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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: October 2015

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Islamic Relief USA and Newark, NJ Muslims to Serve Neighbors in Need on ‘Day of Dignity’

ALEXANDRIA, VA, October 30, 2015 – Newark Muslims will distribute food and supplies to the local homeless on Saturday, October 31st, during the annual Day of Dignity campaign sponsored by Islamic Relief USA. The partner of this year’s event is NIA Masjid and Community Center.

Islamic Relief USA has partnered with local organizations across the United States for over a decade to host the annual Day of Dignity event. Day of Dignity creates an opportunity for caring individuals from diverse communities to provide services to their neighbors in need. Food, clothing, blankets, and hygiene kits are just some of the items distributed during Day of Dignity events. And, often, free medical care, screenings and even barber services are provided. It’s a day to come together and work together for a better world. The food and services are available to anyone in need, regardless of faith.

Event Details:

Location: 229-231 Roseville Avenue, Newark, New Jersey 07107

Time: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

“Islam teaches that we should not eat while our neighbor is hungry,” according to Islamic Relief USA. “Our annual Day of Dignity brings communities together to care for our neighbors. We are issuing a call to organizations around the country to find new, long-lasting ways to give back to our communities.”

Vice Special Report: Countdown To Zero


Special Offers An Expansive Look At Revolutionary Medical Breakthroughs And Challenges That Remain In Ending HIV/AIDS Worldwide

In-Depth Report Features Interviews With Policymakers, Activists, Researchers And Patients Leading The Quest For An AIDS-Free World, Including President George W. Bush And Bono

Watch trailer here:

Humanity may be on the cusp of the first AIDS-free generation in decades. Research into a cure is progressing at a remarkable pace, and this treatable disease is now being beaten in global hot spots by access to health care and prevention methods.

Ranging from high-tech American labs, where the DNA of HIV-positive patients is being edited to resist the virus, to South African clinics that are participating in the largest vaccine trial in history, VICE SPECIAL REPORT: COUNTDOWN TO ZERO goes inside the search for the cure and a preventative vaccine that could eliminate AIDS. Hosted by VICE founders and correspondents Shane Smith and Suroosh Alvi, the timely special debuts on World AIDS Day, TUESDAY, DEC. 1 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT), exclusively on HBO.

The special will also be available on HBO NOW and HBO GO.

From President George W. Bush and Bono, the lead singer of U2 and co-founder of (RED) and ONE, to the clinicians and patients who are battling HIV and AIDS every day, VICE interviews the world’s leading HIV/AIDS activists. Smith sits down with President Bush at the Bush Institute on SMU’s campus in Dallas to discuss the success of the United States-led PEPFAR (President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief) initiative, perhaps the greatest legacy of his presidency, and Alvi travels to Rwanda with Bono to see PEPFAR in action.

In Rwanda, Alvi sees firsthand the progress that has been made. Infection rates have been cut in half and mother-to-child HIV transmission is completely eliminated in some regions. South Africa, however, provides a discouraging contrast, because much work remains to be done in stemming the disease there.

Then, VICE takes a deep dive into the world of HIV/AIDS research to learn just how close we are to discovering a cure and vaccine. Smith visits the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, and Dr. Carl June’s cutting-edge lab at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Dr. Anthony Fauci, renowned immunologist and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, explains why this research is pivotal.

While we may be on the threshold of a cure, the disease is still ravaging communities in America today, particularly among gay men and intravenous drug users. VICE travels to San Francisco and Indiana, the front lines of the fight against HIV/AIDS in the United States, to bring attention to the work that still needs to be done and to highlight why, despite the progress to date, the fight is not over yet.

“As with our specials on prison reform and fighting cancer this year, Shane and his team at VICE are shining a light on a major social issue of this era,” notes Michael Lombardo, president, HBO Programming. “VICE is passionate about the stories they tell, and we are grateful we can translate that energy into raising awareness of this epidemic to our audience and beyond.”

“HIV is the epidemic of our modern age,” says Smith. “We’re on the brink of scientific developments that will end the disease for good — but it isn’t gone yet. Millions are still being infected every year. This documentary is a comprehensive look at the state of HIV/AIDS today, how far we’ve come in fighting it, and how far we still have to go.”

VICE SPECIAL REPORT: COUNTDOWN TO ZERO is executive produced by Shane Smith, Eddy Moretti and BJ Levin; co-executive producer, Jonah Kaplan; supervising producer, Tim Clancy; produced by Matthew Horowitz and David Laven.


VICE is the world’s preeminent youth media company and content creation studio. Launched in 1994, VICE now operates in over 30 countries and distributes its programming to hundreds of millions of viewers each month across digital, linear, mobile, film and socials. VICE includes an international network of digital channels; a television and feature film production studio; a magazine; a record label; an in-house creative services agency; and a book-publishing division.

VICE’s award-winning programming has been recognized by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, Peabody Awards, Sundance Film Festival, PEN Center, Cannes Lions, Frontline Club, Knight Foundation, American Society of Magazine Editors, LA Press Club and Webby Awards, among others.

$100,000 Centre Inspires Grant and Oak Tree Award Announcements Made at Centre Foundation’s Annual Dinner

State College, PA – After weeks of waiting and months of preparation, New Leaf Initiative in partnership with the Food Reclamation Network of Centre County celebrated as their grant proposal, “Food Centres,” was named the 2015 Centre Inspires $100,000 grant recipient during Centre Foundation’s Annual Dinner on Wednesday, October 28th at the Nittany Lion Inn.

“This year, the Centre Inspires granting cycle was focused on community engagement through health and social services,” explained Molly Kunkel, Executive Director at Centre Foundation. “This program encourages collaboration among different sectors in Centre County in an effort to transform an element of our area.”

The “Food Centres” project aims to make healthy, local food accessible to all Centre County residents. Retro-fitted shipping containers will hold cold-storage units for fresh produce. The proposal outlines three of these mobile Food Centres to be located throughout the county at places where there can also be a programming space for things like kids’ cooking classes and farm-to-table workshops. Volunteers will collect extra food from farms, grocery stores, and restaurants to store in the cold-storage units in order to allow local relief organizations to distribute the reclaimed food to their clients.

“New Leaf is honored to be selected as the 2015 Centre Inspires recipient,” said Galen Bernard, Executive Director at New Leaf Initiative. “We love how the ‘Food Centres’ project demonstrates what economic and cultural boost occurs when we inspire, connect, and equip young innovators like Jessie (Pierce) and Kevin (Sims) to solve community challenges. An exciting number of partners have joined this project to address local food insecurity and we all appreciate the Centre Foundation’s support.”

On hand to help New Leaf celebrate was last year’s grant recipient, “Book Benches of Centre County,” which was the inaugural Centre Inspires project. Four of the ultimate 25 fiberglass benches in the shapes of open books were on display for guests to view. Centre County scenes depicted on the benches by local artists included Grange Fair, trout fishing by a barn, childhood imagination through reading, and nature through the seasons.

A prominent supporter of the arts herself, Barbara Palmer was recognized at Centre Foundation’s 2015 Oak Tree Award recipient. Through her fund at the Foundation, Palmer has continued making an impact in the community and is firmly committed to its future.

With a look of delighted surprise, Palmer accepted the award surrounded by many friends. Friends who had lived on her street for decades, raised children with, and even one whom she has stayed in touch with years after the friend moved to Arkansas

Indeed, by Sandra “Sandy” Keiser Edwards, has maintained many treasured friendships in the area. As the evening’s keynote speaker, Edwards was welcomed back during the dinner, which took on a reunion-feel. Edwards and her late husband, Clay, worked in development for Penn State for many years.

Now the Deputy Director of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art – the free public art museum in Northwest Arkansas that was founded by the Walton Family Foundation, Edwards understands the total impact that art can have on a community. Edwards’ keynote address was entitled “Community Engagement through the Arts,” and highlighted how art can not only raise the cultural awareness in a community but can also act as an economic driver.

No matter a donor’s specific interest, Edwards encouraged local community donors to “tell their story.” In her opinion, it’s important to share one’s philanthropic passion, the story of the fund a donor created, and how it helps the wider “ecosystem of a community.”

“Sandy’s love of place really shined throughout her presentation and we were so happy to welcome her back,” noted Kunkel. “Sandy knows that our community has all the components necessary to flourish – dedicated community members and a caring network of organizations. She challenged the community to keep trying new things and collaborate with the Foundation on innovative projects.”

Over 200 community members attended the dinner, which is thrown each year in appreciation of donors who have utilized Centre Foundation as a way to make an impact in our area by establishing non-profit organizational endowment funds. Donors can also be engaged and make an impact through the Foundation’s giving circle, Centre Gives, Centre PACT – Philanthropic Actions Created by Teens, or by joining the Campbell Society for future gifts.

Centre Foundation is committed to helping donors fulfill their philanthropic goals by building and maintaining a permanent collection of endowment funds. The Foundation champions the betterment of Centre County for both present and future generations with trustworthy leadership in shaping effective responses to community issues and opportunities.

Tibet House US and Christie’s Host 13th Annual Benefit Auction December 3, 2015

New York, NY (October 5, 2015) – Tibet House US has announced that the 13th Annual Benefit Auction, in conjunction with renowned auction house Christie’s, will take place on Thursday, December 3, 2015. Proceeds from the auction will benefit Tibet House US and The Tibetan Community of New York and New Jersey.

This year’s Honorary Chair Committee includes Philip Glass, Petra Nemcova, Yoko Ono Lennon, Sandra & Eric Ripert, Martin Scorsese, Trudie Styler & Sting, Uma Thurman, Jann Wenner & Matt Nye, and Arden Wohl.

Charitybuzz will return as the event’s online auction partner. The Tibet House US auction will be live from November 24, 2015, to December 3, 2015, at

Auction Highlights Include:

Rare Items & Opportunities: two tickets to meet Sting at his one-night-only benefit concert at Carnegie Hall and attend a post-show gala dinner at The Plaza Hotel; the once-in-a-lifetime chance to star in an autobiographical musical with professional Broadway actors , produced by Apples and Oranges Studios; a behind-the- scenes look at New York Fashion Week with supermodel Petra Nemcova; a private food and wine tasting for seven people by Le Bernardin’s world-renowned chef Eric Ripert and Wine Director Aldo Sohm at Aldo Sohm Wine Bar; a shopping spree at Donna Karan’s Urban Zen; a personalized voice message from Hugh Jackman; a walk-on role in a major Hollywood motion picture, internships at Def Jam and Rolling Stone magazine, a ride to the destination of your choice on a private Millennium Jet and additional items from Ethan Hawke, Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino.

Adventures & Exotic Trips: A eight-day adventure for two hosted by Aqua Expeditions and GeoEx, which includes four nights exploring the scenic Mekong river life of Vietnam and Cambodia aboard the Aqua Mekong luxury cruise vessel and a three-night luxury stay before or after the cruise; wildly luxurious African adventures from EXPLORE, highlighting the best of Botswana, Victoria Falls, the Ultimate South African Safari and/or Cape Town; a ten-day exotic trip to Bali for two; a magical journey to the Gobi desert in Mongolia with Nomadic Expeditions; a Peruvian Amazon cruise for two on Delfin Cruises; a seven-day stay in Tibet at the Norden Travel’s The Norden Camp.

Contemporary Art & Photography: Rare artwork by Christo, Ross Bleckner, Danny Clinch, Shepard Fairey, Milton Glaser, Herb Green, Bob Gruen, Elliott Landy, Sheila Metzner, Ben Morea, Michele Oka Doner, Ed Ruscha, Patti Smith and Peter Tunney.

Fashion & Jewelry: Pieces by Erickson Beamon, Paula Crevoshay, Darlene de Sedle, Mara Hoffman, Pamela Huizenga, Me + Ro, Paula Mendoza, Doyle Mueser, OSKLEN, Jill Platner and Arden Wohl.

Tibet & Beyond: Antique and ceremonial objects, Tibetan rugs, sculptures, and other global finds.

For more information regarding this year’s Auction, please visit

Calvert Investments Continues Expansion of The Calvert Responsible Index Series

Developed Markets Ex-U.S. and U.S. Mid Cap Latest Introductions

BETHESDA, Md., October 30, 2015 – Calvert Investments, Inc., a global leader in responsible investing, announced today the introduction of two new indexes in the Calvert Responsible Index Series: the Calvert Developed Markets Ex-U.S. Responsible Index (CALDMI) and the Calvert U.S. Mid Cap Core Responsible Index (CALMID). In addition, Calvert launched mutual funds that will track each of the two new indexes: the Calvert Developed Markets Ex-U.S. Responsible Index Fund (CDHAX) and the Calvert U.S. Mid Cap Core Responsible Index Fund (CMJAX).

In June, Calvert initiated the build-out of its index series with the introduction of the Calvert U.S. Large Cap Growth Responsible Index Fund and the Calvert U.S. Large Cap Value Responsible Index Fund – both of which complemented the pre-existing U.S. Large Cap Core Responsible Index Fund (formerly Calvert Social Index Fund). The indexes are driven by the Calvert Research System, a proprietary research platform that synthesizes multiple sources of non-financial data, including environmental, social, and governance (ESG) data. Calvert analysts identify and weight the ESG factors that are most material within each of 156 sub-industries, then rate and rank every company to build the list of index constituents.The firm continues to build upon its global responsible investment research expertise with the newest additions to its responsible index series and related low-cost index funds that will track them and institutional separate account products.


Calvert now offers five distinct indexes:

  • Calvert U.S. Large Cap Growth Responsible Index
  • Calvert U.S. Large Cap Core Responsible Index
  • Calvert U.S. Large Cap Value Responsible Index
  • Calvert Developed Markets Ex-U.S. Responsible Index
  • Calvert U.S. Mid Cap Core Responsible Index

Calvert now offers five index funds, each based on one of the Calvert Indexes:

  • Calvert U.S. Large Cap Core Responsible Index Fund (NASDAQ: CSXAX)
  • Calvert U.S. Large Cap Growth Responsible Index Fund (NASDAQ: CGJAX)
  • Calvert U.S. Large Cap Value Responsible Index Fund (NASDAQ: CFJAX)
  • Calvert Developed Markets Ex-U.S. Responsible Index Fund (NASDAQ: CDHAX)
  • Calvert U.S. Mid Cap Responsible Index Fund (NASDAQ: CMJAX)

“Calvert is committed to meeting the evolving needs of our institutional and private clients with both active and indexed responsible investing products,” said John Streur, CEO, Calvert Investments. “The universe of indexed responsible investment funds is nearly non-existent. Calvert is providing choices for investors based on their desire to get broadly diversified exposure to responsible investments at a reasonable price. Investors may find our index funds can be a cost-effective way to form a foundation or core for portfolios. Where investors find that active management can be valuable, they may look to our high conviction actively managed strategies.

“Calvert Investments has over 30 years of leadership in helping responsible investors define and assess the environmental, social and governance (ESG) impacts of the corporations they own. Combine this with our shareholder engagement and we can help investors drive real positive change in the world.”

Calvert continues to partner with indexing leader S-Network Global Indexes, Inc.SM (SNGI) to manage the benchmark universes.

Information about the Calvert Responsible Index Series and the Calvert Principles for Responsible Investment can be found at

Hollywood Celebrities And Donors ‘Open Doors’ For Students With Learning Differences

WASHINGTON, CT – October 21, 2015 — Supporters, celebrities and friends of The Glenholme School joined together for the fifth annual scholarship fundraising event, “Opening Doors,” sponsored by the school’s Development Board at Bryant Park Grill in New York City on October 21, 2015. When board member Director David O. Russell walks into a room, it becomes electrified and you know something special is going to happen. Mr. Russell, a parent of a Glenholme student, holds this charity near and dear to his heart along with his board colleagues. Sprinkling his signature “stardust” with Robert De Niro, Grace Hightower, Harvey Weinstein, Dascha Polanco, Cristin Milioti and Isabella Rossellini in tow, Mr. Russell created an exhilarating evening with close to two hundred guests and raised over $400,000.

Guests mingled and posed for photos with celebrities, and bid on an array of specialty items in the silent auction. Followed by a lovely dinner where guests were welcomed by Executive Director Maryann Campbell and Board Co-Chair Doug Bowen, who spoke of the enduring effect Glenholme has had on his son and family. Sue Seaver, a recipient of the Scholarship Program, offered how the school’s scholarship affected her daughter and her family, and shared the many improvements in her child’s growth and development. Supporters then bid fervently on fascinating trips and private events including an exclusive in-home dinner by chef Bradley Stellings, a winner of the Food Network’s “Chopped.”

Concluding the live auction was the ardent Glenholme champion, David O. Russell, who stirred the audience with his powerful oration of what young people with disabilities feel and live with each day. He then gave a moving testament to the school and once again offered exclusive movie items including tickets to the premier of his soon-to-be-released movie, “Joy,” and walk-on movie roles to his next upcoming film. Funds raised for these Hollywood events were surprisingly matched by Harvey Weinstein.

A special moment closed out the evening as everyone joined in celebrating Executive Director Maryann Campbell’s decades of service to Glenholme. The school’s Development Board Co-Chair spoke of Ms. Campbell’s dedication and leadership, presented her with an award of Hope! Board members shared moving comments of Ms. Campbell’s inspirational effort in changing the lives of their families. In recent years, Ms. Campbell has led Glenholme through many changes and countless fund raising projects at the school, most notably the night’s incredibly helpful scholarship that brings immediate assistance to those in need of special education services in a supportive school setting.

About The Glenholme School:

The Glenholme School, a center of the Devereux organization, is an independent, coeducational, special needs boarding and day school for young people with high functioning autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, OCD, Tourette’s, depression, anxiety, and various learning differences. The program provides a treatment milieu designed to build competence socially and academically. Our learning environment supports and enhances the ability for young people with special needs to succeed. Devereux is a leading nonprofit behavioral health organization that supports many of the most underserved and vulnerable members of our communities. For more information about The Glenholme School and its program, visit Devereux Connecticut.

Final Recipient Announced for Second Chance to Smile

Dynamic Concepts Dental Implant Center announced the final recipient of a brand new smile

Dr. Weber, Dr. Loewenstein, and Theresa

Dr. Weber, Dr. Loewenstein, and Theresa

Mount Kisco, NY (October 30, 2015) — Dynamic Concepts Dental Implant Center announced the final recipient of the charitable Second Chance program as Theresa Dornellas, of Brooklyn, NY.

The Second Chance program produced 44 qualified local applicants, making the final decision extremely difficult. Ms. Dornellas submitted her application with high hopes to be able to gain back her self-confidence, shattered as a child after being abused. She feels as though she is a huge embarrassment to her family and especially her kids, caused by years of intentionally masking her beauty. Now at a point in her life where she feels capable and ready for a new beginning, she no longer wants to have to hide her charismatic, personable, and friendly personality in the background. Ms. Dornellas continues to face struggle, and overcome them, on a daily basis, in part due to her poor oral health.

Today, she works at a pet shelter where she also volunteers, fostering kittens, cats, and aiding in the process of spaying or neutering feral cats; giving is in her nature. An instinctively friendly person, this life-changing program surely will help boost her self-esteem, improve her career success, and better her health and ability to eat. “I am such a friendly person; I want to greet people with a smile again. I miss it,” said Ms. Dornellas.

Led by Dr. Zachary Weber and Dr. Jerome Loewenstein of Dynamic Concepts Dental Implant Center, Ms. Dornellas will undergo a procedure known as the All-on-4â treatment concept. This technique is a highly sought after dental implant procedure noted for its minimal recovery time, natural look and appearance, as well as its ability to restore oral function. The All-on-4â treatment concept has become a popular choice among those who are seeking an alternative to dentures and looking for a permanent solution for replacing a full-arch of teeth. The unique team of an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and prosthodontist will allow Ms. Dornellas to complete the entire procedure at one of their state-of-the-art dental implant centers in Mount Kisco and Ossining, NY.

In addition to restoring oral function and a natural smile, the Second Chance program aims to improve Ms. Dornellas’s overall quality of life by addressing her other specific needs.

For more information about becoming a partner in Dynamic Concepts Dental Implant Center’s Second Chance program, please visit:


About Dynamic Concepts Dental Implant Center

At Dynamic Concepts Dental Implant Center, you can count on us to provide you with exceptional care and support from the moment you make your first call to our office to the final day of your treatment. We strive to make the treatment process as seamless as possible by implementing the newest technology and latest techniques when creating your individualized treatment plan. We understand the importance of the entire patient experience, which is why we have combined the talents of an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, a prosthodontist, and a highly motivated staff. With both a surgeon and a prosthodontist in-house, we can treat our patients in one place, streamlining the entire treatment process and providing more comprehensive care.

About Dr. Zachary Weber, DMD, MD

Dr. Zachary Weber, DMD, MD is a dual-degree, board-certified diplomate of the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery and practices full scope oral and maxillofacial surgery. Currently, Dr. Weber is on staff at Columbia University Medical Center’s Department of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, where he has an active role in resident education. He is also an attending oral and maxillofacial surgeon at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, NY.

About Dr. Jerome Loewenstein, DMD

Dr. Jerome Loewenstein is a prosthodontist and practices restorative and reconstructive prosthodontics in Westchester, NY. He is a founding member of The Academy of Osseointegration who continues to develop innovative concepts and devices as solutions to the more common restorative problems as well as complex restorative challenges. His in-house dental laboratory can handle any design challenges presented.

JBLM Breaks Ground On $11M Traumatic Brain-Injury Center

By Hal Bernton

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD — By the time Staff Sgt. Spencer Milo arrived for treatment outside of Washington, D.C., he had suffered two traumatic brain injuries in two different wars and was taking more than a dozen different medications.

The National Intrepid Center of Excellence offered one month of intensive care back in 2011 that Milo marks as a turning point in a long battle to heal. And it is the model for a smaller, $11 million Intrepid Spirit facility that broke ground Thursday at JBLM.

“It’s completely changed my life for the better,” Milo said. “I remember walking in the doors, and I didn’t even think I was in a doctor’s office. I thought I was in a resort. It’s a beautiful building, and I think that really set the tone right there.”

The national center — and nine others either built, under construction or planned — gather patients and health-care providers in one building to tackle the challenges of traumatic-brain injuries. Along with traditional medicine, they offer alternative therapies such as meditation and acupuncture.

The centers are the result of a public-private partnership, with donations to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund financing construction, and the Defense Department taking on staffing and management.

“As a nonprofit organization, we can do it faster — and we can probably do it less expensive than the government. All of our projects have been on time and on budget,” said David Winters, president of the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.

At Joint Base Lewis McChord, the building is expected to be completed in 18 months to two years. It will be part of Madigan Army Medical Center, where the 22 staff positions now involved in traumatic-brain-injury care are expected to more than double once the new facility opens.

The centers represent a significant new commitment at Madigan and other bases to one of the signature wounds of the post 9/11 wars — traumatic-brain injuries from improvised explosive devices, suicide bombers and vehicle crashes and other hazards during years of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Some soldiers who suffered war-related injuries years ago still require treatment, while the Army also has plenty of new patients to care for.

“We have the legacy injuries, and when they (soldiers) aren’t fighting, they’re training, and they can hurt themselves as badly or worse,” said Col. Beverly Scott, medical director for Madigan’s traumatic-brain-injury program.

If there is enough capacity, Winters said he hopes some Intrepid centers might also offer care to veterans.

At these centers, injured soldiers are drawn away from their daily routines to focus on healing in programs lasting from four to six weeks. Up to 90 percent of patients who have gone though the centers are able to return to active duty, according to Winters.

Milo, who grew up in Seattle and was based at Fort Bragg in California, went through six months of care on that base before he was offered the option of treatment at the national center at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.

On his first day in the program, Milo was pleasantly surprised to be met by a large group of health-care providers who jointly questioned him. That meant he didn’t have to tell and retell the harrowing story of the injuries he suffered in an Humvee crash in Iraq and a blast of a young suicide bomber in Afghanistan.

Milo said his medical team offered a more detailed diagnosis of his health problems, and develop a detailed treatment plan that included lots of family involvement and helped shift him away from so many medications.

After the program was over, Milo said he had learned a lot of tools that helped him continue to improve as he returned to active duty. He later medically retired after seven years of Army service.

“I think that TBI (traumatic-brain injury) is something that lot of people deal with for the rest of their lives — but this gives you a path so you’re not just aimlessly wandering in the woods,” Milo said.

Michael Baker International Pilot Program Opens Doors to STEM Workforce for Youth in 15 Communities

Alexandria, VA – The National Guard Youth Foundation (NGYF) and Michael Baker International, a global leader in engineering, consulting, planning, technical and professional services, are pleased to announce the results of a successful pilot program that engaged participants of the National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Data from the pilot program – executed at 15 ChalleNGe programs across the country – show the course significantly increased awareness of and interest in STEM careers, particularly among those underrepresented in STEM – minorities and girls.

“Programs like this are often the spark that leads young men and women to discover their passion for science and can put them on the path to promising STEM careers,” said Kurt Bergman, CEO of Michael Baker International. “It’s important to bring STEM education to as many students as possible and, as a company with an employee population heavily focused on STEM, we are honored to support the National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program.”

In its first phase, the Radius-STEM Readiness course, developed by leading education technology company EverFi, has engaged more than 600 ChalleNGe cadets in over 3,000 hours of learning in areas such as HTML coding, unit conversion, probability, linear equations, functions and cryptography. The web-based course uses online gaming and simulations to teach technology and coding skills, ignite interest in STEM, and expose students to STEM careers that they might never have dreamed were within their reach.

Of the participants, 56 percent represented ethnic minorities, while 24 percent were female. More than half of the participants reported that they were not aware of STEM careers or were not encouraged in STEM by their community prior to participating in the program. According to a post-program survey, 52 percent of participating minorities and 54 percent of participating females reported they would like to have a job in STEM as a result of the program, with civil engineering being reported as one of the top five career paths they’d like to take.

“We are grateful to have significant support from Michael Baker International, which has enabled us to provide EverFi’s Radius-STEM Readiness course to ChalleNGe cadets and expose them – many of whom would not have the opportunity otherwise – to career opportunities in the STEM field,” said Allyson Solomon, president of NGYF.

The STEM program’s 15 pilot sites included:

  • Alaska Military Youth Academy in Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska;
  • Appalachian ChalleNGe Academy in Grays Knob, Kentucky;
  • Bluegrass ChalleNGe Academy in Ft. Knox, Kentucky;
  • Capital Guardian Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Laurel, Maryland;
  • Ft. Gordon Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Ft. Gordon, Georgia;
  • Hawaii Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Hilo, Hawaii;
  • Camp Beauregard Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Pineville, Louisiana;
  • Freestate ChalleNGe Academy in Gunpowder, Maryland;
  • Montana Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Dillon, Montana;
  • Puerto Rico ChalleNGe Academy in Juana Diaz, Puerto Rico;
  • Commonwealth ChalleNGe Academy in Virginia Beach, Virginia;
  • Washington Youth Academy in Bremerton, Washington;
  • Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy in Kingwood, West Virginia;
  • Texas ChalleNGe Academy in Sheffield, Texas; and
  • South Carolina Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Eastover, South Carolina.

Currently, nearly 600 additional cadets are taking the STEM course this fall. NGYF plans to expand the STEM curriculum to all 36 ChalleNGe programs across the country.

Keep A Child Alive (KCA) Announces Patrice Motsepe And Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe As Recipients Of The Humanitarian Award At The 12th Annual Black Ball

Grammy-nominated rapper Wale added to the lineup of the night’s performers

[New York, NY – October 30, 2015] – Keep a Child Alive (KCA) today announced that Chairman of the Motsepe Family Foundation, Patrice Motsepe and Deputy Chairman, Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe will be honored with the Humanitarian Award at the 12th annual Black Ball held on Thursday, November 5th at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York. Patrice Motsepe and Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe will be recognized for their efforts to address the issues of social and economic inequality for Africa’s poorest people, and their generous support of HIV and AIDS initiatives over the years.

“We are thrilled to be honoring Patrice Motsepe and Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe at this year’s Black Ball,” said Peter Twyman, CEO of KCA. “They are true champions of Africa, working tirelessly to raise communities by supporting their most vulnerable populations. And understanding that ending AIDS is a critical next step in achieving social justice for all.”

Patrice and Precious founded the Motsepe Foundation in 1999 and were the first African family to join the Giving Pledge in 2013, where they committed half of the proceeds of their family assets to charitable causes and sustainable development of the people in South Africa and on the African continent.

“Over the years, we have initiated and supported various HIV and AIDS projects and are thrilled to join Alicia Keys at KCA’s 2015 Black Ball,” said Patrice Motsepe and Dr. Precious Moloi-Motsepe.

“The Motsepe Foundation is committed to ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 and applauds KCA for their work to increase access to HIV treatment and care for children, youth and families in Africa. By coming together and keeping HIV/AIDS front and center, we can end this epidemic once and for all.”

The 12th annual Black Ball will be hosted by Grammy award-winner, Alicia Keys and emceed by actor, comedian and director, Chris Rock. Grammy-nominated rapper, Wale will join the exciting lineup of performers including Wizkid and LION BABE, who will take the stage with Alicia Keys for electrifying performances. The star-studded evening will celebrate the work of KCA and help raise the necessary funds to provide treatment and care for children, youth and families living with and affected by HIV in Africa and India.

Presenting partners for the 2015 KCA Black Ball include the Jynwel Charitable Foundation Limited, Microsoft, Givenchy Parfums and Sherry-Lehmann Wine & Spirits.

To date, Keep a Child Alive’s Black Ball has raised over $24.9 million for children and families affected by HIV. Past performers of the event have included Jay Z, Carole King, Bono, Adele, Pharrell Williams, Chris Martin, Gwen Stefani, Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer, Justin Timberlake and many more incredible artists. This year marks the 9th year that the Black Ball will be held at the Manhattan Center’s iconic Hammerstein Ballroom, which is known for its extraordinary performances and unforgettable special events.


The Black Ball is a star-studded event where celebrity and philanthropy join hand-in-hand. The evening celebrates the work of Keep a Child Alive (KCA) and raises millions for children and families living with and affected by HIV in Africa and India. In years past, Alicia Keys has shared the Black Ball stage with Jay-Z, Bono, Adele, Carole King, Pharrell Williams, Annie Lennox, David Bowie, Chris Martin, Gwen Stefani, Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer, Justin Timberlake, Common, Sheryl Crow, Lenny Kravitz, Norah Jones,, Janelle Monáe, Femi Kuti, Bonnie Raitt, Damian Marley, Lou Reed, Paul Simon, Usher, Swizz Beatz, Sean Puffy Combs, NAS, David Byrne, Angel Haze, among others.

The Black Ball has honored humanitarians who use their passion, fame, and courage to better our world. Previously, KCA had the pleasure of honoring President Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, Sir Richard Branson, Bono, George Harrison, Stephen Lewis, and Riccardo Tisci, amongst others.


Keep a Child Alive (KCA) was founded in 2003 by AIDS activist Leigh Blake and Grammy Award-winner Alicia Keys, as an emergency push to get life-saving HIV medications to African children and families, who otherwise would not have had access to treatment.

KCA’s work has since grown to include the critical components necessary for successful, life-long HIV treatment: comprehensive, holistic care that supports the complete health of children and their families, ensuring their physical, mental and social well-being.

KCA provides financial and programmatic support to 7 innovative, grassroots programs in Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda and India, serving over 56,000 people annually. With the help of its supporters, KCA continues to use its voice to raise awareness, mobilize people to take action, and rally resources in the global response to HIV. For more information, please visit

Twitter: @keepachildalive; Facebook:;


See updates from the event at #KCABlackBall


For a third consecutive year, Jynwel Charitable Foundation Limited is a presenting sponsor of Keep a Child Alive’s Black Ball. Jynwel Foundation is committed to funding breakthrough programs that accelerate and scale solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges in the fields of global public health, education and conservation.


Givenchy Parfums is proud to return as a presenting sponsor of Keep a Child Alive’s Black Ball. Givenchy Parfums is a luxury fragrance and cosmetics brand that cultivates a unique blend of aristocratic elegance and daring creativity. The creative freedom of the brand, which combines style with impertinence, is reflected in its Couture-inspired perfumes, its audacious and trend-setting make-up products with genuine leather cases, and its innovative skincare formulas.


Upgrade Your World is a year-long initiative from Windows 10 to celebrate those who inspire and empower others, led by Microsoft’s vision to help people achieve more through technology and in celebration of Windows 10. Windows is partnering with 10 global and 100 local nonprofits to help them upgrade the world. A total $10 million cash investment will be made in support of their missions and to promote awareness of their causes.

Available for the first time as a free upgrade, Windows 10 delivers a fast and familiar experience that is more secure and always up-to-date, featuring new innovations like Cortana, Microsoft Edge, and Xbox integration. For more information on how to get involved and #UpgradeYourWorld, visit


Spirits for the evening are generously donated by event sponsor Sherry-Lehmann Wine & Spirits, a long-time partner of Keep a Child Alive. Founded in 1934, Sherry-Lehmann is located in the heart of Manhattan, at 505 Park Avenue. The Sherry-Lehmann store combines old-world charm with modern sophistication, and caters to seasoned wine lovers and beginners alike. Renowned for its deep stock of fine wine and spirits from across the globe, its helpful, knowledgeable staff, and award-winning website, Sherry-Lehmann is committed to delivering an incomparable level of customer service. Entering its 80th year of business, Sherry-Lehmann’s dedication has learned many awards, including: “Retailer of the Year” (The Wine Enthusiast), “New York’s #1 Wine Shop” (Zagat), and the “#1 Wine Shop in America” (Forbes). Visit for more information.

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