Category Archives: News

Help Empower Women and Girls in Malawi with Join My Village

Join My Village Malawi is one of the world’s least developed, and also most densely-populated countries. The people of Malawi are not expected to live past 44 years of age and 89 of every 1,000 births in the country result in infant mortality; this is because Malawi is a country of extreme poverty.

During the Clinton Global Initiative Fifth Annual Meeting, Bill Clinton introduced a very unique commitment between General Mills and CARE, which have partnered together to create Join My Village, an innovative online community that is dedicated to fighting poverty in Malawi through the empowerment of women and girls. But Join My Village will accomplish nothing without the help and the dedication of caring and generous people, which is why you should check out Join My Village.

How it works:

  • Visit Join My Village and join one of ten village teams that will benefit approximately 75 villages in Malawi.
  • As a village team member, you will get to know the women and families in Malawi through frequent updates, photos and stories.
  • Through simple online activities like answering a quiz questions, telling a friend about Join My Village, or joining a village team, $1 will be unlocked by General Mills and will go to CARE’s poverty-fighting programs in the Malawi villages. (There is a limit of 3 activities per person per day and $15,000 per online village team, or $150,000 in total.)
  • General Mills will also match persnal contributions dollar-for-dollar for up to $50 per donor, $15,000 per village team, or $150,000 in total.
  • CARE will distribute all funds raised directly to Malawi to provide economic opportunities for women and increase access to quality education for girls.

I think it’s always amazing to see heavy-hitting companies that can truly make a difference, like General Mills, stepping up to the plate and doing what they have the power to do in order to make a difference in the regions less fortunate than most. The Clinton Global Initiative pairing General Mills with CARE was a great idea and I hope you all take part in Join My Village, especially considering it isn’t going to cost you money in order to help the villages of Malawi; all you have to do is participate in online activities you’re most likely participating in anyway on other websites, like answering quiz questions. This is truly an initiative that everyone can participate in, so go participate and unlock funds needed by Malawi’s women and girls.

The Passing of Senator Ted Kennedy and the Legacy He Left Behind

Ted Kennedy

Senator Ted Kennedy, the Liberal Lion who dedicated his career to equality and health care, passed away the morning of August 26.

Senator Ted Kennedy served his country, but unlike a great deal of politicians in office today, he served each and every single person of his country without bias. His list of accomplishments is long and varied. He fought to reverse the injustices that his fellow human beings encountered daily. He was a strong supporter of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and later authored amendments strengthening enforcement of key provisions of the Act. He played a central role in fighting discrimination in both the Age Discrimination Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. He was also the original Senate lead on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act in 1994, in 1996 he voted against the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), and in 1997 he was the original sponsor of hate crimes legislation. He also fought to end the funding of the very much failed abstinence-only education programs, voted for the increase of funding for HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, and he was also an outspoken supporter for the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, that prohibits gay and lesbian Americans from serving openly in the military.

But what Senator Ted Kennedy is most known for and what he devoted his career to is ensuring that each and every American citizen has the right to universal, affordable health care. He had first introduced a bill to ensure universal health care for all in 1970 and he worked tirelessly to make this a reality for the past four decades. This past summer he had also wrote an essay on the need for universal, affordable health care services, appropriately titled ‘The Cause of My Life.’ He wrote in that essay:

It is a key reason that I defied my illness last summer to speak at the Democratic convention in Denver — to support Barack Obama, but also to make sure, as I said, “that we will break the old gridlock and guarantee that every American…will have decent, quality health care as a fundamental right and not just a privilege.” For four decades I have carried this cause — from the floor of the United States Senate to every part of this country. It has never been merely a question of policy; it goes to the heart of my belief in a just society. Now the issue has more meaning for me — and more urgency — than ever before. But it’s always been deeply personal, because the importance of health care has been a recurrent lesson throughout most of my 77 years.

Senator Kennedy indeed accomplished quite a lot in his life and while his person, tenacity, and ambitiousness will be missed, I hope that his life’s work will inspire others in our Senate and in our government as a whole to ensure that each and every single American has the right to receive health care that they not just need, but deserve.

How America is Pledging to End Hunger

Pledge to End Hunger Just a few months ago we wrote about Share Our Strength, an organization that has seen that the multi-layered epidemic of childhood hunger. They saw the harsh reality that hunger affects 13.4 million American children and they stood up to do something about it. About three months ago they launched Pledge to End Hunger, an initiative that brought the epidemic of hunger to us and asked us what we were going to do about it. They asked us to give, volunteer, or share the word of Pledge to End Hunger and in just three months, the work that they have accomplished is astronomical.

Pledge to End Hunger has teamed up with Hum Office and Tyson Foods to successfully bring semi trucks of foods to food banks to cities all over the country.

Tyson Foods has donated more than 54 million pounds of chicken, beef, and pork–enough for approximately 216 million meals–to food banks and agencies serving local communities all around the country!

Tyson Team Members in more than 50 communities across the country have started a fund-raising program called Powering the Spirit and have raised more than $150,000 for the fight against hunger in partnership with Share Our Strength. They have also engaged high school students to help collect food for local food banks in partnership with America’s Second Harvest–the Nation’s Food Bank Network. They have teamed up with Lift Up America as well as professional and college sports teams to donate protein and bring hope to the less fortunate. Tyson has also been a first-responder on the scene with much needed protein in the aftermath of a natural disaster or other major crisis as part of their Disaster Relief. Finally, they have collaborated with organizations such as League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), as well as colleges and universities associated with Tyson’s own Executive Diversity Business Council to fight hunger in communities across the country.

Pledge to End Hunger has certainly accomplished so much and has helped countless communities and families. Help support Pledge to End Hunger and spread the word about their cause and help other communities and families all across the country in need. Visit Pledge to End Hunger to give, volunteer, or share and you can even spread the word through Twitter using hashtag #HUNGERPLEDGE and also be sure to follow WomanTribune on Twitter, we’ll be tweeting some helpful information on Pledge to End Hunger as well as other great initiatives you won’t want to miss!

Easy Ways to Go Green

There was a lot of talk about going green and saving the planet for Earth Day, but it isn’t just important to make an effort or worse, talk about making an effort for Earth Day; to truly make an impact on the world we live in, we need to continue to talk about the importance of going green far after Earth Day has come and gone.

There are ten easy steps we can take to make our planet a little healthier.

Education
We all know that knowledge is power and when you have all of the facts about what poor shape Mother Nature is in and the threat global warming has over all of us, you have a deeper understanding of what you need to do in order to do your part to help.

Create Awareness
Now that you have spent some time (or a lot of time) researching the facts of global warming, energy consumption, pollution, and everything else that has had an impact on the planet, it is time to spread the knowledge you’ve acquired. Tell friends, family members, and even complete strangers about what you know to be the truth about this global epidemic and they will follow suit with their concern and spread the word.

Recycle
Recycling is one of the best (and easiest) ways to do your part in helping the planet. Recycling reduces the amount of garbage that winds up in landfills, reduces carbon emissions by reducing manufacturing and transportation emissions and allows our planet’s natural resources to be more evenly distributed among everyone in the world.

Politics are Key
We need our government to get behind going green. By getting involved in politics, you can see first hand who the people working for you are and if they share your sentiments about going green. It is very important to vote; vote for politicians who share the same values as you do and don’t be fooled–Voting is important and every vote counts. Voting is what we have to make our voices heard and by voting, you are screaming from the rooftops that you care about the green movement and it is a requirement for our elected officials to feel the same way.

Get Your Bicycle Out
Carbon emissions from vehicles are one of the leading causes of global warming. By driving less, you are not only helping the environment, but it also saves you money and improves your health because if you are not driving a vehicle, you can try walking, bicycling, using public transportation, and carpooling.

Turn Off & Unplug Your Appliances
When your appliances, such as your lights, computers, televisions, toasters, microwaves, coffee pots, etc. are not in use, turn them off and unplug them. When your appliances are left on and plugged in, they are still emitting electricity which also makes your electric bill skyrocket.

Donate Your Old, Unwanted Frames

There are different ways for people to help the environment as well as people in need that many people don’t know about. We wrote an article on how to donate and recycle your old mattresses and the response from that post was great because there were many people that didn’t know what to do with their old mattresses.

Another great way to cut back on the amount of waste that ends up in our landfills and not only that, but also help a great amount of people in need is to donate your old glasses. Your old, out of date, mildly misshapen frames can be donated to people who can’t afford or who would otherwise not be able to see their best—Because of you and your donations, you will be giving people the gift of sight.

You can donate your old glasses at most local eye facilities–Drop off old prescription or nonprescription glasses at your local Lions Club, LensCrafters, Pearle Vision, Sears, Target, or BJ’s Optical store. You can also mail in your old glasses.

Send Something Sweet to Help End Hunger

Ferrero Rocher Send Something Sweet

The Ferrero Company and Share Our Strength have teamed up together and in the spirit of Valentine’s Day are asking for your help in supporting the fight to end childhood hunger. We have featured Share Our Strength before, outlining the dramatic affects of childhood hunger, a multi-layered epidemic that affects approximately 13.4 million (roughly 1 in every 6) children in America today.

It is great to see such a prominent company like Ferrero working to help end childhood hunger and they have certainly put together a unique, interactive and fun way for you to help the effort. The Ferrero Company and Share Our Strength is inviting you to share something sweet by sending a loved one a Valentine’s Day e-card.

All you have to do is go here, select a theme for your e-card, choose a message and fill in the recipient information. For every e-card that is sent, Ferrero will donate $1 (up to $10,000) to Share Our Strength.

By sending an e-card to a loved one, not only are you brightening someone’s day by letting them know that you are thinking of them, you are also acting in the effort to fight childhood hunger. I can’t think of anything sweeter than that!

Help End Childhood Hunger with Share Our Strength

Share Our Strength Childhood hunger is a multi-layered epidemic that affects approximately 13.4 million children in America, representing roughly 1 in 6 children. Childhood hunger impairs children’s health in significant and long-lasting ways. It results in poorer mental health, impedes growth and development, causes more illnesses including stomachaches, headaches, colds, ear infections, fatigue, weaker immune systems, behavioral issues and countless other lifelong consequences. Hunger also makes children unable to learn and perform academically, impairing cognitive functioning and causing children to experience school absences, tardiness, school suspensions and failing entire school years.

Hunger is not only an epidemic in America, but it is also a pandemic throughout the entire world. There is strength in numbers and together, we have the ability to not only fight but end childhood hunger.

Operation No Kid Hungry Share Our Strength started Operation No Kid Hungry where they are asking us to join in the national text campaign and food drive to end childhood hunger in America.

You can help end childhood hunger by making a text donation by texting “SHARE” to 20222 on your mobile phone. AT&T will match the first $100,000 in text donations to Share Our Strength.

Hold a food drive. Meet the growing need for food by teaming up with food banks in your area. Check the list of most needed foods and start asking friends, family and neighbors for those foods. If your area does not have a food bank, start a food drive on your own. Start a movement in your area and get the residents of your town interested in helping out.

Lastly, help spread the word about Operation No Kid Hungry. You can spread the word just by using websites and web services you frequent daily. Leave comments or do guest posts for your favorite blogs or post about this movement on your own blog. You can also spread the word through Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and any other web services you frequently use.

You can find out more about this call to action on Share Our Strength’s website and AT&T’s media kit.

Watch the Inauguration Live

I have been watching live inaugural coverage since early this morning and if one thing is apparent, it is the fact that so many Americans, even those who have not exactly felt like Americans have traveled to Washington, DC, viewing parties all over the country and tuning in online to see the 44th president of the United States inaugurated.

This is not only a historic moment for America, but for all of us.

Watch live inaugural coverage brought to you by MSNBC.

Time for Change: Get Marijuana Law Reform on the Agenda!

After all the victories we’ve seen in the realm of marijuana law reform and the recent election, it is now time to act! According to the NORML blog, “The election of Barack Obama, coupled with Democrat control of both the House and the Senate, presents a unique and critical opportunity for federal marijuana law reform.” A vast majority of you voted to change the laws regarding marijuana arrests; now is the time to make sure your vote doesn’t go unnoticed.

Obama’s transition team has established a website recently with an agenda of things to be addressed once Obama is in office. Looking at the current list, I was upset to see that Marijuana Law Reform is not even mentioned. Thankfully, the website has a page asking for OUR ideas to help solve challenges facing our country.

That means it’s up to us to get Marijuana Law Reform on the list! All you have to do is go to the page linked above to contact Obama and his transition team, and demand change of the current marijuana policy. Thanks to the wonderful people at NORML, you can even include the three suggestions below:

1. President Obama must uphold his campaign promise to cease the federal arrest and prosecution of (state) law-abiding medical cannabis patients and dispensaries by appointing leaders at the US Drug Enforcement Administration, the US Department of Justice, and the US Attorney General’s office who will respect the will of the voters in the thirteen states that have legalized the physician-supervised use of medicinal marijuana.

2. President Obama should use the power of the bully pulpit to reframe the drug policy debate from one of criminal policy to one of public health. Obama can stimulate this change by appointing directors to the Office of National Drug Control Policy who possess professional backgrounds in public health, addiction, and treatment rather than in law enforcement.

3. President Obama should follow up on statements he made earlier in his career in favor of the decriminalization of marijuana by adults by calling for the creation of a bi-partisan Presidential Commission to review the budgetary, social, and health costs associated with federal marijuana prohibition, and to make progressive recommendations for future policy changes.

As if this hasn’t been said enough – This is the time for change! I cannot urge you enough to write this letter to the President Elect and get Marijuana Law Reform on the agenda. You already showed that it’s what you want by voting for it in the election – Now is time to make your voice heard and tell them why and how!

– – – – – – – – – –

Ally is a girl from New York who writes Sweet Leaf Tribune, an informational blog about marijuana law reform and cannabis culture, as well as medical marijuana, recipes for ‘baked’ goods, stoner how-to’s, and a lot more.