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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: July 2018

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Dream Foundation Appoints Director of Development

Anais Pellegrini joins national dream-granting organization

Press Release – Santa Barbara, Calif. –– Dream Foundation announced the appointment of Anais Pellegrini as Director of Development.

Ms. Pellegrini will serve as a member of the leadership team and an active participant in Dream Foundation’s development team. In partnership with Chief Executive Officer Kisa Heyer, she will be responsible for establishing fundraising goals, developing and implementing strategies to broaden the funding base for the Foundation and managing the organization’s development department. Additionally, Ms. Pellegrini will design and implement a comprehensive plan for developing key external alliances by cultivating individual and philanthropic support and ensuring that philanthropy and fund development are carried out in keeping with the organization’s values, mission, vision and plans.

“We are delighted to welcome Anais,” says Dream Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer Kisa Heyer. “Her national and local expereince will be instrumental in her work here at Dream Foundation. We are honored to have her on our team and excited to see what the future holds.”

Ms. Pellegrini most recently served as the Director of Development for the Community Environmental Council in Santa Barbara. She began her career in fundraising in New York at the Katonah Museum of Art and has since worked with the Anti-Defamation League’s Tri-Counties Office and the Granada Theatre, both in Santa Barbara.

Born in Malta and raised in China, Australia and Hong Kong, Ms. Pellegrini is fascinated in what strengthens and enriches lives and communities and is honored to be a part of the non-profit world in Santa Barbara.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from State University of New York College at Purchase.

“I have been a long admirer of Dream Foundation’s inspiring mission,” says Ms. Pellegrini. “I am thrilled to take on the role of Director of Development and secure critical funding for the many Dreams yet to be fulfilled.”

About Dream Foundation:

Dream Foundation, the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults, fulfills final Dreams that provide inspiration, comfort and closure at the end of life. With the support of a nationwide network of volunteers, hospices, health care organizations and committed donors, Dream Foundation has given life to more than 30,000 final Dreams over the past two decades. The Foundation is proud to maintain Charity Navigator’s four-star rating—its highest—for sound fiscal management ensuring its donors and partners that their investment will be used wisely. Dream Foundation receives no state or federal funding—we rely solely on private donations. To support our mission please visit DreamFoundation.org/donate.


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City Accelerator Expands to Five More U.S. Cities to Help Strengthen Local Minority-Owned Businesses and Create Jobs

With Support by the Citi Foundation and Living Cities, $500,000 Distributed to Atlanta, El Paso, Long Beach, Newark, and Rochester

Press Release – NEW YORK – The Citi Foundation and Living Cities today announced the expansion of the City Accelerator program to five additional U.S. cities – Atlanta, El Paso, Long Beach, Newark, and Rochester. The five cities will work together over the next year to pursue a range of projects to support the growth of local minority-owned businesses and the creation of additional jobs in their communities. Local initiatives range from ensuring minority-owned businesses are integrated into the commercial development of the 31-acre Pittsburgh Yards site in Atlanta to expanding small business services through the network of local libraries in El Paso.

“While the impact of small business growth on the U.S. economy is widely appreciated, the potential of minority-owned small businesses is often overlooked,” said Ed Skyler, Citi’s Executive Vice President for Global Public Affairs and Chair of the Citi Foundation. “These cities recognize this untapped potential and are coming together to rethink how they work with minority-owned small businesses to help them grow and create high-quality jobs.”

All five cities selected for this Accelerator are majority-minority, meaning that relative to the overall U.S. population, racial minorities comprise a majority of the local population, making them prime urban centers to address the barriers people of minority-owned businesses face, including access to capital, connections to industries, and navigating regulations.

Now in its fifth year, the City Accelerator has brought together 17 municipalities to test new approaches that improve the lives of residents, especially those with low incomes. For example, Baltimore created an online portal for residents returning from the criminal justice system to access services and job opportunities, which is now part of the Baltimore City Health Department’s TECHealth initiative. Seattle created a system managed by the Department of Neighborhoods to integrate the perspectives of racially diverse communities into the planning of key projects and policies and track the results. The City of Los Angeles is using its position as the host of the 2028 Olympics to test out policies and programs that will ensure small businesses, including minority-owned businesses, have access to the economic opportunities that come with hosting a large event.

“Cities can have a disproportionately positive impact on local entrepreneurial ecosystems and the creation of good jobs”, said Living Cities President and CEO Ben Hecht. “The cities in this latest initiative will be showing how they can harness all of their assets to support and grow businesses owned by the nation’s fastest growing populations—people of color—and help to close racial gaps in wealth and income in their own backyards.”

“Creating innovative ways to build opportunity and equity through job growth, business incubation and workforce training is a priority for our Administration and our city,” said Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. “Our vision for One Atlanta includes a city where neighborhoods, communities and businesses thrive. We look forward to working with the Citi Foundation and Living Cities through the City Accelerator to realize that goal.”

“The El Paso Public Library System is a support mechanism within our community that aims to enhance economic and educational opportunities, especially for our minority population,” said El Paso Mayor Dee Margo. “El Paso has over 54,000 minority-owned local businesses and we look forward to working with the Citi Foundation and Living Cities through the City Accelerator to enhance and cultivate the business community to support regional entrepreneurial efforts.”

“Long Beach is committed to advancing its Economic Blueprint through participation in the City Accelerator, which will help map our local entrepreneurial ecosystem, identify growth industries, and support local talent,” said Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia. “Through this exciting partnership with Citi Foundation and Living Cities, we hope to create a seamless support system for entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses in Long Beach.”

“Taking part in the City Accelerator initiative will help us get two of my administration’s most important initiatives off the ground—Buy Newark and the Contractor Development Initiative,” said Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka. “Whether ensuring that anchor institutions commit to increasing purchasing from Newark businesses or large developers partner with smaller minority and women-owned contractors, we are implementing unique programs to drive local procurement. Newark is a city on the rise and we look forward to working with Citi Foundation and Living Cities as we use every tool in our toolkit to ensure that development is inclusive.”

“My administration is committed to creating more jobs, safer and more vibrant neighborhoods and better educational opportunities for all of our residents, regardless of the zip code they live in,” said Rochester, NY Mayor Lovely A. Warren. “As our economy rebounds and becomes more focused on entrepreneurship and small business, it is essential that everyone is a part of the growth and prosperity. We are excited to work with the Citi Foundation and Living Cities as part of the City Accelerator as we develop strategies and policies designed to build an inclusive ecosystem that provides all Rochesterians with the opportunity to build a brighter future through business ownership.”

In addition to a $100,000 grant, each city will receive a combination of coaching, technical assistance and implementation resources in the coming year. Cities may consider local policy reform, changes in standard small business support practices, staff training, leadership and accountability structures, communications, outreach and relationship building, and capacity-building.

Technical assistance for the effort will be provided by Rodrick Miller, President and CEO of Ascendant Global, an economic development consulting firm. Miller has previously served as the President and CEO of the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation and the New Orleans Business Alliance.

To track the progress and work of these City Accelerator cities in the coming year, visit Governing Magazine, Citi’s blog and follow #CityAccelerator on Twitter.


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OPIC Provides Loan to Support Small Business Lending and Transportation in Uganda

Press Release – WASHINGTON – The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) has provided a $5 million loan to Tugende Limited, which supports small business lending and expanded transportation in Uganda by providing lease-to-own financing to motorcycle taxi drivers.

Tugende is a six-year-old business that tapped into pent up demand for lease-to-own financing among motorcycle taxi drivers and quickly expanded into a 150-employee business that has to date served more than 12,000 customers — 5,000 of whom have already purchased their motorcycle taxis outright. The business, which has grown with no advertising, will use the OPIC loan to scale up its successful operations in Uganda, and offer a path to ownership and higher income for many more of the estimated one million full time motorcycle taxi drivers in East Africa.

Tugende, which means “let’s go,” was founded by American Michael Wilkerson who spent time as a Fulbright scholar and a journalist in Uganda and discovered that “bodas” or motorcycle taxis, were a critical part of the country’s transportation infrastructure. As he got to know more boda drivers he also learned that many worked long hours but could not attain financial security since they could not access the credit to purchase their own bodas.

Motorcycle taxis are a key form of transportation in Uganda.

“By supporting Uganda’s boda drivers, we are empowering local entrepreneurs while also helping to strengthen a key mode of transportation in Uganda,” said Ray W. Washburne, OPIC President and CEO. “This project will advance OPIC’s new Connect Africa initiative to invest in transportation, technology and value chains across the continent.”

In addition to promoting boda ownership, Tugende offers drivers training on safety, financial planning and customer service. Drivers can typically take ownership of a boda in 20 months, which can result in them doubling their take home income. Many of these borrowers have used this additional income to invest in healthcare and education for their families, or to start additional small businesses and create more jobs.

“Bodas are a key source of transportation in Uganda, but for boda drivers and many other small business operators access to capital has always been the biggest challenge,” said Tugende Founder and CEO Michael Wilkerson. “OPIC’s financing will help us provide financial security, asset ownership and higher income for thousands of additional drivers and improved quality of life for tens of thousands of their family members.”


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Kraft Heinz Expands Environmental Commitments to Include Sustainable Packaging and Carbon Reduction

Company Aims to Make 100% of its Packaging Recyclable, Reusable or Compostable by 2025; Increase Usage of Recycled Materials; Pledges to Set Science-based Emissions Reduction Targets

Press Release – PITTSBURGH & CHICAGO – (BUSINESS WIRE)– As part of its commitment to reduce natural resource needs and manage overall environmental footprint, The Kraft Heinz Company today announced the expansion of its environmental stewardship strategy to include time-bound targets for achieving greater packaging sustainability and setting science-based goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Specifically, Kraft Heinz supports the move toward a circular economy and aims to make 100 percent of its packaging globally recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025.This announcement, a complement to its Growing a Better World strategy released in last year’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Report, supports the Company’s broader efforts to improve the sustainability of its supply chain.

“Our collective industry has a massive challenge ahead of us with respect to packaging recyclability, end-of-life recovery and single-use plastics,” said Bernardo Hees, CEO at Kraft Heinz. “Even though we don’t yet have all the answers, we owe it to current and future generations who call this planet ‘home’ to find better packaging solutions and actively progress efforts to improve recycling rates. That’s why Kraft Heinz is placing heightened focus on this important environmental issue.”

Kraft Heinz will aggressively pursue technical alternatives while also collaborating externally to advance its commitment to deliver 100 percent recyclable, reusable or compostable packaging by 2025. The Company will partner with packaging experts, organizations and coalitions to explore technical, end-of-life and infrastructure solutions, and is already collaborating with Environmental Packaging International (EPI) for consulting, tracking and other specialist services in the packaging space. The Company also will work toward increasing the usage of recycled content in its packaging and decreasing the overall volume of packaging used.

While the global packaging target is new, Kraft Heinz is no stranger to advancing the sustainability of its packaging. Evidenced by previous work in this space, the Company has been working for years to optimize its high-volume packaging. For example, Kraft Heinz recently exceeded its commitment to reduce the weight of its global packaging by 50,000 metric tonnes. Additionally, Kraft Heinz Europe is working to make the recyclable Heinz Tomato Ketchup PET plastic bottle fully circular by 2022, by using recycled material that can be made back into food-grade packaging.

Kraft Heinz will further outline its strategy and timeline for achieving this commitment in its next CSR Report, expected to be issued in 2019.

In addition, Kraft Heinz is doing its part to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy by joining the Science Based Targets Initiative and working to set science-based greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals in its supply chain. Adoption of these particularly aggressive targets is aimed at helping avoid a global temperature increase of more than two degrees Celsius.

Added Hees: “We found that most of our emissions are coming from areas outside our direct operations. To truly succeed as champions of sustainability, we will look at our full value chain and determine where we can make the greatest impact for our planet.”

The Company plans to announce these new science-based goals when their current commitments expire in 2020.

For more information on sustainable business practices at Kraft Heinz, please visit: http://www.kraftheinzcompany.com/sustainability.html.

ABOUT THE KRAFT HEINZ COMPANY

The Kraft Heinz Company (NASDAQ: KHC) is the fifth-largest food and beverage company in the world. A globally trusted producer of delicious foods, The Kraft Heinz Company provides high quality, great taste and nutrition for all eating occasions, whether at home, in restaurants or on the go. The Company’s iconic brands include Kraft, Heinz, ABC, Capri Sun, Classico, Jell-O, Kool-Aid, Lunchables, MaxwellHouse, Ore-Ida, OscarMayer, Philadelphia, Planters, Plasmon, Quero, Smart Ones and Velveeta. The Kraft Heinz Company is dedicated to the sustainable health of our people, our planet and our Company. For more information, visit www.kraftheinzcompany.com.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This press release contains a number of forward-looking statements. Words such as “expect,” “will,” “aim” and variations of such words and similar future or conditional expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Examples of forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the Company’s plans and expectations. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are difficult to predict and beyond the Company’s control.

Important factors that affect our business and operations and that may cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, operating in a highly competitive industry; changes in the retail landscape or the loss of key retail customers; our ability to maintain, extend and expand our reputation and brand image; the impacts of our international operations; our ability to leverage our brand value to compete against retailer brands and other economy brands; our ability to predict, identify and interpret changes in consumer preferences and demand; our ability to drive revenue growth in our key product categories, increase our market share, or add products; an impairment of the carrying value of goodwill or other indefinite-lived intangible assets; volatility in commodity, energy and other input costs; changes in our management team or other key personnel; our ability to realize the anticipated benefits from our cost savings initiatives; changes in relationships with significant customers and suppliers; the execution of our international expansion strategy; tax law changes or interpretations; legal claims or other regulatory enforcement actions; product recalls or product liability claims; unanticipated business disruptions; our ability to complete or realize the benefits from potential and completed acquisitions, alliances, divestitures or joint ventures; economic and political conditions in the United States and in various other nations in which we operate; volatility of capital markets and other macroeconomic factors; increased pension, labor, and people-related expenses; volatility in the market value of all or a portion of the derivatives we use; exchange rate fluctuations; risks associated with information technology and systems, including service interruptions, misappropriation of data, or breaches of security; our ability to protect intellectual property rights; impacts of natural events in the locations in which we or our customers, suppliers, or regulators operate; our indebtedness and ability to pay such indebtedness; our ownership structure; the impact of future sales of our common stock in the public markets; our ability to continue to pay a regular dividend; restatements of our consolidated financial statements; and other factors. For additional information on these and other factors that could affect our forward-looking statements, see “Risk Factors” disclosed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 30, 2017. We disclaim and do not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement in this press release, except as required by applicable law or regulation.


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The Good Cards Brings “Think Global, Act Local” Mission to Global Kids’ Program

Global Kids’ Summer Bridge Program at Bronxdale High Engages Students in Doing Good Deeds with The Good Cards

Press Release – PALO ALTO, CA (July 30, 2018) – The Good Cards, the digital platform that promotes kindness through an app designed for gaming fun, has partnered with the Global Kids’ Summer Bridge Program at Bronxdale High, to engage students in doing good deeds. A custom Good Cards “mission,” around sharing food with those who have less, has been developed specifically for the Summer Bridge Program’s “Think Global, Act Local” workshop.

Global Kids’ Summer Bridge Program served 50 students who are transitioning from Middle to High School, in a two-week program with a collection of workshops. In the “Think Global, Act Local” workshop, students engaged in a custom mission for “Food Sharing,” where they gathered donatable goods and brought them to the school, then went in groups to donate directly to shelters. The Good Cards also was used in the “Health & Wellness” workshop, where students used the Good Cards to do good deeds for themselves and friends/family.

“My name is Jade and I’m 14 years old. We are doing a project based on food insecurity. Some people in the world are less fortunate and we want to change that. The Good Cards helped us do that,” said Jade, 9th Grade, Bronxdale High.

“This is important because this helps other people who can’t afford water bottles, cans, or female products. Homelessness has been its highest in years and we want to help change that,” said Gladis, 9th Grade, Bronxdale High.

Corey Harnish, CEO of Better World International, the non-profit creator of The Good Cards project worked with Andre Ware and Cassandra Jagroop of Global Kids to develop the custom mission. “We wanted to try a different approach with the ‘Think Global, Act Local’ mission,” Corey said. “The Summer Bridge Program exposes students to topics critical to their own personal success as students, as well as the wellbeing of their neighborhoods. The emphasis on ‘Food Sharing’ focused on the social impact kids can make as they do good deeds for others.”

“Global Kids’ primary goal is to develop youth leaders through dynamic global education and leadership development programs,” said Andre. “Our custom mission with The Good Cards, brings both a ‘hands-on’ and social-media element to our Summer Bridge Program, that gives us an engaging new way to demonstrate positive global citizenship. We are excited to expand our program with fun and meaningful experiences with the help of The Good Cards.”

About Better World International and The Good Cards

Better World International is a tech-gaming not-for-profit that combines a vision of a better world with technology-driven solutions for social change. Its series of real-life games are being developed to encourage a global trend of doing good, while empowering people to take small positive actions and see their impact in real time. The Good Cards, a Better World International project, is an innovative online-gaming platform and app that engages people worldwide in doing good deeds for happiness and global sustainability. Better World International is a 501(c)(3) and is soliciting donations to sustain its growth. Learn more about The Good Cards and please donate: www.thegoodcards.com

About Global Kids, Inc.

Global Kids, Inc. (GK) is the premier nonprofit education organization for global learning and youth development that works to ensure that youth from underserved areas have the knowledge, skills, experiences and values they need to success in school, participate effectively in the democratic process, and achieve leadership in their communities and the world. Global Kids reaches over 3000 students, “GK Leaders,” each week in New York City and Washington, DC through its in-school and after school global education, social action, digital media, and service-learning programs. Founded in 1989, Global Kids seeks to address the lack of global education and leadership opportunities for youth from neighborhoods whose racial and ethnic groups are largely underrepresented academically, politically and professionally. For more information or to donate, please visit: http://globalkids.org.


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Pacific Service Credit Union Recognized for Charity Efforts

S.F. Business Times ranks credit union 80th in Bay Area for corporate philanthropy

Press Release – Concord, CA July 30, 2018 – Pacific Service Credit Union, a full-service financial institution serving several counties throughout California, has been named as the 80th ranked corporate philanthropist for 2018, according to a list recently released by the San Francisco Business Times, a leading weekly business journal publication. The announcement reflects the publication’s annual Top 100 Bay Area Corporate Philanthropists for 2018. The list showcases Bay Area companies that demonstrate exemplary charitable work in their respective communities.

Pacific Service Credit Union is the only Concord-based company that made the top 100 list. The credit union also received accolades for joining a handful of companies in the bay area who donate more than 1% of their profits. In 2017, Pacific Service Credit Union donated 2.73% of their profits to local non-profit organizations.

“We are proud of our corporate commitment to help improve the lives of the people in our community,” stated Steve Punch, President and CEO of Pacific Service Credit Union. “We are honored to be recognized for our efforts.”

Pacific Service Credit Union donates approximately $150,000 annually to various 501(c)(3) organizations.

About Pacific Service Credit Union

Based in Concord, CA, Pacific Service Credit Union is a full-service financial institution serving anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Marin, Napa, Placer, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma counties. Pacific Service Credit Union has nearly 60,000 members and over $1 billion in assets. Learn more at www.pacificservice.org.


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YWCA Boulder County Announces Dash and Bash 2018 Fundraising Event

Annual 5K and 10K Walk/Run to Raise Funds for YWCA’s Mission to Empower Women and Eliminate Racism

Press Release – BOULDER, CO – July 30, 2018 – YWCA Boulder County has announced the inaugural Dash and Bash, a 5-kilometer and 10-kilometer walk/run and 1-mile dash fundraising event, which will take place on September 30, 2018 at the Boulder Reservoir in Boulder, Colorado.

The YWCA Dash and Bash is an event to celebrate and help to fund the organization’s mission to empower women and eliminate racism. The event brings together members of the community by encouraging teams of 6+ co-workers, family members, friends, corporations and civic groups to make a powerful statement and provide support to fuel the important work of the YWCA. A fun 5K and 10K walk or run, this is an event for the competitive, those enjoying a fun, meaningful run and even for kids to show their support in a 1-mile dash. Funds raised by the YWCA Dash and Bash support important programs including Reading to End Racism, Latina Achievement Support and Children’s Alley, the only drop-in, sliding scale child care in the Front Range. In total, 6,000 individuals are served in our community by this meaningful and relevant work.

“We’re thrilled to be celebrating the strength of our community by supporting diversity, inclusion and the empowerment of women and girls,” said Debbie Pope, CEO, YWCA Boulder County. “Not only will this event provide an opportunity to bring this community together for an important cause, but the funds we raise together will ensure we can continue to support the critical and relevant work we are doing to improve lives,” she added.

Since YWCA USA’s founding in 1858, YWCA has been at the forefront of the most critical social movements. This rich history, along with its current program offerings, makes YWCA USA the oldest, largest, and one of the most accomplished multiracial organizations in the fight for social justice. In Boulder, YWCA has evolved over the years from boarding house to social club and today is a human service agency. The organization is a non-sectarian nonprofit that is not affiliated with any religious group, and is a publicly funded, inclusive organization that welcomes everyone to participate, male and female alike.

Throughout the last century, women have come to YWCA to find housing assistance, business advice, career counseling, fitness classes, and affordable childcare. Beginning in the 1980s, community members could count on YWCA Boulder County to provide low-cost parenting classes and valuable resources to support healthy self-esteem and economic self-sufficiency. Our wide range of programs continue to provide services to those who need them.

About YWCA Boulder County

YWCA Boulder County is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. The organization has been providing a variety of vital services to the women, children, and families of Boulder for over 95 years. YWCA Boulder County is a welcoming human service agency that works with over 6,000 individuals annually. For more information on our programs, visit: www.ywcaboulder.org/.


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Amida Care and National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS Inc. (NBLCA) Host Hepatitis C Testing Event on National African American Hepatitis C Action Day with Support from Bronx Council Member Andy King

Advocates encourage Bronx residents to get screened for Hep C and HIV at The Mall at Bay Plaza

150,000 New Yorkers are living with chronic Hep C, which can cause severe liver disease if left undetected and untreated

Press Release – Bronx, NY — On Wednesday, July 25, Amida Care, a not-for-profit New York community health plan; the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS, Inc. (NBLCA); New York City Council Member Andy King and Deputy Bronx Borough President Marricka Scott-McFadden partnered with advocates, local leaders and health care providers at The Mall at Bay Plaza on National African American Hepatitis C Action Day to encourage Bronx residents to get screened for Hepatitis C. Throughout the day, representatives from NBLCA and Brightpoint Health provided free Hepatitis C and HIV screenings, and information was distributed to the public about liver health. Other participants included Dr. Paul Chambliss of Acacia Network and Bishop Nancy Rosario of Church of God’s Children.

“Hepatitis C is a silent epidemic that impacts 150,000 New Yorkers and deeply impacts the African American community. Though Hepatitis C can be treated and cured, many people with Hepatitis C have no symptoms, so it’s crucial to get tested and know your status,” said Stephane Howze, Vice President of Member Experience at Amida Care. “Events like today’s that raise awareness and encourage individuals to get tested, especially in the Bronx, where the rates of liver cancer are the highest in the city, are incredibly important, and we are thankful to our partners for their support.”

“Hep C is twice as prevalent among African Americans as it is among white persons, and two of the four neighborhoods with the highest rates of newly reported Hep C cases are right here in the Bronx. About half of the people with Hep C don’t even know they’re infected because they have no symptoms, which can take decades to appear. That’s why testing is so important,” said C. Virginia Fields, President and CEO of the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS, Inc.

“Hep C is a silent epidemic that is affecting the African American community. We want to reaffirm our commitment to educate our brothers, our sisters, our fathers, our neighbors, anyone who is walking, living, and breathing to understand the importance of getting tested,” said Council Member Andy King, whose district includes the Mall at Bay Plaza, where the event was held.

“We know the work of this resource fair is very important. As others have said, Hepatitis C is a silent assault on the body. Symptoms can remain dormant for decades. Knowing your status allows you to get cured,” said Marricka Scott-McFadden, Deputy Bronx Borough President.

“As someone who has been cured of Hepatitis C, I want to encourage everyone to go out and get tested,” said Jackie Johnson, an Amida Care member and Bronx resident. “There is no reason to feel embarrassed or ashamed. If left untreated, this virus can lead to serious liver damage or even death. I’m living proof that treatment does work!”

“The more people who get treatment, the fewer new infections there will be. If there are fewer people out there with Hepatitis C, there will be fewer people exposed. We need to test and treat,” said Dr. Paul Chambliss of Acacia Network.

“We have a van outside doing testing today, so don’t leave for tomorrow what you can do today,” said Bishop Nancy Rosario, Church of God’s Children. “My brother over ten years ago passed away from Hepatitis C. There was no cure then; there is a cure now, so please get tested!”

“A quarter of Americans living with HIV also have Hepatitis C, and liver damage progresses more rapidly in those who are co-infected,” said Terry Leach, Vice President of Pharmacy for Amida Care. “New treatments are incredibly effective and have minimal side effects. At Amida Care we’ve treated over 1,200 members for Hepatitis C, with a 95% cure rate. Knowing your status means you can begin to get the treatment you need immediately, making events like today’s so critical.”

Over 3.5 million Americans are living with Hepatitis C. Hepatitis C can cause serious liver damage, and the Bronx has the highest liver cancer and mortality rate of any NYC borough. Thankfully, there is a cure, so it’s crucial that those at risk for Hepatitis C are screened so they can begin treatment immediately.

Amida Care Inc. is a not-for-profit health plan that specializes in providing comprehensive health coverage and coordinated care to New Yorkers with chronic conditions, including HIV and behavioral health disorders, and people who are of transgender experience or homeless (regardless of HIV status). Amida Care has a wide network of health care providers throughout New York City and is the largest Medicaid Special Needs Health Plan (SNP) in New York State. For more information, visit www.amidacareny.org.

The National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS, Inc., (NBLCA) is a 501c3, not for profit organization with a mission to educate, mobilize, and empower Black leaders to meet the challenge of fighting HIV/AIDS and other health disparities in their local communities. Founded in 1987, and headquartered in New York City, NBLCA is the largest nonprofit organization of its kind in the United States.


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Project Calls For Women Entrepreneurs In Africa To Build Region’s First Intelligence Network

Press Release – Wageningen, Netherlands, 27 July 2018: VALUE4HER a new CTA project will empower women entrepreneurs working in the agricultural sector – agripreneurs – by giving them the skills, knowledge and access to markets, finance and services they need to build their businesses. The project is calling for women-led agribusinesses to register to become part of the first intelligence network targeting women-led agribusinesses in Africa.

“Women are key actors in agriculture, but benefit little from high-value activities,” says Sabdiyo Dido Bashuna, senior technical adviser, value chains and agribusiness, at the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA).

Critical challenges for women include access to markets and market intelligence, access to finance and other business services, and the technical, management and leadership skills needed to drive an enterprise forwards.

VALUE4HER has launched a call for women-led agribusinesses in southern and eastern Africa to register for an agribusiness intelligence network targeting women-led agribusinesses. The aim is to foster better links with markets, supply chains and other service providers, including financing partners. Agribusinesses that register will also be eligible to participate in the project’s activities, including training and the chance to apply for a competitive grant aimed at spurring innovation.

To register with VALUE4HER, go to the following links:

Eastern Africa: https://goo.gl/forms/d8H1vWXD51PKNcUz1
Southern Africa: https://goo.gl/forms/7Bo5BgZEeE3Fb6Dx1

VALUE4HER a joint initiative of CTA, the Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF) and the African Women in Agribusiness Network (AWAN), will help women to develop agribusinesses and to derive more income from agri-food markets. “We want to bring in more young women to be job creators and not just job seekers,” said Irene Ochem, founder and CEO of AWIEF, at the launch of the project.

CTA has extensive experience in working with women-led businesses in Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific, including the Caribbean Network of Rural Women Producers (CANROP) and Samoa-based Women in Business Development Incorporated (WIBDI), as well as with farmer-led agricultural enterprises in Africa.

VALUE4HER will focus on linking women-led agribusinesses with competitive high-value regional and global markets and improving women business leader’s technical and managerial skills. The project will also facilitate innovative business linkages with other women-led agribusinesses and help agripreneurs to link with women suppliers, to benefit other women in the value chain. In addition, VALUE4HER will use knowledge and targeted advocacy to address economic barriers to women’s entrepreneurship (e.g. equitable access to finance), as well as highlight and reinforce market practices that enable women to succeed.

About CTA

The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) is a joint international institution of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the European Union (EU). Its mission is to advance food security, resilience and inclusive economic growth in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific through innovations in sustainable agriculture. CTA operates under the framework of the Cotonou Agreement and is funded by the EU.


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Global Financial Inclusion Initiative at Risk from Payment Fraud

Press Release – San Francisco, CA: July 26, 2018: Nick Brown, payment system expert and founder of Clear Purchase, issued a warning to all those involved in the global Financial Inclusion Initiative. Interoperability, the connecting of financial systems to process financial transactions, massively increases their vulnerability to payment fraud. The devastation that would result from a major fraud attack has the potential to stall the entire global Financial Inclusion Initiative for years, Nick Brown warns. It is possible to minimize the potential damage. We must not let the Financial Inclusion Initiative fail from lack of foresight.

Interoperability massively increases the risk of payment fraud, because each financial transaction involves multiple systems that communicate sensitive information among them. With multiple systems to attack, as well as the communication methods that join them, it will be the weakest link in the chain that becomes the target.

Payment fraud is a massive global problem that exceeds $20b per year. Major criminal organizations have decades of experience in successfully attacking well-established payment systems, despite the huge amounts of money spent every year on prevention. New systems in developing countries that have little or no protection will be easy targets for these criminal organizations.

Nick Brown said, “We must raise awareness in developing countries of the problem of payment fraud, and minimize the vulnerability of their financial systems to a major attack.”

Next week, Nick Brown will start posting a series of blogs on LinkedIn titled “Developing country guide to Payment Fraud.”

Part one: Introduction to Payment Systems and Payment Fraud

Nick Brown is a technical expert with 30 years of experience in the payment infrastructure industry, which included the implementation of the VISA Debit Card system at VISA International in 1996. He has also been involved in writing national and international standards for data security for the financial services industry.

Clear Purchase, Inc., is part of the movement to break the poverty trap in developing countries by creating a truly cashless economy. Their role is to build the payment network hub that connects everyone together, facilitating even the smallest transactions. www.clearpurchase.com


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