Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Free Seminars Explore Hazardous Waste Management in Nevada

RENO, Nev. — The Nevada Small Business Development Center, Business Environmental Program is presenting seminars on hazardous waste management throughout Nevada.

Retail operations, service industries, property managers, manufacturers, automotive repair, and many other business and government operations have the potential for generating hazardous waste. Fluorescent lamps, solvents, paints, used oil, off-spec products, and electronics are a few examples of wastes that may require special management and disposal. Managing hazardous waste requires much more than keeping containers closed and labeled. The seminar will cover the basics of hazardous waste management and focus on specific requirements including what business must document in their operating records.

The seminars are free. Business owners/operators, supervisors, environmental health and safety personnel, technicians, and others interested in improving their knowledge regarding hazardous waste management are invited to attend. Seminars will be held throughout the month of September in Ely, Las Vegas, Elko, Winnemucca, Reno, Fallon and Carson City.

Additional information on the seminar content is available by calling (775) 689-6671 or visiting NSBDC.

The NSBDC Business Environmental Program provides free and confidential environmental assistance, including: assistance over the phone; on-site assessments; informational materials, and training seminars. The NSBDC is a statewide resource for business assistance and provides a full range of business services in 12 offices located in 10 cities throughout Nevada.

These free seminars may be helpful to businesses owners because hazardous waste requires much more than simple containment and labeling. Business owners can learn ways to save money and simplify compliance through these seminars. And it's free!

Monday, July 30, 2007

$10K Grant Helps Feed Needy Kids

RENO, Nev. — The Food Bank of Northern Nevada received a $10,000 grant from Arrow Electronics, Inc. in support of its free after-school meal program for children in low- income neighborhoods in Washoe County. The Arrow Electronics grant sponsors three Kids Cafe sites in neighborhoods where more than 80 percent of the children are eligible for free or reduced price school meals. Now, these children can receive one free, complete evening meal after school every weekday during the school year.

“Arrow is pleased to support the contributions and commitment of the Food Bank of Northern Nevada in its mission to ensure children don’t go hungry and have access to nutritious meals,” said Mike Richardson, general manager, Arrow Electronics in Reno. Reno is home to more than 500 Arrow employees and is the location for one of Arrow’s distribution and programming facilities.

Through Kids Cafe, many low-income children have access to a healthy meal that might not otherwise be available to them. There are more than 22,000 children (more than 37 percent) in Washoe County schools who are eligible for free or reduced price school meals. More than 1,000 Kids Cafe meals are served daily during the school year to children at dinner sites. All children ages 1-18 from the neighborhood are welcomed and fed.

The Food Bank of Northern Nevada is a regional distribution and support system for more than 100 different direct-service, non-profit agencies serving the needy, the ill, the elderly and children. Its partner agencies include emergency food pantries and senior meal programs, sliding scale day care centers, drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers, family and domestic
violence shelters and various youth programs, all of which offer meals or snacks.

Arrow Electronics is a global provider of products, services and solutions to industrial and commercial users of electronic components and computer products. Headquartered in Melville, N.Y., Arrow serves as a supply channel partner for more than 600 suppliers and 140,000 original equipment manufacturers, contract manufacturers and commercial customers through a global network of 260 locations in 55 countries and territories.

Arrow's donation will help fill a critical need in Northern Nevada's Washoe County, where the 22,000 students who are eligible for free or reduce cost school meals come from households with incomes that are below 185 percent of the Federal Poverty Threshold.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Company Donates Sailboat to Sea Scouts

BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. — Southern Cross Building Products, LLC recently donated a Catalina sailboat to local Sea Scout Ship SS247, a division of the Boy Scouts of America.

"We are always looking for ways to strengthen our ties to the local community and felt that the young adults of Sea Scout Ship (SS247) give back a positive message to our community,” said Rodrigo Vera, president of Southern Cross Building Products, LLC.

The 24-foot Catalina sailboat is one of the most popular boats made in the Unites States. It can be used for day trips and also has ample space for several people in its cabin for longer offshore and long distance voyages.

Sea Scouting is a division of the Boy Scouts of America for young men and women aged 14 through 20. Its purpose is to bring a character building, citizenship training, and fitness program to the youth of America. Sea Scout Ships are organized by churches, civic clubs, schools, maritime organizations, businesses, unions, and other community organizations that provide adult volunteer leaders, program resources, and meeting facilities. These Ships plan programs related to maritime careers, seamanship, and service.

Southern Cross Building Products, LLC manufactures and distributes a full range of sustainable flooring and wall-building products made of glass, wood, stone and clay.

We were unfamiliar with the Sea Scouts until we learned about this donation. The sailboat will be put to good use as young people use it to learn about safe boating.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Businesses Co-Sponsor Wine-Tasting Event to Benefit Opportunity Village

LAS VEGAS — Southern Wine & Spirits and Lee’s Discount Liquor are co-sponsoring an inaugural O-Vino Wine Tasting to benefit Opportunity Village. The event will be held from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 25, in the Estancia Ballroom at Green Valley Ranch, 2300 Paseo Verde Parkway in Henderson. The event will feature a silent auction, hors d’oeuvres and hundreds of wines from around the world. All proceeds from the event benefit Opportunity Village.

Tickets are $50 in advance, $70 the day of the event, and
are available at all Lee's Discount Liquor locations, Opportunity Village
and all Station Casinos rewards centers. Attendees must be at least
21 years old. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit Opportunity Village.

Opportunity Village is a not-for-profit organization that serves people with intellectual disabilities by providing them with vocational training, employment and social recreation services that make their lives more productive and interesting. Through Opportunity Village’s programs and services, hundreds of people with disabilities are learning vocational skills and being placed in jobs throughout the community.

Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. is the nation’s leading wine and spirits distributor with a tradition of delivering the highest levels of service excellence since 1968.

Lee’s Discount Liquor has been a leader in the fine wine industry for more than 20 years.

Opportunity Village is one of the most worthwhile non-profits in Southern Nevada, and the business community has long supported the organization through special events, fundraisers and more. This event is a nice way for the two corporate sponsors to support Opportunity Village while focusing on their area of expertise.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Alcoa Fastening Systems Donates $25,000 For Solar Car Project

TORRANCE, Calif. — Alcoa Fastening Systems (AFS) is continuing its sponsorship and support of the award-winning University of Michigan Solar Car Team. In addition to continued financial support with a $25,000 donation, AFS provides technical support, installation tools, and engineered fasteners that are generally used for high tech aerospace applications.

"We are very happy to play a key role in the success of the U of M program," said Rick Sharpe, SVP of Aerospace Customers and Marketing for AFS. "This fine young team continues to push the envelope in design, integration of highly engineered materials, and advanced assembly techniques which is what we specialize in, so it is a natural fit.”

The University of Michigan Solar Car Team is a non-profit, student-run organization whose purpose is to design, finance, build, and race a solar-powered vehicle in competitions around North America and the world. The team is dedicated to the development of its members as teammates, educators, and leaders, and to the education of our community on the potentials of alternative energy technology.

Alcoa Fastening Systems, a business unit of Alcoa, is a leading worldwide designer and manufacturer of fastening systems, specialty fasteners, components, and installation systems for aerospace and commercial product assembly. Headquartered in Torrance, Calif., the company has 6,600 employees, and manufactures at 19 locations in 9 countries. AFS also operates 7 worldwide distribution/logistics centers.

Solar energy continues to be one of the best untapped power sources, and the U of M Solar Car Team is pushing the envelope, thanks to the support of companies like Alcoa Fastening Systems. Perhaps solar powered cars will be the preferred transportation of tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Las Vegas Realtors to Host Blood Drive in August

LAS VEGAS — The Greater Las Vegas Association of REALTORS (GLVAR) in conjunction with United Blood Services, is hosting a blood drive from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 20, at the GLVAR office located at 1750 E. Sahara Avenue, in classroom B. Appointments are suggested and can be made by calling 702-784-5000.

The drive is being held to help ease the shortage of blood in Southern Nevada.
According to United Blood Services, more than 400 pints of blood are needed to get through the summer, especially from people with Type O negative blood.

As a thank you gift, donors will receive a voucher from Cold Stone Creamery for a free “love it” size creation.

GLVAR was founded in 1947 and provides more than 17,000 local members with education, training and political representation. GLVAR, the local representative of the National Association of REALTORS, is the largest professional organization in Southern Nevada. Each GLVAR member
receives the highest level of professional training and must abide by a strict code of ethics.

United Blood Services exists to make a difference in people’s lives by bringing together the best people, inspiring individuals to donate blood, producing a safe and ample blood supply, advancing research, and embracing continuous quality improvement.

This event is very timely, given that blood supplies in Southern Nevada are lower than normal this time of year. Donations are critical or the community will face shortages later this summer that could place elective surgeries on hold. Kudos to the GLVAR for helping out in the community it serves.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Weston Investment Co. Donates Building

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Oregon Community Foundation announced that Weston Investment Company LLC has donated the Commonwealth Building to the OCF Joseph E. Weston Public Foundation.

The building, worth approximately $30 million, was designed between by architect Pietro Belluschi from 1944 to 1948. Located at 421 S. W. Sixth Avenue, it is listed on the U. S National Register of Historic Places. Characterized by aluminum and sea-green glass, the building was the first in America to be fully sealed and air conditioned using heat pumps, which were cutting edge in the 1940’s and 1950’s.

Joe Weston, owner of Weston Investment Company, established the OCF Joseph E. Weston Public Foundation in 1991 to receive some of the wealth and property he accumulated through his company. The OCF Joseph E. Weston Public Foundation, administered by OCF, will now have total assets of nearly $92 million, generating nearly $2.5 million annually for grant awards.

The OCF Joseph E. Weston Public Foundation supports a wide range of charitable and educational programs in the greater Portland area and in Oregon that have well developed missions, a broad base of financial support and a strong volunteer base and that benefit children, the working poor, the physically and mentally challenged, senior citizens and the homeless.

Portland-based Weston Investment Co. owns nearly 3,000 apartments and 2.5 million square feet of commercial real estate in the Pacific Northwest.

Founded 34 years ago, the Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) works in partnership with individual, family, business and organizational donors to improve the lives of Oregonians through philanthropy and by building an endowment - now more than $900 million - for Oregon's future. OCF provides more than $48 million annually in grants and scholarships statewide.

Weston Investment Co. has a history of supporting the Portland community, the city where it is based. The company focuses primarily on donations that will help the poor. Company founder Joe Weston is a noted philanthropist, and it would be nice if others in his industry would follow his lead.

Friday, July 20, 2007

BP Pledges $50,000 In Solar Gear to Museum

DURANGO, Colo. — BP America announced an in-kind donation of $50,000 in solar equipment to the Discovery Museum at the Powerhouse in Durango. The donation includes high-efficiency solar panels manufactured by BP Solar. The solar electric equipment will provide a source of clean power for the interactive science and energy center and other programs planned for the site.

To provide the museum project with the most benefit from the donation, BP also issued a friendly challenge to the community to match its donation by Sept. 8, the date of the Discovery Museum’s first fund-raising gala.

Announcing the BP donation at an annual Discovery Museum/Children’s Museum “fun-raiser,” Dan Larson, BP director of public affairs, said the in-kind donation follows BP contributions of more than $20,000 since 2004. Larson challenged the community to contribute additional materials, expertise, and funds to augment the projected 10-kilowatt output of the photo-voltaic system. “By combining what the community and other companies can contribute with BP’s contribution, we can increase the amount of clean power this system can provide,” he said.

BP is one of the world’s largest energy companies. Its alternative energy business, launched in 2005, combines all of BP’s interests in low and zero-carbon power generation: wind, solar, and hydrogen power with carbon capture and storage. In Southwest Colorado, BP is a leading producer of natural gas from its operations center near the Durango-La Plata County Airport.

The Discovery Museum at the Powerhouse in Durango will be an interactive science and energy center for all ages. The museum, which will include sustainability labs, an outdoor science park, Sudden Science camps and after-school programs, is set to open in 2010 along the Animas River.

This in-kind donation will be the cornerstone of the Discovery Museum, and BP's challenge to other local businesses to help the museum reach its fund-raising goal is admirable. Hopefully other companies will rise to the challenge.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Companies Donate $25,000 in Services to Clean Lincoln Memorial

WASHINGTON, D. C. — Yesterday, pressure washers planned to clean sections of the Lincoln Memorial to remove dirt, discarded gum and food stains as part of the Power Washers of North America (PWNA) Clean Across America program.

The pressure washers participating in the project will employ professional-grade Sirocco water reclamation systems and other equipment designed to stop runoff from reaching the Potomac River and the tidal basin. Following the guidelines established by the PWNA, contractors will use low-pressure hot water and steam to safely restore the memorial.

"What some consumers don't realize is that using high pressure water to clean historic structures like these can cause considerable damage and these memorials are made of stone. Just imagine how much damage can be caused to surfaces like wood decks and aluminum siding when using high pressure like 3,000 PSI on them," said Henry Bockman, chairman of Clean Across America and project coordinator.

Thousands of dollars in equipment and resources have been donated from manufacturers, vendors and contractors to complete this extensive cleaning project in one day. Project planning and implementation has been coordinated by the following businesses:

• Henry's Housework, a wood restoration and pressure washing company providing deck cleaning and other home maintenance services in Maryland.

• Under Pressure, a pressure washing company from Maryland.

• Sun Brite Supply, a pressure washing supply distributor in Georgia that sells pressure washers, and power washing supplies across the nation.

• Red Fall Contracting, a pressure washing company from Maryland.

• Clean Solution, a pressure washing company from Pennsylvania.

• Clean Again, a pressure washing company from Maryland.

• Aqua Marines, a pressure washing company from Maryland.

• Sun Brite Supply of Maryland, a pressure washer supply company that carries supplies for deck cleaning and offers a variety of other pressure washing services.

Additional companies supporting the project include: Hydramotion Cleaning Systems in Pennsylvania; Sun Brite Supply from Georgia; Pressure Washer.net from California; Devour Catering from Washington DC, Latimat from Canada; KBK Graphics from Ohio; Sun Brite Supply of Maryland, and The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company of Ohio.

Power Washers of North America is the contractors’ association for the power washing industry. It is a leader in developing and communicating the highest standards in ethical business practices, environmental awareness, and safety through continuing education and active representation of the membership.

This volunteer project nicely demonstrates how small businesses can work cooperatively to tackle a large project that benefits everyone.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Louisville Slugger Goes to Bat for USA Cares

LOUISVILLE, KY — Louisville Slugger, the historic baseball bat company announced it will begin producing the first ever "All American Bat" in support of Operation Slugger II, the second such effort led by USA Cares to provide sporting goods equipment to U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The red, white and blue full-size Louisville Slugger bat is available at Slugger Gifts, at USA Cares USA Cares Web site and at select locations across the country.

In 2005, Louisville Slugger and its parent company, Hillerich and Bradsby Co., partnered with USA Cares to collect more than 13 and a half tons of new and used sporting equipment, which was shipped to troops serving in Iraq and Afghanistan to provide a morale boost.

Now, new troops can benefit from this equipment. The goal Operation Slugger II is to compile 600 complete kits with a value of about $800,000.

"We have continued to receive requests from the troops for equipment to help fill in the down time, and seeing the generosity of America last time, it was an easy decision to help develop Slugger II, “ said John A. Hillerich IV, president and CEO. “Our support will continue for as long as it is needed.”

Proceeds from the limited edition bat will provide support to the mission of USA Cares and Slugger II. Bats will sell for $60, plus shipping and handling.

Louisville Slugger is the official bat of Major League Baseball and is a name that is synonymous with America's pastime. Louisville Slugger bats have been used by the greatest players in baseball, including Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, Stan Musial, Jackie Robinson, and Hank Aaron. Louisville Slugger also makes TPX baseball equipment for college, high school, and youth players, as well as equipment for slow-pitch and fast-pitch softball players. Louisville Slugger is a brand of the Hillerich & Bradsby Co., a fourth generation family-owned business.

USA Cares is a worldwide charitable organization serving military service members and their families with direction, advice and grant assistance for quality of life issues caused by military service. To date, USA Cares has received requests from over 6,000 service members and families with more than $3 million dollars in organizational and found resources granted.

This is a nice example of a company partnering with a non-profit to better the lives of US troops serving abroad. Perhaps other businesses will follow their lead and lend a hand as well.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Safeway Sponsors Mobile Mammography Van

PLEASANTON, Calif.— Safeway, Inc. and the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) debuted today a mobile mammography van equipped with cutting edge digital screening technology. Safeway funded the $800,000 van with proceeds from a month-long breast cancer fundraising campaign.

The mobile screening vehicle is a 40-foot, self-contained clinic with the digital screening technology recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration to detect breast cancer more effectively than the traditional mammography screening. In addition to a mammography unit, the van also has a reception area, dressing rooms and a waiting room. It will be staffed by a mammography technologist, an assistant, and a driver. It will operate in Seattle.

In addition to the cost of the van, Safeway Chairman, President and CEO Steve Burd presented an additional $200,000 check from The Safeway Foundation to fund the van's first two years of operation. The new mobile unit will be operated by SCCA in partnership with the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

Safeway Inc. is a Fortune 100 company and one of the largest food and drug retailers in North America, based on sales. The company operates 1,755 stores in the United States and western Canada and had annual sales of $40.2 billion in 2006. Safeway supports a broad range of charitable and community programs and last year donated more than $154 million to important causes, such as cancer research, education, food banks and programs focused on assisting people with disabilities.

This donation/sponsorship will benefit an estimated 30 women every day, and features technology that is more effective than traditional mammograms. This van will help save lives.

Friday, July 13, 2007

JK Harris & Company Helps Families of Fallen Firefighters

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. — JK Harris & Company announced that $14,000 will be donated to the City of Charleston Fireman's Fund to help the families of the nine Charleston firefighters who lost their lives battling a fire at a furniture store in Charleston, S.C., on June 18.

The North Charleston-based company, which is the largest tax resolution firm in the nation, collected $9,000 in voluntary donations from employees. The company also matched, dollar for dollar, the first $5,000 that was collected to bring the grand total to be given to the Fireman's Fund to $14,000.

"Our employees wanted to help the families of these nine heroic firefighters," said John Harris, president and CEO of JK Harris. "And just like many times before, our employees showed their compassion to help those in need."

The loss of the nine firefighters marked the first time a firefighter was killed on the job in Charleston since 1965. More than 10,000 mourners, including firefighters from across the country, attended the public memorial service for the firemen on June 22 at the North Charleston Coliseum.

"These families have experienced a tremendous loss," Harris said. "I am very proud that our employees have shown where their hearts and minds are - with the fallen firefighters and their families."

JK Harris & Company, LLC, based in North Charleston, S.C., is the nation's largest tax resolution firm and has served over 170,000 customers since its founding in 1997 by John K. Harris. JK Harris consultants are available to meet with consumers in over 450 locations nationwide by appointment only. The company also provides services for consumer and commercial debt, student loan debt, investment fraud, financial planning, tax return preparation, and audit representation.

This is a nice example of a business giving back to people in the community. The loss of these firefighters was a terrible tragedy, and perhaps in some way this donation will ease some of the financial burden of their families.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Qwest Donates $10,000 to Big Brothers Big Sisters

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— The Qwest Foundation today announced a $10,000 grant to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central New Mexico (BBBS-CNM) to sponsor a media technology program.

The grant will fund the "Crossroads" program, which engages at-risk teenagers with adult mentors in positive activities focused on five activities: community service,math/science, career development, culture and fitness/recreation. The aim of the program is to encourage youth to gain confidence in their ability to use technology and provide creative opportunities to enhance their development.

"Our youth is reaching out for positive activities and role models, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central New Mexico helps fill that need," said Loretta Armenta, Qwest president for New Mexico. "There are many athletic programs that cost students little, if anything, but few programs that offer affordable access to technology. Qwest Foundation is thrilled to partner with BBBS-CNM to open these doors and hopefully ignite children's imaginations."

"We are grateful to Qwest for partnering with Big Brothers Big Sisters in the spirit of service to our community's youth," said Angela Reed Padilla, BBBS-CNM CEO. "This grant provides the opportunity for caring adult mentors to share their expertise and enthusiasm for technology with youth in a fun, learning environment. Through one-to-one mentoring, we can foster a relationship of learning, caring, and social development. Adults and youth together will gain insight into how the use of technology can create opportunities for a strong future, both for our youth and for our business community."

The goal of Big Brothers Big Sisters is to create and foster one-on-one, positive relationships between children and adults. BBBS-CNM is dedicated to providing opportunities for volunteers and children to enjoy the magic that comes from making a new friend. Big Brothers Big Sisters is the oldest and largest youth mentoring organization in the United States. Since 1969, BBBS-CNM has been developing positive relationships that have a direct and lasting impact on the lives of young people. In 2006, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central New Mexico served over 1,000 children, ages six through 18, in five counties.

The Qwest Foundation's core principle is that investing in people and communities provides lasting value for the future. The Qwest Foundation awards grants to community-based programs that generate high-impact and measurable results, focusing on pre-K through grade 12 education.

While many children's sports activities are supported by businesses and community partners, there isn't always as much support or awareness of technology education needs. This donation by Qwest really fills an important niche and will benefit thousands of children.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Central Pacific Bank Supports Meals on Wheels

HONOLULU — Central Pacific Bank donated $25,000 to Lanakila Meals on Wheels, Hawaii’s largest Meals on Wheels program. The bank will also open its branches to accept donations from the public.

Lanakila Meals on Wheels announced in June that it would be forced to cut its delivery service by 233 seniors because it is no longer receiving some $350,000 in state funding. Lanakila is the only meal provider to 727 homebound seniors on the island of Oahu.

The bank’s donation, as well as donations by other companies, will enable Lanakila to continue its current service for at least another month, said Marian Tsuji, president and CEO of Lanakila Rehabilitation Center.

Since 1980, Lanakila Meals on Wheels has provided hot and nutritious daily meals to homebound seniors (60 and older) who are not to prepare their own meals due to physical challenges. The program delivers more than 242,000 meals annually to homebound seniors.

Central Pacific Bank is Hawaii's third largest commercial bank with 38 branch offices statewide, including four supermarket branches and more than 90 ATMs.

This is another great example of the business community stepping in to help people locally. Central Pacific Bank not only made a generous donation, but by taking the lead it also encouraged other businesses to get involved as well.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Oakland Raiders Golf Tourney Benefits Special Olympics

PLEASANTON, Calif. — The Oakland Raiders (Raiders) raised more than $200,000 for Special Olympics Northern California as part of the 2nd Annual Raiders Golf Classic June 14 at Castlewood Country Club in Pleasanton. More than 300 golfers were paired with Oakland Raiders players, legends and coaches to play a round of golf and celebrate the achievements of local Special Olympics athletes. Proceeds from this year's event will help underwrite costs associated with the Special Olympics Northern California Summer Games, which were held earlier this month for more than 1,000 athletes at UC Berkeley.

“This has been a wonderful partnership for an even greater cause — we are happy to help the Special Olympics make a difference in the community," said Artie Gigantino, senior administrator for the Oakland Raiders.

This year's event, presented by Preferred Financial, included giveaways and contests on almost every hole, such as longest drive, hole-in-one, accuracy drive, and longest putt. While making their way through the 18-hole course, golfers enjoyed food and beverages, received Raiders-signed memorabilia, and were encouraged by the Raiderettes. Raider legends Jim Plunkett, Ted Hendricks, Tim Brown and Daryle Lamonica, as well as new Raiders head coach Lane Kiffin, served as celebrity captains on the foursomes. Rookie quarterback JaMarcus Russell also came out to pay a special visit.

"Anything I can do to come out and give back to the community, I'm willing to do," said Russell, who was attending his first Raiders Golf Classic after being drafted no. 1 by the Raiders in April. "God bless (the Special Olympics athletes) and our best wishes go out to (them) to better themselves."

The Raiders Golf Classic is part of a three-year partnership between the Raiders and Special Olympics Northern California.

Special Olympics Northern California provides free, year-round sports training and competition in a variety of Olympic-style sports for individuals ages 8-80 with developmental disabilities. In Northern California, more than 15,000 athletes compete in 19 sports.

This annual event and its proceeds can help the Special Olympics Northern California reach out to more than 300,000 kids and adults with developmental disabilities in its service area and help the organization continue to make its programs available for free to special athletes and their families. It's a great touch to see professional athletes working with the amazing special athletes.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Jewelers for Children Slates $4.5 Million For Charities

NEW YORK CITY — Jewelers for Children , the jewelry industry's charity, announced that $ 4.7 million would be committed in the year ahead to charities that benefit children who are the victims of catastrophic illness or life-threatening abuse and neglect. The announcement was made at the recently held Facets of Hope celebration at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas.

More than 2,100 members of the jewelry industry attended the annual event. Audience members also heard from some of the children who have directly benefited from the support the jewelry industry has provided. The program included a 15-year-old girl who was treated as St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN and a 10-year-old, HIV positive boy from Jamaica who is participating in a study with the JFC Elizabeth Glaser Scientist, Dr. Margaret Feeney. Dr. Feeney and the boy were introduced, for the first time, on the stage during the presentation.

The funds will be distributed as follows:

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital - $1 million

Make-A-Wish Foundation - $1 million

National Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Association - $1 million

Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation - $675,000

Jason Program - $325,000

Make-A-Wish Foundation International - $200,000

National Autism Research Foundation – $50,000

Santa America Fund - $35,000

Jewelers For Children was founded in 1999 by the U.S. jewelry industry with the mission of helping children in need. The nationwide success is due to the continuing generosity of jewelry trade organizations, jewelry and watch manufacturing companies, jewelry retail stores, individual jewelry professionals, and jewelry consumers.

This is a fantastic example of an industry coming together to make a difference. This donation effectively benefits eight different charities, which in turn benefit the lives of countless children.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

BlogCatalog.com Launches Global Awareness Campaign

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — BlogCatalog.com, one of the fastest-growing social blog directories on the Internet, will launch its second social awareness campaign, this time to benefit organ donor awareness worldwide. The campaign, BlogCatalog Community Organ Donor Awareness Campaign, asks directory members (bloggers) to write about organ donation on July 18, provide links to donor information sites on the Internet, and link back to BlogCatalog if they want to receive credit for their contribution.

“In May, we focused on education and one organization. The response was really overwhelming and I’ve been personally touched and inspired by it,” said Antony Berkman, president of BlogCatalog.com. “I knew our members had been developing one of the friendliest social networks on the Internet, but our efforts in May really proved how generous bloggers can be. They directly benefited more than 1,000 students nationwide through DonorChoose.org.”

This time, Berkman says he wants to invite even more bloggers to become involved by focusing on an important social issue that impacts the world — organ donation. Some estimates he has read report that more than 1,700 people need transplants in Australia, more than 170,000 in Europe and the United States, and more than 2 million in China.

“When you look at the numbers, it’s very frightening. People are dying because they need organs and there are not enough available,” says Berkman. “BlogCatalog.com members helped raise awareness and funds for education in May. This time we are hoping they come together in July and help change the world by raising awareness about organ donation.”

Berkman said the BlogCatalog.com team researched hundreds of sites about organ donation and picked several to help provide bloggers with information. In the United States, they include OrganDonor.gov, UNOS, and MatchingDonors.com. He also encouraged directory members outside of the United States to list sites hosted in their countries and drew attention to British Organ Donor Society, which is known for a worldwide link page. For BlogCatalog.com participation information, see the announcement.

“Another great site is Transplant Success, which lists dozens and dozens of individual success stories,” said Berkman. “But we really encourage directory members and other bloggers to write about what they want, whether it is to focus on a success story, stop the organ black market, or encourage people to fill out a donor card. What’s important is that on July 18, organ donation will be one of the most talked about topics on the Internet.”

BlogCatalog.com will also credit participating bloggers by linking to their blogs. BlogCatalog.com is the first social network directory to organize members to raise awareness for a global campaign. For more information about the directory, visit blogcatalog.com.

While organ donation is a personal decision for many people, we think the campaign to generate awareness so people can make a better informed decision. We like that BlogCatalog has set guidelines for the campaign without setting any requirements.

Monday, July 02, 2007

AT&T Helps Military Families Connect for Independence Day

SAN ANTONIO, Tex. — AT&T Inc. announced the donation of 10,000 prepaid phone cards, which is the third installation toward more than 50,000 prepaid phone cards that the company will give away in 2007. With the help of the United Service Organizations (USO), the cards will be distributed to military personnel who are stationed overseas. This donation builds on more than 85 years of AT&T support for U.S. military families and a 20-year partnership with the USO.

The latest donation marks 30,000 phone cards donated so far this year via direct handouts with the USO. This set of 10,000 phone cards will be distributed on overseasmilitary bases during USO entertainment tours that are slated for the weeks following Independence Day. According to AT&T, this donation is in honor of U.S. families, whether they are on active duty or have a loved one who is actively serving.

In the coming weeks, the USO will help AT&T distribute the phone cards to troops who are serving throughout Iraq, Kuwait, Afghanistan, South Korea, Japan and Europe. Each donated phone card will provide 20 free minutes of talk time from Iraq to the U.S.

"As we celebrate one of the most patriotic holidays of the year, we salute U.S. military families everywhere," said Carmen Nava, AT&T senior vice president-distribution. "We also hope this donation will help ease some of the challenges posed by distance, time zones and ongoing military duties -- and bring loved ones closer together."

For more than 66 years, the USO has been providing morale, welfare and recreational services to U.S. military personnel and their families. The USO is a nonprofit, charitable organization, relying on the generosity of the American people to support its programs and services. It is supported by Worldwide Strategic Partners AT&T Inc., BAE Systems North America, Clear Channel Communications, The Coca-Cola Company, DRS Technologies, Inc., Military Channel, S & K Sales Co., TriWest Healthcare Alliance and The Walt Disney Company, and thousands of individual donors.

AT&T Inc. is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. Among their offerings are the world's most advanced IP-based business communications services and the nation's leading wireless, high speed Internet access, and voice services. As part of its three-screen integration strategy, AT&T is expanding its TV entertainment offerings.

The donation builds on AT&T's work to help keep military families connected. Since January 2006, AT&T has donated nearly 200,000 prepaid phone cards -- valued at nearly $1.8 million -- to U.S. military members and their families. We think supporting our troops and military families is honorable, particularly on the Fourth of July.

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