Stand with Olympic Athletes, Human Rights Watch and the LGBT community around the globe
Tonight, millions around the world will watch the opening ceremonies in Sochi, Russia. They will watch a historic celebration of the human spirit, taking place in a nation that is systematically crushing human dignity.
In the last year Russia has enacted a law that sponsors homophobia, effectively demonizing its LGBT people, and making them more vulnerable to harassment and physical attacks. The very act of saying that homosexuality is normal, of supporting a friend or family member, of speaking your mind, is now illegal.
We cannot ignore hate, bigotry, and discrimination.
The extraordinary athletes we celebrate tonight have trained their entire lives in anticipation of these two weeks. They are the ultimate example of perseverance of the human spirit. They demonstrate that there are no limits. And they deserve better.
Stand with the athletes, with those who fight for human rights, and with those who are repressed in Russia.
Change your Facebook profile picture now to stand with us in solidarity.
We will not let Russia’s LGBT community be ignored.
What would you do with $25,000?
If you had nothing to lose, would you chase your dream? The film Secret Life of Walter Mitty poses this question, and when 20th Century Fox gave filmmaker Casey Neistat $25,000 to create a video to promote the movie, he took the message of the film literally!
Happy New Year - and may 2014 be filled with chasing dreams - and more hollywood assignments - like these.
DEC 15 - Los Angeles: The 4th Annual Big Sunday Holiday Party & Sing-along!
Each year hundreds of people, from all walks of life, gather to eat, sing (with The Famous Big Sunday Band! - Mark Drop, Clyde Kaplan, Michael Skloff, Rob Laufer and David Levinson all led by Carole Beren), decorate, and enjoy the holidays. Along with the kids from AbilityFirst, the seniors from Sunset Hall, teens from Phoenix House, as well as others who could use some help and good cheer this holiday season.
All ages are welcome to come as guests, to be entertained, and to keep others company, too. (And no, no one has to sing.) It’s all at 6111 Melrose, L.A., just west of Cahuenga.
They’re also collecting:
· TOYS for foster kids at Children Uniting Nations and the homeless and hungry of Hollywood who’ll be attending Temple Israel of Hollywood’s Annual Christmas Dinner.
· FOOD for the All Peoples’ Community Center and the 109th St. Recreation Center, both in South L.A.
· WINTER CLOTHES for political refugees at The Program for Torture Victims and food for hungry families, and homeless people at the St. Vincent Medical Center.
You can drop off your donations at 6111 Melrose Ave., L.A., 9-5, all week.
To rsvp or to donate items contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to Help Victims of Typhoon Haiyan
(CNN) — The stories coming out of the Philippines are unimaginable. Rushing water and wind tearing children away from their parents’ arms. A death toll that may reach 10,000. A city of 200,000 in which no buildings appear to have survived intact.
One of the most intense typhoons on record, Haiyan (locally known as Yolanda) left catastrophic destruction behind.
If you’re looking for someone missing in the Philippines, or if you have information about someone there, Google.org has launched the Typhoon Yolanda Person Finder. A Google crisis map has also been added to detail evacuation centers and areas designated for relief.
Charities and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) from around the world are responding to this disaster. Many are detailed below with how they’re providing aid and how you can help them make a difference.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has deployed rescue and relief teams to evaluate the damage in the areas devastated by Typhoon Haiyan. You can donate to the Philippine Red Cross by selecting the Supertyphoon Yolanda campaign on their donation page. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and Red Cross networks from around the world are supporting the Philippine Red Cross. Many have created specific funds for this disaster, including the American Red Cross, Canadian Red Cross and the British Red Cross.
The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) is working with local authorities, the Filipino Jewish community and their global partners to assist in providing for survivors’ immediate needs. You can support their efforts online or by phone at 1-212-687-6200.
CARE's emergency response teams are coordinating with local partners in the Philippines to provide food, water, shelter and health care for those in need. Their teams in Vietnam are preparing for the potential need there as Typhoon Haiyan continues its devastation. You can support CARE's efforts on their website, or by phone at 1-800-521-2273 within the United States or +1-404-681-2252 outside the U.S.
Catholic Relief Services, the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the U.S., is on the ground helping with water purification, shelter materials and essential living supplies. You can donate to the organization’s efforts online or you can call 1-877-435-7277. You can also type in your phone number on the website and a representative will call you back to take your donation.
Convoy of Hope's Global Disaster Response Team has shipping containers full of food and supplies on the way to the Philippines. The organization is preparing more supplies to be sent like canned goods, hygiene kits and water filtration units. You can visit Convoy of Hope's website to donate funds to their efforts or call 1-417-823-8998.
Mercy Corps is preparing to deliver food, water, temporary shelter and other basic supplies to devastated areas throughout the Philippines. You can support the organization by donating through their website, PayPal, or by calling 1-888-747-7440.
Oxfam America aid teams are on the ground in northern Cebu, northern and eastern Samar and Leyte, in the Eastern Visayas region in the Philippines. They’re working to provide immediate access to water and sanitation materials. You can support this effort by donating online to their Typhoon Haiyan Relief and Recovery Fund, or by phone at 1-800-776-9326.
Adventist Development and Relief Agency's (ADRA) emergency response team is working in Manila and in the province of Bohol to provide food, emergency relief and medical aid to those in need. They have launched an emergency appeal that you can support online or by phone at 1-800-424-2372.
Food and water
The World Food Programme was already providing emergency food assistance in the Philippines following the October earthquake. With these emergency food stocks stretched thin, they’re now mobilizing additional supplies and are flying in 40 tons of fortified biscuits in the coming days. Additional food supplies are needed. You can help these efforts by donating online or by calling 1-202-747-0722 domestically or +39-06-65131 for international calls.
Samaritan’s Purse has sent disaster relief specialists, including water and nutrition experts, to the Philippines to deliver immediate aid. They have launched the Philippines Emergency Relief fund for this disaster, which you can support online or by phone at 1-828-262-1980.
World Vision is responding in the Philippines by first providing emergency food and clean water. They will also work to create child-friendly spaces and help families rebuild from this disaster. They have launched a Philippines Disaster Response Fund that you can support online or by calling 1-888-511-6443.
Action Against Hunger is on the ground providing drinking water and survival kits containing buckets, soap and chlorine tablets. They’re also working to distribute sanitation equipment to prevent outbreaks of waterborne diseases. They’re requesting assistance and you can help by donating online or by calling 1-877-777-1420.
ShelterBox was already in the Philippines providing shelter after the 7.2 earthquake that hit Bohol on October 15. They are now expanding their operations to provide tents and essential equipment for families left homeless after Typhoon Haiyan. You can support their work in the Philippines either online or by calling 1-941-907-6036.
Habitat for Humanity is already providing help to 30,000 families with shelter repair kits to rebuild their damaged homes. You can support this work by donating from the Philippines to their Re-Build Philippines Fund or from the U.S. by contributing to their Disaster Response Fund. You can also make a donation by phone at 1-800-HABITAT.
Architecture for Humanity is mobilizing to assist with post-disaster reconstruction and the organization’s working with local architects to identify the most critical rebuilding needs. You can support their Super Typhoon Haiyan Response online, by calling 1-415-963-3511 or by texting REBUILD to 85944 to make a $10 donation from your mobile phone.
Americares has an emergency shipment on the way to the Philippines with enough medical aid for 20,000 survivors, including antibiotics, wound care supplies and pain relievers. You can support Americares with an online donation or by calling 1-800-486-4357.
International Medical Corps has pre-positioned medical supplies and their team is on the ground coordinating with their partners in the Philippines to distribute and provide medical aid. You can support their Typhoon Haiyan Emergency Response fund online or by calling 1-800-481-4462.
More than 1.5 tons of emergency medicine and medical supplies are en route to the Philippines from Direct Relief. The supplies include antibiotics, pain relievers, nutritional supplements, antifungal medications, wound dressings and chronic disease medicines. You can call in your donation by dialing 1-805-964-4767 or you can go online to support the organization.
The U.S. Fund for UNICEF is helping children and their families in the Philippines receive shelter, clean water, nutrition and vaccines. Their emergency response can be supported online or by calling 1-800-367-5437. You can also donate directly to UNICEF in the Philippines here.
Save the Children is offering disaster relief support for children in the Philippines, Laos and Vietnam after Typhoon Haiyan. You can support their Philippines Annual Monsoon and Typhoon Children in Emergency Fund online. You can also donate by phone at 1-800-728-3843.
Emergency response teams from ChildFund International prepositioned supplies, including emergency kits and tents, and made arrangements with local suppliers to access food and non-food relief supplies. The organization is also preparing to setup child- centered spaces where kids can feel safe. Donate to ChildFund online to help children cope and recover confidence after this disaster.
Teams from Plan are also on the ground responding to the needs of children and their families. Their priorities are vulnerable youngsters and communities in rural locations. You can support their appeal on their website.
PHOTO OF THE WEEK - 29 October 2013
One-year-old Nuah Conteh is malnourished and has malaria in Sierra Leone.
UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Lionel ‘Leo’ Messi is marking his son’s first birthday (2 November) by promoting child survival. The Leo & Thiago Messi Celebrate Life campaign asks friends and fans worldwide to help raise awareness about the importance of giving all children an equal chance to survive. Despite sharp reductions in child deaths since 1990, 18,000 children under 5 still die each day from mainly preventable causes.
To see more: www.unicef.org/photography
FYI - UNICEF has created a web application called “Leo Messi and Thiago celebrate life”, which will be available until November 4. Through this application, everyone can join Leo’s commitment to help children of the world grow up with the same kind of opportunities. http://www.unicef.org/messithiago/en/
Volunteers age 12 and older are invited to join us on Saturday, October 26 for the first official Assembly Day of this Holiday Drive. We plan to assemble and ship 8-10,000 care packages in one day!
TIME: 9am - Noon; Lunch Break; 1pm - 4pm
PLACE: 17330 Victory Boulevard (at Louise); Van Nuys 91406
While you’re with us, we want you to have some extra fun, too! We hope you’ll spend a few moments with our friends from the new and upcoming FOX show, Enlisted, premiering on Friday, January 10.
A crew from Enlisted will film your shout-outs to air at the end of each episode and/or to post online, so be creative!
Here are some optional ideas:
~Grab your friends, co-workers, teammates, family members and bring signs, banners, flags or whatever else you’d like to use as “props”!
~Dress alike in your team, scout or club uniforms!
~Know someone who is overseas? You can make your shout-out to him or her or their unit!
~Don’t know anyone who is deployed? Your shout-out can be a simple, “Thank you for serving!” or “We love our troops!”
As always, there will be plenty of work to do, too, so please dress comfortably and wear closed-toe shoes. Find all our basic volunteer information and important armory rules online here.
The food trucks scheduled to be at the armory are: Muddhouse Coffee, No Jodas Cuban Kitchen and La Frite Express (please note that this line-up is subject to change without notice). A portion of every purchase will be donated back to Operation Gratitude to help send more care packages!
Have questions about volunteering? Please send an email to our wonderful Volunteer Coordinator, Penny: email@example.com — be sure to put “Operation Gratitude Volunteer” in the subject line.
Join the Biggest Beach Clean Up Volunteer Event on the Planet!
Join thousands of Southern Californians to clean over 50 beach and inland locations in L.A. County on Coastal Cleanup Day, September 21, 2013. Last year in California alone, nearly 63,000 volunteers removed over 871,580 pounds of trash and recyclable waste covering more than 1,500 miles! Plus - They’ve made it easier than ever now to personally fundraise for Coastal Cleanup Day. Once you sign up, you can create a fundraising page and share with friends and family. Volunteers who raise $100 or more get a Heal the Bay t-shirt! Be part of the change and sign up now!
The Climate Reality Project - Take the first step!
We loved this idea of 10 simple steps to make a difference. Especially the first step - to reach out to friends and tell them that Climate Change matters to you! Thanks to Felicity Huffman for doing just that and reaching out to us with this cool site:
"I imagined the sigh of exasperation, or the muttered "oh God what has she sent me now." Maybe you will think this is a little extreme, or crazy? Maybe this seems like I am 1 email away from buying clothes made out of hemp and shoes made out of VEGAN leather (what is that anyway?), and eating a lot of garlic and grains, and wearing earrings that I made in my pottery studio. Next was feeling stupid that I am sending this at all! I mean who am I kidding - how can something as simple as emailing your friends and family make a dent in something as huge as "saving the world!" I don’t know, but I am going to follow the 10 steps and find out." - Felicity’s email to Stacy
We checked it out and just loved everything about The Climate Reality Project. They have curated a collection of activities for you to get informed, get involved, use the power of your wallet, and mobilize your networks to send a message that climate change matters to you. Taken together, these actions will have a huge ripple effect. This is the challenge of our time. It’s up to us to solve it! Here are four of our favorites from their list. Check ‘em out.
Join the Climate Reality Project and add your voice to a global community of nearly 5 million people demanding a solution now. Then get involved with climate organizations in your community, or join some of the nation’s largest environmental advocacy groups like the Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation, the Natural Resources Defense Council, or the World Wildlife Fund.
Take Small Steps
You can do so many things to make a difference and inspire people around you. Things like keeping your car tires fully inflated, not letting your car idle, switching out old light bulbs for LED or CFL options, and walking or biking instead of driving. For more ideas, check out the EPA’s What You Can Do.
Become a Climate Leader
Learn more about climate change and inspire your community to act. Join the Climate Reality Leadership Corps and join a global network that’s changing the world.
Peace, Love and 1,000 Flip Flops
Helmut and Devra Elze, founders of the Northern California company MADiL (Make A Difference In Life) - will be giving away 1,000 pairs of flip-flops to people who upload a photo or video here of themselves doing good. Participants in the “Peace, Love & 1,000 Flip Flops” campaign will be given a coupon code for $19, the value of a pair of flip-flops. As a general rule, the brand donates 10 percent of all sales to non profits. “MADiL stands for make a difference in life and it is not just our name, it’s a movement we hope to inspire,” Devra Elze said.
So common - put your goody two shoes on! iVolunteer… do you?