Information and news about philanthropy

What is the Definition of Philanthropy?-TBP
According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, philanthropy is defined as “goodwill to fellow members of the human race; especially active effort to promote human welfare.” Additionally, philanthropy is “an act or gift done or made for humanitarian purposes,” or “an organization distributing or supported by funds set aside for humanitarian purposes.”

This is interesting to consider. The majority of the time, most of us tend to think of philanthropy as the large donation of money to humanitarian or environmental causes. We tend to think of famous philanthropists like Andrew Carnegie and John Rockefeller. More recently, we might think of Bill Gates and Warren Buffet.

What is a Philanthropist

However, a philanthropist does not only have to be someone who donates large sums of money to worthy causes. The definition of philanthropy says that one has to have a goodwill to humankind and an interest in promoting human welfare. One can accomplish this in a multitude of different ways.

A philanthropist could be someone who is educating herself on humanitarian issues. She could figure out what issues are salient to her, what issues are most dire or what issues people do not acknowledge as much. She could also learn the most effective solutions to this issue. The philanthropist could use this education in order to build her dedication to an issue and make the most change.

A philanthropist could be someone who consistently does community service for a humanitarian organization or a cause that he supports. He could dedicate his time to this organization and help using the skills that he possesses.

A philanthropist could be someone who works for a nonprofit or humanitarian organization. This person could dedicate his or her career to a valuable cause. She could work on the ground or in policy reform.

Finally, someone could donate a percentage of their income to a cause or humanitarian organization. The amount of money does not necessarily have to be large.

In conclusion, it is important to remember that a philanthropist has to make an “active effort to promote human welfare.” This means that a philanthropist is not exclusively someone who donates a lot of money to humanitarian causes. A philanthropist makes a significant effort to change a societal problem, in the best way that he or she can. A philanthropist finds an issue resonates with her, and she does what she can to help. Philanthropy is about dedication to humanitarian issues. It is not always about money.

– Ella Cady

Sources: Huffington Post, Merriam Webster, About.com, Biography Online
Photo: LTD

Five Charities that Make a Different Kind of Difference
Charities all work to accomplish different goals and, while their goals are all admirable, some seem to stand out a little more than others. The traditional philanthropic method typically involves collecting donations to be spent on aiding a group or cause either by giving away the raised funds or purchasing specific goods to give to those in need. While this charity formula is not wrong, there are other non-traditional ways to do good. Take a look at these five organizations that make a different kind of difference with your donation.

1. Development Media International (DMI) — DMI creates and broadcasts radio and television programs that help educate and encourage people to adopt healthy practices that can improve a community’s standard of living and individuals’ longevity. Instead of using their funding to distribute soap for hand washing or toothbrushes, they teach simple practices that can make long-term differences, practices that can be taught to children and passed along through generations.

2. Kiva — Kiva is a nonprofit that works to alleviate global poverty through individual micro-loans. Donors invest in the form of a small personal loan for individuals to accomplish a project or improve their businesses. Microfinance institutions allow individuals and communities to lift themselves out of poverty by giving them the tools to be economically successful.

3. The Global Alliance For Improved Nutrition (GAIN) — GAIN is an organization that works to eliminate iodine deficiency, which can lead to impaired cognitive development and is common in developing countries. GAIN’s Universal Salt Iodization program uses the funds they raise to provide technical assistance, supply needed equipment and train government officials. In addition, salt producers monitor the results of changes made in developing countries. GAIN targets the root of iodine deficiency and funnels its efforts toward rectifying it instead of simply managing the consequences.

4. VillageReach — VillageReach is a nonprofit that develops, tests and implements new systems, technologies and programs that improve health in rural or poor communities. In the past few decades, there have been great advancements in the medical field, but because of a lack of access to clinics, medicines and trained professionals, many people in the developing world are isolated from these advancements and do not reap the benefits of improved health and healthcare.

This is where Village Reach comes in; instead of focusing money on more vaccines or more doctors, they focus on removing barriers that stand in the way of communities receiving the healthcare they need. VillageReach partners with institutional stakeholders, such as governments and global health partners, to implement the change needed to extend the reach of adequate healthcare.

5. The Borgen Project — Donations made to The Borgen Project have the intention of alleviating global poverty. While your donation will not directly purchase a meal for a hungry child, it has the power to feed, clothe and provide power for an entire community or country. Funds that are raised by The Borgen Project go toward program services, and fund development and operation expenses. This means that donations are used to fuel the machine that pushes political leaders to allocate funds in a way that benefits those living in poverty in developing countries. So your five dollars could influence the U.S. government to pass legislation that provides millions of people with clean drinking water.

Brittney Dimond

Sources: Give Well, KIVA, Village Reach
Photo: Flickr

Hard Rock Philanthropy
Raising funds for philanthropic causes around the world has been a commitment that Hard Rock pursues through the use of mottos, which can be seen in all their locations, and sales.

The recognized chain of theme restaurants contributes to various humanitarian and environmental causes through the sale of original and sometimes limited edition Hard Rock products.

With the motto LOVE ALL – SERVE ALL, Hard Rock has been using corporate philanthropy as a business strategy that allows the corporation to support global and local communities.

According to the Hard Rock website, the corporation has been advocating and supporting humanitarian and environmental causes since their first day in 1971. The company supports various philanthropic partners, each tied to different mottos based on the causes the partners focus on:

TAKE TIME TO BE KIND – These are Hard Rock’s philanthropic partners that focus on humanitarian and human rights causes:

American Indian Veterans Memorial, American Red Cross, Amnesty International, Bombay Teen Challenge, Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Caron Keating Foundation, St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children, Children of Restaurant Employees (CORE), City of Joy, Crossroads Center, David Lynch Foundation, Fundacion Pies Descalzos, Global Angels, Habitat for Humanity, Holster Project, Hope North, Make A Wish Foundation, MPP HAITI, Music for Relief, Musicians on Call, Music Rising, Nordoff Robbins – UK, Pathfinder Academy, Pattanarak Foundation, Peace First, Roots & Shoots, The Mercury Phoenix Trust, The Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital Trust, TJ Martell Foundation, Vicente Ferrer Foundation and WhyHunger.

SAVE THE PLANET – These partners focus on environmental causes such as habitat and animal protection:

Arbor Day Foundation, Farm Aid, Sustainable BioDiesel Alliance, Wildlife Conservation Society and Cotton Conservation Initiative (CCI).

ALL IS ONE– These are organizations in the entertainment industry that advocate for different causes:

GRAMMYs/National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, Grammy Museum, LATIN GRAMMYs/Latin Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, Country Music Awards, MusicCares, Gibson Foundation, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Heard The World.

Hard Rock supports all of their partners by creating awareness and funding and by educating others about the different projects and causes for which their partners advocate.

Hard Rock also creates a variety of original products that are sold with a charitable purpose.

The company created the “Signature Series” t-shirt line as a way for artists to donate and do humanitarian labor by providing an original design to Hard Rock. These designs are printed on limited edition t-shirts and are sold in every Hard Rock location and in Hard Rock’s online shop.

Artists select charities from around the world and proceeds from their t-shirt sales are donated to those charities.

So far, Hard Rock has released 33 “Signature Series” t-shirts created by various artists including Imagine Dragons, Kiss, Linkin Park, U2, The Who, Bon Jovi, Shakira and Queen.

Current “Signature Series” t-shirts, as well as pins, bracelets and earbuds, are available in Hard Rock stores worldwide and online. The purchase of these items contributes to donations to different philanthropic causes.

Hard Rock Philanthropy is the humanitarian side of the Hard Rock company. With the use of mottos, products and partnerships with organizations and artists, Hard Rock is advocating to make the world a better place by loving and serving all.

– Diana Fernanda Leon

Sources: Hard Rock 1, Hard Rock 2, Hard Rock 3, Hard Rock 4, Hard Rock 5
Photo: La Republica Firenze

How Warren Buffett Generosity Can Save Generations
According to Forbes Magazine, Warren Buffett is one of the wealthiest men in the world, with a net worth of over $72 billion. Buffett amassed a great portion of his wealth through investment and involvement in his family’s business, Berkshire Hathaway. Since coming into his fortune, Buffett has created a non-profit called The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, which is a large family foundation third only to The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and The Ford Foundation.

After Buffett’s first wife, Susan Thompson, passed away at the age of 72, he decided to focus the foundation’s efforts on charitable causes. One of the most funded causes was creating an IUD, an intra-uterine contraceptive device. All of the foundation’s donations to research, funding and supplying were made in confidence, but it is evident that without funding for research the world would be in a much different place.

When IUDs were first created, they had more negative side effects than positive outcomes. Since few women saw their use, research on this form of contraceptive slowed to a halt, but after ten years of minimal research the Buffett Foundation decided to invest in better contraceptives for women who did not have access to medical facilities. According to Buffett, not allowing women to decide when they want to get pregnant is essentially failing to utilize half of the brain power in the world, as these people are constantly worried or concerned about pregnancy and their children.

Since Buffett’s investment, three major IUDs have emerged: ParaGard, which is a copper IUD that can last 3 years; Mirena, which is a plastic IUD that secretes hormones and can last up to five years; and most recently, Liletta, which is very similar to Mirena and was developed by a non-profit funded by Buffett in order to offer a cheaper option to women who could not afford a standard IUD.

The longevity of IUDs, some lasting up to 10 years, has made them an ideal form of contraception for busy women who do not have a steady schedule and cannot take pills at the same time every day. IUDs are 99 percent effective and have proven to be safe and beneficial for women in underdeveloped countries. In some developing countries, women are still dying in childbirth due to far too many pregnancies and a lack of control over their fertility. However, as female reproductive rights become a more pressing issue, IUDs and their cheap — or maybe even free — existence could make a huge difference.

Many women who live in poverty feel as though they do not have control over their bodies, an issue that has been brought up with several women’s rights’ activist groups. In order to grant women more control, we must grant them access first to contraceptives and next to education. When women are given the option to decide whether or not to have a child, they are able to make better decisions for their families and for their futures. Childhood mortality rates will decrease, female life expectancy will increase and overall national GDP will also increase. This is one simple change funded by one outstanding man that could provide women in developing nations a chance to take control of their lives and make a difference.

Sumita Tellakat

Sources: Bloomberg, Forbes
Photo: Forbes

Orlando Volunteer
Interested in Orlando volunteer opportunities? The Borgen Project is currently seeking advocates, writers and ambassadors in Orlando to join our team of dedicated volunteers. With our telecommuting positions, you can help fight global poverty from anywhere in the country.

At The Borgen Project, we address extreme poverty and hunger at the political level. Volunteers should be able to work independently, contact local congressional leaders, attend community events and manage a fundraising campaign. See below to learn more about our Orlando volunteer Opportunities.

 

Advocate

Location: Nationwide (Telecommute Volunteer Role)
Salary: Unpaid
Duration: 3 months
Hours: 4 hours per week

This is a great entry-level volunteer position for someone looking to be part of The Borgen Project. Advocates can operate from anywhere in the U.S.

– Attend one (30-60 minute) national conference call every week (5PM PDT, 6PM MDT, 7PM CDT, 8PM EDT).
– Serve as an ambassador for the world’s poor. Build awareness of the issues and ways people can help.
– Manage and implement fundraising campaigns.
– Represent The Borgen Project in your city. Attend events and engage people in the cause.
– Contact congressional leaders in support of key poverty reduction programs.

Qualifications:
– Excellent overall communication skills: oral, written, presentation.
– Ability to self-manage and prioritize assignments.

How to Apply: To apply, send your resume to [email protected].

 

Regional Director

Location: Nationwide (Telecommute Volunteer Role)
Salary: Unpaid
Duration: 6 months
Hours: 4-6 hours per week

Regional Directors operate independently from home and maintain contact with The Borgen Project’s Seattle office. Regional Directors sign a 6-month contract. The position is volunteer and is roughly 4-6 hours per week. Regional Directors attend a conference call every Monday evening. Regional Directors come from many diverse backgrounds, some of which include news anchor, veteran, banker, teacher, relief worker, political staffer, sales manager, programmer and college student.

Key Responsibilities:
– Attend one (30-60 minute) conference call every week with the president of The Borgen Project and Regional Directors from across the United States (5PM PDT, 6PM MDT, 7PM CDT, 8PM EDT).
– Meet with local congressional leaders and lobby for legislation that improves living conditions for those living on less than $1 per day.
– Mobilize people in your community to contact their congressional leaders to support poverty reduction legislation.
– Manage and implement fundraising campaigns.
– Build a network of people engaged in the cause.
– Serve as The Borgen Project’s ambassador in your city.

Qualifications:
– Basic understanding of U.S. politics and international development.
– Highly organized with the ability to prioritize multiple functions and tasks while managing their work time efficiently.
– Strong team player that loves to bring new ideas to the table.
– Ability to demonstrate frequent independent judgment with decisiveness.
– Excellent overall communication skills: oral, written, presentation.

How to Apply: To apply, send your resume to [email protected].

 

Learn more about the Regional Director Program

 

Writer

Location: Nationwide (telecommute volunteer role)
Salary: Unpaid
Duration: 3 months
Hours: 10-15 hours per week

This is a 12-week, part-time volunteer role. The selected candidate will be able to work from home and pick their own schedule, but must meet weekly deadlines.

– Write 3 articles per week for The Borgen Project’s blog and magazine. Writing will focus on quality, but also improving search ranking.
– Assist with advocacy and fundraising.

Qualifications: Strong research and writing skills. Must be able to work independently and meet deadlines with very little supervision. Experience writing SEO-friendly content is helpful, but not required.

How to Apply: To apply, send your resume and two writing samples to [email protected].

 

Youth Ambassador (high school students)

Location: Nationwide
Salary: Unpaid
Duration: 3 months
Hours: 4 hours per week

This is a great volunteer position for high school students looking to get involved in politics, global development and the good fight against global poverty. Youth Ambassadors can operate independently or in groups from anywhere in the U.S.

– Serve as an ambassador to your school and community for the world’s poor. Build awareness of the issues around global poverty and ways people can help.
– Attend and hold events and engage people in the cause.
– Contact congressional leaders in support of key poverty reduction programs.
– Create a club at school or in one’s community to bring more people together in the battle for the underdog (suggested).
– Create a network of close friends and relatives to engage in The Borgen Project’s cause through information and issue messaging.

Qualifications:
– Good overall communication skills: oral, written, presentation.
– Ability to self-manage and prioritize assignments.
– Commitment to advocating for global poverty reduction.
– Willingness to learn and a drive to succeed!

How to Apply: To apply, send your resume to [email protected].

 

Forbes
A new survey released by The Chronicle of Philanthropy ranks 12 companies in order of who gave away the highest percentage of profits in 2013. 70 U.S. companies participated in the survey. The top 12 most generous companies are listed below along with descriptions of their core values and donations.

1. Alcoa

Alcoa, a metals, engineering and manufacturing company, values innovative solutions that better the world. They donated 12.1 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

2. Safeway

Safeway, a grocery and food supply company, values quality food and integrity. They donated 7.2 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

3. UPS

UPS, a commerce and messaging company, values excellent service and dedication. They donated 5.6 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

4. Bank of America

Bank of America, a banking company, believes in the power of helping all people. They donated 5.4 percent of their products to worthy causes.

5. State Farm Insurance

State Farm Insurance, an insurance company, values being a Good Neighbor and helping those in need. They donated 4.1 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

6. Kroger

Kroger, a retail food company, believes in proving the best service, selection and value. They donated 3.3 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

7. MetLife

MetLife, an insurance, benefits and retirement company, values individuals and seeks to help the future of others. They donated 3.2 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

8. Target

Target, a retail company, values quality products to enable a successful life. They donated 3.2 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

9. Nationwide

Nationwide, an insurance company, values helping others. They donated 3.2 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

10. DOW Chemical

DOW Chemical, a chemical, biological and physical sciences company, is committed to innovations that help the world. They donated 2.4 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

11. Goldman Sachs Group

Goldman Sachs Group, a bank, securities and investment management company, believes in making a difference in someone’s life. They donated 2.3 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

12. Exelon

Exelon, an energy service company, values progress and knowledge that will help the world. They donated 2 percent of their profits to worthy causes.

Kelsey Parrotte

Sources: Alcoa, Bank of America, DOW, Exelon, Forbes 1, Forbes 2, Goldman Sachs, Kroger, MetLife, Nationwide, Safeway, State Farm,, Target, UPS
Photo: Flickr

z1 Borgen Project
A young man decided to devote his life to saving the lives of people in poverty-stricken countries. Thus, he completed his doctorate of philosophy at University of Oxford and became a trader at a Wall Street firm. Although the logic in this plan is not immediately clear, in the scheme of effective altruism, it makes perfect sense.

Effective altruism is “a philosophy and social movement which applies evidence and reason to determining the most effective ways to improve the world”. It is a trend, primarily among young people, to live their best life while also giving the most they can to help other people. It is not sacrificing, but flourishing.

The Oxford grad and trader, Matt Wage, made it his goal to give a sufficient amount of his annual salary to save the lives of the millions of children around the world who die annually from preventable diseases. He realized that, as a trader, he would be able to give a larger amount of money away, and within a year of work, he was donating a six-figure sum to highly effective charities. He is able to lead a stable, comfortable life in a promising career while helping hundreds of people across the globe.

Philosophy plays a major role in the workings of effective altruism because it challenges the relationship between impulse and reason: are we guided entirely by impulse and only later apply reason as a hollow justification, or do we decipher our reasoning before even considering out actions? How does logic play into charitable acts? Is it a guiding principle some possess and other do not, or do generous people simply give as a matter of impulse? Like many things in philosophy, there are no simple answers, but it is enough to challenge popular notions of behavior through benefiting oneself while also helping others.

Effective altruists also challenge conventions in that they are highly selective in where they let their money go. Rather than spreading funds across many different charities, they donate to just one or two organizations they know are highly effective and make the most of their funds. This requires thorough research into the progress and activity of different organizations and a strong passion for one or two causes.

Effective altruists also employ logic in funneling their donations. They believe that rather than donating to causes that attract people through emotional sway, people should donate funds to causes that most need them and will most effectively use them. This promotes charitable organizations to attract donors through demonstrated transparency and efficiency rather than eliciting emotional responses.

As Millenials enter the workforce, many are considering careers that allow them to give back while living modest lives. They are directing the course of their lives in the interest of others, while giving back to their own communities through hard work and human capital. In this way, they are leading industrious lives and helping others do the same. They employ both logic and emotion and shed optimistic light on the future of charity and goodwill.

Jenny Wheeler

Sources: TED, Boston Review
Photo: 101 Fundraising

poverty

Australia is considered a developed nation with rather good development indicators: children in school, high life expectancy, higher than average gross national income and the ability to be an agent of change. Yet, like most countries, there are still people living in poverty or at a disadvantage.

Guy Sebastian and his wife Jules have started a foundation to directly combat poverty in their native Australia as well as branch out and help others living in poverty abroad.

In the United States, Guy Sebastian is best known for the song “Battle Scars,” released in 2012 with Lupe Fiasco, but his musical career began when he won the first Australian Idol title in 2003. His wife Jules is a celebrity stylist and a copartner in The Sebastian Foundation.

Sebastian’s humanitarian work started very early in his musical career when he took a tour of Africa, specifically Uganda, as an ambassador for World Vision. During his time there, he saw the debilitating effects that poverty can have on a person, and he has worked for awareness surrounding poverty from that time on.

When the Sebastian’s family started to grow, they became even more involved with helping children and families in Australia and the world. Through this desire The Sebastian Foundation was formed.

The Sebastian Foundation states, “Our focus is people. Our love is people. We want to see the need and meet the need. We want to help in any way we can and we hope you join us in our mission.” With this thought in mind, they form collaborations with like-minded organization to work with as partners.

Recently, much of their work has centered on local initiatives such as Big Brothers and Big Sisters, dance programs for youth with Downs Syndrome and children’s hospitals. They have also partnered with Sam Moran, the Yellow Wiggle as of 2006 and a UNICEF Goodwill ambassador; Sam works to help “Australian children who are sick, disadvantaged or have special needs.”

The foundation has global poverty in mind as well. Especially because of Sebastian’s time as a World Vision ambassador, The Sebastian Foundation focuses on families in regards of “poverty, poor health and disease, empowering women, educating children and giving them a chance at a better future [and] community.”

One way to be involved with this great foundation is to donate and, in return, one can receive a gift heart bracelet with the word “joy” on it. Or they have a shop where one can purchase a beautiful print of a photo taken by Sebastian, and all proceeds are a donation for the foundation.

Overall, the Sebastian family has used their celebrity status in Australia to help those who need it most in their home country. But through their global work, and Sebastian’s breakthrough on the U.S. music market, their reach can spread even farther than before, helping so many people in need around the world.

– Megan Ivy

Sources: Guy Sebastian, The Sebastian Foundation, The Sebastian Foundation Facebook Page, The World Bank, YouTube
Photo: Jules Sebastian

reduce_global_poverty

Today, many socially conscious companies work to reduce global poverty. They help the poor either by donating directly to charities or by providing jobs and fair wages for those in need. Many of these organizations make jewelry. Here are 10 companies that sell jewelry products in order to help the global poor:

1. Article 22 — Article 22 sells jewelry made by bombs, plane parts or other materials left over from the Vietnam War. Their first collection, Peacebomb, uses Vietnam War Era bombs and is crafted by Laotian Artisans. Article 22 helps the poor by providing jobs to Laotian Artisans who may have been ignored or forgotten. Also, each Peacebomb item funds the demining of land that is littered by bombs.

2. 31 Bits — The 31 Bits mission statement is “using fashion and design to empower people to rise above poverty.” They work with women in Uganda who earn an income from the jewelry they create. The women also receive counseling, finance training, health education and business mentorships. Each purchase from 31 Bits funds their work in Uganda.

3. Half United — The purchase of any Half United product gives seven meals to children in need in the United States, Fiji, Cambodia and Madagascar.

4. Indego Africa — Indego Africa works with women in Rwanda in order to help them flourish as independent businesswomen. They partner with female artisans and sell their products in their shop. One hundred percent of their profits go toward job skills training programs for their artisans in business management, technology, entrepreneurship and English and Kinyarwanda literacy.

5. Kurandza — Kurandza works with HIV positive women in Mozambique. Many of these women do not have the money necessary for transportation to the hospital and are therefore not able to obtain the medicine that they need. Kurandza works with these women, and the proceeds from the skirts and jewelry that they make goes toward transportation to the hospital and other household items, such as schoolbooks for their children.

6. Purpose — Purpose is a fashion jewelry brand launched by International Sanctuary. International Sanctuary was an organization found in 2007 that works to help those who escaped sex trafficking, in both Mumbai, India and Orange County, California. Survivors are placed in mentoring programs and given an education, medical and dental care, scholarships and microloans. In 2014, International Sanctuary founded Purpose as a way to give survivors employment, financial stability and a brighter future.

7. The Starfish Project — The Starfish Project was founded in 2006 in order to help exploited women in China. It works to give them alternative employment and holistic care services, and provides them with counseling, vocational training, language acquisition, family education grants, healthcare access and housing in a women’s shelter. The Starfish Project wants to raise awareness about violence against women and its goal is to restore hope for each woman that enters its doors.

8. The Purple Buddha Project — Like Article-22, the Purple Buddha Project works to help demining. As they say, more tons of bombs were dropped on Cambodia than on Germany and Japan combined during World War II. The Purple Buddha Project uses remains of weapons in Cambodia in order to make jewelry, providing jobs to Cambodian artisans. The purchase of each piece goes toward demining of land in Cambodia or Laos. Many of the Purple Buddha Project bracelets contain positive messages.

9. Mujus — Mujus works to give back to Peru. They pair fair wages and provide health insurance to Mujus artisans in Peru in order to help provide social change to communities around Lima. (Mujus also works with the ALS association in the United States, and has a special collection designed to help raise money for those with Lou Gehrig’s disease).

10. Colorful Minds — While Colorful Minds does not sell specific jewelry pieces, they do sell jewelry boxes and pouches (which you can use to keep all the jewelry you purchased while helping the global poor). Colorful Minds works with vocational centers in India that serve those living with disabilities. They market the products that are made at the vocational centers in order to help those with disabilities to integrate into society, increase self-esteem and motivate them to use their creativity. They also execute a grant program which provides necessary items, such as prosthetics or supplies, to vocational centers.

Ashrita Rau

Sources: Article 22, Busy Mommy, 31 Bits, Half United, Indego Africa, Kurandza, Purpose Jewelry, Starfish Project, The Purple Buddha Project, Mujus, Colorful Minds
Photo: The Big Piece of Cake

Latina-Powerhouses
For years entertainers have adopted a precious role in ridding away difficulties posed against those of the developing world. With such charitable responsibility, ten Latina powerhouses from an assortment of entertaining realms have quintessentially supported strategies that give back to many, albeit by endorsement or establishment of a personal foundation.

1) Cuban musician Gloria Estefan has been sincerely active in providing global health, especially helping those who suffer from paralysis-related illnesses. A paralysis-sufferer herself, the “Conga” songstress founded The Gloria Estefan Foundation in 1997 as a means to empower”the youth by financial support for good health, cultural development and education.

2) Mexican singer Thalía, known in American music markets for her Fat Joe-assisted “I Want You,” has been a charitable key in giving back to underprivileged women and children from Latin American countries. Her more familiar feat comes from participation as a spokeswoman and ambassador for global campaign March of Dimes, an initiative that educates and funds the developing Latin American world of hazardous premature births,

3) Puerto Rican-Cape Verdean hip-hop icon Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes not only served as a member of R&B trio TLC but has additionally held philanthropic ties with organizations alleviating AIDS, alongside giving back to international ones concerned with poverty. Lopes’ most profound advocate roles derived from her donative unit Lisa Lopes Foundation, an organization that provides shelter and necessities to developing Honduran sites.

4) Puerto Rican actress and choreographer Rosie Perez is undoubtedly synonymous with addressing health awareness statements, especially in concern to the discussion of HIV/AIDS. Expanding herself from an inner-city educator to a global spokesperson, the “In Loving Color” choreographer has been massively active in endorsing AIDS-related fundraisers and providing global education of the sexual disease by support of her role in the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA), as appointed by President Barack Obama.

5) Honduran entertainer America Ferrera, best known for her televised title role as “Ugly Betty,” first explored her philanthropic skills when she participated with Aquafresh White Trays to provide immediate dental care to women in need. Since her “fresh mouth” spot, Ferrera has worked in conjunction with fellow celebrities in combating AIDS and cancer, and has more notably collaborated with programs like international “Save the Children” and Hispanic Heritage Foundation-associated “READ: Refugee Enrichment and Development” to enhance education for the impoverished; the former notably raising funds to build schools in Mali.

6) Mexican film starlet Salma Hayek has provided a passionate take on helping battered women of all ages around the world. Among her most high-profiled recognitions include her $75,000 donation to Mexican-operated charity units that minimize domestic hardships in northeastern regions of Mexico. Hayek has more notably co-founded CHIME for a Change and its Syrian-based initiative to improve lives like those hailing from the Middle East who have been displaced by brutal conflict.

7) Greatly known for her filming roles as Gail in “Sin City” and Chelsea Brown in the recent “Top Five,” Puerto Rican-Cuban actress Rosario Dawson has taken part in programs that enrich African lives for a socially- and domestically-healthy cause. From attending a 2005 United Nations conference to promote environmental preservation as a poverty eliminator, the “Men in Black II” co-star has been a frequent advocate for the global “V-Day campaign,” a movement that stops violence against women; moreover, Dawnson has launched several initiatives that embrace native Africans who specialize in fashion or design.

8) Renowned Mexican singer and former X-Factor judge Paulina Rubio has led a moderate philanthropic trail in shielding Latinos from sexual diseases like HIV/AIDS. Appointed as the then-newest “Madrina” for the Latino Commission on AIDS in 2007, the “Boys Will Be Boys” musician remains a vast component in initiating safe sex campaigns geared towards a Latino audience, not only from the Latino Commission, but also for accompanying international nonprofits like the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

9) Pop culturally known for her sexual-liberating role as Gabrielle of “Desperate Housewives,” Mexican starlet Eva Longoria has been regarded as among the top philanthropists, particularly for her vast achievements in giving back to a large number of communities. Longoria’s most known charitable causes generally include her involvement with Padres Contra El Cancer and Eva’s Heroes, the latter which improves developmentally challenged children. Further on, Longoria has provided global awareness with her Eva Longoria Fund (ELF), which supports children of any ethnic background who suffer from health-related problems.

10) Finally, the term humanitarian is not fully defined without the mentioning of famed Colombian singer Shakira, who has been featured as a spokeswoman for a number of foundations that give back in millions. The “Whenever, Wherever” artist’s very own organization, Barefoot Foundation, has created over five schools and implemented proper nutritional and educational access to over 30,000 native Colombian families since its launch in 2007.

With the help of these 10 gracious Latina “sheroes,” the developing world might just be a few steps closer in reaching the hopeful of everyone living stably, without financial or health concerns posing as deathly restraints.

– Jeff Varner

Sources: TreeHugger, BORGEN, esmas, PRNewswire 1, San Antonio Express-News, PRNewswire 2, Save the Children, USATODAY.com, California Community Foundation, Shape Magazine, TakePart, thuglifearmy.com, Los Angeles Times, VeroNews, BMI.com
Photo: Billboard