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

Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Social Entrepreneurship

This category includes articles about social entrepreneurs, typically about businesses with a for-profit model with a social mission embedded into the fabric of the business.

Thrive Foundation Commits $2.4 Million To Support Nation’s Youth

Eight organizations receive funds to expand innovative models for positive youth development

PALO ALTO, CA – The Thrive Foundation for Youth announced a grant commitment of $2.4 million to eight organizations across the U.S. working to further the Foundation’s mission of guiding disadvantaged young people to reach their full potential by strengthening the direct impact and presence of caring adults in their lives. The new grantees will each receive unrestricted grants of $300,000 over the next two years to accelerate their work in the field of positive youth development.

“We’re excited to partner with organizations that are already making an impact in their communities,” said Nicole Taylor, President and CEO of the Thrive Foundation for Youth. “Our grantees have discovered ways to create a constellation of competent, caring adults who are making a difference in the lives of children and helping youth reach their full potential. We intend to create a conversation and relationship between and among this cohort of grantees to leverage lessons learned from their work, to conduct research and to develop tools to expand and deepen these transformative programs.”

Thrive selected grantees based on their demonstrated impact, and their entrepreneurial and effective approach to reaching disadvantaged youth. Each one demonstrated the ability to provide comprehensive programming and meaningful learning experiences based on a keen knowledge of youth needs. All eight grantees have professional staff members who serve as the primary “caring adult” in their day-to-day lives, and are role models who provide a consistent, compassionate and trustworthy presence. Collectively, these organizations currently impact the lives of approximately 15,000 young people throughout the United States. They are:

  1. The Brotherhood/Sister Sol (New York, NY) is a supportive youth development model for young men and women in New York City that provides comprehensive, holistic and long-term support services to youth. BHSS is locally based with a national reach as they publish assorted curricula and collections of their members’ writings; train educators from throughout the nation on their approach; and advise on educational policy across the country and in New York City.
  2. Colorado UpLift (Denver, CO) helps underserved youth overcome significant obstacles to success through character education, high school graduation and post-secondary engagement, emphasizing staff-student relationships and student peer leadership.
  3. Friends of the Children (Portland, OR) is a nationwide organization that breaks the cycle of generational poverty through salaried, professional mentoring. Friends selects the highest risk children and commits to working with those children from kindergarten to graduation. Friends works through chapters and affiliates, and also shares their expertise with other organizations who want to use the Friends of the Children model.
  4. Girls Inc. of Alameda County (Oakland, CA) supports girls in becoming strong through healthy living, smart through education, and bold through independence, providing girls with continuous, strength-based, youth development programming and strong adult role models to identify and nurture the potential for success in every girl.
  5. Latin American Youth Center (Washington, D.C.) empowers a diverse population of youth to achieve a successful transition to adulthood through multi-cultural, comprehensive, and innovative programs that address youths’ social, academic, and career needs.
  6. Self Enhancement, Inc. (SEI) (Portland, OR) guides underserved youth and families to reach their full potential. Their work with more than 7,500 students and families results in stable, supported families and an enhanced community.
  7. Youth Guidance (Chicago, IL) creates and implements school-based programs that enable at-risk youth to overcome obstacles, focus on their education and, ultimately, to realize their full potential and graduate with a meaningful plan for successfully managing life. Youth Guidance’s Becoming a Man (B.A.M.) program is a dropout and violence prevention program for at-risk male students in grades 7-12. B.A.M. offers in-school programming, in some cases complemented by after-school sports, to develop social-cognitive skills strongly correlated with reductions in violent and anti-social behavior.
  8. Youth Radio (Oakland, CA) is the nation’s leading syndicator of youth voices and a national model for media and technology education. The organization provides thousands of low-income youth with innovative media and technology training, paid employment, and wraparound support services to launch them into college and family-sustaining careers.

These well-established organizations will become a learning community as the Thrive Foundation works alongside grantees to understand and learn from their respective best and promising practices, their needs, and their challenges. This unique foundation-grantee relationship will combine design-thinking principles and technology with scientific research and on-the-ground knowledge to study the frameworks of successful caring adult models and to inform and strengthen their plans to scale their work.

The Fall 2014 grants will begin in November of 2014 and conclude in 2016. Thrive intends to select an additional grantee cohort in 2015. To learn more about Thrive Foundation grantees, visit www.thrivefoundation.org/our-grantees/.

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Camp Kesem College Student Volunteers Join National #GivingTuesday Movement

Encouraging students to help kids through and beyond a parent’s cancer with the launch of Camp Kesem themed Giving Tuesday photo booths nationwide

November 14, 2014 (Los Angeles, CA) – Camp Kesem, a nationwide non-profit supporting children through and beyond a parent’s cancer, will encourage college students across the country to give back this #GivingTuesday with the launch of its 2014 #GivingTuesday #HelpCampKesem Photo Campaign. On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, 62 Camp Kesem collegiate chapters nationwide will activate on-campus Camp Kesem themed #GivingTuesday photo booths inviting their fellow students to take photos and share them on their personal Instagram accounts using the #GivingTuesday and #HelpCampKesem hashtags. With these photos, Camp Kesem’s student leaders will unite to spread the spirit of #GivingTuesday on social media and inspire their peers to take collaborative action to give back to their communities and help send more of Camp Kesem’s kids to camp.

Each participating Camp Kesem college chapter will set up its own photo booth on campus and invite its fellow students to help spread the magic of Camp Kesem and the spirit of #GivingTuesday. In addition to fun props, each photo booth will incorporate special Camp Kesem and #GivingTuesday #HelpCampKesem signs that will prompt students to identify how their participation is helping kids this #GivingTuesday. Participants will be invited to take a photo and share it via their Instagram account with the special #GivingTuesday and #HelpCampKesem hashtags.

Camp Kesem is driven by 62 college campuses nationwide, each providing their surrounding communities with a student-run summer camp for children affected by a parent’s cancer, as well as year-long peer support. “For #GivingTuesday this year, students across the country are encouraged to become active participants in our mission to support children through and beyond a parent’s cancer,” says Jane Saccaro, Camp Kesem CEO. “By sharing their photos on Instagram, they are generating awareness and funds and identifying ways they can help Camp Kesem kids in a way that is personal to them.”

#GivingTuesday, 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.

#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.

“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.

Participating college chapters include: Arizona State University, Augustana College, Brigham Young University, Brigham Young University – Idaho, California State University, Fresno, Carnegie Mellon University, Case Western Reserve University, Central PA, Chestnut Hill, College of William & Mary, Columbia University, Cornell University, Emory University, Florida State University, George Washington University, Indiana University, Johns Hopkins University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Miami, Michigan State University, North Carolina (Duke /UNC-Chapel Hill), Northern Arizona University, Northwestern University, Princeton University, Rice University, Saint Louis University, Santa Clara University, Southern Utah University, Stanford University, Stony Brook University, Syracuse University, Texas A&M University, The Ohio State University, UC San Diego, UC Berkeley, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Santa Barbara, UC Santa Cruz, UCLA, University of Colorado – Boulder, University of Florida, University of Georgia, University of Illinois, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of Missouri, University of Nebraska, University of Notre Dame, University of Oklahoma, University of Oregon, University of Pennsylvania, University of Richmond, University of South Alabama, University of Southern California, University of Texas – Austin, University of Virginia, University of Washington, University of Wisconsin, Vanderbilt University, Virginia Commonwealth University, Yale University

On December 2, 2014, Camp Kesem hopes to generate a stream of Instagram posts nationwide under the #GivingTuesday and #HelpCampKesem hashtags, and engage students in selfless giving for a deserving population of children.

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About Camp Kesem

Camp Kesem provides children through and beyond a parent’s cancer with a peer-support network that recognizes and understands their unique needs. This summer, Camp Kesem served nearly 4,000 children, ages 6-16, with fun and support through free summer camps led by passionate college students. Camp Kesem currently operates over 60 chapters in 29 states and is funded donations and community support. For more information on Camp Kesem, please visit www.campkesem.org, Facebook.com/CampKesem, and @CampKesem on Twitter & Instagram.

About Giving Tuesday

#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 inspires 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 harnesses 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:

Website: http://www.givingtuesday.org
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GivingTuesday
Twitter: twitter.com/GivingTues

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Celebrity Ambassadors Goldie Hawn, Vanessa Hudgens, Louise Roe, Catt Sadler, Navid Negahban, Paul Hipp, Shoshana Bean Host 10th Anniversary Of The Gorgeous & Green Gala – Emerald City – Benefiting Global Green USA

San Francisco’s sold-out gala raises over $400,000 and unites eco-conscious celebrities and Bay Area luminaries for a dazzling evening benefiting Global Green’s sustainability initiatives, programs and critical projects and celebrating Gorgeous & Green’s 10th Anniversary

San Francisco, October 13 – On Friday, October 10, 2014, Global Green USA’s 10th annual star-studded Gorgeous & Green Gala – Emerald City – was held at the LEED-certified Bently Reserve and celebrated designer eco-fashion, sustainable technologies and eco-conscious initiatives. The sold-out event raised over $400,000 from the evening’s ticket sales and live auction which will benefit Global Green USA’s national programs devoted to implementing smart solutions to climate change, including waste diversion and building green and resilient communities.

“I’m grateful to the event’s co-hosts — to everyone who came out to support us and made this extraordinary event possible,” said Les McCabe, President and CEO of Global Green USA. “As a result, Global Green USA can develop programs and initiatives that help communities build sustainably and channel important resources right here in the Bay Area and nationally.”

Co-chairs and environmental advocates Zem Joaquin, Nadine Weil, Christopher Bently and Wendy Schmidt welcomed guests to the Emerald City gala, the dazzling star-studded evening showcasing the re-imagined green sustainable city. The historic Bently Reserve was festooned with sustainable Emerald inspired design, silky fabrics and sparkling motifs curated by Blueprint Studios. Acclaimed honorary hosts actress Goldie Hawn, actress Vanessa Hudgens, actor Navid Negahban, actor Paul Hipp, actor Austin Butler, fashion host and lifestyle expert Louise Roe, Host of E! News Catt Sadler and Broadway star and recording artist Shoshana Bean attended the event and lent their support towards Global Green’s mission.

“Zem and I were delighted to co-chair the Gorgeous and Green Gala together for our tenth anniversary year,” stated Nadine Weil, founder of Heart of Green who wore an eco-couture gown by Oliver Tolentino and jewelry by Lang Antiques and Ashley Morgan Designs. “Our goal was to show that you can live a glamorous lifestyle, and it can be completely eco-conscious from the fashion, to the décor, to the delectable food and cocktails.”

“The event exceeded our incredibly high expectations and we cannot thank our fabulous supporters enough,” said Zem Joaquin, editor at large of Home and Lifestyle for Huffington Post and founder of ecofabulous.com. “We were honored to celebrate the life-affirming work that we are doing at Global Green every day.”

The benefit featured musical performances of “The Wizard and I” and “Defying Gravity” by Broadway star and recording artist, Shoshana Bean, famous for her portrayal of Elphaba in the Broadway musical WICKED, as well as live performances by Gregangelo’s Velocity Circus. Guests enjoyed the Emerald City photo booth by Drew Altizer with Wizard of Oz costume options and a VIP Gifting Suite featuring an array of eco-conscious brands. Guests were also treated to an elegant locally-sourced organic meal prepared by Dominique Crenn, the only female chef in America with two Michelin Stars for her restaurant Atelier Crenn, with a first course prepared by Parke Ulrich, Executive Chef of Epic Roasthouse and Waterbar, and mouth-watering desserts from Ethan Howard, Executive Pastry Chef at Cavallo Point.

The menu for the evening included a savory first course as a Barrel Cut Short Rib Salad featuring Bently Ranch Meats, Cardamom Roasted Cauliflower, Marinated Grapes and Levain Lace as well as a vegan entrée of Coconut flan, Yuzukosho, Grains, Smoked Avocado, Tomato Compote and Fall Fermented Vegetables and Herbs from Chef Crenn’s garden. For dessert, Chef Ethan Howard prepared a delicacy of Green Apple & Celery Verrine with honey mousse paired with an emerald-hued Dulcey Macaron. J. Lohr Vineyards, a certified California sustainable vineyard & winery, served varietals from their limited-release, tasting room-only portfolio sustainably-farmed on their Paso Robles estate including the 2013 J. Lohr Gesture Viognier and the 2011 J. Lohr Hilltop Cabernet Sauvignon. The Emerald City was a carbon neutral event courtesy of Wildlife Works Carbon and a target zero waste event with greening assistance by Taste Catering.

The eco-couture fashion show, curated and styled by Lily Achatz and co-produced by Clarissa Nicosia and Lily Achatz, thematically invoked the Gorgeous & Green Emerald City in the world-famous film “The Wizard of Oz” and showcased models by Stars Model Management in eco-couture gowns by Oliver Tolentino and sparkling green, vintage couture looks from eBay including the finale gown by Antonio Berardi made famous by Gwyneth Paltrow. Also starring on the runway were top ethical designer Daniel Silverstein, two gowns sustainably made by Nina Ricci for Connie Nielsen, and local conscious fashion designers Karen Caldwell, AZADA by Tara, and Myrrhia Fine Knitwear. The models rocked handbags by Simon + Krull and Rosa Candelario as well as exquisite precious jewelry by local designers Kim Deterline and Ashley Morgan Designs featuring reclaimed metals and gemstones from non-conflict, clean mines. Chantecaille and Mercer Street Salon provided expert makeup and hair for the runway fashion show and also worked their magic on actresses Vanessa Hudgens, Goldie Hawn and Shoshana Bean to give them fabulous looks for the Emerald City. DJ David Carvalho from Boutique DJs provided the soundtrack for the sensational show which showcased how being green can be the most glamorous.

Volkswagen of America, Inc. (VWoA) and Global Green joined efforts by auctioning off the first 2015 all-electric Volkswagen e-Golf at the 10th year anniversary celebration. Volkswagen gave Gorgeous & Green Gala guests the exclusive opportunity to be the first person in America to own the 2015 Volkswagen e-Golf, the brand’s first fully electric, zero tailpipe emissions vehicle in the U.S. market. One of the most efficient electric vehicles in its class, the e-Golf features a 24.2 kWh lithium-ion battery, a range of up to 100 miles per charge, an electric motor with 115 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque, and one of the largest interiors in its class. The handsome car greeted guests upon arrival and was on display in front of the Bently Reserve on a green carpet. The auction, hosted online at www.charitybuzz.com/vwegolf, gave bidders the opportunity to be the first owner of the brand’s first all-electric model before retail sales in the United States begin later this year. Bids will continue to be accepted at www.charitybuzz.com/vwegolf until 3:30 p.m. ET on October 29, 2014, when the winner will be revealed. All auction proceeds benefit Global Green USA’s efforts to advance smart solutions to climate change.

The spirited live auction at Gorgeous & Green also featured an original painting by artist Zio Ziegler, a retreat at Post Ranch Inn, a made-to-measure suit by Klein Epstein & Parker in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley, a stay at the eco-luxurious Cavallo Point, and a week at the One&Only Palmilla Resort, voted the top resort in Mexico’s Baja region for the last decade by readers of Conde Nast Traveler.

Featured sponsors of the event included: Bently Enterprises, The 11th Hour Project of The Schmidt Family Foundation, Volkswagen e-Golf, nrg energy, eBay, ecofabulous, Stars Model Management, Elisabeth Thieriot, Ashley Morgan Designs, PG&E, Chantecaille, Mercer Street Salon, Pureology, Taste Catering, Bently Ranch Meats, Blueprint Studios, Glodow Nead, Leftwich Event Specialists, Everything Audio Visual, J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines, Defiant Whisky, 360 Vodka, MateVeza, VEEV Spirit, One&Only Resorts, Post Ranch Inn, Simon + Krull, Klein Epstein & Parker, Cavallo Point, Zio Ziegler, Step Into My Green World, Earth Friendly Products, TATCHA, Supergoop, Wildlife Works, Juice Beauty, Escama Studio, Green Toys, Replete Skincare, FSHN Magazine, Hotel Vitale, Lang Antiques, Miette, California Caviar, Korbel Organic Brut Champagne.

ABOUT GLOBAL GREEN:

Global Green USA is dedicated to helping the people, places, and the planet in need through catalytic projects, transformative policy, and cutting-edge research. Global Green USA’s signature programs include greening affordable housing, schools, neighborhoods, and cities as well as rebuilding communities — such as New Orleans and areas of New York and New Jersey — that have suffered from the impacts of climate change, sea level rise, and environmental degradation. Global Green USA is the U.S. affiliate of Green Cross International, which was founded by President Mikhail Gorbachev in 1993 to foster a global value shift toward a sustainable and secure future. For more information, visit globalgreen.org and follow us @globalgreen. Contact: Tina Vennegaard 310 581 2700 x118 TVennegaard@globalgreen.org.

ABOUT THE BENTLY RESERVE

The Bently Reserve is one of San Francisco’s most prestigious event venues ideal for meetings, special occasions and weddings. With more than 14,000 square feet of meeting and event space, this state of the art LEED certified building features a visually stimulating fusion of contemporary and classic San Francisco. Deeply influenced by Greco-Roman architecture, this 1924 Beaux-Arts “Banking Temple” boasts opulent marble, grand staircases, ornate molding and original colorful murals, complemented by contemporary furnishings and state-of-the-art technology. Centrally located in the heart of downtown in San Francisco’s bustling Financial District, the Bently Reserve is surrounded by renowned restaurants, hotels and shopping. It is one mile to the Moscone Convention Center, 14 miles (30 minutes) to San Francisco International Airport and 18.5 miles (40 minutes) to Oakland International Airport. For more information, call (415) 294-2226 or visit www.bentlyreserve.com. For our latest news, visit us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/bentlyreserve and follow us on Twitter http://twitter.com/bentlyreserve. For more information, visit www.bentlyreserve.com.

5 Ways Anyone Can Be a Philanthropist

By Theresa Roemer

A friend recently confided in me that she feels like a failure because she does not give enough to charity – not enough money, because she doesn’t have it, and not enough of herself because she doesn’t have time. “I just don’t have the means to be a philanthropist,” she said. I explained to my friend that philanthropy is for everyone, even on the smallest level. It is not reserved just for the wealthy.

To the average person, it could appear that philanthropy is only for rich people with lots of time on their hands. Nothing could be further from the truth. As an entrepreneur and a businesswoman, I am often asked to donate money and time to worthy causes. But I work alongside people from all walks of life who share my desire to give to others. For me, giving is not just about money, but also time, energy, and effort to help those in need.

Theresa Roemer

Philanthropy is for everyone. Here are five things that you can do to be a philanthropist right now:

  1. Adopt a cause. There is no lack of worthy causes that deserve your help. But first, you must find a cause that is close to your heart. It can be anything. Your personal connection is the most important aspect of giving. If you were to look at the everyday needs of those around you – even your friends and loved ones – you could find a cause. You may have a friend who died from cancer, a neighbor who has Alzheimer’s disease, or know of a child with juvenile diabetes. There is the American Cancer Society, the Alzheimer’s Association, and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, each in need of volunteers. 
  2. Donate something. Don’t focus on the dollar amount, even sending a check for $5.00 can be meaningful. While billionaires seem to get all the publicity, anyone involved in fundraising will tell you that the small donations keep the causes going. I know of several colleges and universities that value the number of alumni who give almost as much as the amount that is given. In that regard, when the tallies are taken at the end of the year, someone who gives $10.00 is counted the same as someone who gives $10,000. Also remember that $10.00 given regularly over a lifetime, well that adds up.
  3. Donate your time. You would be surprised how many organizations and causes need man power more than, or as much as, money. Think about volunteering in some way. Many organizations train volunteers to raise money by making phone calls. Others welcome help in setting up for benefit dinners or—more importantly—cleaning up afterwards. These are the unglamorous, but necessary and heartfelt, donations that are every bit as important as money. You don’t read about it in the newspapers, and that’s the point. Your time can also be spent doing something for a neighbor such as sitting with an elderly person who simply needs the company, or taking them food shopping. This is another type of donation of time you don’t read or hear about but a void nonetheless that needs to be filled. 
  4. Create your own cause. Perhaps you know of someone afflicted with a rare disease or syndrome that does not enjoy widespread support or recognition. Maybe there is a person in your neighborhood—a wounded veteran returning from Afghanistan, for example—who does not qualify for much-needed treatments or even food money. Organizing just one pot luck supper or blind auction, and donating the proceeds to the needy individuals, can be of immense service. Your own philanthropic efforts for the needs of one person will have reverberating effects on someone’s life. 
  5. Be creative. Look for unexpected ways to donate things. Did you know that you can give to just about any charitable cause by donating a used car? And it doesn’t even have to be a good car. Hospitals, foundations—even the Salvation Army—may take a beat-up old piece of junk and give a tax-deductible credit in exchange. The car doesn’t even have to be in running condition. There are also senior organizations that will use the value of the car toward ride services for seniors in your local area. Your old car could allow a senior citizen to get transportation to doctor’s appointments and grocery store runs alone.

I believe that it is my duty to give to others, and that we all share this responsibility to some extent. Philanthropy is about setting goals and reaching them on behalf of someone else and for their benefit alone. It’s a selfless act and one that I take very seriously. Whether alone or in gathering friends and colleagues to accompany you in the journey of giving, I promise that once you venture down the road of giving you will live a better life for someone else’s benefit, and that alone is worth the journey.

About Theresa Roemer

Theresa Roemer is the CEO of Theresa Roemer, LLC and a small business owner who specializes in business philanthropy. She owns several home goods companies in Houston, Texas and is a partner in Roemer Oil. As an expert in business philanthropy, Theresa works regularly with major motion pictures, television studios, corporations and high profile brands to expand their philanthropic reach to raise millions of dollars through business charity events. Theresa consults with organizations such as LVMH to understand their business goals with fundraising, then turns those objectives into a reality with her ability to produce high-impact business fundraising events.

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National Urban League Celebrates the 58th Annual Equal Opportunity Dinner, A Star-Studded Affair Honoring McDonald’s President and CEO, Don Thompson and R&B Legend, Valerie Simpson

November 13, 2014 (New York, NY) – The National Urban League hosted its 58th Annual Equal Opportunity Dinner (EOD) on November 12, 2014 in New York City. At the event, held in the heart of Times Square at the New York Marriott Marquis, president and CEO of the National Urban League, Marc H. Morial thanked and bid farewell to outgoing National Urban League board chair John D. Hofmeister and welcomed new chairman, Michael F. Neidorff. Neidorff, who currently serves as chairman, president and CEO of Centene Corporation – was also the Gala Chair.

The dinner honored Don Thompson, President and CEO of McDonald’s Corporation, who received the 2014 President’s Award for his outstanding leadership and corporate stewardship. Grammy Award winner Valerie Simpson received the EOD Arts Award for her unparalleled contribution to music and R&B legend Freddie Jackson performed a stirring tribute to her.

In recognition of their generous support of the National Urban League, Wells Fargo was inducted into the League’s Five Million Dollar Hall of Fame and AT&T and UPS into the Ten Million Dollar Hall of Fame.

The dinner was hosted by Caroline V. Clarke, executive director of Black Enterprise and host of Black Enterprise Business Report, and David Ushery, anchor reporter of The Debrief with David Ushery on NBC 4 New York. Mezzo-soprano Alicia Hall Moran provided entertainment throughout the evening with stirring renditions of classics from the critically acclaimed The Motown Project.

The evening closed out with an EOD Post Gala Affair hosted by the National Urban League Young Professionals and Dessert Reception with music by DJ mOma.

Stella & Dot Foundation to Support Military Families for the Holidays with Buy One, Gift One Program

SAN FRANCISCO, NOVEMBER 5, 2014 – Stella & Dot Foundation announced today the launch of a ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ for the holidays in support of military families through a new partnership with military organizations throughout North America. The Stella & Dot ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ effective November 1st through November 30th will gift accessories to active duty members, female veterans, military wives and their teenage daughters during the holiday season. Since the program’s inception, Stella & Dot has gifted over $1 million in product.

Stella & Dot will distribute jewelry through targeted programs including; MOAA (Military Officers Association of America), donating to the MOAA spouse program to gift accessories to recently deployed service members, military spouses and women veterans of all ranks and services; MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region) providing gifts to enhance the quality of life for Canadian Forces families.

“This holiday season, we wanted to give a gift of our deep gratitude to the military families who give so much to us all. Our hearts are with every family that moves frequently and spends so much time apart to serve our country.” said Jessica Herrin, Stella & Dot CEO and Founder.

“The Military Officers Association of America’s Spouse Programs is honored that Stella & Dot has invited us to partner with them to thank our military families for the sacrifices they make” said Christine C. Gallagher, Deputy Director, Spouse and Currently Serving Programs. “With their generous donation, we are able to gift Stella & Dot jewelry to military spouses, mothers and daughters of our nation’s heroes.”

Stella & Dot Buy One, Gift One Items:

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Through the purchase of a scarf, Stella & Dot will donate an assortment of accessories as gifts to warm hearts during the holiday season.

To purchase a scarf from the collection or for more information, please visit: www.stelladot.com.

About Stella & Dot:

Stella & Dot is a boutique-style jewelry and accessories company reinventing the home-based, flexible entrepreneurship opportunity for the modern woman through its social-shopping business platform. Stella & Dot offers its on-trend, celebrity and editorial-coveted product line exclusively through a growing network of trained independent consultants (Stylists) across North America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Ireland and France. With a mission to give every woman the means to style her own life, Stella & Dot celebrates the collective spirit and recognizes its leaders through executive training, exclusive sales rewards, and a community that gives back to our home and abroad. Stylists earn sales commissions by selling at private in-home trunk shows and online with a best-in-class and innovative technology platforms. For more information, visit www.stelladot.com.

About The Stella & Dot Foundation:

The Stella & Dot Foundation engages and inspires our community to affect positive change in the lives of women and their families. In addition to our year-round global charity partner, Every Mother Counts, Stella & Dot also celebrates Autism Awareness Month in April, Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, and supports military families through our Buy One, Gift One program in November. To date, the Stella & Dot Foundation has raised over $1.6 million towards causes important to our community. Together, through the donations made possible by the sale of our foundation accessories, our collective small acts add up to make a big impact.

About Military Officers Association of America (MOAA):

Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) is the nation’s largest officers association with more than 380,000 members from every branch of service, including active duty, retired, National Guard, Reserve, and former officers and their families and survivors. MOAA is a nonprofit and politically nonpartisan organization and an influential force in promoting a strong national defense. MOAA represents the interests of service members and their families in every stage of their lives and careers, and for those who are not eligible to join MOAA, Voices for America’s Troops is a nonprofit MOAA affiliate that supports a strong national defense. For more information, visit www.moaa.org or www.voicesfortroops.org/.

About MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region):

The Military Family Resource Centre–National Capital Region (MFRC-NCR) is a home away from home for families. MFRC governed by a volunteer community-based board of directors and is the only local not-for-profit organization that directly supports the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) families in the National Capital Region, which consists of 11,000 military members (Regular and Reserve) 8,000 spouses and 9,000 children. The MFRC-NCR is committed to enriching the lives of our community by providing relevant programs and services that empower, encourage and strengthens our military families, aided by community partnerships. MFRC-NCR offers services, such as emergency short-term housing units, workshops and support groups, respite and emergency childcare, and mental health services are available to military families at all times, especially in difficult times. For further information, please visit www.mfrc-ncr.org

Women Presidents’ Organization Selects AXA as Exclusive Retirement Plan Provider

New York, NY (November 12, 2014) — The Women Presidents’ Organization (WPO) has selected AXA as its exclusive retirement plan provider. AXA will become the preferred provider of cost-effective retirement planning products and services for the nonprofit, peer advisory group for leaders of multimillion dollar companies. The WPO comprises women entrepreneurs throughout the world who have built and led multimillion dollar businesses.

Women-led companies contribute nearly $3 trillion to the economy and make up 16 percent of all jobs. According to WPO’s recent Business Outlook Survey, more than a quarter of WPO member businesses (28 percent) have achieved a growth rate of 25 percent or more in 2014. When compared with average U.S. business growth of 5.4 percent, these top women-led businesses have outperformed the national average by three times or more. Close to half (42 percent) of WPO members project 2014 revenues to top $5 million, and 25 percent project revenues of over $10 million.

As women leaders address the internal factors that impact revenue, they are most concerned with challenges such as growing their business to scale (17 percent), finding and retaining good employees (16 percent), maintaining/increasing profit margins (15 percent) and growth of competition (8 percent).

“WPO members lead a wide array of industries,” said Marsha Firestone, Ph.D., WPO President & Founder.” “One of the key operational challenges they face is helping their employees secure their financial future. The AXA suite of retirement planning products and services offers a rich resource to identify financial goals and select options that balance risk and reward.”

AXA provides turnkey retirement planning programs to both self-employed and small- to mid-size business owners as a benefit to their employees.

“Providing a retirement plan can help small businesses reward and retain valuable employees,” said Tracey Gray-Walker, managing director of AXA’s Association Business.

The range of AXA retirement options includes financial planning strategies, trusts, custodial services, recordkeeping, reporting, and plan design recommendations and implementation. AXA also provides plan participants with account information through custom websites and telephone service. Additionally, the company provides an ongoing education program to help plan participants take greater control of their retirement.

About AXA Association Retirement Solutions

AXA Association Retirement Solutions is the name under which various AXA Equitable annuity products are marketed for the purpose of funding retirement plans for association members. “AXA” is a brand name of AXA Equitable Financial Services, LLC and its family of companies, including AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company (NY,NY), MONY Life Insurance Company of America (AZ stock company, administrative office: NY, NY), AXA Advisors, LLC, and AXA Distributors, LLC. In business since 1859, AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company is a leading financial protection company and one of the nation’s premier providers of life insurance, annuity, and financial products and services distributed to individuals and business owners through its retail distribution channel, AXA Advisors, LLC (member FINRA, SIPC) and to the financial services market through its wholesale distribution channel, AXA Distributors, LLC. AXA S.A. is a Paris-headquartered holding company for a group of international insurance and financial services companies, including AXA Equitable Financial Services, LLC companies. AXA S.A. is a worldwide leader in financial protection strategies and wealth management with 102 million clients in 56 countries as of December 31, 2013. The obligations of AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company and MONY Life Insurance Company of America are backed solely by their claims-paying ability. Follow AXA on Twitter and like us on Facebook. For more information, visit www.axa.com.

About the Women Presidents’ Organization

The WPO is the ultimate affiliation for successful women entrepreneurs worldwide. In monthly meetings across the world, women from diverse industries invest time and energy in themselves and their businesses to drive their corporations to the next level. WPO members’ average revenue is $13 million, generating aggregate revenue of $19 Billion. Local WPO chapters are coordinated by a professional facilitator and meet monthly to share business expertise and experience in a confidential setting. For more information, call 212-688-4114 or visit www.womenpresidentsorg.com. Follow WPO on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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Stella & Dot Foundation to Support Military Families for the Holidays with Buy One, Gift One Program

SAN FRANCISCO, NOVEMBER 5, 2014 – Stella & Dot Foundation announced today the launch of a ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ for the holidays in support of military families through a new partnership with military organizations throughout North America. The Stella & Dot ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ effective November 1st through November 30th will gift accessories to active duty members, female veterans, military wives and their teenage daughters during the holiday season. Since the program’s inception, Stella & Dot has gifted over $1 million in product.

Stella & Dot will distribute jewelry through targeted programs including; MOAA (Military Officers Association of America), donating to the MOAA spouse program to gift accessories to recently deployed service members, military spouses and women veterans of all ranks and services; MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region) providing gifts to enhance the quality of life for Canadian Forces families.

“This holiday season, we wanted to give a gift of our deep gratitude to the military families who give so much to us all. Our hearts are with every family that moves frequently and spends so much time apart to serve our country.” said Jessica Herrin, Stella & Dot CEO and Founder.

“The Military Officers Association of America’s Spouse Programs is honored that Stella & Dot has invited us to partner with them to thank our military families for the sacrifices they make” said Christine C. Gallagher, Deputy Director, Spouse and Currently Serving Programs. “With their generous donation, we are able to gift Stella & Dot jewelry to military spouses, mothers and daughters of our nation’s heroes.”

Stella & Dot Buy One, Gift One Items:

Through the purchase of a scarf, Stella & Dot will donate an assortment of accessories as gifts to warm hearts during the holiday season.

To purchase a scarf from the collection or for more information, please visit: www.stelladot.com.

About Stella & Dot:

Stella & Dot is a boutique-style jewelry and accessories company reinventing the home-based, flexible entrepreneurship opportunity for the modern woman through its social-shopping business platform. Stella & Dot offers its on-trend, celebrity and editorial-coveted product line exclusively through a growing network of trained independent consultants (Stylists) across North America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Ireland and France. With a mission to give every woman the means to style her own life, Stella & Dot celebrates the collective spirit and recognizes its leaders through executive training, exclusive sales rewards, and a community that gives back to our home and abroad. Stylists earn sales commissions by selling at private in-home trunk shows and online with a best-in-class and innovative technology platforms. For more information, visit www.stelladot.com.

About The Stella & Dot Foundation:

The Stella & Dot Foundation engages and inspires our community to affect positive change in the lives of women and their families. In addition to our year-round global charity partner, Every Mother Counts, Stella & Dot also celebrates Autism Awareness Month in April, Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, and supports military families through our Buy One, Gift One program in November. To date, the Stella & Dot Foundation has raised over $1.6 million towards causes important to our community. Together, through the donations made possible by the sale of our foundation accessories, our collective small acts add up to make a big impact.

About Military Officers Association of America (MOAA):

Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) is the nation’s largest officers association with more than 380,000 members from every branch of service, including active duty, retired, National Guard, Reserve, and former officers and their families and survivors. MOAA is a nonprofit and politically nonpartisan organization and an influential force in promoting a strong national defense. MOAA represents the interests of service members and their families in every stage of their lives and careers, and for those who are not eligible to join MOAA, Voices for America’s Troops is a nonprofit MOAA affiliate that supports a strong national defense. For more information, visit www.moaa.org or www.voicesfortroops.org/.

About MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region):

The Military Family Resource Centre–National Capital Region (MFRC-NCR) is a home away from home for families. MFRC governed by a volunteer community-based board of directors and is the only local not-for-profit organization that directly supports the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) families in the National Capital Region, which consists of 11,000 military members (Regular and Reserve) 8,000 spouses and 9,000 children. The MFRC-NCR is committed to enriching the lives of our community by providing relevant programs and services that empower, encourage and strengthens our military families, aided by community partnerships. MFRC-NCR offers services, such as emergency short-term housing units, workshops and support groups, respite and emergency childcare, and mental health services are available to military families at all times, especially in difficult times. For further information, please visit www.mfrc-ncr.org

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The Beeck Center Releases Report on How Governments Can Pay for Success

Experts Discuss Advancement of Outcomes-Based Agreements for Solving Social Challenges

WASHINGTON, DC (November 12, 2014) — The Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation at Georgetown University today released its report on outcomes-focused policy, which illustrates how the public sector can realign funding to reform social service delivery and improve results. Governments traditionally pay for the number of people served, or they have arbitrary benchmarks and protocols that often become the main focus of administrators at the expense of driving results. This report, Funding for Results: A Review of Government Outcomes-Based Agreements, provides a guide for leaders looking to design programs to ensure public funds are properly managed to attain results. The full report is available at www.driveimpact.org.

“The Beeck Center is proud to provide this resource to policy makers around the world. We hope this enables them to create sustainable programs that yield results. The report offers a framework for government on how to align incentives to ensure public funds are managed to achieve social outcomes,” said Sonal Shah, Executive Director of the Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation. “Our mission is to drive impact by encouraging leaders to implement innovative methodologies and tools to address and improve our social challenges.”

The Beeck Center convened a panel of experts, with interactive sessions to discuss and design outcomes-based agreements to achieve results. Participants, including Stephen Goldsmith, Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government; Jim Shelton, Deputy Secretary of U. S. Department of Education; Ben McAdams, Salt Lake County Mayor; and James Sorsenson, Entrepreneur and Investor, James Lee Sorenson Global Impact Investing Center at the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah, discussed how public sector policy can spark creative solutions for today’s social problems.

The Beeck Center’s report provides a framework for governments to design and implement outcomes-based agreements to pay for success. The report highlights five illustrative case studies which offer key insights. The case studies include the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services and the Australian government’s employment services program.

  • Tennessee Department of Children’s Services Performance Based Contracting: The state of Tennessee directed the child welfare system to focus on one clear goal of moving children into permanent homes more quickly. Providers that exceeded the baseline performance were rewarded, while those that performed below baseline were penalized. This model nearly cut in half the average time a child spends in temporary care from over 22 months to just 14 months.
  • Australian Employment Services: The Australian government incentivized non-governmental employment service providers to link job training with real jobs. Between 1995 and 2005, the cost to place each job seeker dropped from $16,000 to $3,500. Australia saw a 55% improvement in the placement of the most disadvantaged job seekers .

“The Beeck Center’s report provides a crucial roadmap for leaders at all levels of government,” said Stephen Goldsmith, Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. “Outcomes-based agreements are valuable tools that can dramatically increase efficiency and reduce administrative burdens and costs, while ensuring that programs accomplish their intended objectives.”

The report offers a framework for governments to design and implement outcomes-based agreements. These agreements are most successful when: 1) governments can measure performance and align incentives in a transparent and consistent manner; 2) there is a willingness to be flexible — learn, evolve, and shift current structures to achieve stated goals; 3) governments build relationships with all stakeholders

Governments have an opportunity to find innovative ways to re-align incentives and pay for success. This report provides guidance to government, philanthropy and social sector leaders interested in designing new types of agreements that can achieve results.

The full report can be viewed at http://www.driveimpact.org.

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Corporate, Nonprofit, Social Enterprise, Hybrid Leaders Gather to Discuss Future of Sustainable Growth and Giving

Sustainability Summit: Vision 20/20 Brings 230 Executives Together to Discuss Challenges and Opportunities in Nonprofit Sector, Corporate Philanthropy and Responsibility, More

New York – During a time of change and uncertainty for nonprofits and businesses alike, the Sustainability Summit will gather here on Thursday, November 13 offering a chance for business, philanthropy and mission-driven leaders to discuss both the future of the nonprofit sector and the role of corporations in building a sustainable world – both for organizations and for society as a whole.

“As we’ve evolved as a company and expanded our work and our own efforts to become a better corporate citizen, we’ve realized how important it is to collaborate with and support all socially responsible enterprises,” said Tom Raffa, CEO and Managing Partner of Raffa, P.C., of the need for this conversation. “We are seeing significant shifts within and across the sectors. We must see more nonprofits moving from dependency relationships to sustainable, capitalized organizations and more for-profits rethinking their traditional quantifiable business metrics and taking corporate consciousness to new levels. We all know that we need to strike a better balance – one that puts the value of profit, society and environment on equal footing and ensures that what we do today to meet our needs, will not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their needs. This is our challenge – and our collective responsibility.”

As part of Raffa’s 30th anniversary, the consulting firm is hosting a series of discussions on the future of the nonprofit sector and how for-profit businesses, like Raffa, are changing their own metrics for success with an eye towards more than profits alone. In June, Raffa hosted a summit in Washington, D.C. focused on empowering nonprofits and furthering collaboration within and across the sectors. The Sustainability Summit will expand that conversation to explore how new models for progress and social responsibility efforts across all sectors can be effectively leveraged for success.

Executives from nonprofits of all sizes will be attending, including representatives from the Red Cross, Fedcap, Samaritan Village, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Jewish Federations of North America, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, American Civil Liberties Union, Serious Fun Children’s Network, American Jewish World Service, YMCA of Greater New York, Lifespire and the ASPCA. Leaders from B Corps, social enterprise and hybrid business structures will be part of the conversation as well.

WHAT:

Sustainability Summit: Vision 20/20

WHEN:

November 13, 2014, 8:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

WHERE:

Lighthouse Guild
111 E. 59th Street New York, NY 10022

WHO:

More than 200 leaders from corporate and nonprofit sectors, including:

Dan Pallotta (Keynote Address at 8:45 a.m.*)
Tom Raffa, Raffa P.C.
Dan Osusky, B Labs
Asha Curran, 92nd Street Y
Michael Bzdak, Johnson and Johnson
Stephen K. Orr, Orr Associates, Inc. (OAI)
Allen Bromberger, Perlman & Perlman LLP
John Sabino, Capital One Bank
Mitchell Netburn, Project Renewal
Kathryn Haslanger, JASA
Tino Hernandez, Samaritan Village, Inc.
Marcos Salazar, Be Social Change

The agenda and full list of speakers is available here. Discussions to be held on Thursday, include:

  • New Models for Progress: Overcoming Barriers to Sustainability*
  • Making Corporate Partnership Work
  • Merging for Success*
  • Changing Leadership for Today’s Sustainability
  • Recruiting and Leveraging Corporate Board Members
  • Restructuring the Business of Giving*
  • Fundraising with Wall Street in Mind
  • Strategic Partnerships Through a Legal and Funding Lens
  • Building Social Engagement Through Authentic Marketing
  • Measuring and Communicating Impact

* Select panel discussions will be streamed live with support from Gold Sponsor Orr Associates Inc (OAI). Register here to watch the webcast live.

The Sustainability Summit: Vision 20/20 is hosted by Raffa, P.C., with support from OAI, and contributing sponsors Perlman & Perlman, LLP, Capital One Bank, Anybill and InfoGroup.

About Raffa

Founded in 1984, Raffa is an accounting, consulting and technology firm based in Washington, D.C. dedicated to service and community. As a B-Corp certified, national Top 100, “Best of the Best” CPA advisory firm specializing in nonprofits and socially-responsible businesses, Raffa performs high-quality audits annually and provides support to help organizations across the country effectively and efficiently manage their most critical processes. The firm’s highly specialized professionals provide planning, consulting and compliance services to entrepreneurs, families, nonprofits and social enterprises. Offering a deep bench of expertise across an array of services, including accounting and tax, human resources, technology and consulting, Raffa’s client-centric, customized approach helps each client meet its potential and ensures each client’s success is sustained and maintained. Learn more at www.raffa.com.

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