Alltop

Alltop répertorie de nombreux articles sur l'entrepreneuriat social à travers le monde.

21.09.2014 The first RCT for the Condom Balloon Tamponade: Comparing to Misoprostol in Mali and Benin

Dumont CBT method Mali Benin

The power of social media powers much of what we do at Maternova. Our Twitter presence with our three handles, @maternova, @Mtnva_Research and @maternovaCBT, has allowed us to connect with midwives, global health experts, social activists and dedicated bloggers from around the world. The same network linked us to work in Benin, Mali and Vietnam on our favorite DIY method.

Recently our team has dedicated itself (among a number of other things) to spreading information about the condom balloon tamponade (CBT) method developed by Dr. Akhter and her team. A low-cost method for low-resource settings, the intrauterine condom balloon tamponade uses a condom, a catheter, a suture and IV fluids (and sometimes just sterile water) to create a balloon which can help prevent and stop post-partum hemorrhage, a condition where the mother bleeds excessively after birth, and is a leading cause of maternal mortality worldwide.

In our search for research that supports the effectiveness of this method, we were able to find an ongoing study called [Evaluation of intrauterine balloon tamponade efficacy with Condom catheter in the severe PostPartum Hemorrhage management in Benin and Mali] (http://www.controlled-trials.com/ISRCTN01202389/) through one of our Twitter connections. We should mention that having @maternovaCBT run by a French and Flemish speaker helped uncover new leads.

This study is conducted by the Institute of Research for Development (IRD) in Paris, France.
We immediately contacted Dr. Alexandre Dumont from the IRD, who is the research director of this study. He replied with more information about his work and attached their recent publication [A Randomized Controlled Trial to Test the Effectiveness of Intrauterine Balloon Tamponade with Condom Catheter in Severe Postpartum Hemorrhage Management: A Feasibility Study in Benin] (http://omicsgroup.org/journals/a-randomized-controlled-trial-to-test-the...). As the first randomized control trial (RCT) related to the condom balloon tamponade method, this pilot study is extremely impressive due to its focus and ethical considerations. It particularly looks at the difference in treatment with misoprostol or with the condom balloon only. It reports that “the condom catheter is generally well accepted by clinicians. Its assembly was considered fast and easy. No side effects were reported.” We look forward to keeping track of this study and its completion in 2015.

Meanwhile the Maternova team is working on a booklet that features a step-by-step illustrated guide to the CBT method, along with testimonials and references. This booklet features evidence from OBGYNs and midwives around the world. Stay tuned for more news!

21.09.2014 Water for Everyone is Possible

Every second, two people move into a city. Across the world, that’s a million people every week. Many are in search of a better life but, when they arrive, what they find is not what they were expecting. The world is driven by self-interest and nowhere is this more evident than in cities. Behaviour is […]

21.09.2014 Community Libraries: A Solution to Global Illiteracy

“My parents are farmers. They don’t know how to read and write,” said 10-year-old Thinley Pelzom, from rural Bhutan. When most people think of learning to read, children come to mind. But Thinley’s family is part of a much larger global challenge: more than 86 percent of the world’s 907 million illiterate people are adults. […]

21.09.2014 Macrowaste Mail

A BBC profile:
''This is the site designated for us by the town hall. We have been appalled to discover there is no safety provision. Men, women and children walk through the site. But our company is a going concern. What are we to do with the rubbish?'' asks the 30-year-old general manager of Macrowaste.

Authorities have given start-up company Macrowaste the go-ahead to operate their rubbish collection in Bamako, even though the city does not have a functioning waste disposal plant.

The company is expected to do exactly as the city does with its own dozen dustcarts: fly-tip on spare land.

There is no doubting Bamako's dire need for waste solutions. The city's open sewers are packed with rubbish.

In the central market area you have to step over waves of discarded plastic packaging, bags, old tyres and rotting food remains.

Thousands of small-scale waste entrepreneurs, with donkeys and traps, make a living collecting rubbish.

They charge households 2,000 CFA francs per month ($4; £2.40). Amidst the rubbish they find waste that can be resold, like aluminium cans, electronic circuit boards and thick plastic. Then they tip the remainder wherever they can.

Enter the ex-pats Macrowaste is the brainchild of two Malians living in the United States - Abdoulaye Tangara, 29, and Lamine Dembele, 35. ''We met on an online forum,'' says Abdoulaye, 29, whose day job is in financial services in Georgia.

''I was doing research into the waste management sector when I met Lamine, who runs a janitorial firm in Philadelphia.
More here
Image courtesy of the BBC

21.09.2014 Rungwe Avocado Company

From AWF:
The southern highlands of Tanzania are an invaluable ecosystem—but may also prove fertile grounds for agriculture.
This region features the largest and most important montane grassland in Tanzania, making it a critical ecosystem. At the same time, the government of Tanzania has targeted this area for development as part of an agricultural corridor that will help increase Tanzania’s economy and food security.

A sustainable agricultural enterprise and proper zoning here, however, will help stabilize land use.

Smart investing will protect land and livelihoods. African Wildlife Foundation’s impact-investment subsidiary, African Wildlife Capital (AWC), provided a loan to the Rungwe Avocado Co. in Tanzania’s southern highlands, to support an environmentally sustainable growing and export project for avocados. Under the terms of the investment, and bound by AWC’s conservation covenants, Rungwe will intensify avocado production in a limited area while also engaging the agricultural services of local farmers, simultaneously increasing income to local communities and limiting agricultural sprawl.

Avocados now benefit 2,000+ farmers. One year after the AWC investment, more than 2,000 local farmers are directly growing avocados for Rungwe, with the goal to increase this to more than 5,000 outgrower farmers.

21.09.2014 Conservation - Themed Primary Schools

A novel type of education hub? CNN reports:
image courtesy of MASS design
Over the next decade, the African Wildlife Foundation is building 15 conservation-themed primary schools in some of Africa's most remote regions -- areas that are also highly strategic from an environmental standpoint. The schools are designed to be state-of-the-art, built with attractive faculty housing that will hopefully lure some of Africa's best teachers.
MASS DESIGN GROUP
In exchange, the organization not only helps to shape young minds to further the cause, but gets written agreement from the local community to set aside a patch of land for conservation purposes -- a stretch that will be free form hunting, logging and unplanned agriculture.
On using local materials and building in sustainability:
Architectural firm MASS Design Group has partnered with the African Wildlife Foundation to build the schools. For the Ilima project, it was imperative that the designers used materials that are easy to source and replace. "If there's a need to repair or maintain the school 45 years down the road, the community has to be able to do it without depending on materials like steel or cement, which would be hard to locate," says Andrew Brose, the project manager. We work in a lot of parts of Africa that are remote, but this takes the cake Patrick Bergin, African Wildlife Foundation Mass Design started by researching not just the materials in the region, but local construction methods.
More here

21.09.2014 Fiiri Bandhiga

For Somali entrepreneurs:
Fiiri Bandhiga is a convention scheduled on September 21, 2014 in London. 32 Somali entrepreneurs living in the UK, and working in diverse fields such as fashion, cuisine, media, agriculture and development have been selected.

By reuniting business leaders from all fields under the same roof, Fiiri Bandhiga aims to provide Somali entrepreneurs with the possibility of expanding their businesses in the UK and internationally. Fiiri Bandhiga will offer a breeding ground for new ideas and will facilitate the exchange and networking between Somali entrepreneurs.

Fiiri Bandhiga hopes to create a solid international network of businesspersons across Europe and North America. In this vein, four conventions will be held starting in London and followed by Minneapolis, Toronto and Oslo.

Additionally, Fiiri Bandhiga aims to enhance the image of the Somali diaspora by casting a brand of young, active and creative Somalis, fully participating in the globalized world context.

During the daylong convention, entrepreneurs will be able to showcase their products and interact with visitors. A television platform will also be present where participants will be allowed to present their projects.
via the BBC

21.09.2014 Qelasy - Education Tablet Computer

Tamasin Ford reporting at the BBC.Thierry N'Doufou founder of Qelasy:
"We continue to go to school here as we went to school 100 years ago," says the 36-year-old entrepreneur.

"The same heavy backpack, the same blackboard with the same chalk."

And that heavy backpack is what Mr N'Doufou is hoping to lighten by introducing a bespoke tablet computer made specifically for schools in Ivory Coast.

Taking a tablet Two years ago, he came up with Qelasy, Africa's first educational tablet. "We thought about how to build a digital backpack; a tablet that will replace books, textbooks, notepads."
More here

20.09.2014 Global Investor Statement: Shifting from Debate to Solutions

Why did the Skoll Foundation and Capricorn Investment Group join nearly 350 other institutional investors in signing the 2014 Global Investor Statement on Climate Change? The transition to a sustainable energy economy requires concerted action by everyone. Companies must transition to renewable power. Regulators must guide resource allocation and incentivize the switch to low-carbon energy […]

19.09.2014 Content Curation: 9 Things To Keep In Mind

The following post is copyrighted by Return On Now - Austin Internet Marketing Consulting Services

Anyone who aims to drive a successful social media marketing effort will need to get comfortable with content curation. Content has become the glue that holds the whole social marketing process together. It is not enough to write and promote your own content. To establish expertise in your field, you need to read, understand, filter, and share good materials from… read more →

The post Content Curation: 9 Things To Keep In Mind appeared first on Return On Now.

18.09.2014 Send a Child to School

project picture
$25 — Will pay for one week of school
$50 — Will pay for two weeks of school
$125 — Will pay for one month of school

give now

Summary
In Belize a free education isn't always an option. At Ambergris Caye Elementary School, we are trying to provide options for children whose parents cannot afford to send them to school. Through this project your donation will go directly towards a child's education, paying their tuition to one of the best schools in Belize! Please search your heart and educate a child. Consider a monthly donation on a recurring basis to help a child. It's easy to set up! Be generous, children are the future!

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
Often we take for granted a free education. However, children in Belize are often not able to attend school because of lack of space in a government school, or there is no government school in their town or village, or the parents cannot afford to send the children to school. This creates situations where children start school late and miss the very formative years of education. Children are sometimes eight to ten years old and still cannot read due to the lack of opportunity.

Activities
With this project Ambergris Caye Elementary school will take your donation and apply it directly toward the tuition of a child who falls into the above category. These sponsored children will be selected by the administration based on financial need and academic promise. There is always another child or children we are made aware of who are unable to attend solely due to the parents inability to pay. Through your donations we can make this problem go away for the children of San Pedro.

Potential Long Term Impact
This project will be a long term project to address this social issue within the community of San Pedro, Belize. Through education of children from an early age we will help eliminate poverty within the community. By ensuring that those from the poorer socio-ecconomic facets of the community are educated, we are helping to aid them in being able to provide their children with the education which was so difficult for them to attain. We are appealing to you to help support this project.

Project Sponsor: Ambergris Caye Elementary School
Theme: Children | Location: Belize
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$75,000
Project #18082 on GlobalGiving.org

18.09.2014 What do markets have to do with emergency response?

Image: 

By Madeline Rose, Mercy Corps Policy and Advocacy Advisor

When civilians suffer during war, it’s not just at gunpoint. In South Sudan, thousands of civilians have died this year from unthinkable violence. But an even greater killer is spreading across the country that isn’t receiving enough attention: the absolute destruction of markets and trade.

South Sudan is currently facing the most severe food crisis in the world. Violent conflict that began in December 2013 has displaced 1.7 million people and forced millions of others into hiding. Across the young nation, crops that should now be ready to harvest were never planted. Livestock now ready to be sold have no markets to be brought to. And traders who play a critical role in maintaining stable food prices across the country have been too scared to travel.

As a result, 4 million people need emergency food assistance, 50,000 children could die by December and a famine could be declared by January 2015.

After eight months of humanitarian response, only one-third of people in need have received assistance. This is partly because the global humanitarian effort is only 51% funded — but it is also due to the way the international community is responding.

Local leaders help keep trade alive

Fortunately, there is a bright spot in an otherwise bleak context: local leaders have developed inter-ethnic conflict management to keep trade alive. After months of conflict, local Nuer chiefs in Unity State brokered a peace deal with Dinka chiefs from neighboring state, Jonglei to stimulate trade.

The leaders agreed that they “could not let our people starve.” Through a series of meetings in May and June, local chiefs from Duk County in Jonglei State and Panyjiar County in Unity State formalized a local agreement — allowing trade to move freely between the counties to keep the markets functioning and safe.

A series of Mercy Corps assessments found that local markets are beginning to rebuild under this local leadership, but slowly. When the rainy season subsides in October, we expect violence to increase as competition for resources becomes more intense and armed groups are better able to travel.

This means that the time to help markets recover and thrive is now. Doing so will help us reach thousands of civilians still in need, build local capacity along the way, and lay the foundations for early recovery.

What's the next step?

Unfortunately, policy obstacles are keeping us from capitalizing on this window of opportunity.

How so? In humanitarian emergencies, funding tends to support “direct-delivery” emergency programs: those that fit an immediate need for a singular household. Very few donors provide organizations grants to stimulate or rebuild whole markets in the midst of an emergency, because this kind of development is seen as a lesser concern.

But Mercy Corps’ experience and research has found that market-oriented interventions are exactly what is needed, even in the context of an emergency — like the situation today in South Sudan — in order to provide communities with the tools they need to survive, recover and build back from conflict and disasters.

This report describes the case for market-rebuilding opportunities in South Sudan, and discusses some of the key policy and program shifts necessary to support these types of interventions.

Read the full policy paper ▸

Originally published by Mercy Corps.

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17.09.2014 Ceres’ Mindy Lubber: The Clean Trillion

The UN Climate Summit will be held on September 23 in New York. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has invited world leaders, from government, finance, business, and civil society to the summit to galvanize and catalyze climate action. Mindy Lubber of Ceres will be in attendance. Looking ahead, she recently published three columns on clean transportation, clean energy and green […]

17.09.2014 Q & A with John Elkington on His New Book, The Breakthrough Challenge

SustainAbility Research Director Chris Guenther recently caught up with John Elkington, Co-Founder of SustainAbility and Founding Partner and executive chairman of Volans, about the launch of John’s recently published book, The Breakthrough Challenge. In addition to the book, they discuss the dilution of the sustainability agenda, the shifting role of the Global C-Suite, and the upcoming Breakthrough Decade.

Chris Guenther: SustainAbility has closely tracked–and frequently discussed with you–your work on Breakthrough Capitalism, which you framed at the first Breakthrough Capitalism Forum in May 2012, and subsequently in the Breakthrough and Investing in Breakthrough reports. How have these ideas evolved to what is now represented in The Breakthrough Challenge, and what specifically drove you and Jochen Zeitz to write the book?

John Elkington: I had no plans to write another book, Chris, having only recently published my eighteenth, The Zeronauts: Breaking the Sustainability Barrier. But then I got an invitation from Sir Richard Branson’s foundation, Virgin Unite, to attend a small roundtable outside Geneva. On the second day, Jochen Zeitz walked in and, I have to say, there was electricity between us around our thinking and ideas. I didn’t give it much more thought, but a couple of months later he got in touch and suggested writing a book together.

When Jochen and I spent some days together, the book evolved further. The Virgin Unite meeting we originally attended proved to have been the gestational event for what became The B Team, a not-for-profit initiative founded and co-chaired by Sir Richard Branson and Jochen, and where I am on the Advisory Board. The idea is to bring together a global group of leaders to create a future where “the purpose of business is to be a driving force for social, environmental and economic benefit.”

So we began to think of framing the book as the manifesto for The B Team. And that’s the way it turned out, with a foreword from Richard and interviews with most of the B Team leaders.

At its heart, the book articulates a prescription for radical change. Its very language – breakthrough, transformation, paradigm shift, a new economic order – shouts ambition and urgency. But in a certain sense, sustainability advocates have been pitching the same notion for decades. In your view, just how far along in the process are we, and what are the one or two most important tipping points that convince you breakthrough is both possible and perhaps imminent?

Up to a point, Lord Copper, as a previous generation would have said. Most of the founding mothers and fathers of the sustainability movement believed that system change was essential, if not always inevitable.

But as the agenda mainstreamed, and was picked up by many people and organisations that had a pretty sketchy grasp on the nature and scale of the challenge, it often became conflated with citizenship, CSR and Shared Value formulations. Nothing wrong with any of those, of course, but they are often about win-win outcomes—when true system change often means win-lose outcomes, particularly for those left holding tomorrow’s stranded assets.

In simple terms, mainstreaming has diluted the sustainability agenda, often to homeopathic proportions. No offence to those who believe in homeopathy, but—having tried it—I don’t.

And here’s why I’m persuaded that, even with best will in the world, we’re fiddling while Rome—or Earth, in this case—burns. We’re on track to having burned our total carbon allocation for the 21st century by 2034—and are now on track for 4°C warming by 2100. This is a slow catastrophe, with marked signs that it will soon accelerate as we exceed the buffering capacity of the deep oceans.

My sense is that—and this has nothing to do with the French or even, to a degree, with the UN—the COP21 climate conference in Paris will mark a watershed in all of this. Weird weather is part of the equation, but there are moments when the science simply becomes overwhelming. We are very close to that point.

The stars of the book, which readers are hopefully enticed to emulate, are what you term “breakthrough leaders.” They are at once able to navigate the upper reaches of business today while also actively stretching notions of what business could or should be tomorrow. But such extraordinary people remain remarkable exceptions. Meanwhile, most corporate sustainability leaders and their counterparts in ‘core’ business still speak fundamentally different languages. What advice do you have for leaders on either side of this chasm so that they may begin to close the gap?

I’m not sure I agree that these are rare animals today. When I started working with companies, back in the mid-1970s, you were really lucky if you got to meet PR people or lawyers. Basically, these were people whose job it was to keep you out of the corporate engine room. They played a defensive game. We have seen a seismic shift since then. These days, if you don’t get to meet director-level people in the first round, you begin to wonder what planet the company is on.

Yes, many leaders in what I call the Global C-Suite still see all of this as a distraction, but that’s changing. Take a look at the water-energy-food-climate nexus work done by the World Economic Forum, for example, and it’s clear that the deeper parts of the sustainability agenda are flashing across into the security realm—with major implications for business and governments alike.

The advice to leaders who are still struggling with all of this has to be either, ‘Get Out More,’ or ‘Invite the Future In.’ Like organisations such as Leaders’ Quest, one of the things Volans has done in recent years is take leaders on study tours, learning journeys, to help them see a different world, different futures. As we concluded in our Future Quotient work, leaders now need to shift the needle from incremental to systemic change, to widen their scope, deepen their analysis, raise their ambitions and extend their time horizons.

In the good old days, to this end, we would have engineered it such that companies brought in NGOs to discuss all of this, but now such events are more likely to feature investors, government actors and even competitors.

And for those trying to close the gap between where they are and where they will need to be, it also makes sense to look around for collaboration platforms, many of which are pre-competitive, such as the American Sustainable Business Council, the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, or the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals initiative. If such platforms don’t exist in your field, help set one up.

A recent Schumpeter column in The Economist argued essentially that the low-hanging fruit of corporate sustainability – measures that trim obvious risks and costs through enhanced resource efficiency, stakeholder engagement, etc. – has been picked, and that the business case for going further will be either much more complicated, or for some sectors, simply nonexistent. How do you reassure those who worry about the ultimate uncertainty of what lies ahead? Or more to the point, how might we encourage more leaders to seek a radically new order, even when their own or their organization’s security in it is far from guaranteed?

When we set up Volans in 2008, as a sister organisation to SustainAbility, we adopted the symbol of the flying fish (whose species name is Pisces volans, the second word meaning something that can fly) and used the metaphor of early manned flight to describe where we are in all of this. We spoke of Schumpeter and his focus on creative destruction. And then along came The Economist with its Schumpeter column, featuring the image of an early birdman about to jump off into space. Synchronicity. Zeitgeist, perhaps.

None of this was new for me, though. I recently went back to my first university to receive an honorary doctorate, but had to admit to the assembled throng that when I first enrolled in 1967, it was to study Economics—and I gave that up in 1968, switching to Sociology & Social Psychology. Economics then seemed seriously out of touch with the real world. And when we talk of the growing need for system change today, a key part of what we are talking about is the need for revolutionary change in Economics, the master discipline of capitalism.

The only two economists who really lived on in my memory, and profoundly shaped my thinking, were Nikolai Kondratiev and Joseph Schumpeter, both obsessed by long-wave economic cycles. Prime Minister Gordon Brown once claimed that we had ironed out the big cycles, but subsequent experience proved him devastatingly wrong.

So I’m afraid I don’t see it as any part of my mission to reassure today’s companies and business leaders that they can adapt to a radically new order. Most won’t or can’t. The nature and scale of what is coming at us is nicely (if uncomfortably) illustrated by the fact that recent valuations priced Elon Musk’s upstart Tesla electric car company at around half the value of General Motors. Inconceivable a few short years ago. Now Musk may fall flat on his face, as Shai Agassi did with Better Place, but the writing is on the boardroom wall.

I was intrigued to see one of the chapters in the book was on education. Although the focus is rather squarely on business schools, which by their nature have a relatively short amount of time (e.g., a couple of years, much of which is typically devoted to the post-MBA job search), often at the tail end of one’s schooling years, or even well into their career, to change their thinking. What, if any, role do you see for shifting earlier-stage educational approaches, and/or for other disciplines to contribute, in order to advance the breakthrough agenda? Is this an area where breakthrough leaders and their companies should seek to have impact?

For business, cracking open the B-schools and changing their paradigm is Job #1 in the educational space, alongside the task of re-educating their current crop of executives. One of the corporate initiatives that has excited me has been DSM’s Next initiative, effectively a parallel advisory board of Gen Y employees. Great idea!

As for earlier stage education, it’s crucial, and not just for the long term. It’s remarkable how often senior business leaders tell you that their epiphany came when talking to their children about what they were learning at school. The best education in this space would combine elements of a walk in the wild with David Attenborough (I’m off in a couple of days to see an elver farm run by the Sustainable Eel Group, for example) and the best of the X Prize world. Young people need to learn how to appreciate, treasure and conserve—and how to creatively disrupt the worst of the old economic order that would otherwise bring their futures down in flames.

Should members of the Global C-Suite get involved in this area? Of course—and many do. The more the merrier! But they should know that children spot phonies faster even than company employees.

You echo a familiar refrain in the sustainability field at the moment – essentially, that business must lead the way and not wait for governments and NGOs to either work out the big solutions or hold companies to account. But you’re quick to add that we need their leadership, too. How much further do you think business can go in the absence of these other ingredients, and what strategies does breakthrough capitalism recommend for beginning to correct the imbalance?

Incumbents will struggle, insurgents will disrupt. An Elon Musk doesn’t much care about government, as long as it doesn’t get in the way. The future is bubbling up under the incumbents, both in the private and public sectors, and the implication is that at some stage we are going to see a wholesale reinvention of government and governance.

In the past, such eras of change have been driven by pandemics, depressions and/or wars. And, for better or worse, I think we are much closer in to such seismic disruptions than most people currently realise.

On government—I worked with a range of government agencies in the 1970s, and then again in the 1990s when I spent seven years as an advisor to the European Commission. As a result, I have fierce antibodies to most aspects of government. But, perhaps paradoxically, I also see the role of governments and governance institutions as critical—and growing in importance. The key point about initiatives like The B Team is that they now argue the need to level the playing field up, whereas business long argued the need to level down.

Indeed, I have recently been reading Ed Conway’s The Summit, a fascinating history of the Bretton Woods summit in 1944. How privileged we are to have grown up in a world framed by the genius of people like John Maynard Keynes and Dexter White. But the shelf-life of the UN system has expired. It isn’t just that we need companies to fill the gap—we need companies that help a wide range of other actors to help co-evolve whatever it is that will come next.

And what is true for the institutions of global governance is also true for most national governments. They are losing their grip. Bright young people are increasingly disinclined to go into government. And this threatens to become a vicious spiral. Personally, I would like to see more business people running for political office, and more government people getting at least some experience of how the private and citizen sectors work.

In terms of what comes next, we are thinking in terms of a Breakthrough Decade, from 2015 to 2025. Our new book, The Breakthrough Challenge, is an attempt to sketch out a more ambitious, stretch agenda for business and for financial markets. Ultimately, too, this means a transformed agenda for voters, politicians, governments and the public sector in general. And the nature of politics means that politicians will continue to be lagging indicators of change for a while yet.

Still, there’s something I routinely say to younger people who come through our offices, and who note that they wish they had been around for the golden era, the glory days, of environmentalism and sustainability: The glory days are still out there, waiting to be had. I hit 65 years old this year, having now worked in this space for just over 40 years, but I genuinely believe that we are now on the threshold of the most exciting, fast-paced decade yet.

17.09.2014 REDD+ Offers Collaborative Approach to Save Forests and Climate

Forests are essential to human health and livelihoods – from the air we breathe to the water we drink and food we eat, forests are beautiful, inspiring places and home to countless species of plants and animals. Their value in our lives is well documented, and increasingly embraced by both the public and private sectors. […]

17.09.2014 ZeroDivide to Host Workshop at Health 2.0 Conference

ZeroDivide to Host Workshop at Health 2.0 Conference

By Vanessa Mason Wednesday, 17 September 2014 - 1:06pm

From September 21st to the 24th, hundreds of health and tech professionals from all over will gather for the 8th Annual Health 2.0 Fall Conference at the Santa Clara Convenction Center. The event will feature 150 live product demos, over 80 speakers touching on a variety of topics, 30 engaging panels and more. 

During this conference, on September 22nd from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., ZeroDivide will host an interactive workshop entitled "Patient Engagement and Digital Health for the Underserved." The workshop will focus on the challenges and opportunities in designing and developing digital health products that meet the needs of the medically underserved populations. With expansion of health insurance coverage, millions of people now have increased access to the health care system, a majority of whom were previously uninsured. While the rapid growth of digital health offers an unprecedented opportunity for patients to take charge of their health, this tech boom may also worsen existing disparities for medically underserved populations. This workshop will address the following questions: What unique considerations are needed to co-design effective digital health tools with and for medically underserved populations? How can digital health begin to reframe and redefine patient engagement for this population?

The session will feature 3 key activities:

  • Demos of digital health products for medically underserved populations

  • Panel discussion on effective strategies and key considerations for patient engagement from the perspectives of a founder, primary care provider, investor, and a policy expert

  • Interactive discussion where teams of 8-10 participants at each table will have the opportunity to workshop methods and solutions to integrate patient engagement into product development

Product demos will include presentations by:

  • Demos of digital health products for medically underserved populations

  • healthAction Patient Toolkit (Kristina Sheridan, Project Lead)

  • CareMessage (Vineet Singal, CEO) 

Panel Discussions will include the following speakers:

  • CarlaDenise Edwards, Alameda Health System, Chief Strategy Officer (Moderator)

  • Kristina Sheridan, Associate Department Head, MITRE Corporation

  • Ming Ming Kwan, Assistant Director of Health Promotion, API Wellness Center

  • Marisue Garganta, Director of Community Health Integration and Community Benefit at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, Dignity Health

  • Rebecca Coelius, Health Vertical Officer, Code for America

If you are attending Health 2.0 Santa Clara, please consider joining us on Monday, September 22nd at 8:00 a.m. 

No additional registration is required to attend the workshop for conference attendees. The workshop will be held in room 203 and 204. 

During the session, Twitter users are invited to join the conversation using the #health2con hashtag. Please feel free to tag us with @ZeroDivideOrg or with our ehealth specific Twitter handle, @eHealthEquity

16.09.2014 Team-Up for Textbooks: Volunteer to Help Students with Disabilities

The new school year is in full swing, yet across the U.S., all too many students with print disabilities might not have the textbooks they need for class. To meet that need, the Benetech Volunteer Program is piloting a new initiative—and we’re inviting you to join us!

When a Bookshare student member with a print disability needs a book for school that is not yet in the Bookshare collection, the member submits a request and Bookshare creates an accessible digital version of that book. However, students often don’t know what books they need until the first days of school—a hectic time when Bookshare receives thousands of book requests. During this time, the process of making a textbook accessible can take from 8-12 weeks, with proofreading being the most time-intensive and costly component. Meanwhile, students with print disabilities risk falling behind in school as they wait for the books they need.

Volunteers can now help fulfill students’ book requests faster during periods of peak demand by joining Benetech’s newest volunteer initiative: Team-Up for Textbooks.

Volunteers seated in a conference room at Benetech's offices during a Team-Up for Textbooks kickoff event.
Our wonderful volunteers kicking off the Team-Up for Textbooks initiative
Here’s the idea: through targeted outreach to parents, schools, and community partners, our staff members are recruiting volunteer teams to proofread student requested textbooks. Together, we can not only speed up the delivery of needed textbooks, but also build awareness to strengthen the web of support for students with disabilities. Each volunteer effort makes a difference for a student with a disability today while also creating a lasting resource that will support students for years to come!

To learn more and get involved, please submit the
Team-Up for Textbooks volunteer form or contact our staff via email: volunteer [at] Bookshare.org. Thank you for your support!

16.09.2014 Savegre Tapir Project at Rafiki

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$20 — will provide 1 foot of fencing for the tapir enclosure. The total needed is roughly 10,000 feet. ($200,000)
$25 — will provide 1 hour of research for acquiring permits. The total time required may vary, but an estimate of 120 hours or $3000 is projected.
$100 — will provide 1 square meter of building costs for the veterinary facility. The total area of the Veterinary facility is 200 sq meters or $200,000.

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Summary
The Savegre Tapir Project at Rafiki is dedicated to tapir awareness in the Savegre River Watershed and the Path of the Tapir Biological Corridor of Costa Rica. Through private land management, education, and on site scientific studies, ASANA and Rafiki hope to shift the paradigm of how local people view tapirs. We believe that if they appreciate the benefit of having tapirs in the environment, they will be more likely to support conservation efforts and help save the species from extinction.

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
The Savegre River Watershed is burdened with the perception by local people that conservation is responsible for diminished employment opportunities. Recent changes in forest laws, especially prohibition of logging and deforestation have caused an end to many of the agricultural jobs that formed the basis of rural economies. Many have resorted to illegal hunting practices in order to supplement their diets. Survival of mammals such as the tapir is unlikely to occur under these conditions.

Activities
Rafiki Safari Lodge is one of the few conservation-focused business establishments along the Savegre River. Currently the lodge provides employment opportunity to nearly 20% of the nearest local community. Expanding the tourism model to include the tapir project will directly and immediately stimulate the economy through increased employment opportunities for the tapir enclosure. The project will also benefit the local economy by increasing other "spill-over" tourism business opportunities

Potential Long Term Impact
The Savegre Tapir Project at Rafiki is part of an international effort to reintroduce tapir into the wild in its natural ranges. The scientific data gained at Rafiki is invaluable for the future of tapir conservation in Costa Rica and globally. The project will also serve as a model for other landowners showing a sustainable business model utilizing natural resources without disrupting the intact ecosystem.

Project Sponsor: ASANA (Friends of Nature, Central and Southern Pacific Coast) Costa Rica
Theme: Animals | Location: Costa Rica
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$95,000
Project #18332 on GlobalGiving.org

16.09.2014 (RED) is on Snapchat!


Guess what? (RED) is now on Snapchat!

Follow username: RED on Snapchat. Why? Because we want to chat with you! 

We're snapping fun stuff that we want you to see. Check out our Snapchat story to see our doodles, a behind-the-scenes look at (RED) HQ, a sneak peek at the latest happenings at (RED) and more.

And we're kicking off our Snapchat account with giveaways - all week long! Just follow username: RED on Snapchat to enter.

Here's how you can join us on Snapchat:

Download the Snapchat app here and create your account. 

Tap the friend icon on the upper-right corner of the My Friends page



















Tap the far right 'Search' tab, type in red and tap the plus icon next to red




















Happy Snapping! We can't wait to chat with you :)

Official rules & regulations here

16.09.2014 School for training Children with Special Needs

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$45 — Speech therapy Materials for one kid
$150 — self help skill materials
$200 — Therapy for Mentally Retarded Child for one year

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Summary
Aruna Chetana School for Children with Special Needs is a model for many schools in the state of Karnataka, India. It has been helping children with multiple retardation, special needs, and cerebral palsy for past twenty-five years and counting. The philosophy with which this school is started is that all children regardless of mental disabilities, learning disabilities, and genetic disorders have a basic fundamental right to live a life with dignity and have got right to education.

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
Children born with disabilities have a appalling health condition and their development is much behind the normal average level. Medical intervention, therapeutic services, conveyance are basic requirements for these children along nutritious drink and supportive Aids. These children need special attention and Preparation to formal education and specific tools which will enable them to get into main stream so that they can also be engaged in vocational activities to develop specific aptitude.

Activities
In Aruna Chetana we aim to provide access to education irrespective of the disability by training these children to become self-dependent and respectable citizens. We try to reduce the load on the parents by training them with life skills. We provide free food and Therapic treatment at our centers. After providing them with preliminary training we try to enroll them in regular schools& for few others with less learning ability, we provide them with vocational training to make them independent.

Potential Long Term Impact
We aim to bring a positive and encouraging change in the life of these children so that they won't be considered as burden to the society instead they will also be able to contribute productively in whatever little way they can. We are trying to help these children to gain greater social acceptance.

Project Sponsor: Hindu Seva Pratishthana
Theme: Children | Location: India
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$50,000
Project #18293 on GlobalGiving.org

16.09.2014 Help the Visually Challenged Celebrate Diwali

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$10 — will help provide new dresses and fire crackers to 1 visually challenged child
$50 — buys new clothes and fire crackers for 5 visually challenged children
$100 — will buy new dresses and fire crackers for 10 visually challenged children

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Summary
This project hopes to provide new dresses and firecrackers to 600 of our visually challenged children on the occasion of the Diwali festival this year. The beneficiaries of this project are dependent on others for new clothes and crackers, as they are from rural areas.They are no difference from sighted people when it comes to doing anything in life. So your contribution will help in making them go a long way. Indian Association for the Blind (IAB) is an NGO that believes in spreading happiness.

Project Needs and Beneficiaries
Diwali is also called the 'Festival of Lights' in India, which is celebrated in a grand manner. But when it comes to our visually challenged children, all of them are from rural areas. Hence, even the thought of wearing new clothes and celebrating happily has been a distant dream for them till now. These children hold a lot of expectations towards celebrating Diwali with new clothes and crackers. If their expectations are fulfilled, their hearts will be filled with happiness.

Activities
The contributions from your side will certainly bring so much happiness in the lives of 600 children. By wearing new dresses, bursting firecrackers and celebrating with their friends and family, their dream of a lifetime will be fulfilled. Their day will be made colourful and memorable.

Potential Long Term Impact
This project fulfills the motive of spreading happiness and harmony among everyone. So, on this day, each and every penny given by you, will bring a smile on the face of each child in our campus. In future, they will also want to provide the same amount of happiness to the needy. Your contributions will help in creating evergreen memories, which will be cherished by each and every one of them forever.

Project Sponsor: Indian Association for the Blind
Theme: Children | Location: India
Funding to Date: $0 | Need:$6,000
Project #18317 on GlobalGiving.org

15.09.2014 SustainAbility Honored as 'Best for Workers,' Creating Higher Quality Jobs that Serve a Higher Purpose

Today, SustainAbility and 79 other companies worldwide were recognized for creating the highest quality jobs by the nonprofit B Lab with the release of the third annual B Corp Best for Workers list. This analysis includes metrics regarding compensation and benefits, health and wellness programs, parent-friendly flex time and leave policies, professional development and internal promotion, corporate culture, profit sharing and ownership opportunities.

“With Millennials’ increasing demand for work-life integration, B Corps are winning the talent war,” said Jay Coen Gilbert, co-founder B Lab. “The Best for Workers Honorees are leading the way with their commitment to creating high quality jobs that serve a higher purpose.”

The ‘B Corp Best for Workers’ list honors businesses that earned an worker impact score in the top 10% of all Certified B Corporations on the B Impact Assessment, a rigorous and comprehensive assessment of a company’s impact on its workers, community, and the environment. Honorees were recognized among micro, small, and mid-sized businesses.

Fellow honorees include Dansko, the 100% employee-owned, footwear brand, Ecotrust Forest Management, an investment and advisory firm helping investors and landowners enhance forest health and productivity, Rally Software, a leading global provider of cloud-based solutions for managing Agile software development (and the first successful B Corp IPO) and Charter School Business Management, a NY-based provider of financial training to the charter sector.

The ‘Best for Workers’ companies come from over 25 different industries such as consulting and financial services, renewable energy installation and technical services. One third of honorees are based outside North America, including countries such as Brazil, New Zealand, Italy Argentina and the United Kingdom.

Each honored company is a Certified B Corporation. They use the power of business to solve social and environmental problems and have met rigorous standards of overall social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. Today there are over nearly 1,100 Certified B Corporations, across 100+ industries and 34 countries, unified by one common goal: to redefine success in business.

B Lab is a nonprofit organization that serves a global movement to redefine success in business so that all companies compete not only to be the best in the world, but the best for the world.

15.09.2014 Big Vision Tip: Stay on Track. Text Your Big Vision Buddy

About a year and a half ago my friend Heather and I decided to try the Oprah and Deepak 21-Day Meditation Experience. To make sure we completed it, we texted each other right after we meditated. There were many mornings when I would "forget" to meditate (isn't it funny how our minds do that when we're resisting something?), and her text would prompt me to do it.

It worked so well that even when the 21 days were over, we continued to text each other after we meditated. A year and half later, our meditation practices certainly aren't perfect, but they're so much a part of our lives that we no longer text about it. We've moved on to new projects!

Heather is working on finishing her book, and I'm trying to get back into the swing of regular blogging, so now we text each when we're going to write, and when we finish. Once again, it's working! I'm posting here for the first time in almost two months.

It's such a simple process, but one that has made a huge difference in our lives.

Below are a few tips for texting with your Big Vision Buddy:

    • Pick a Big Vision Buddy who is also working on a project, or habit. It's more fun for the support to be two-way, rather than one-way. 
    • Also, your Buddy should be someone who you aren't competitive with, or who isn't emotionally invested in the completion of your goal, or project.
    • Nudge don't judge. If your Buddy hasn't texted you in a while, gently ask them how things are going, and how you can support their getting back on track.

    Big Vision to-dos for you:

    • Pick a project, or habit you would like to work on this week, this month, or this fall.
    • Ask someone to be your Big Vision Buddy.
    • Start texting!

    Speaking of which, I'm going to go text Heather now!

    Photo of Heater by In Her Image Photography

    15.09.2014 Why GDP doesn’t explain economic development: Measuring progress in the Amazon

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    Though Brazil has grown leaps and bounds in the last decade, many of its citizens still struggle for basic human needs. Since 2000, GDP per capita has skyrocketed from a measly $3,000 USD to $11,200 USD per year, but the data is deceiving. This is particularly true in the Amazon, where poverty often drives the destruction of precious rainforests.

    Seeking to illuminate this gap is the Amazon-based nonprofit Imazon, which produced a study to measure development based on the Social Progress Index, a global initiative that measures the social and environmental performance of territories, regardless of their economic development. Instead, it focuses on three indicators: basic human needs, foundations of well being and opportunity.

    Global Envision spoke to Adalberto Verissimo, whose team coordinated the IPS (Índice de Progresso Social) Amazonia study, to get a closer look at how the study was developed and its potential impact for the Amazon region. 

    GE: If you were explaining this to someone who had very little understanding of the issue, how would you connect the dots between low social progress and deforestation?

    A: Everyone around the world looks at the Amazon as a place of nature, but there are 24 million people living there and they’re living far below the Brazilian average. Brazil itself only ranks 46th of the 132 countries observed through the global version of IPS. In fact, if the Amazon was a separate country it would rank 93rd.

    The vulnerability of people’s social conditions also translates into environmental vulnerability. Municipalities that have lost most of their rainforest rank the lowest on social progress and economic indicators. It’s hard to conserve the rainforest with such low social conditions. I think that’s the main message of the report.

    GE: IPS Amazônia was designed as a sub national initiative using the same methods and indicators as the global Social Progress Index, what makes it different and what were some of the regional specific challenges in crafting the study?

    A: I would say in one sense it’s difficult it’s a huge territory, the Amazon alone is larger than the European Union. However in Brazil we’re at an advantage, the country has a history of keeping good public statistics and making that data accessible and available, so that allowed us to develop this project with relatively high quality statistical analysis.

    We had some issues in dealing with the ‘opportunities’ section. Some are only very recently being documented and incorporated into public statistics, for example, violence against women. A big part of [Brazil] public policy right now is to establish a department inside police stations where a female officer is posted to receive domestic violence reports. As this public policy evolves and more women come to make the case, the data will become available to us. 

    GE: Were there indicators absent from the national statistics that you wanted to incorporate into the study?

    A: Of course. We wanted to have more information and better indicators related to corruption and discrimination against minorities. So there’s room for improvement. But in terms of health, education, security, shelter, sanitation, water, ecosystems, and sustainability [Brazil has] great data.

    GE: How would you go about collecting data to include an indicator like corruption?

    A: One way to do this is through examining financial audits. Brazilian legislation requires that municipalities organize independent annual auditing of their financial budgets. The problem is that it takes years to get the final results, but it’s an important proxy for us to have. If the municipality has financial auditing with bad records we can make an assessment. We know whether the issue exists and persists.

    GE: What sets the IPS study apart from others seeking to address and examine the same issues?

    A: The good thing about the IPS is that it’s isolated from economic proxies, so we were able to analyze social progress independent of economic growth. In addition, it enables us to cross reference with economic data. For example, in the municipality of Alta Mira, the GDP per capita ranking was 158th, but according to the results of the IPS study it ranks 402nd for social progress. This exemplifies how important using a wide range of indicators is. Traditionally we have relied on economic proxies, which are clearly inefficient and at times created a distorted impression of an area’s social progress and development.

    GE: What do you think are the long-term benefits is of using studies like this? How will it be distributed? Do you expect policymakers to use this on a local and national level?

    A: The report is a management tool that can improve the quality of decision-making. Particularly in large municipalities like Para and Alta Mira, where the population is so large it’s difficult to track social progress, this information could be crucial to helping local officials decide where to allocate government spending.

    GE: How frequently do you envision this data being updated? What would a 2.0 version of this report look like?

    A: Our idea is to try and measure every two years. In 2016 we’re aiming to publish another report. We want to include more indicators like communication, corruption and discrimination against minorities. Communication in particular is of interest to us because it’s a good proxy of social capital and civic engagement. It’s important to have an open system where people are actively engaged in their own news. The idea is that we need to publish these reports regularly and make them a mainstream resource that people are aware of so that all levels of society can work to address these issues.

    GE: What’s next on the agenda for Imazon and the IPS report?

    A: If you really want to improve the environment, we need to improve the social conditions to allow more businesses to switch to a green economy. So when you combine all this data (the IPS, economic proxies and green data) we have a powerful lens to understand and influence the reality of the situation. In the countryside of Brazil, politicians often discuss investments and ideas but not results. So we’re looking to change that dialogue for the better.

    Read the report, “IPS Amazônia,” here.

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