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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

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May 1st Fundraiser to Benefit Nepal Cleft & Burn Center

The Nepal Cleft & Burn Center (NC&BC) will hold its annual fundraiser Friday, May 1st, 2015, from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Foothill Oriental Rugs, 1460 Foothill Drive, Salt Lake City, Utah. The event benefits families of Nepal by raising funds for the NC&BC, Nepal’s first teaching hospital specializing in deformity-correcting reconstructive surgery located in Kathmandu, Nepal. The event will feature music, dinner, and a live and silent auction. The cost of the event is $95 per person. Information is available at

The event raises funds for surgeries and medical supplies for the NC&BC, which is also part of a modern new health services complex in the Kathmandu Valley. The NC&BC survived damage from the recent earthquake and is providing much-needed emergency care for victims of the earthquake, and it will be critical in providing ongoing care. Funds from the fundraiser will ensure that the hospital has the resources to continue providing quality healthcare as Kathmandu recovers from the earthquake.

Over the years, this annual fundraising event and the grassroots efforts of a group of US-based Tibetan rug importers raised the funds to open the NC&BC. Through the NC&BC each year, hundreds of Nepal’s poorest citizens receive free, life-changing reconstructive burn and cleft palate surgeries. The director and administrator of the Nepal Cleft & Burn Center is Dr. Shankar Rai. A native of the ‘hill country’ of Eastern Nepal, Dr. Rai is an internationally recognized reconstructive surgeon and has completed thousands of reconstructive surgeries as well as taught local Nepali healthcare providers to provide much-need surgical and medical care.

For those who can’t attend the event but would like to help support the NC&BC, donations can be made at

Recycled Love and a Second Chance

This is a guest post from Sasha Lipton.

I started Second Chance Toys when I was in high school because it upset me to see good-as-new plastic toys on the curb for garbage day when I knew there were so many kids out there whose parents couldn’t afford toys. I also envisioned a big pile of toys in the landfill, knowing full well– that throwing out these plastic toys presented a hazard to our environment.

I enlisted my mom – and her SUV — and we started retrieving these toys from the curb — one by one — until our basement was filled. I then cleaned and tagged them with notes for the new owners, and we delivered them to a local family violence. I referred to it as “love recycled.”

Fast-forward 8 years and Second Chance Toys has distributed nearly 200,000 toys to children in need and touching more than half a million kids – and future generations with a cleaner earth. We have saved about 40 tons of non-biodegradable waste from our landfills.

The great thing about Second Chance Toys is that it’s not only the kids who receive the toys that benefit. The children and families donating the toys get a different kind of gift like I did. They get the gift of giving – and honestly there is nothing that feels better than helping someone else.

Through a very special corporate partnership with Kidville, we are teaching families the importance of being part of this ‘love recycled’ movement. Kidville holds toy collections with us twice a year and hosts’ special recycling classes for young children that help them understand at a very young age the importance of re-using things.


One of the best things about the small idea I had is that it’s really contagious – everyone wants to join in and help. So we have created a template on our website that allows families and communities to do just that. If you want to donate, collect, or receive toys, we make it easy and tell you how to do it in your area. And we support these efforts with the help of corporate partners like 1-800-Got-Junk?, Kohl’s, Old Spice, Viacom and of course Kidville. We couldn’t continue our work without their help – and we are constantly looking for ways to expand our corporate family so we can increase our impact.

Right now our work is focused in the East (from Boston to Washington, DC) but we have empowered many to hold their own toy drives – so there are events going on now around the country and even on the other side of the world – in Sydney, Australia.

Anyone can participate – families, the community, businesses, and even high school students! All the tools are right on our website to make it easy to do give back in a special way!

After all, this is the true meaning of Thanksgiving.

Second Chance Toys

  • 200,000 toys distributed
  • 40 tons of non-biodegradable waste saved from our landfills
  • More than 600,000 smiles delivered to deserving children
  • Over 100 toy collections scheduled for this holiday
  • Learn how you can get involved:


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UBS Introduces BETA Version of Planet Art, an Ipad App That Delivers Contemporary Art News to Global Audiences

A simple tool to navigate vast amounts of contemporary art information, Planet Art collects and organizes news, features and market stories from a broad range of sources into custom content streams for users.

Zurich, New York, 01 December 2014 – Today, global financial services company UBS announced the release of Planet Art, a new iPad app that is the first and only app to collect and distill global news about contemporary art. Available free of charge from the Apple App Store, Planet Art will be introduced during the December 2014 opening of Art Basel in Miami Beach, where UBS welcomes collectors, curators, gallerists and general art lovers to experience the app in action during one of the art world’s largest and most exciting annual events.

Developed by UBS, Planet Art uses unique algorithms to read, index and objectively rank information from mainstream media, traditional art world news outlets, niche publications and blogs. Based on these methods, the app presents the top-ranked information on trending topics as reported in the media.

Continuously updated, Planet Art offers a snapshot of the most relevant and trending topics in contemporary art. Featuring a simple and intuitive design, the app organizes key stories from a diverse range of news sources into three categories—News, Features and The Market, helping seasoned professionals and beginning art enthusiasts alike to digest and stay up-to-date on the most topical art world information. Users can personalize Planet Art to create a custom content stream focusing on locale, specific artists, galleries, museums and subjects and the app also can help users discover new interests.

“Clients rely on UBS’s business expertise to help provide them with clarity and direction within a complex international financial system. In the same way, Planet Art serves as an invaluable guide through a vast and often confusing system of contemporary art news sources and trends,” stated Johan Jervøe, Chief Marketing Officer for UBS. “We believe that critical insights and seeing the bigger picture are fundamental shared values between the art world and providing financial services.”

As an active participant in the field of contemporary art—with a renowned corporate collection, a record of investment in diverse international arts initiatives, and as global Lead Partner of the major modern and contemporary art fair Art Basel in all three of its worldwide venues—UBS developed Planet Art to provide its clients and the art world at large with a simple tool to navigate the growing and often fragmented landscape of art information available today.

Planet Art draws its content from RSS sources offering publicly available information. At the time of launch, highlights of some of news sources currently featured in Planet Art include: The Art Newspaper; ARTnews; Art in America; ArtFCity; Art Asia Pacific (China); BBC Culture blog (UK); Financial Times (UK); The Guardian (UK); New York Observer’s Art & Gallerist; The New York Times; and The Wall Street Journal, among others. The Planet Art content list will be evaluated regularly and will grow over time.

For more information about Planet Art:
Download here:

UBS & Contemporary Art

Planet Art joins an extensive roster of contemporary art initiatives and programs in which UBS is engaged: the UBS Art Collection is one of the world’s largest and most important corporate collections of contemporary art; the firm continues to provide long-term global support for the premier international Art Basel shows in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong, for which they serve as global Lead Partner; and UBS collaborates with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation on the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative. These activities are complemented by a number of regional partnerships including the Fondation Beyeler in Switzerland, the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco, the Louisiana Museum in Denmark and the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. UBS also provides its clients with insight into the contemporary art world through the UBS Art Competence Center and the UBS Arts Forum. The company’s long and substantial record of patronage in contemporary art actively enables clients and audiences to participate in the international conversation about art and the global art market through the firm’s contemporary art platform.

About UBS

UBS draws on its 150-year heritage to serve private, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as retail clients in Switzerland. Its business strategy is centered on its pre-eminent global wealth management businesses and its leading universal bank in Switzerland, complemented by its Global Asset Management business and its Investment Bank, with a focus on capital efficiency and businesses that offer a superior structural growth and profitability outlook.

UBS is present in all major financial centers worldwide. It has offices in more than 50 countries, with about 35% of its employees working in the Americas, 36% in Switzerland, 17% in the rest of Europe, the Middle East and Africa and 12% in Asia Pacific. UBS employs about 60,000 people around the world. Its shares are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).


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Helping Drug Addicted Peoples for Drugs Free Life

By Fahad Hassan

Islamabad Pakistan

New Life (Nai Zindgi in urdu) is a rehabilitation center with a mission to create a drugs­free and healthy society. We have a team of dedicated professionals who is working day and night to give the addicted and psychiatric patients a new life.

History and Aim

Founded in 1991 and till date we rehabilitate thousands of people and now they are living a drugs­free happy life. Our goal is to strengthening and empowering the communities to solve their problems through collective action and participation and to motivate the peoples to avoid from using drugs which is the core program of the New Life. We committed to improving the lives of families and individuals affected by Narcotics proactively advancing research for better understanding, better treatments and a cure; educating the public and healthcare professionals about all forms; advocating for universal Anti Narcotics screening; and providing support services and resources vital to the society. We focused mission to provide quality health and social services to underserved communities, by using innovative and participatory approaches and to provide the free medical treatment to the general public.

Fundraising Campaign on Indiegogo

We are currently running a fundraising campaign at for expanding our rehabilitation center so we can serve more and better.

For More details and contributions please visit our campaign page at:

Talk About Coming a Long Way To A Party, MS Patients Circumnavigate The World to Sail Into Fort Lauderdale To Join ‘HATS OFF! Gala’ Benefit For Multiple Sclerosis Foundation

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL.Multiple Sclerosis Foundation ( ) will be greeting some special guests who’ve sailed a very long way to attend its “HATS OFF! Gala” at the Hyatt Regency Pier 66 on December 6th. Oceans of Hope ) has circumnavigated the world with passengers that have MS. The crew of the ship will receive a “Beacon of Light” award at the Gala for their determination and dedication to sail around the globe.

Admirers as well as other MS patients will greet the arrival of the ship 11am on December 3rd at the Bahia Mar Docks. The public is invited to share this moment of history in the making.

The Multiple Sclerosis Foundation Gala will honor Dr. Daniel Kantor for Leadership of Care and Drs. Marietta and Ira Glazer for being the Fearless Volunteers of the Year. Co-Chairs are Lynne & Ralph McGrath and the evening will be emceed by Chanel from Mega 94.9 and 93.9.

An auction will be held during the cocktail hour bearing one of a kind items donated at a VIP pre Gala party held at Alpine Jaguar such as a basket including Units of Botox®, Lipo and B-12 Shots, a Google tablet, a custom-made sterling silver necklace decorated with fresh water pearls, blue topaz, and Swarovski elements, a signed football by Lee Corso, ESPN College Gameday analyst, “Tree at Sunset” matted photo and portrait package. These items and many more, will be available for bidding.

Sponsors of the gala, which is set for Saturday, December 6th, include: AT&T, Novartis Pharmaceutical, Lorraine Thomas, Genzyme, Biogen Idec, EMD Serono Pfizer, TEVA Shared Solutions, Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, Mallinckrodt, NSCFF, Alpine Jaguar,, South Florida Opulence Magazine, Palm Beach Broadcasting, MDW Insurance and CBIZ.


The Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, ( or 888-MSFOCUS), is a national publicly-funded 501(c)3 non-profit organization headquartered in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. The mission of MSF is to provide vital programs and services for those affected by MS, and heighten public awareness and understanding for those diagnosed with the illness in order to elicit financial support for their needs. Also, tune in to, the first online radio station for the MS community that broadcasts content round-the-clock, brought to you by MSF.

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Notes on Undoing

A group exhibition of: Igor Eškinja, Vlatka Horvat, Igor Grubić,
Tina Gverović, Zlatko Kopljar, Dino Zrnec, Marko Tadić, Damir Očko, Hrvoje Slovenc, Viktor Popović, and Ljiljana Mihaljević
Curated by Branka Benčić
Exhibition Dates: November 20th – December 20th
Opening Reception: November 20th | 6-8 PM

Igor Eškinja, Project Room 1, 2011, Lambda print, 90 x 120 cm, edition of 3 + 2 AP.

New York, NY [November 5, 2014] – Garis & Hahn and Ikon Arts Foundation are pleased to present Notes on Undoing, a group exhibition of established and emerging Croatian artists curated by Branka Benčić. Featuring photography, film, drawing, painting and mixed-media work by Igor Eškinja, Vlatka Horvat, Igor Grubić, Tina Gverović, Zlatko Kopljar, Dino Zrnec, Marko Tadić, Damir Očko, Hrvoje Slovenc, Viktor Popović, and Ljiljana Mihaljević, Notes on Undoing is the first survey of Croatian contemporary art at the gallery. The exhibition will run from November 20th to December 20th, with an opening reception at Garis & Hahn (263 Bowery, New York, NY 10002) from 6:00 to 8:00 PM on November 20th.

Notes on Undoing brings together a group of artists with a shared cultural heritage and diverse practices all centered on exposing, unpacking and exploring the dominant assumptions that inform the perspectives of the viewers and the artists themselves. Viewers will observe these artists tackling their practices with disparate yet connected approaches: some show an interest in the experience of how the body or object relates to its environment. Alternately, others choose to focus on the experiences particular to the artist—for example, the relationship between the artist and the institution, or the presentation of work in a space. Curator Branka Benčić further elaborates: “Artistic positions engage with issues of (re)presentation, structure and construction of the work of art, or the act of ‘exhibiting’ itself, pointing to tensions between the observer and the observed, exploring spatial relationships and interactions between objects.”

The exhibition spaceprovides ample material for the exploration of these relationships. Artists Igor Eškinja and Vlatka Horvat both destabilize the viewer’s interaction with space. Eškinja’s photographs challenge and upend traditional notions of the image-space relationship. Horvat’s wall-mounted Equivalents series of diptychs and triptych, created from “non-art” materials, bring into question the viewer’s relationship to the artwork. Viktor Popović’s work takes this a step further.His site-specific found-object sculptures bring “non-art” materials into the gallery context to expose the tenuous relationship between the art and the exhibition space. Tina Gverović’s work, a collection of drawings from her 2013 residency at the Tate modern, explore her interest in methods of integrating her work into the architecture of an environment.

Artists Dino Zrnec and Marko Tadić seek to build on the history of their respective media through their practices. Zrnec treats his large paintings as a series of experiments – eager to manipulate the canvas and explore new relevancies in famed techniques- pours paint from one canvas to another. The work, while reminiscent of abstract expressionist stain paintings, pushes the form into the twenty-first century. Tadić, who works in collage and animation, constructs visual environments with precise and confident shapes, taking the medium of stop-animation to a new place with Until a Breath of Air. Damir Očko willshow three collaged photo-compositionswhich,much like Tadić’s work, use the form of collage to create meaning in layers and juxtapositions.

Film is also adeptly used to unveil complicated relationships between the content, the viewerand the space created between them. In Zlatko Kopljar’s film K16 the artist digs a hole for over ten minutes, evoking feelings of futility and pointlessness through this seemingly interminable task. Ljiljana Mihaljević’s short film The Route expresses similarly nihilistic sentiments. The film begins with a quote from Nobel Peace Prize in Literature recipient Ivo Andrić on the circular nature of civilizations and impossibility of finding a direct path to truth, followed by Mihaljević playing a never-ending game of hopscotch, where the traditional grid has been drawn into a circle. The constructed realities of these films relate to “Chapter IV” of Hrvoje Slovenc’s photography series Marble Hill in which the artist sets fire to a diorama of an apartment that burned down in his Bronx neighborhood and photographs the resulting imagined scenes. The photographic “evidence” reveals typically undocumented details of characters and objects affected by disasters.Again revealing the usually unseen, Igor Grubić’s series Angels with Dirty Faces, shows portraits of the Croatian miners whose strike forced the resignation of Communist president Slobodan Milošević. Grubić photographed these miners against a background of chalk-drawn wings, referencing the miners’ role as political “saviors” in the recent history of Yugoslavia and Serbia.

In the range of approaches exhibited in Notes on Undoing, the viewer may observe the ways in which these artists’ deconstruct and “undo” the assumptions and structures around them.At the same time, their works create and reveal new frameworks and relationships within these realms. Garis & Hahn is proud to have the opportunity to present this landmark first exhibition of Croatian contemporary art in conjunction with Ikon Arts Foundation.

About the Artists

Igor Eškinja was born in 1975 in Rijeka, Croatia. His practice centers around using quotidian materials to explore the relationships between images and 3D space. His work is exhibited internationally, with solo exhibitions in cultural institutions in France, Croatia, Luxembourg, Spain, Venezuela, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Austria.

Vlatka Horvat was born in Cakovec, Croatia, and received a BA in Theatre Studies from Columbia College, Chicago, an MA in Performance Studies from Northwestern University, Evanston, and a PhD from Roehampton University, London. She was a recipient of the Rema Hort Mann Foundation visual art award in 2010, and exhibits her work internationally through galleries Rachel Uffner, New York, ŻAK | BRANICKA, Berlin, and annex14, Berlin.

Igor Grubić studied theology and film production before becoming an artist, and both disciplines inform his politically and socially conscious pieces, which often take the form of “site-specific interventions”. The performances are recorded and presented as multimedia installations which Grubić has exhibited internationally, including at the 11th Istanbul Biennial and Manifesta 4, Frankfurt. Grubić has also worked as a producer and journalist for activist Croatian video studio Fade In.

Tina Gverović is a Zagreb native who splits her time between Dubrovnik and London. Gverović’s work in Notes on Undoing comes from a 2013 residency at the Tate Modern, London, where she collaborated with artist Sinisa Ilić to create Inverted House, a site-specific installation and accompanying drawings comparing the Tate’s building, collection, and public with its counterparts at the Belgrade Museum of Contemporary Art.

Zlatko Kopljar was born in Zenic, Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1962, and graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice, Italy, in 1991. He has exhibited at the Sao Paulo Biennale, Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rijeka, Croatia, The Kitchen, New York, and Gallery Manes, Prague, among others. His work is in several collections including the Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb, Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Rijeka, Museum of Modern Art, Zagreb and the Filip Trade collection.

Dino Zrnec is a painter educated in Zagreb, Prague and Vienna. Born in 1983 in Zagreb, Zrnec lives and works in both his hometown and Vienna, where he creates large scale abstract paintings which continue to experiment with materials and their application in the vein of the abstract expressionists. Zrnec received the HDLU annual award for young artists and 2011, has participated in residencies in Paris and Vienna in 2012, and continues to exhibit his work in Croatia and around the world.

Marko Tadić’s work draws on the rich and long history of collage and the constructed image. Born in Sisak, Croatia in 1979, Tadić has exhibited widely in solo and group exhibitions in Zagreb, Ljubljana, Vienna, Kassel, Berlin, Los Angeles and New York. He was the 2008 recipient of the Radoslav Putar Award for young Croatian artists.

Damir Očko’s recent work explores the potential of the human voice and its relationship to the physical world in projects such as TK and SPRING. Očko graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts, Zagreb, in 2007 and has participated in residencies and exhibitions across Europe, including a residency at Temple Bar Gallery & Studios in Dublin, Ireland, and solo exhibitions most recently at Yvonne Lambert, Paris and the Palais de Tokyo, Paris.

Hrvoje Slovenc received his MFA in Photography from Yale University School of Art in 2010. His work has been exhibited at cultural institutions around the world, including the Museum of New Art, Detroit, MI, the Bronx Museum of the Arts, New York, the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Rijeka, Croatia, and the Young Artists’ Biennial in Bucharest, Romania. He currently teaches at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City.

Viktor Popović is an Associate Professor at his alma mater, the Academy of Fine Arts in Split, Croatia. He engages the viewer by presenting his work as “non-art”, whether through his choice of materials or installation, working in the contemporary continuation of the “ready-made”. Popović has exhibited internationally in the United States, Finland, Austria, Croatia, and the United Kingdom.

Ljiljana Mihaljević studied painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence, but her recent work has included films, installations and performances that seek to define what cannot be expressed in words. Mihaljević is a member of the Croatian Association of Professional artists and has exhibited internationally at art fairs in Marseille and Holland and in galleries in Croatia, Italy, and the United States.

About Ikon Arts Foundation

Established in 2013, Ikon Arts Foundation is a non-profit cultural organization based in New York City. The role of Ikon Arts Foundation is to inspire engagement with Croatian creative culture. It achieves this by promoting artists, designers and film-makers by way of both online and offline programming aimed at creative culture enthusiasts and creative industry professionals.

About Garis & Hahn

Garis & Hahn is a gallery-cum-Kunsthalle that mounts exhibitions focused on conceptual narratives and relevant conversations in contemporary art. By displaying an array of carefully curated artists, the gallery endeavors to provide accessibility, education, awareness, and a market to the art while engaging both the arts community and a broader general audience.

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Shave Beards to Save Lives: MenEssentials Celebrates the Launch of U.S. Website with a Pop-Up Shave Shop to Benefit Movember Foundation

Online Grooming Shop for Men Invites the Bearded to a Day of Pampering, Beer Drinking, and Giving Back

LOS ANGELES, CA – November 21, 2014 – To celebrate the launch of and mark the end of beards around the nation, MenEssentials will be hosting a pop-up shave shop in Westwood Village, Los Angeleson Monday, December 1 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The event, which will donate 100 percent of proceeds to the Movember Foundation, invites guys to use (and lose) their beards to benefit a greater cause: prostate cancer awareness.

After providing Canada with the largest and most extensive arsenal of men’s grooming, skincare and lifestyle goods for the past two decades, MenEssentials is doing the gentlemanly thing and extending its reach to the United States. The company will begin with the launch of its online store and, in the coming year, open several brick-and-mortar locations in the Los Angeles area. To celebrate: a day of professional shaves, free beer, and the opportunity to give back. MenEssentials will donate to the Movember Foundation the entirety of profits made from the mobile shave shop and match all donations up to $5,000.

“Our entire company is founded on this idea of being ‘true gentlemen.’ I think this goes beyond luxury grooming products and colognes, but also has something to do with giving back,” says Greg Aghamanoukian for MenEssentials. “MenEssentials’ pop-up shave event is the perfect opportunity to celebrate our U.S. launch, introduce men to our wide range of products, and most importantly, raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer.”

In true Hollywood fashion, the company will have a step and repeat, where freshly shaved guys can get their photo snapped for a chance to enter the MenEssentials social media contest for free swag.

“After going beard-free, men can cheers to a day of good looks and good deeds as they head next door to the legendary Barney’s Beanery for a complimentary beer,” says Aghamanoukian. “It’s not an event any man will want to miss.”

November is bound to get hairy, which is why, come December 1, MenEssentials plans to be there to ensure no beard is shorn in vain.

For more information, please visit

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Stand Up To Cancer – Supported Research Discovers Why Patients Respond to a Life-Saving Melanoma Drug


LOS ANGELES – November 26, 2014 – Work supported by the Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) – Cancer Research Institute (CRI) – Immunology Translational Research Dream Team, launched in 2012 to focus on how the patient’s own immune system can be harnessed to treat some cancers have pioneered an approach to predict why advanced melanoma patients respond to a new life-saving melanoma drug. This new drug, pembrolizumab (Keytruda), was recently approved by the FDA. These findings are reported in Nature online November 26, 2014, ahead of print in the journal.

Over a two-year study, researchers including Dr. Antoni Ribas of UCLA Jonsson Cancer Center and co-leader of the CRI-SU2C Immunology Dream studied 46 patients with advanced melanoma treated with pembrolizumab. These patients had tumor biopsies before and during treatment. The researchers analyzed those biopsies and classified them according to whether the patient responded or not to pembrolizumab. The study then used the biopsy findings to predict the likelihood whether patients would likely to respond to this treatment

According to the press release issued by UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, a protein known as PD-1 puts the immune system’s brakes on, preventing T cells from attacking cancer cells. Pembrolizumab removes the brake lines, freeing up the immune system to kill cancer cells. Keytruda was the first PD-1 immunotherapy drug approved by the FDA in September 2014.

“The work of Dr. Ribas, his colleagues and the SU2C-CRI Immunology Dream Team is so important, bringing tangible benefits to patients struggling with advanced melanoma and providing the means to assess why some patients are responsive to this breakthrough drug,” said Phillip A. Sharp, Ph.D., chairperson SU2C Scientific Advisory Committee, and MIT Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge. “Not only has this research validated a pathway to determine which patients may be responsive to pembrolizumab, we anticipate it will significantly inform development of better drug combinations that are more effective, less costly and with fewer side effects for even more patients with melanoma and other cancers.”

In addition to support from Stand Up to Cancer, this research was supported by the National Institute of Health and the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center through philanthropy and other sources.

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HelpMeSee Joins the National #GivingTuesday Movement To Encourage Spending With A Purpose

Pledges to Cure Cataract Blindness for 20 Million People Currently Affected by this Treatable Eye Disease

New York, November 21, 2014 – HelpMeSee – a global campaign to cure cataract blindness – has joined #GivingTuesday, with a Global Ambassador Video Search contest, a first of its kind effort that will harness the collective power of a unique blend of partners—charities, families, businesses and individuals—to transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season. Coinciding with the Thanksgiving Holiday and the kickoff of the holiday shopping season, #GivingTuesday will inspire people to take collaborative action to improve their local communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they support and help create a better world.

Taking place December 2, 2014 – the Tuesday after Thanksgiving – #GivingTuesday will harness the power of social media to create a national moment around the holidays dedicated to giving, similar to how Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become days that are, today, synonymous with holiday shopping.

HelpMeSee’s Global #GivingTuesday campaign asks people to experience what it is like for the 20 million people living in the developing world who are currently blind with cataracts. To understand cataract blindness for just a moment in time, HelpMeSee invites people to film themselves conducting their favorite activity blind folded and to share their experience with the rest of the world on this #GivingTuesday. During HelpMeSee’s Global #GivingTuesday campaign, we will be launching our first Global Ambassador Search, where participants demonstrate and address the challenges of a world with cataracts through their video submissions. It is only through living the experience of what others feel that we understand their challenges.

“As a participant in this innovative movement, HelpMeSee strongly believes that it takes a community, with the support of the international community, to solve its own problems in order to build sustainable systems to truly eradicate a single problem,” said Mohan

Jacob Thazhathu, President & CEO, HelpMeSee. “The HelpMeSee Campaign to cure cataract blindness does just that. By building and helping establish cost effective and sustainable solutions in innovation technologies, communities around the world can not only be leaders in solving its social issues, but restores the dignity and pride needed to help these global communities facing insurmountable issues overcome and rise above its current situations.”

Seeing an opportunity to channel the generous spirit of the holiday season to inspire action around charitable giving, a group of friends and partners, led by the 92nd Street Y (92Y), came together to find ways to promote and celebrate the great American tradition of giving. Thought leaders in philanthropy, social media and grassroots organizing joined with 92Y to explore what is working in modern philanthropy and how to expand these innovations throughout the philanthropic sector. The concept gained steam, and with the help of the United Nations Foundation and other founding partners, more than 10,000 organizations have joined the movement and are providing creative ways people can embrace #GivingTuesday and collaborate in their giving efforts to create more meaningful results.

“It’s been a privilege to work with remarkable leaders all over the country building a movement around #GivingTuesday,” said Henry Timms, 92Y’s Executive Director. “This initiative has truly been crowd- sourced by some of the smartest and most connected minds among the next generation of philanthropists and entrepreneurs.”

Currently, more than 100 corporate and nonprofit organizations have committed to participate in the initiative.

“#GivingTuesday is a counter narrative to Black Friday and Cyber Monday because it reminds us that the spirit of the holiday giving season should be about community and not just consumerism,” said Kathy Calvin, CEO of the UN Foundation. “The most meaningful gift we can give our children, loved ones, friends and neighbors is the commitment to work together to help build a better world.”

Those who are interested in joining HelpMeSee’s #GivingTuesday initiative can visit For more details about the #GivingTuesday movement, visit the #GivingTuesday website (, Facebook page ( or follow #GivingTuesday

( and the #GivingTuesday hashtag on Twitter


About HelpMeSee

HelpMeSee ( is a global campaign to eliminate cataract blindness endemic in developing countries. The HelpMeSee mission is to make sight-restoring, MSIC surgery available to millions of underserved people through financial support and the training of thousands of highly skilled specialist cataract surgeons recruited from within their communities. HelpMeSee has designed and is now producing a virtual reality surgical simulator and training program to be implemented worldwide, adapted from extensive experience in simulator based aviation training.

About #GivingTuesday

#GivingTuesday is a movement to celebrate and provide incentives to give. It will culminate with a global day of giving on December 2, 2014. This effort harnesses the collective power of a unique blend of partners— charities, families, businesses and individuals—to transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season. #GivingTuesday will inspire people to take collaborative action to improve their local communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they celebrate and help create a better world. #GivingTuesday will harness the power of social media to create a global moment that is dedicated to giving around the world.

To learn more about #GivingTuesday participants and activities or to join the celebration of giving, please visit:


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SDSU Greek Community Statement on Sexual Violence

InterFraternity Council will suspend all social activity.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014) — The leaders of San Diego State University’s Greek community issued the following statement today regarding sexual violence on the SDSU campus.

Sexual violence is a significant issue on our campus and on college campuses across the country. As campus leaders, we are committed to ending sexual violence. We recognize that we must change attitudes and practices in our community to accomplish this goal.

Recently, it was alleged that fraternity members acted in an inappropriate and disrespectful manner toward campus community members who were participating in a Take Back the Night march. The university is currently investigating these allegations. To the extent such allegations are true, this conduct is unacceptable and does not reflect the values of the Greek community at SDSU. We do not condone this type of behavior, which has led us to the following decision.

Greek student leaders, with support from President Elliot Hirshman, Vice President of Student Affairs Eric Rivera, SDSU’s Sexual Violence Task Force and other members of the university administration, will immediately take proactive steps toward addressing this extremely serious issue and the Greek community’s role in it.

Specifically, the InterFraternity Council will voluntarily suspend all social activities in order to focus on educating its members about sexual assault prevention. The Panhellenic Council and National Pan-Hellenic Council will be providing programming and education for its members and the United Sorority and Fraternity Council will be educating all of its members on the impact sexual assault has on their diverse communities.

Every member of the Greek community will be required to undergo sexual violence and bystander training. We will all participate in events and activities that promote an end to sexual violence. Moreover, we will meet regularly with each other and administrative leaders to determine better ways to regulate ourselves and our members.

Our intention is to become leaders on this issue by bringing together our community, as well as others in the campus community, to discuss, create and implement policies and procedures in the effort to end sexual violence on our campus.

The statement was signed by J. Cole, President, Associated Students; Brittany Sidler, President, Panhellenic Council; Marc Hess, President, InterFraternity Council; Mireya Meza, President, United Sorority and Fraternity Council; and Ezinne Ofoegbu, President, National Pan-Hellenic Council.

Quote from SDSU President Elliot Hirshman

“I commend the leaders of the Greek community for recognizing our shared responsibility to end sexual violence and taking these proactive steps to address this critical issue. We must work as one community to create the substantive changes necessary to end sexual violence on our campus. The steps outlined today are the beginning of what must be a sustained effort to change attitudes, culture and actions and the university is committed to working with, and supporting, our Greek community as it pursues these essential efforts.”

Quote from Vice President of Student Affairs, Eric Rivera

“We are pleased to see the Greek community step forward and acknowledge they have an important role to play in this ongoing discussion and cultural change on our campus. We have many tools and programs already in place for them to take advantage of. And we will work collaboratively with them to support their ongoing efforts to make our campus more safe.”

About San Diego State University

San Diego State University is a major public research institution offering bachelor’s degrees in 91 areas, master’s degrees in 78 areas and doctorates in 22 areas. The university provides transformative experiences, both inside and outside of the classroom, for its 35,000 students. Students participate in research, international experiences, sustainability and entrepreneurship initiatives, and a broad range of student life and leadership opportunities. The university’s rich campus life features opportunities for students to participate in, and engage with, the creative and performing arts, a Division I athletics program and the vibrant cultural life of the San Diego region. For more information, visit

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