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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: October 2018

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Original Comic Art Charity Auction Benefits The Ed Asner Family Center

Heritage Auctions partners with Ed Asner Center to support mental health and enrichment programs

Press Release – DALLAS, Texas (Oct. 16, 2018) – Known for his Emmy-winning roles playing curmudgeons, ranging from Lou Grant on The Mary Tyler Moore Show to Carl in the Pixar film UP, actor Ed Asner’s true character is that of a philanthropist and loving father who shared his passion for comic books with his children. Earlier this year, the legendary actor and founders Matt and Navah Asner opened The Ed Asner Family Center, to offer a host of programs, classes and therapy dedicated to promoting self-confidence in differently abled individuals. They plan to open in their new location in November.

Tomorrow, Heritage Auctions is hosting The Ed Asner Family Center Original Comic Art Charity Auction at Today’s leading comic book artists, including Kevin Nowlan, Alex Ross, Jim Lee and more, have donated high-profile work for the online auction.

“The Asner family have always been comic book fans,” said Matt Asner, Ed Asner’s son and President of The Ed Asner Family Center. “We thought, ‘What can we do to raise the eyebrows of people and highlight creativity?’ We are incredibly excited about doing an original art sale. The Ed Asner Center represents unleashing creativity, and what better way of illustrating this than the world of comics?”

Matt Asner said the core values and programming of the Center are based around creation of an environment that shows the limitless potential of children with different levels of ability, including autism, Down syndrome and developmental delays. “The arts are so important for instilling self confidence in people,” he said.

Matt Asner still remembers his father taking him to newsstands and bookstores while his father was a star on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. “I still remember the first comic book my father ever bought me,” Matt Asner said. “It was an Avengers reprint from 1970. He sees the great, creative atmosphere around comics. He gets it. He saw the creativity, the art and writing involved, and appreciated it.

“We are honored to have 70 pieces of original art from some of the brightest stars in comics in this special auction that we feel could only be done through Heritage,” Asner adds.

Artists who donated both individual work and collaborations, including Alex Ross, Adam Kubert, Tom Derenick, Danny Miki, Scott Hanna and Lary Stucker, Brent Anderson, Adam Hughes, Colleen Doran, Barry Crain, Dan Jurgens, Karine Charlebois, Cully Hamner, Eric Powell, Geof Darrow; Jerry Ordway, Jim Lee and Kevin Nowlan.

“We are very thankful for the contributions of these artists and the time and friendship of Kevin Nowlan,” Matt Asner said. “Kevin was Superman, Batman and Doctor Strange on this project. We also wish to thank Albert Moy, Spencer Beck, Animazing Gallery and Kurt Busiek for their contributions, as well.”

Select highlights include, Nowlan’s original cover art to Doctor Strange #19 (Marvel, 2017), the original cover art by Lee from Scooby Apocalypse #3 (DC, 2016) and variant cover original art by Cassaday for Captain America: Reborn #6 (Marvel, 2003), published in the popular six-issue series.

The Ed Asner Family Center Original Comic Art Charity Auction is online at The Center also offers donors several giving levels and even explains how contributions support various programming. Donations may be made at

Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. Heritage maintains offices in New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, London, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.

The Internet’s most popular auction-house website,, has over one million registered bidder-members and searchable free archives of four million past auction records with prices realized, descriptions and enlargeable photos. Reproduction rights routinely granted to media for photo credit.

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Kool Smiles Delivers Needed Dental Care to Ghana Children and Families with Touch A Life

Press Release – ATLANTA — A team of Kool Smiles dentists and clinical staff recently returned from a mission trip where they spent a week delivering much needed dental care to nearly 200 children and adults in the Accra and Kumasi regions of Ghana. Kool Smiles partnered with Touch A life, part of Kool Smiles’ global outreach initiative, Kool Doctors Giving Back, which aims to bring, quality, compassionate dental care to underserved communities throughout the world.

Dentists Abrefi Asare, DDS, from Laredo, Texas, Tashiba Nelson, DDS, from Orangeburg, South Carolina, Tsebaot Indrias, DDS, from Baltimore, Maryland along with clinical team leader Teri Brown from Louisville, Kentucky, and dental hygienist Amy Le from Atlanta, Georgia, were selected to participate in the mission trip to Ghana September 8-14, 2018. During their time abroad, the Kool Smiles team spent several days performing dental examinations, extractions, restorative procedures and cleanings while also educating children and adults about the importance of oral hygiene.

“When children lack dental care, it impacts their quality of life and can cause suffering leading to an inability to eat, sleep, learn and play,” said Tashiba Nelson, DDS. “Everyone should have access to quality, affordable dental care, regardless of where they live—whether it’s South Carolina or Ghana, Africa.”

“Being able to give back to my homeland by educating and motivating the Touch A Life children to improve their oral health made this experience extremely rewarding,” noted Abrefi Asare, DDS, who was born in Ghana and immigrated to the United States.

The Kool Smiles team was met with big smiles and open arms from the families of the Ghana community. The communities visited have extremely limited access to medical and dental care, making this trip a positive step toward empowering a healthier and happier future for children in underprivileged areas abroad.

Dr. Indrias added, “As a dentist, I really shouldn’t be surprised by a smile, but it was a look of appreciation on the beautiful children we treated in Ghana that made this the most humbling experience.”

The Kool Smiles team selected for the Ghana trip all support the mission of giving back to communities here at home and abroad.

“One of the reasons I became a dental hygienist was to help people, do something positive and give back to the community,” said Amy Le, a dental hygienist at Kool Smiles. “I’m grateful I had the opportunity to broaden my impact and serve children and families in communities on another continent. Our mission made a difference in the lives of those we treated and in our lives as dental providers caring for others.”

“I have always wanted to give back on a global level and this trip gave me the power of bringing happy, healthy smiles to families in Africa,” said Teri Brown, clinical team leader at Kool Smiles.

Touch A Life, a global organization that focuses on developing creative ways to bring healing and empowerment to those who are suffering, exploited or at-risk around the world joined the Kool Smiles team in Ghana. Their programs include, The Touch A Life Care Center in Ghana, Life Academy, Art Healing, and Grief Community. In Ghana, the organization worked to provide long-term care and rehabilitation for child survivors of forced labor.

“There are health-related needs at the Touch A Life Care Center, including dental care, so it was wonderful to have a dedicated, passionate dental team on site to provide annual check-ups, customized dental care, and educational tools that will make a lasting impact on the children and families we serve,” said Rachel Brown, Development Director at Touch A Life.

Launched in 2016, the Kool Doctors Giving Back initiative aims to bring, quality, compassionate dental care to underserved communities at home and abroad. The Kool Doctors Giving Back program is sponsored by the Benevis Foundation.

For more information about our mission trips with other partners, please visit

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10 Million-Plus Americans Helped By Delta Dental Member Companies’ Contribution Of $61 Million In Community Benefits

Philanthropic initiatives underscore Delta Dental’s mission of increasing access to oral health care in U.S. communities nationwide

Press Release – OAK BROOK, Ill., Oct. 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Access to oral health care continues to be a challenge for millions of children and adults, with some never having seen a dentist. Delta Dental is committed to addressing this critical need across the United States. The not-for-profit national association of the Delta Dental companies reports that its member companies donated more than $61 million in direct and in-kind community outreach in 2017, helping over 10.2 million individuals nationwide.

“The Delta Dental member companies’ actionable investments in communities across the nation demonstrate their genuine commitment to improving lives, one smile at a time,” said Steven R. Olson, president and CEO of Delta Dental Plans Association. “As community partners, the Delta Dental companies continuously evaluate where and how they can create meaningful outcomes that can have a lasting, positive effect on oral health and overall health.”

So how are Delta Dental’s philanthropic contributions making a difference? By supporting 1,425 programs across the country last year, the Delta Dental companies increased access to oral health care through direct programming and financial support of dental workforce education; provided treatment to at-risk children and adults; and expanded oral health awareness, education and wellness.

Oral health education as a priority

Outreach for oral health education programs backed by the Delta Dental member companies in 2017 exceeded 4.3 million persons. An example is the continuation of the Land of Smiles® educational touring program supported by Delta Dental of Missouri. Since 2002, more than 900,000 children have learned about the importance of good oral health, with the help of Delta Dental’s Tooth WizardSM, Tooth Fairy, and PlaqueManSM characters. Learn more here about how elementary school-aged children have been engaged during more than 4,500 performances of the Land of Smiles tour across the Show Me State.

Another oral health education endeavor includes the Cavity Free Kids curriculum (developed by Delta Dental of Washington’s foundation), which teaches early learning (Head Start, child care, home visiting) providers about what causes tooth decay and how to work with families to prevent oral disease and promote good health. The curriculum is recommended by Head Start’s National Center on Early Childhood Health and Wellness, and Cavity Free Kids trainings have been delivered in 19 states.

Additional oral health education examples follow: Delta Dental of Arkansas leveraged Captain Supertooth and the Tooth Fairy at a National Education Association’s Read Across America Day event to discuss how to keep teeth happy, healthy and clean; the Delta Dental Foundation collaborated with Girl Scout troops in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana on the Smile Squad oral health patch program; and Delta Dental of Illinois offered the Teeth-on-the-GoSM bookbag program to instruct kindergarten through 2nd grade-aged students about good dental care.

“We understand how a healthy smile changes a life — a smile can boost confidence, express feeling, help get a job, and tell a story,” said Dr. Joe Dill, DDS, MBA, Delta Dental Plans Association’s vice president of dental science and network strategy. “Establishing positive oral hygiene habits at a young age is critical to laying the foundation for good oral health. Delta Dental’s oral health education programs are designed to be informative and engaging, making them ideal for helping brushers and flossers in training establish good habits for a lifetime.”

The Children’s Oral Health Survey shows that children who brush as often as they should are more likely than those who don’t (67 percent versus 60 percent) to take pride in their smile. The “smile pride” gap improves with flossing to 79 percent versus 63 percent.

In addition, the Delta Dental survey reveals that children who brush their teeth two or more times a day are more likely than those who brush less often to be proud of their personal success (68 percent versus 48 percent), performance in school (66 percent versus 47 percent), and good eating habits (45 percent versus 32 percent).

Establishing roots in dental prevention

Helping to prevent oral health problems, before they occur, is at the heart of many of Delta Dental’s community benefits efforts. In 2017, more than 4.2 million individuals were served by the Delta Dental companies’ dental prevention initiatives, including community water fluoridation, school sealant programs, and screenings. As an example, Delta Dental of Wisconsin supports one of the most comprehensive school-based sealant programs in the country in partnership with the state of Wisconsin and Children’s Health Alliance of Wisconsin. The Seal-A-Smile program helps to reduce the incidence of caries and other oral health problems among school-aged children in vulnerable segments of the population. In addition, Delta Dental of Iowa sponsored the “Rethink Your Drink” program to install water bottle filling stations at numerous schools in Iowa to update or replace existing water fountains.

Treating dental needs of at-risk Americans

Through the Delta Dental member companies’ community outreach, more than 1.3 million at-risk children and adults received treatments for dental diseases and cavities. One example of assistance is the continuation of a successful, multimillion-dollar mobile dental program offered by Delta Dental of South Dakota. Two fully staffed mobile dental clinic trucks tour communities statewide on average 40 weeks per year to address the oral health needs of underserved children. Click here to view more about the mobile dental program. Another illustration of assistance is support in 2017 from Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation, which expanded access to care for more than 130,000 Minnesotans in need through increased capacity at safety net dental clinics around the state. Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation made grants to more than a dozen not-for-profit clinics in 2017 and had another 10 active grants from prior years focused on access to care.

Addressing other local-level needs

More than 330,000 people benefited from the Delta Dental companies’ support of oral health research, dental workforce education, dental sponsorships, and non-health-related aid, including helping with relief efforts for natural disasters. As an example of a dental sponsorship, Delta Dental of Arizona hit it out of the ballpark with its participation in the No Chew Crew anti-smokeless tobacco program, in partnership with the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team.

About the survey

The Children’s Oral Health Survey was conducted between December 13 and December 28, 2017, among a nationally representative sample of 1,322 parents of children ages 12 and under. The margin of error is +/- 2.7 percent.

Follow us on Twitter @DeltaDental and Facebook: Delta Dental Plans Association

About Delta Dental Plans Association

Delta Dental Plans Association, based in Oak Brook, Illinois, is the not-for-profit national association of the 39 independent Delta Dental companies. Through these companies, Delta Dental is the nation’s largest provider of dental insurance, covering more than 78 million Americans, and offering the country’s largest dental network with approximately 154,000 participating dentists. In 2017, the Delta Dental companies provided more than $61 million in direct and in-kind community outreach support to improve the oral health of adults, children and infants in local communities across the country. For more information, visit:

SOURCE Delta Dental Plans Association

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Partnerships for Parks Community Connections: An Evening of Networking for Park Volunteers

Event To Be Held On October 23, 2018

Press Release – October 15, 2018 — NEW YORK, NY — Partnerships for Parks is proud to announce that the 5th annual Community Connections event, recognizing New York City park volunteers who have graduated from the Partnerships Academy Fellowship Program, will be held on October 23, at the Manny Cantor Center on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. At the ceremony, City Parks Foundation Executive Director, Heather Lubov, and Deputy Commissioner of NYC Parks, Liam Kavanaugh, will honor twenty community park groups from across the city.

The twenty graduates include Bronx-based Survivor I Am, Brooklyn’s Fresh Creek Nature Association, Harlem’s Friends of St. Nicholas Park, Queens-based Friends of Rosemary’s Playground, and Staten Island’s Friends of Mariners Harbor Parks. These groups span the five boroughs and tackle issues of concern in their respective neighborhoods, encouraging activism and community engagement, increasing programming and beautification of their local green spaces, and advocating for funding from their elected officials.

The Fellowship Program provides the essential training and organizational development these groups need to realize their visions for their local parks. Now in its sixth year, the program provides tailored support to community park groups, teaching them how to define goals and develop action plans for improving their local parks, and how to monitor and evaluate their progress. This year, the graduates participated in workshops with experts on creating group structure, writing grants, designing public programming, and working with the press.

“We value opportunities to learn from one another – from experts on our team, and experts in our neighborhoods,” said Sabina Saragoussi, Director, Partnerships for Parks. “The Fellowship, and culminating Community Connections event, celebrate the accomplishments of some of our most dedicated park partners, as well as provide a unique opportunity for us to exchange rich knowledge for the benefit of our communities. When we connect, we grow together.”

The Fellowship Program is free of charge for park group members and leaders, who are selected via an application process. These volunteers are vital in caring for and improving New York City’s 29,000 acres of greenspace. Their dedicated stewardship helps build long-term investment in these public spaces and strengthens the social fabric of their neighborhoods. For more information on the program, visit

Community Connections: An Evening of Networking for Park Volunteers

When: October 23 / 6:00 – 8:30 pm

Members of the press are invited to attend.

Where: Manny Cantor Center

197 E. Broadway, New York, NY 10002

Visuals: Remarks from NYC Parks Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanaugh and City Parks Foundation Executive Director Heather Lubov. Featuring twenty local community groups taking the podium to accept their awards.

About Partnerships for Parks: Partnerships for Parks is a joint program of City Parks Foundation and NYC Parks that supports and champions a growing network of leaders caring and advocating for neighborhood parks and green spaces. We equip people and organizations with the skills and tools needed to transform these spaces into dynamic community assets.

Generous private support is provided by the Altman Foundation, the Greening Greenpoint Community Environmental Fund, and the MJS Foundation. Public support is provided by the NYC Council under the leadership of Speaker Corey Johnson through the Parks Equity Initiative.

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The American Red Cross Partners With Solar Cooking Start-Up GoSun Inc.

Brand Licensing Alliance Established to Develop Co-Branded Solar Relief Products

Press Release – GoSun Inc., a team that is leading the innovation of solar cooking products, today announced a brand licensing alliance with the American Red Cross in order to have co-branded GoSun products widely available for clean and fuel-free cooking in case of an emergency or disaster. The co-branded products to be included initially are the ultra-portable GoSun Go and the easy to use and incredibly fast cooking GoSun Sport.

GoSun’s Sport and Go models are perfectly equipped to cook hot food in all environments with only the power of the sun. The stoves are safe, fast, storable, and lightweight. From cooking hot food to pasteurizing water the GoSun suite of products are built perfectly for disaster and preparedness situations. Retail stores are beginning to carry GoSun’s alternative powered products in areas prone to threat from floods, storms, hurricanes and other major weather events causing power outages and affecting millions of people annually.

“GoSun is regularly examining new relationships that can help to us impact communities around the world in a positive way,” said Patrick Sherwin, founder of GoSun. “Curating the American Red Cross Brand Licensee relationship aligns with our global mission to assist those in need during emergencies, and to educate people on clean cooking practices.”

“Part of the Red Cross mission is to help people prepare for emergencies,” said Jim Parker, Executive Director of Brand Licensing for the Red Cross. “Having solar products on hand will benefit those affected by power outages due to a wide range of events and disasters.”

About GoSun Inc.

GoSun is a young company comprised of designers, engineers, and change-makers, intent on serving the world with unique solar solutions. GoSun has been determined since day one to make a worldwide impact with the power of solar innovation. They received a UN Grant from The Global Alliance for Clean cookstoves for a Pilot Study in Guatemala in 2014, and have been recognized since by many organizations for consistently innovating the space of solar cooking and solar product development.

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Centre Foundation Celebrates Another Successful Year of Philanthropy

Community Foundation to host annual dinner on Thursday, Nov. 1 at The Nittany Lion Inn

Press Release – STATE COLLEGE, PA – Centre Foundation will host its annual end-of-year dinner on Thursday, Nov. 1 at The Nittany Lion Inn to celebrate another successful year of philanthropy in Centre County.

At the dinner, Centre Foundation will announce the newest Centre Inspires project and the 2018 Oak Tree Award winner, recognized for his/her service, commitment, and passion for the foundation. The program will also highlight the accomplishments of Strawberry Fields’ Good Day Café, the recipient of the 2017 Centre Inspires grant.

Guests should register online by Oct. 26. Attendance at the dinner costs $100 per person.

Centre Foundation believes in the organizations that are working to create a better future for the community. Each year, Centre Foundation distributes hundreds of grants to nonprofits in order to continue making Centre County the best place to live, work, and play.

“The generosity of Centre County continues to amaze me,” expressed Molly Kunkel, Executive Director at Centre Foundation. “I hope that you will join us to celebrate all that we have accomplished as a community this year.”

Centre Foundation’s mission is to inspire and facilitate a culture of giving to create a vibrant community.

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Girl Scouts of the USA and Discovery Education Launch National Initiative to Inspire Young Girls to Pursue Careers in STEM

— Addressing Gender Equity in STEM, ‘Girls Get STEM: Unleash Your Inner Scientist’ to Encourage the Next Generation of Leaders in STEM —

Press Release – Silver Spring, Md. (Monday, October 15, 2018) – Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA), the preeminent leadership development organization for girls, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, today announced Girls Get STEM: Unleash Your Inner Scientist – a national initiative to spark girls’ interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). The program will provide educators, Girl Scout troop leaders, and families with standards-aligned curriculum aimed at addressing gender equity in STEM education through a series of girl-led, girl-tested and girl-approved resources for students in grades 2-5.

The initiative launches with the Unleash Your Citizen Scientist Virtual Field Trip, premiering on Thursday, October 18, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT, and will transport students and their teachers from the walls of their schools to a STEM-focused adventure camp alongside the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas at their STEM Center of Excellence. The girl-led adventure will inspire the use of scientific method by all students to help build a better world. Educators, parents and students are welcomed to register for the virtual event here. Viewers are encouraged to join @DiscoveryEd, @GirlScouts, and other experts for a LIVE Twitter chat during the premiere by submitting questions and sending pictures using #CitizenScientistVFT.

“We are excited to collaborate with Discovery Education to inspire young students to dream big as they explore all of the amazing opportunities available to them in STEM fields,” said GSUSA CEO and former rocket scientist Sylvia Acevedo. “We know how important it is to introduce girls to STEM at a young age so that they can see themselves as the scientists, engineers, astronauts, designers, programmers, coders, and creators of the future—and so they know that the possibilities are truly endless.”

Recent findings from the Girl Scout Research Institute’s Generation STEM: What Girls Say about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math show 92 percent of girls interested in STEM fields believe they are smart enough to have a career in STEM. However, women continue to be underrepresented in these fields. Girls Get STEM: Unleash Your Inner Scientist aims to change this trend by cultivating girls’ early interest in STEM and associated careers.

“We are proud to join Girl Scouts of the USA in their important work to open STEM pathways for girls by increasing their exposure to STEM’s role in making the world a better place,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Discovery Education. “Girls Get STEM: Unleash Your Inner Scientist is designed to build girls’ confidence in their problem-solving abilities, and together, we will inspire a new generation of women leaders to pursue careers in STEM.”

Leveraging no-cost, digitally immersive, standards-aligned curriculum – including educator resources and virtual experiences – Girls Get STEM: Unleash Your Inner Scientist will spark girls’ interest in STEM and prepare them for the future. Girl Scouts has been the preeminent leadership development organization for girls for over a century, offering opportunities to explore fields like STEM and entrepreneurship in which women are traditionally underrepresented, in a safe all-girl space where they can build confidence and take healthy risks.

“‘Girls Get STEM: Unleash Your Inner Scientist’ will encourage all students—including girls—to see themselves as emerging solution-seekers who aspire to make positive change,” said Karie Hutner, Education Technology Coach, Verona School District, Wisconsin. “Discovery Education and Girl Scouts’ collaboration to ensure that a new generation of young scientists are intrigued by real-world applications of science, technology, engineering and math will equip young innovators with the tools needed to advance our world.”

Resources to expand STEM opportunities and create a more equitable future are available at no cost at, they will also be available through Discovery Education Streaming. Additionally, these resources are available for use in and out of the classroom. For more information about Discovery Education’s digital content and professional development services, visit Stay connected with Discovery Education through social media on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest @DiscoveryEd. To join or volunteer for Girl Scouts, visit

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Business Leaders from 35 Countries Gather in Peace Palace for the Nudge Summit

Jaap Smit, Commissioner of the King for the province of South Holland, will hand out the Nudge Global Impact Awards

Press Release – Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 15 October, 2018 – the 9th Nudge Global Impact Challenge starts today (15 – 17 October). 90 young talented professionals from all over the world are participating in this life-changing leadership programme about sustainability and impact creation. They represent global organisations such as Heineken, Danone, Ferrero, BMW Group, Rabobank, Philips, Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, Nutreco and ABN AMRO. The programme creates a change in the leadership of the next generation of global business and society leaders, resulting in greater global impact on sustainability. The Nudge Summit on 16 October in the Peace Palace is the highlight of the Nudge Global Impact Challenge. Current and future leaders will connect and commit to make change happen.

Nudge Global Impact Award

During the Nudge Summit, Jaap Smit, Commissioner of the King for the province of South Holland, will hand out the Nudge Global Impact Awards. This prize celebrates the positive impact on society and the world that the participants of the Challenge are achieving through the realisation of their Sustainability Impact Plan. Nudge partnered up with the Department of Environmental Policy Analysis of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam to assess the impact made by participants, from which six finalists were determined. A jury will choose three Selected Awardees who will win a Nudge Global Impact Award.

Jan van Betten, founder of Nudge:

“Nudge focuses on impact. The Nudge Global Impact Challenge is the instrument for young professionals and their organisations to realise change and impact. Changing the lives of one billion people in a positive way and tackling global issues. Is it possible when you are 23 years old? Yes, you can when you know how to mobilise your organisation towards doing business for good. Nudge realises the worldwide impact our alumni have created, it is about time to award them for that.”

Nudge Summit in the Peace Palace

At the Nudge Summit on 16 October, over 200 CEOs, politicians, scientists and young future leaders in sustainability will connect and commit to make change happen. This year’s theme of the Challenge, ‘Towards a Circular Economy. Gearing up young leaders for new perspectives on leadership, culture and technology’ deserves a grand location, hence, the Summit will be held in the Peace Palace in The Hague (International City of Peace and Justice). The keynote speaker will be Martijn Lampert (Research Director, Motivaction International). He will share the results of the Glocalities global survey report, inspired by Nelson Mandela’s dream to eradicate poverty, titled ‘Increasing knowledge and activating Millennials for making poverty history’.

Partners of the Nudge Global Impact Challenge are: Circl, AsianNGO, B Lab Europe, China Europe International Business School (CEIBS), Ferrero, Fred Foundation, Global Shapers, Heineken International, India Connected, LeaderScope, MasterPeace, Netvlies, OPEN (One Planet Education Networks), Plastic Soup Foundation, Seedlink, Tony’s Chocolonely, Triodos Foundation, Unilever, VU University Amsterdam and Wageningen University & Research.

About Nudge

Founded in 2010, Nudge strives towards a sustainable society. Nudge is a social enterprise and B Corp based in The Netherlands. Nudge connects people and organisations with its online platform in order to achieve grassroots initiatives that bring a positive and long-lasting change in our society. By facilitating bottom-up initiatives, Nudge offers perspectives for action that are accessible to everyone. Nudge invites everyone to take action and make a positive contribution to society. Over 65,500 people and approximately 200 organisations in the Netherlands are members of the Nudge community and this number is increasing daily.

About the Nudge Global Impact Challenge

The Nudge Global Impact Challenge is a life-changing development programme and competition for the best young talents in the world who want to advance their leadership skills in sustainability and impact creation. More information can be found here.

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Create and Network at Northern NJ Community Foundation’s Connect the Dots Makerspace Expo

Press Release – (Bergen County, New Jersey; October 10, 2018) — If you enjoy creating art, designs, inventions, woodwork, crafts, or other products, come to the Northern New Jersey Community Foundation’s (NNJCF) ArtsBergen next Connect the Dots event, Makerspace Expo, on Monday, November 5. The hands-on networking event takes place at Bergen Makerspace in the Bergen County Technical Schools Adult & Continuing Education Building, located at 190 Hackensack Avenue in Hackensack, New Jersey from 6:00 8:00 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Good-will donations are welcome.

Learn about the Maker Movement by experiencing a makerspace firsthand. Educators Dennis Montone and Mark Tronicke, along with five makers will demonstrate the tools, equipment, projects, and uses of laser cut, 3D printed art, woodturning, and upcycled electronics sculpture. This open space provides a collaborative workplace and brings together a community of like-minded creatives, designers, artists, and inventors exploring and sharing ideas and developing finished products. Connect with artists, municipal and community leaders, and business owners living or working in Bergen County and meet others with similar interests.

“The ethos of makerspaces and the maker movement aligns perfectly with the Northern New Jersey Community Foundation’s mission to bring people together to share best practices, ideas, inspiration, and talent as a way to build stronger, more productive and vibrant communities. We encourage artists to come out on November 5 to experience an amazing creative resource here in Bergen County,” said Danielle De Laurentis, Associate Director, Northern New Jersey Community Foundation.

Photo Credit: Bergen Makerspace


Space is limited. Pre-registration is required and may be done online at For further information about the Northern New Jersey Community Foundation or ArtsBergen, contact or call 201-568-5608.


The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF), a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization based in Hackensack, New Jersey, focuses primarily on civic engagement, education, public health, and the arts. NNJCF works with local governments, school districts, businesses, non-profit organizations, and citizen groups in Northern New Jersey to improve community life. The Foundation’s partners identify and resolve regional problems and opportunities by talking and learning from each other, by sharing ideas, best practices, services, and resources.

For more information, visit, send an email to, or call (201) 568-5608. Follow the NNJCF on Facebook at Northern NJ Community Foundation/ArtsBergen and Twitter @NNJCF.

About ArtsBergen

ArtsBergen, an initiative of the Northern New Jersey Community Foundation, is an emerging arts alliance in Bergen County, New Jersey that supports and encourages creative placemaking, the practice of integrating arts and culture into a neighborhood, town, or region to build community and livability and boost local economy. The initiative’s mission is to energize and unify artists and arts organizations and connect the Bergen County community to the arts. For more information, visit,

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Societal Prejudice Restricts Girls’ Access To Mobile, Global Study Finds

  • In many developing nations, girls’ access to and use of mobile is dramatically restricted compared to that of boys
  • Girls are sharing and borrowing phones in secret, putting them disproportionately at risk
  • The study, advised by MIT D-Lab, explores vulnerable girls’ access to mobile across 25 countries, including India, Tanzania, South Africa, Nigeria and Bangladesh
  • Girl Effect and Vodafone Foundation call for development and tech communities to design mobile products and services that meet the needs of vulnerable girls

Press Release – Today, non-profit Girl Effect and Vodafone Foundation publish findings of the first comprehensive global study into how adolescent girls access and use mobile technology. The research reveals that boys are 1.5 times more likely to own a phone than girls as societal prejudice and other barriers disproportionately restrict girls’ access and usage of mobile. [1]

Girls’ mobile phone access in developing nations is higher than expected; while only 44% of girls interviewed in the study say they own a phone, more than half (52%) access phones by borrowing one. The study reveals that phones make girls feel more connected (50%), provide access to education (47%), reduce boredom (62%), increase access to restricted information (26%), and increase their confidence (20%).

We can connect globally, get to know more about what we are studying, and we can learn many things through the Internet. We can know about things that are unknown to us. (Girl, 19, Bangladesh)

However, the research – a qualitative and quantitative study across 25 countries – found that girls’ access and use is dramatically restricted by negative social norms that prevent them from having the same freedoms as boys. More than two-thirds (67%) of boys surveyed reported owning a phone (compared to 44% of girls) and 28% borrowed – compared to more than half (52%) for girls.

Moreover, in countries such as Nigeria and Malawi, boys are more likely to use a phone for a more sophisticated range of activities than girls, like using Whatsapp and Facebook, searching the internet for news or finding jobs. On the other hand, girls in these locations are more likely be restricted to using phones for more basic day-to-day tasks that require lower levels of tech literacy, like calling their parents or using the calculator.

In countries like India and Bangladesh, girls seen using phones often face negative judgement from community members, meaning parents are more likely to ban access to a device. Girls who break rules around phones are also more likely to be punished by scolding, beatings, being kept out of school or even early marriage.

If it’s a 15 year old girl, she won’t be allowed to go out of her home, she will be beaten and her educational privileges will be taken from her. It can also happen that she is married off. (Girl, 17, India)

Restrictions on girls’ use of mobile also mean girls are more likely to resort to unsafe and covert behaviours to access phones. In locations such as Northern Nigeria, where girls need parental permission to use phones, girls say that boys will often give their girlfriend a secret phone, so that he can contact her privately whenever he wants.

As a consequence, girls see parental safety concerns as the greatest barrier to mobile access (47%), whereas boys cite cost as their greatest barrier (60%).

Kecia Bertermann, Technical Director of Digital Research, Girl Effect, said: “Unequal access to technology is a growing area of research, but ‘girls’ are typically subsumed within the broader category of ‘women’, so their unique challenges often go unreported. This study reveals the reality for girls and their position at the back of the queue when it comes to accessing mobile. Firstly, we found that girls experience more of the risks but fewer, if any, of the benefits; without the time or permission to develop the confidence to explore more sophisticated uses of mobile, girls’ tech literacy is hampered. Secondly, given some girls are resorting to using phones in secret, they sometimes feel unable to report safety issues to parents or friends, and end up putting themselves at greater risk.”

In Malawi and Rwanda, where access to mobile is restricted and girls’ tech literacy is low, girls themselves fear that phones can lead to them ‘going astray’ because they assume that mobiles lead to contact with boys and ultimately, unwanted pregnancy.

Others believe that a boy and a girl are different people, others say that a boy can have a phone at any age while a girl may end up getting pregnant. (Girl, 19, Malawi)

However, universally girls identify that having a mobile phone can help keep them safe. Girls emphasise much more than boys how valuable a phone can be for minimising danger in their lives. In countries where girls tend to have less access and less varied usage, this is often given as the primary justification for having a phone.

Andrew Dunnett, Vodafone Foundation Director, said: “Girls are being left behind. In many countries access to mobile is key to a girls’ health, learning and development. We need to face the reality that girls and boys do not have equal access to mobile, and design services that reach the girls and meet their needs in this context. We want this research to inform and support the tech and development sectors in meeting girls’ needs and making real progress in achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.”

Vodafone Foundation and Girl Effect have committed to empower seven million vulnerable girls across eight countries with access to the services they need through mobile. Working in partnership with multiple partners and funders, their aim is to generate total funds of up to $25m over five years, including a $5m contribution from the Vodafone Foundation, to achieve this ambitious goal.

This inaugural study urges leaders in the development and tech worlds to recognise the societal constraints holding back girls from accessing mobile. Vodafone Foundation and Girl Effect call on industries to take action and implement the following:


  1. Address the mobile gender gap holistically. Girls face physical barriers to accessing mobile phones, but it is often the social barriers that are the most challenging to overcome. These can be most effectively addressed by taking into account the local context and taking a holistic approach, to tackle multiple barriers simultaneously through a combination of digital and non-digital means.
  2. Rewrite literacy for the digital age. Tech literacy is a crucial component of education – girls are at risk of falling behind if we don’t invest in this. Support should include integrating tech literacy and digital safety into school lessons for all students, as well as encouraging broader acceptance of mobile phones amongst families and communities.
  3. Design for online safeguarding. Girls everywhere – from Northern Nigeria to Adams County, Colorado – want their online experiences to be safer. When designing platforms, we must make special considerations for users who borrow phones. We need to design an experience that is just as safe for a girl who has intermittent access to different devices, as it is for one who has constant access to her own device.
  4. Involve men and boys. Men and boys often have greater access to phones than girls and women, and also sometimes act as gatekeepers to mobile access. We need to support these gatekeepers to challenge taboos around mobile and show how phones can practically improve girls’ lives.
  5. Support girls to expand their own digital horizons and co-create. Girls are better placed than anyone else to design relevant and valuable solutions for their own lives lives. This presents a huge opportunity for the tech sector to bring girls into the development process. We need to increase girls’ tech literacy – from daily use of phones, to coding ideas and interventions – and enable access to spark creativity and create without boundaries.

The report Real Girls, Real Lives, Connected is available here

[1] All stats based on analysis of data from girls in Malawi (Mzuzu, Lilongwe and Zomba); Rwanda; Tanzania (Temeke, Dar es Salaam); Nigeria (Kano); India (Bihar and Rajasthan); and Bangladesh (Dhaka and Jessore).

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