Monday, February 8, 2016

Growing Peace Through A Ugandan Coffee Bean



If you haven’t heard the inspiring story already you must find a way to see the documentary “Delicious Peace Grows in a Ugandan Coffee Bean,” directed by  Curt Fissel. The film tells a story we can all learn from.

 In 2003 J.J. Keki , a Ugandan coffee farmer had a dream. To make his dream a reality he walked door to door and asked his Jewish, Christian and Muslim neighbors to put their differences aside for the benefit of all. They were all third and fourth generation coffee farmers struggling to make a living with  low local coffee prices.

The farmers did put difference aside and formed the Peace Kawomera Cooperative.  With help from Laura Wetzler from the US-based organization Kulanu, and  Paul Katzeff, CEO of Thanksgiving Coffee Company in Fort Bragg, CA,  these Jewish, Christian and Muslim farmers formed a coffee cooperative that is not only sharing delicious coffee around the world but also showing by example that  differences can be put aside, and with dialog and partnerships in their place, a delicious peace can grow as well.

The coop has grown from a few hundred farmers to around 1200 and has expanded to cocoa and vanilla. To support the coop you can learn more about purchasing coffee products at www.thanksgiving coffee.com or by visiting  http://www.mirembekawomera.com

Monday, February 1, 2016

Gen Y Turn Tables Talking To Parents About Cancer

Roughly 7 years ago while her mother was recovering from cancer Yael Cohen over heard the phrase "fuck cancer," said in passing.  It resonated with her... that and the fact that her generation... Gen Y has been left out of the cancer conversation because they are not the target demographic most susceptible to the disease. But Yael thought "We've taught our parents about technology. We've talked to our parents about watching their cholesterol. Why aren't we talking to them about saving themselves from this disease?

While the organization started out raising money and awareness by selling t-shirts with that explicit phrase-- and a PG version,  F___Cancer, the organization has grown to much more than t-shirt sales. The mission and message of Fuck Cancer is to promote early detection, prevention and awareness by engaging Gen Y'ers to engage their parents in "the cancer conversation." The organization's event-based truly approach to reaching and engaging Gen'Yers in spreading the word about prevention, detection and support for cancer patience is truly social - a movement in itself. It includes  fundraising and awareness gatherings with DJ's and  support retreats. The organization has expanded beyond its Canadian origins to include events in Los Angeles and Miami in 2015 and an event in Seattle coming soon.

To rally your social following to action, download flyers and media kits and to learn more go to www.letsfcancer.com

Monday, January 18, 2016

Wounded Warrior Project



Their statement that “The greatest casualty is to be forgotten” really says a lot in summing up the organization’s mission.  The vision IS achievable - To foster the most successful, well-adjusted generation of wounded service members in our nation's history.


And their road map to do so is one certainly worthy of support with three simple but impactful steps.
To raise awareness and enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members.     
To help injured service members aid and assist each other.
To provide unique, direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service members
By 2017 the project will have served 100,000 warriors, 11,000 warrior will have participated in the Odyssey Project and 10,000 warriors and caregivers employed..

Services and programs include Post Traumatic Stress Disorder coping skills, family support, peer mentoring, economic empowerment through transition training and their Warriors To Work program.  As part of their engagement initiatives they offer adaptive sports events. And as indication of the program of the alumni more than 50% remain actively engaged. The program also works with veterans gaining their benefits for them from the VA and has successfully gotten program participants over $96 million in benefits entitlements.

To volunteer, get engaged, get assistance or make a donation visit http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

The Ride To Conquer Cancer --Calling Riders to Scenic 2-Day Cycling Events Across Canada

Imagine a vacation taking in Canada's scenic vistas, country mountain trails, panoramic views from Vancouver to Seattle or throughout Quebec's countryside or journeying through the Pacific Northwest. Now imagine these experiences as 200k/200 mile cycling events with thousands of riders.  

These rides are annual events raising money and awareness for cancer research. This year the events happen early June to early August. And you have your choice of treks literally across Canada. This year's 2-day events are;  Ontario June 11 - 12, British Columbia-June 27 - 28, 2016,  Alberta - August 6-7, 2016 and Quebec - July 9 - 10th.

The first leg of each ride is on Saturdays. Riders camp overnight, finishing the rides on Sundays. Rides are supported by hundreds of volunteers. Meals, tents, campsites, medical services are provided. Campsites are complete with tents, hot showers and even entertainment. There are also stops with snacks and water provided.

Cause Force-- literally an impactful force in event fundraising-- works with nonprofits including the Alberta Cancer Foundation, British Columbia Cancer Foundation, The Campbell Family Institute and Segel Cancer Centre. Events draw thousands of riders; athletes, vacationers, cycling enthusiasts and advocates in the battle against cancer.

According to Cause Force 2 in 5 people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. If you love the outdoors and want to challenge yourself for a greater cause check out these events..... this year (there's still time) or next. For more information visit http://www.causeforce.com or http://www.conquercancer.ca





Monday, November 2, 2015

For Gil Garcetti and Barbara Goldberg Wells Bring Hope



It all started when Gil Garcetti spoke at Barbara Goldberg’s Salon Forum in 2008 sharing powerful photos he had taken in Western Africa. He shared the dire need for safe drinking water and the endless struggles of women and girls to get it. 

 In 2009 Barbara founded Wells Bring Hope and, partnering with World Vision, drilled 10 wells the first year. Inspired by the commitment of Wells Bring Hope Gil Garcetti continues help share the story of this struggle for safe drinking water through speaking opportunities and his photography.

In the Fall of 2007, the UCLA Fowler Museum had an exhibition of his photographs, “Women, Water and Wells.” In 2009, many of these photos were on exhibition in the visitors lobby of the United Nations in New York. In February, 2008, these same photographs and his words inspired the founding of “Wells Bring Hope.”

Since its start Wells Bring Hope has funded 363 wells helping over 235,950 people in West Africa.

Both Gil Garcetti and Barbara Goldberg continue to work tirelessly to bring safe water and hope to some of the poorest people in our global community. And you can help them fund more wells by sharing their story and the dire circumstances of the women of West Africa with your social networks. For more information visit www.wellsbringhope.org

Monday, October 26, 2015

Afghan Refugee Girls' Primary Schools




According to Betsy K. Emerick, PhD; the life expectancy for Afghan women is 44 years.  The Afghan literacy rates are 31% for men and 15% for women The average Afghan  woman will bear 7.4 children and 57% of Afghan girls marry before the legal age of 16.

This is why she needs our help to make a difference by using social media to spread the word to help her continue Afghan Girls Schools.

The schools are located in refugee camps in Pakistan that have been home to nearly 2 million Afghan refugees for over a decade.  The schools are currently educating 600 girls. It costs $85 to pay a teacher's salary for  one month,  a school uniform costs $5, a sewing machine costs $40 and you can give a girl a year's education for  just $55.

For more information email: afghangirlsschools@yahoo.com

Monday, October 19, 2015

Bikes From Lotus Pedals Helps Keep Girls Safe-And Gets Them To School- In Rural Cambodia



Due to the vulnerabilities of rape and sex trafficking most parents prefer to keep their girls home rather than subject them to the dangers of getting to school. As a result only 11% of girls in Cambodia reach secondary school. In 2013 the Lotus Pedals program was launched to provide bikes to young Cambodian girls. The program is slowly making a positive impact in increasing the number of girls going to school.

According to Erika ­Keaveney, executive director of Lotus Outreach International, the San Francisco charity that runs the program, “Lotus Pedals is a simple intervention but a terrifically effective one.”

The charity spends $80 to provide each bike, counting the costs for transport and delivery, a repair kit, and a pump, along with project management and follow-up.

In 2013  Lotus Outreach ensured that 302 young riders got to school. The program has identified 381 additional students who may qualify to receive a bicycle. There remain thousands of girls across the country want to attend school but have no means of transportation.

Beyond the bike initiatives Lotus International serves over 30,000 women and children mainly in Cambodia and India through initiatives on education, health, anti-trafficking and economic empowerment.  To learn more about the work of Lotus International and to find out how to support their Lotus Pedals bicycle initiative visit http://www.lotusoutreach.org