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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
social entrepreneurship, impact investing, philanthropy
and corporate social responsibility.

Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Philanthropy

This category includes stories about philanthropy, typically covering the generosity of individuals, families, groups of individuals and foundations (nonprofits primarily in the business of funding other nonprofits.

Statewide Health Information Network of New York Introduces New Alert System to Improve Care for High-Risk Patients

New York State Department of Health, Brooklyn Health Home and Oscar Demonstrate How Healthix’s Clinical Event Notifications Protect Patients in New York City and Long Island through Real-Time Alerts

New York, NY: The New York State Health Department today joined with Healthix, the Brooklyn Health Home and Oscar to provide an update on the development of New York’s new electronic health record system, the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY).

To demonstrate how the SHIN-NY operates on a regional level, the group highlighted Healthix’s patient alert system, which allows care managers to receive real-time alerts when their patients are admitted to or discharged from a hospital, helping to improve care coordination and reduce avoidable hospital re-admissions.

Healthix, the largest of the nine Qualified Entities that comprise the SHIN-NY, already facilitates health information exchange for 10 million patients across Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Long Island.

“Healthix and the other regional networks that comprise the Statewide Health Information Network of New York are essential to improving the delivery of health care in the Empire State,” said acting New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. “By utilizing advancements in health technology, the SHIN-NY network has given us the ability to ensure that critical health data is up to date and available when it is needed the most.”

Earlier this year, the New York State legislature voted to appropriate $55MM to support the development of the SHIN-NY — a “network of networks.” The SHIN-NY will enable doctors and patients to securely access their electronic health records no matter where they live or work in the state. Access to critical health information will improve the quality of care and help reduce unnecessary hospital re-admissions, a key driver of healthcare expenditures in New York.

Healthix’s patient alert system, also known as Clinical Event Notifications, triggers over 5,000 monthly real-time updates to case managers about their high-risk patients, allowing them to better navigate crisis situations and develop comprehensive health care plans to further their care in the future.

“We at Healthix are gratified to be able to deliver tools designed to support providers, assist care managers and help coordinate the care of patients, many of whom struggle with multiple co-morbidities and other complex conditions,” said Tom Check, CEO of Healthix. “With a growing number of participating clinical, behavioral health and social service providers, as well as health plans, Healthix provides secure access to current patient information wherever and whenever it’s needed.”

The Brooklyn Health Home (BHH) coordinates care for over 8,000 at-risk patients across the borough of Brooklyn, and has utilized Healthix’s clinical event notifications with successful results. By using the system, the Health Home’s community-based care managers have been able to expeditiously respond to their patients’ urgent care needs, including visits to emergency rooms and hospital admissions. For example, care managers can bring critical information about patients to hospital staff in real-time, and communicate with patients’ providers in the community to collaborate on care plans that will prevent avoidable hospital visits in the future.

BHH has also implemented protocols that are triggered once a care manager receives an alert. For example, care managers must visit hospitalized patients within two business days, and conduct case conferences with the clinical team. In the third quarter of 2014, Brooklyn Health Home care managers received over 1,300 clinical event notifications from Healthix, and timely responses to these alerts increased by 10% from February – September of 2014.

“Real-time communication and collaboration with a patient’s care team, especially around critical events like ER visits and hospital stays, is the fundamental core of our program,” said Dr. Karen Nelson, Executive Director of the Brooklyn Health Home and Senior Vice President of Integrated Delivery Systems at Maimonides Medical Center. “The Healthix alerts, which are integrated in our care coordination IT platform, are the key drivers that facilitate understanding the root causes of acute care utilization and developing care plans to keep individuals well, in their communities, and accessing appropriate care and services.”

Oscar, the innovative health insurance company representing 17,000 members in New York, has also utilized Healthix’s Clinical Event Notifications for over six months. Thanks to the system, Oscar’s medical team has engaged 80% of their members who generated a Healthix notification on a variety of urgent healthcare issues. Healthix’s system notified Oscar’s medical team of 66 Emergency Room visits and hospital admissions in the past six weeks alone, allowing Oscar’s nurses to provide appropriate care management services, including: care coordination with the Hospital Discharge Planner about post- acute services, arranging and authorizing outpatient rehabilitation and delivery and authorization of medical equipment and supplies.

“Healthix Clinical Event Notifications have enabled Oscar to support our members through new, meaningful interactions with care,” said Oscar co-founder and co-CEO Mario Schlosser. “The CEN process has had a significant effect on improving both the velocity and effectiveness of Case Management and Care Coordination at Oscar. Through this partnership our in-house team of doctors and nurses are able to supplement their knowledge of member health and in turn continue to provide simple, intuitive, health care for all.”

In addition to the Brooklyn Health Home and Oscar, a growing number of healthcare organizations are utilizing Healthix’s alert system, including: NYU Langone Medical Center, Mount Sinai Health System, North Shore-LIJ Health System, Lutheran Medical Center, Visiting Nurse Service of New York, Federation Employment and Guidance Service, Inc. (FEGS), ProHEALTH Care Associates LLP, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and others.

Currently, patient health data in Healthix is accessible only to healthcare providers within New York City and Long Island. But in 2015 the SHIN-NY will expand Healthix’s reach by connecting healthcare providers and case managers to critical patient health information no matter where they are located in the state, with patient consent. For example, if a patient from New York City needed emergency care while visiting Albany, the SHIN-NY would give the treating physician instant access to that patient’s records in order to provide effective treatment. For patients who live in areas that border several other regions such as the Hudson Valley, the SHIN-NY, will make it easier for all of their providers to access and share the patient’s health records seamlessly.

In addition to improving the quality of care and improving patient safety, creating a statewide network is expected to save hundreds of millions across the state through reduced re-admissions and eliminating redundant tests. For more information about the SHIN-NY, please visit www.nyehealth.org.

About Healthix:

Healthix is a Qualified Entity, devoted to developing, deploying and operating innovative uses of interoperable health information technology and analytics to facilitate patient-centric care for New Yorkers. Healthix was formed through mergers between NYCLIX, LIPIX, and most recently BHIX. The newly merged Healthix expertly delivers health information exchange services, access to clinical data and the tools to support care coordination for over 10 million patients and over 140 participant organizations serving over 500 locations in New York City and Nassau and Suffolk counties. Please visit www.healthix.org to learn more.

About Oscar:

Oscar is a new kind of health insurance company, designed to put people first. Through a high-tech, data-driven approach, easy-to-understand language and a unique set of benefits, Oscar is drastically changing the way we think about and interact with our health insurance. Founded in 2012, Oscar makes health insurance simple, transparent and human. For more information, visit hioscar.com or holaoscar.com.

About the Brooklyn Health Home:

The Brooklyn Health Home (BHH), led by Maimonides Medical Center, was designated by New York State in December 2011. Its goal is to identify, engage and address the full range of behavioral, medical and social problems affecting thousands of patients with multiple chronic conditions, serious mental illness and/or HIV. The BHH fosters collaboration and the timely exchange of patient information among involved providers and drives measurable improvements in patient engagement and outcomes.

BHH currently serves over 8,000 members who live and/or receive care in Brooklyn.

About New York State Department of Health:

The New York State Department of Health is charged with protecting the health, productivity and wellbeing of all New Yorkers by striving to create healthy communities and ensuring access to quality, evidence-based, cost-effective health services. With a budget of more than $58 billion, the Department regulates more than 200 hospitals and hundreds of other health care facilities; administers the state’s public health insurance programs; oversees more than 80,000 New York state-licensed doctors, administers the state health benefit marketplace, NY State of Health; runs a premier biomedical laboratory; and supports numerous, innovative public health and prevention initiatives.

Impact Investing Can Advance Economic Mobility in America

Survey and Report Demonstrate Successes and Opportunities to Help Low-Income Families Climb the Socioeconomic Ladder

Washington, DC, December 11, 2014 – The Aspen Institute today released its report The Bottom Line: Investing for Impact on Economic Mobility in the US showing how investors are making significant impact investments in education, economic security, and health and well-being that are advancing economic mobility for low-income families. These investments are yielding social and financial results and creating models for other investors to follow.

“As a country, we have long believed in the “American Dream” – through hard work and opportunity, we can reach our goals. But with millions struggling, those dreams are being eroded. Social and economic mobility has stagnated, and inequality is rising. Not only are families at risk but so is our nation’s economic security,” said Anne Mosle, vice president of the Aspen Institute.

The Survey

The Aspen Institute, in partnership with Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, conducted its survey of active and emerging investors to assess activity and interest related to investments in education, economic security, and health and well-being. Target respondents included private and community foundations, boutique investment funds, private financial institutions, and private wealth managers and institutional consultants. From the survey:

  • Thirty-nine individuals responded, representing 32 institutional investors from across investor types.
  • Nearly 69 percent of respondents invest in the study’s target impact areas of education, economic assets, and health and well-being.
  • For these respondents, impact investing is not a new practice. Sixty-four percent indicated they have been active impact investors for more than 10 years.
  • Among all respondents, the average investment transaction size varied from less than $100,000 to more than $10 million. Of target impact area investors, the majority of respondents indicated an average transaction size between $100,000 and $3 million.

Point of View Essays and Deals at a Glance

Philanthropic, business, and nonprofit leaders active in the sector contributed a series of thought-provoking essays offering their insights and lessons. These include Clara Miller, F.B. Heron Foundation; Kate Wolford, McKnight Foundation; Audrey Choi, Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing; and Kyle Zimmer and Jane Robinson, First Book.

The report also contains snapshots of deals, including work by the Calvert Foundation, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Kresge Foundation, and Living Cities.

The Report

The Bottom Line: Investing for Impact on Economic Mobility in the US takes an in-depth look at how impact investments in education, economic security, and health and well-being can advance economic mobility in low-income families. The report details critical aspects of investing in each.

Education:

  • Investing beyond school infrastructure to educational outcomes;
  • Focusing on quality and efficiency; and,
  • Leveraging intermediaries to deploy large amounts of capital effectively.

Economic assets:

  • Using diverse forms of capital to initiate and sustain economic opportunity;
  • Collaborating to invest in local ecosystems; and,
  • Leveraging data to scale what works and eliminate barriers.

Health and well-being:

  • Reducing disparities in access and quality of care;
  • Managing the costs of care; and,
  • Investing in health systems.

Success Stories

The research also yielded numerous case studies demonstrating measurable success from the impact investments.

Acelero Learning: Closing the Achievement Gap in Early Education

Acelero is a for-profit social enterprise committed to closing the achievement gap for children and families served by Head Start Programs. Founded by Aaron Lieberman and Henry Wilde, Acelero Learning is a prime example of how both financial and human resources from across sectors can be leveraged to design and employ a market-based approach to improving outcomes for low-income children and families in the US.

Acelero Learning serves 5,000 low-income children directly, preparing them to enter kindergarten, with another 20,000 benefitting from the school’s tools, training, and resources. The program not only tracks 30 indicators of student progress, but requires parents to sign a contract to read to their children at least 20 minutes each night, while offering them effectiveness coaching and other help.

What they have achieved with their relentless focus on results for families is year-to-year gains with their children on standardized tests that are 50% higher than Head Start programs overall.

Center for Employment Opportunities, US Social Finance and Bank of America: Tackling Recidivism

This pay-for-success contract, issued by the state of New York, is the first such contract to be offered directly to individual qualified investors and is aimed at measurably reducing criminal recidivism. Within it, the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO) offers job training to 2,000 clients in New York City and Rochester. Bank of America Merrill Lynch offered the investment to its private banking clients.

CEO estimates intensive job support for people coming out of incarceration saves $60,000 per individual per year. New York State, for example, pays about half of that, or $85 for each bed-day saved.

Investors will start to receive repayments if the project reduces the number of nights the clients in CEO’s target group spend back in prison by at least 8 percent, compared to a similar group that does not receive CEO’s services.

The New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision will evaluate a randomized control trial that compares the employment and recidivism outcomes of the 2,000 participants served by CEO with a control group referred by parole officers to traditional service providers.

Over the past year, the Aspen Institute has documented lessons learned from the impact/mission-driven investment field and the developing strategies and tools to apply market-based solutions toward efforts that can create economic security and promote educational success, as well as improve the health and well-being of low-income families across the US.

The research and report are a project of Ascend at the Aspen Institute and the Program on Philanthropy and Social Innovation.

Ascend at the Aspen Institute is the national hub for breakthrough ideas and collaborations that move vulnerable children and their parents toward educational success and economic security. We take a two-generation approach to our work – focusing on children and their parents together. We bring a gender and a racial equity lens to our analysis. For more information, visit ascend.aspeninstitute.org

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visit www.aspeninstitute.org

Deliver Meals with God’s Love We Deliver for Winter Feast

Spread holiday cheer and Deliver Meals on December 24

Brooklyn, NY, December 11, 2014 – God’s Love We Deliver is seeking volunteers to deliver meals on Christmas Eve morning for their holiday celebration “Winter Feast,” December 24, 2014.

Every year God’s Love cooks and delivers special holiday feasts for their clients, their families and a guest.

“Winter Feast is a very special day at God’s Love,” says Steven Marion, Director of Special Events and Volunteer Services. “The holiday season culminates in this special day. We love to watch our community come together in celebration, to help their neighbors in need, and to spread holiday cheer!”

God’s Love We Deliver needs volunteers to help deliver Winter Feast to their clients, their families and guests. The menu features Cornish game hen, wild rice stuffing, corn chowder, fresh vegetables and pumpkin mousse.

In addition to delivering holiday meals, volunteers will deliver a special Blizzard Box filled with non-perishable food items. With these Blizzard Boxes, the clients of God’s Love We Deliver will have food in the unlikely event that God’s Love cannot deliver due to winter weather.

This year, God’s Love will work with over 1,000 volunteers to cook and deliver over 3,000 special holiday feasts.

Sign up to register for Winter Feast volunteering with the God’s Love 2014 Winter Feast Registration form.

For more information on Winter Feast volunteering, please visit http://www.glwd.org/winterfeast. For more information on volunteering, please contact God’s Love at volunteer@glwd.org.

Help God’s Love We Deliver get the word out about volunteering:

About God’s Love We Deliver

God’s Love is the New York metropolitan area’s leading provider of life-sustaining meals and nutritional counseling for people living with severe illnesses. Begun as an HIV/AIDS service organization, today God’s Love provides for people living with more than 200 individual diagnoses. God’s Love cooks and home-delivers the specific, nutritious meals a client’s severe illness and treatment so urgently require. Meals are individually tailored for each client by a team of Registered Dietitians, and all clients have access to unlimited nutrition counseling. God’s Love supports families by providing meals for the children and senior caregivers of its clients. All of the agency’s services are provided free of charge, and in its history of more than 29 years, God’s Love We Deliver has never had a waiting list. For more information, visit www.godslovewedeliver.org. Follow God’s Love on Facebook and follow them on Twitter, @godslovenyc. God’s Love is a non-sectarian organization.

Boys & Girls Club Partners With Graduation Alliance to Help At­-Risk Students

SALT LAKE CITY — The Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley has recently partnered with Graduation Alliance to provide a new program to help at-­risk students, as well as those who have left school before graduation, to earn their high school diploma.

The program, funded by grant money from The Caldwell Family Foundation, will initially open 10 seats to students from the South Salt Lake area who need additional academic and social support to reach graduation.

Participants in the program will be enrolled in online courses that meet the graduation requirements of their high school. Participants will receive one­-on-­one support and a structured environment to focus on their school work at the Midvale and Murray Boys & Girls Clubs. Graduation Alliance will provide the courses, tutors, teachers and mentoring the students need to advance in earning their diplomas.

“The partnership between Graduation Alliance and Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley will provide students with the additional face­-to-­face time and academic support they need in order to be successful,” said Kim Kelley, director of strategic programs at Graduation Alliance. “We’ve seen how this can change lives, and we’re eager to do that in Utah.”

Founded in Salt Lake City, Graduation Alliance works with thousands of at-­risk students across the country to provide the flexibility, social support and academic interventions they need to earn a high school diploma and successfully transition to college and career training.

“Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley has a mission to help each student in our program graduate high school with a diploma,” said Machelle Lake, Director of Special Events and Communications. “This new partnership with Graduation Alliance brings together two organizations that share that common mission, benefitting the student and the community.”

One such student is Daniel C, who was forced to leave high school last year due to multiple interstate family moves. The 17 year old now comes to The Club every day to work on earning his high school diploma. His goal is to be able to graduate with his class next spring. “Getting my diploma will give me the opportunity for a better future,” Daniel said.

“We’ve been working outside of Utah for several years now, and we are excited for the new partnership with Boys & Girls Clubs because it has opened doors for us to help students in our own neighborhood,” Graduation Alliance CEO Ray Kelly said. “This has been a long time coming, and we are eager to begin working with these students who need additional support due to life circumstances.”

Since 2007, Graduation Alliance has specialized in creating learning environments for underserved student populations, crafting curriculum strong in career and technical education, and facilitating academic mentorship programs for a diversity of learners. For more information visit GraduationAlliance.com.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley

Affiliated with Boys & Girls Clubs of America, the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley (BGCSV) was founded in 1967. The Club serves and promotes life changing experiences for all children, especially those at risk. These kids are at risk for drug and alcohol exposure and abuse, at risk to witness or experience physical violence, at risk to encounter food instability and at risk to be introduced to gangs. The Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley has worked tirelessly to ensure that success, hope and opportunity is within reach of every youth and family that enters their doors. BGCSV has nearly 3,000 registered members in 8 locations and 10 age ­appropriate programs each year. Club locations are in Murray and Midvale, and additional programs operate after school at elementary schools in Midvale, Kearns and Sandy. As the largest and oldest Boys & Girls Club in the State of Utah, hundreds of thousands of youth and families have passed through the doors of BGCSV Clubs over the past 47 years. In addition, the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Valley reaches nearly 48,000 youth through their outreach and community service programs. Visit www.bgcsv.org for more information.

Westminster Named to 2014 Presidential Honor Roll for Community Service

Students performed more than 80,000 hours of community service in 2013

SALT LAKE CITY – For the eighth consecutive year, the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) has named Westminster to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The organization recognizes institutions of higher education that support exemplary community service programs and raise the visibility of effective practices in campus community partnerships.

This year, Westminster was included in the honor roll in the following areas: interfaith service, general community service and education.

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“Westminster College is committed to community engagement throughout every area of the college. It begins with our mission statement that states ‘our purposes are to prepare students to lead lives of learning, accomplishment, and service,’” said Julie Tille, director of Westminster’s Katherine W. Dumke Center for Civic Engagement. “We are pleased to be recognized once again for our service and interfaith efforts.”

During the 2012-13 school year, Westminster students have performed more than 80,000 hours of community service—up 9,000 hours from the previous year. Students and have participated in programs that have: helped mentor ESL students at East High School; provided support and mentorship to the village of Wai, Maharashtra, India; assisted to Granite Park Junior High’s refugees/underrepresented students by providing weekly mentorship sessions that focus on college readiness; created programs to help students in South Salt Lake; organized faith retreats and programs; offered courses about Autism Spectrum Disorders and hosted community events for families of children with autism, to name a few.

“Social responsibility and ethical awareness through teamwork and collaboration are at the core of Westminster’s learning goals and mission,” added Tille. “The culture of community service is strong throughout campus, and begins as soon as students set foot on campus their freshmen year. We pride ourselves in incorporating service not only into our extracurricular offerings, but in our academic curriculum as well.”

CNCS has administered the award since 2006 in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, as well as the American Council on Education, Campus Compact, and the Interfaith Youth Core. More than 700 higher education institutions across the nation were recognized this year for their service commitments.

About Westminster:

Westminster is a nationally recognized, comprehensive liberal arts college. With a broad array of graduate and undergraduate programs, Westminster is distinguished by its unique environment for learning. Westminster prepares students for success through active and engaged learning, real world experiences and its vibrant campus community. Westminster’s unique location, adjacent to the Rocky Mountains and to the dynamic city of Salt Lake, further enriches the college experience. For more information, visit www.westminstercollege.edu or follow WestminsterSLC on Twitter.

Wealth-X Reveals: The Largest Philanthropic Donations Of 2014

Buffet Tops List With US$2.1 Billion Donation, 8 of Top 10 Donors Are Americans

New York, 10 December, 2014 – With the season of giving upon us, Wealth-X today released a list of the 10 biggest single charitable donations of 2014. Billionaire investor Warren Buffet made the largest donation of 2014, giving US$2.1 billion to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in the form of 16.6 million shares of his company, Berkshire Hathaway.

Eight of the top 10 donations of 2014 were made by American philanthropists. Hong Kong real estate tycoons Ronnie and Gerald Chan are the only non-Americans to appear on the list. The billionaire brothers collectively gave a US$350 million gift to Harvard University, the largest ever in the school’s history.

Harvard also received a US$150 million donation from hedge fund manager Kenneth Griffin to support financial aid. Six of the top 10 donations of 2014 were made to educational institutions, two were given to health causes, and two went to philanthropic foundations.

Below are 10 largest philanthropic donations of 2014:

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*Donated amounts only take into account donations that have already been made, and do not include pledged amounts. 

About Wealth-X

Wealth-X is the world’s leading ultra high net worth (UHNW) intelligence and prospecting firm with the largest collection of curated research on UHNW individuals, defined as those with net assets of US$30 million and above. The firm’s Wealth-X Professional solution is the standard for banking, luxury marketing and not-for-profit professionals working with the ultra affluent. Headquartered in Singapore, Wealth-X has 13 offices across five continents. (www.wealthx.com)

UNICEF And Millicom Team Up For A Safer Internet World For Children

UNICEF and Millicom have formally agreed to a three-year alliance to improve respect for children’s rights in the telecommunication sector. The partnership will strive for positive change within the industry through pilot implementation of the Children’s Rights and Business Principles and the UNICEF and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) Guidelines for Industry on Child Online Protection.

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Millicom and UNICEF plan to create standards for good practice in the telecommunication sector that protect children online and respect their right to privacy, freedom of thought, opinion, culture and safety. Children and young people face an increasing number of risks online, from targeted marketing using their personal information to bullying and harassment, identity theft and online abuse.

The alliance seeks to:

  • Map the risks to and opportunities for children’s rights in the telecommunication sector and in specific operational settings
  • Develop and promote industry-specific guidance on how the telecommunication sector can improve respect for children’s rights, specifically through implementing the Children’s Rights and Business Principles and
  • Develop case studies on lessons learned in implementing the Children’s Rights and Business Principles and the UNICEF and ITU Guidelines for Industry on Child Online Protection.

UNICEF and Millicom have been in discussions since 2012, when Millicom provided feedback on UNICEF’s Children’s Rights and Business Principles tools for implementation. Millicom then piloted UNICEF’s Children’s Rights Checklist at its operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Subsequently, Millicom and UNICEF began formalizing their collaboration to outline future work and to ensure that their common objectives were met.

Millicom’s Executive Vice President of Strategic Operations and Partnerships, Rachel Samrén said: “Companies have many strategic and direct ways to influence children’s lives positively, beyond charity work or fighting child labour. At Millicom, we always ‘demand more’ and so we are proud to be at the forefront of putting into action the great work with UNICEF that takes a wider perspective on business responsibility and children.”

“UNICEF is committed to working with business to identify the shared value that can be created when improving child rights within each industry,” said Gérard Bocquenet, UNICEF Director of Private Fundraising and Partnerships. “We are proud to join Millicom in identifying how children can be better protected online in this growing virtual world. It is truly an important issue that is increasingly relevant to children everywhere.”

Foundation Center and Center for Disaster Philanthropy Release New Research Tracking How Foundation Funding Flows to Disasters

Research Lays Foundation for Data Collection Network to Improve Disaster Philanthropy

New York, NY, and Washington, DC — December 11, 2014. Today Foundation Center, the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide, and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP), the only full-time resource devoted to disaster philanthropy, released a new report to help donors, NGOs, government agencies, and media gain an increased understanding of how much foundation funding is spent on disasters each year, by whom, and for what activities. Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2014: Data to Drive Decisions presents an analysis of funding for disasters by the largest U.S. foundations. It finds that, in 2012, 234 foundations made 884 grants totaling $111 million for disasters.

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“The research released today establishes critical baseline data about foundation funding for disasters and helps fill a gap in knowledge that historically has been incomplete and difficult to access,” said Robert G. Ottenhoff, president and CEO of CDP. “This new report and CDP’s partnership with Foundation Center represent important steps towards capturing a more complete picture of the funding landscape.”

According to the research findings, the majority of disaster grantmaking in 2012 was for natural disasters ($64.9 million), and almost half of all disaster funding was directed to response and relief efforts ($51.5 million). The report also examines the philanthropic response to earlier disasters, explores the media landscape, and anticipates what it will take to improve coordination and collaboration for more effective disaster-related giving. Three case studies in the report take a closer look at foundations that have made substantial investments in disaster preparedness, relief, and recovery.

“It’s encouraging to see foundations demonstrate innovation and commitment in going beyond emergency response to address the full life cycle of disasters,” said Lawrence T. McGill, vice president for research at Foundation Center and one of the report’s authors.

During a special webinar slated for Tuesday, December 16, donors, NGOs, government agencies, the media, and others interested can hear directly from the researchers and ask questions about the findings from Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2014: Data to Drive Decisions. Register online.

The research report is part of a broader effort to track philanthropic funding flows to disasters, cultivate an online data gathering network, and equip the field with strategic resources for improving disaster preparedness, response, and resilience. A searchable online platform launching in late 2015 will make this information accessible, facilitate even more peer-to-peer learning, and provide an opportunity for additional funders to contribute to this collective body of knowledge.

“The data network and resulting website can help shift how organizations understand, prepare for, and respond to disasters,” said Bradford K. Smith, president of Foundation Center. “Our goal is to empower donors to make more effective giving decisions related to disasters and ultimately improve the practice of philanthropy through better coordination and transparency.”

This project was made possible by a generous gift from The Irene W. and C.B. Pennington Foundation. An expert advisory committee comprised of foundations, humanitarian organizations, and philanthropic support organizations is also providing ongoing guidance and insight for the project.

Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2014: Data to Drive Decisions can be downloaded for free at Foundation Center’s website or at the Center for Disaster Philanthropy’s website.

SDSU Applications at an All-Time High

San Diego State University has received more than 79,000 undergraduate applications for fall 2015.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (Dec. 11, 2014) — For the fourth year in a row San Diego State University has received a record number of applications.
The application period for fall 2015 closed on Nov. 30 with 81,080 freshmen and undergraduate transfer student applications. That is an increase of more than 2 percent from last year’s record 79,135 applications for fall 2014.

“We are excited to again see record interest in our academic programs. This interest reflects the dedicated efforts of our talented faculty and staff members, our growing national reputation and the extraordinary achievements of our alumni and current students.” said SDSU President Elliot Hirshman.

Among the fall undergraduate applications are 58,193 first-time freshmen and 22,816 upper division transfer students, up 4 and 6 percent respectively over last year.

Quality and quantity

As the number of applications to the university increases, so too does the academic achievement of its students. The 2014 class of freshmen for the San Diego campus is the highest-achieving in the history of the university. Among the 4,978 first-time freshmen this year, the average high school GPA is 3.69 with an average SAT score of 1115, up from 3.61 and 1106 the year before. The incoming class is also highly diverse; 52.9 percent of first-time freshmen are students of color.

Thanks in part to these academic achievements, SDSU continues to build momentum in national rankings, moving up 34 spots from No. 183 in 2011 to No. 149 in this year’s U.S. News and World Report’s list of national universities.

Fall 2015 applicants can expect notification of acceptance by March 2015.

Celebrities Display Raw Emotion, are Rendered “Speechless” In New, Unscripted NO MORE PSAs on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault

Footage created as part of Joyful Heart Foundation NO MORE PSA shoots directed by Founder Mariska Hargitay

WHAT: Today, a new series of NO MORE domestic violence and sexual assault PSAs will begin rolling out, featuring more than a dozen celebrities who are so moved by the content of the shoot that they are left without words. Entitled “Speechless,” the newest PSA series created by the Joyful Heart Foundation for the NO MORE movement is a raw, unscripted and powerful video collection that shows the candid responses as these men and women attempt to talk about domestic violence and sexual assault. The PSAs will be seen on NBC (Dec. 10), USA Network (Dec. 12), on several Viacom brands (starting Dec. 15), and during NFL broadcasts this season.

“Speechless” was not planned. It was an unexpected byproduct when emotions ran high while shooting other scripts previously aired. The spots are stark, spare visually and use only ambient sound. “Speechless” was designed to shed light on how difficult it is to talk about these taboo, hidden and painful subjects. The spots reveal the depth to which we are all affected by these previously unspeakable issues. They urge viewers to start a conversation about domestic and sexual violence with friends and loved ones.

NO MORE is a public awareness and bystander engagement movement around domestic violence and sexual assault, and is comprised of hundreds of national and local groups that are working to address these issues in the United States.

The NO MORE PSAs are the result of an unprecedented collaboration of celebrities, athletes, corporations, foundations and service providers who have donated their resources to bring these hidden issues into the public eye in a way that has never been done before. They were developed pro bono by Rachel Howald at the global ad agency Y&R (Young & Rubicam), produced by the Joyful Heart Foundation and Viacom’s social responsibility umbrella Viacommunity and Viacom Velocity; directed by Joyful Heart Foundation founder Mariska Hargitay; and photographed by renowned celebrity photographer Timothy White.

Similar “Speechless” PSAs featuring current and former NFL players (watch here) aired during NFL broadcasts on Thanksgiving Day for more than 92 million viewers, an advertising value of $2.1 million.

Since October 23, NO MORE PSAs featuring NFL players have been airing each week during NFL broadcasts reaching 16.6 million people per game – more than 590 million in total. The original, celebrity NO MORE PSAs launched in September 2013 and have since aired more than 39,000 times nationwide.

For more information about NO MORE visit www.nomore.org.

WHY: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 1 in 3 women 1 in 4 men in the United States have experienced rape, physical violence, and stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Twenty four people every minute – more than 12 million women and men – are victims of physical violence, rape and stalking from their partners in one year.

The 2013 “NO MORE Study,” commissioned by the Avon Foundation for Women reveals that despite the vast numbers impacted by these crimes, people are not talking about them. Three out of four (73%) parents have not had a conversation about domestic violence or sexual assault with their children.

Simply starting a conversation about these issues can help – as 64% of Americans say if we talk more about domestic violence and sexual assault, it would make it easier to help someone.

NO MORE is helping to get the conversation started.

WHEN: Dec. 10-15, 2014

WHO: Celebrity participants in the “Speechless NO MORE” PSAs include the following (and PSAs will be rolling out with select talent):

  • Andre Braugher
  • Blair Underwood
  • Camryn Manheim
  • Chris Meloni
  • Dann Florek
  • Danny Pino
  • Dave Navarro
  • Debra Messing
  • Hilary Swank
  • Ice T
  • Jemima Kirke
  • Kelli Giddish
  • Keshia Chante
  • Mariska Hargitay
  • Mary J Blige
  • Max Joseph
  • Megan Hilty
  • Raul Esparza
  • Shad Moss
  • Sway Calloway
  • Tim Gunn

Interviews available upon request with:

  • Dave Navarro, Spike Ink Master and Viacommunity spokesperson, whose mother was killed by an abusive partner
  • Domestic violence and sexual assault prevention experts and service providers
  • Virginia Witt, Director, NO MORE
  • Maile Zambuto, Chief Executive Officer, Joyful Heart Foundation
  • Rachel Howald, Y&R (Young & Rubicam), Creative Director of NO MORE PSA campaign
  • Niels Schuurmans, Executive Vice President of Viacom Velocity Creative Content Solutions at Viacom, Inc.
  • Survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault

About NO MORE:

NO MORE is a public awareness and engagement campaign focused on ending domestic violence and sexual assault. Using its signature blue symbol to increase visibility and foster greater dialogue, NO MORE seeks to break social stigma, normalize the conversation around domestic violence and sexual assault, and increase resources to address these urgent issues. NO MORE is aligned with hundreds of organizations working at the local, state and national levels on prevention, advocacy, and services for survivors. To find out how you can get involved, visit www.nomore.org. Or for regular updates, follow NO MORE on Twitter @NOMOREorg or Facebook www.facebook.com/NOMORE.org.

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