Category Archives: Philanthropy

Eat Up! Foodlnk Kickoffs Summer Meals with Rochester Rhinos

As Published in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professionals’ Blog

Three-hundred eighty Rochester youth were served summer meals from Freshwise Kitchen, Foodlink’s catering company, at last week’s Summer Meals kickoff at Excellus’ Rhino Stadium. Participant’s enjoyed a wholesome main dish of chicken, baked potatoes, apples, cold slaw, whole wheat rolls and chocolate milk, along with a hearty side order of hopscotch, double-dutch, face painting, inflatable play space and soccer with the Rhinos’ team. If that weren’t enough, Rochester’s youth and their chaperons were even given goody bags and two free tickets apiece to either the Rochester Rhinos’ game from this past Saturday or the Rattlers’ Lacrosse for Friday night.

The kickoff epitomized what a young active and healthy day looks and feels like— even beneath the blistering sun. As an AmeriCorp VISTA, hunger advocate and gym enthusiasts, I had a great time double dutching — or at least “twirling” (turning the rope) — with the kids and sharing a few laughs. It’s both fulfilling and daunting to know that so many of our youth live in households that rely on Foodlink and school meals to provide the most basic living necessity of all: food.

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Health, Philanthropy, Social Justice

Economies Change; Hunger Persists. Take Action Today

As Published in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professionals’ Blog

At a press conference yesterday afternoon, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke was once again a bearer of bad news. A combination of financial woes in Europe, the fiscal cliff (tax increases and government spending cuts that are being negotiated for 2013) and other factors will likely leave our nation’s unemployment rate hovering over 8 percent up until 2014, potentially leading to a double dip recession. The Feds’ sorry forecast for America’s economic growth has prompted the visibly frustrated Bernanke to pick up the pace and extend Operation Twist — yet another stimulus. Even with historically low interest rates, the $267 billion extension will likely drive long-term rates even lower in an attempt to make it easier for businesses and consumers to get credit.

Despite the most jovial and vehement critiques of our leaders’ policy adjustments, there remains a persistent social ill that stubbornly hides in plain sight. Domestic hunger stands out as a puzzling reality in our rich democracy. The fact that over 48.8 million Americans (14.5 percent), 16 million youth, one out of every four toddlers and an all time high number of working families have this vice in common is daunting…Read More

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Philanthropy, Social Justice

Seek Your Reminder Moment: Meet People, Transcend the Cubicle

As Posted in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professional Blog

Whenever someone thinks of a noble career that allows you to give back to the community and improve the conditions of society, the non-profit sector is often the first field that comes to mind. Some people may even envision non-profit employees walking down the most impoverished streets in the country to work hands-on with their target populations. But that is merely a half truth. A quick internship with just about any non-profit would acquaint you with the realities of the office setting that dominates every American industry.

But people don’t pursue a career in non-profits for the valor of having their own cubicle and unlimited sticky notes; it’s because of the affected segments of society that may not be getting enough help from the government. That is precisely the reason that non-profit employees enter the industry with an unrivaled enthusiasm and optimistic outlook. Unfortunately, some of us may fall victim to office-atrophy and forget why in the world we’re subjecting our eyes to prolonged staring contests with computer monitors (the computer typically wins, by the way). Read More…

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Philanthropy

Foodlink’s Backpack Program Feeds Minds and Futures

As posted in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professionals’ Blog

It was a gloomy Monday morning with only a few minutes left before my fifth grade Benchmark exam; it seems like eons ago. Although I was a dozen years younger at the time, the memory of the physiological strain I experienced that morning is still alive today. A combination of stress, nerves and stigma acquainted me with a hunger like no other — I like to call it ‘standardize test day hunger.’ Not only that, but as the overweight kid, I was always self-conscious about letting others know when I was hungry.

Luckily for me, my fifth grade teacher, Ms. Dobsen, knew me well enough to realize that something was wrong. Ms. Dobsen decided to pull me aside and send me to the lunchroom to grab a bowl of cereal before the exam.  Moments later, I was able to dominate my test with a full stomach and an able mind that enabled me to score amongst the five highest grades in our class.

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Philanthropy

Children’s School of Rochester: the ultimate cultural experience

As published in the Campus Times

With one step into the Children’s School of Rochester (CSR), you might have the urge to ask someone whether or not you just stepped into a junior United Nations.

CSR, or School No. 15, is the most ethnically and culturally diverse school of the Rochester City School District. Of the 286 students that attend the Kindergarten through sixth grade elementary school, on Averill Street, 54 percent are English learners from other countries. Additionally, over 35 different languages are spoken in the students’ homes.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2010/11/11/children%E2%80%99s-school-of-rochester-the-ultimate-cultural-experience/

 

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http://www.campustimes.org/2010/11/11/children%E2%80%99s-school-of-rochester-the-ultimate-cultural-experience/

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Filed under Campus Times, Education, Philanthropy

Amnesty magnifies the invisible

As published in the Campus Times

Amnesty International is a nonpartisan student organization that works together to engage the UR community on international human rights issues. President and senior Penni Spicer has been tabling in Wilson Commons for their upcoming event Invisible Children. The event brings to Rochester an organization that serves young Ugandans who are threatened with abduction from their villages, being forced into war. Over 2 million children have been displaced over the past 20 years in the civil war-torn country.

Next Monday’s event will include a screening of the organization’s new documentary, as well as two men who will provide firsthand accounts of the turmoil in Uganda.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2010/09/30/amnesty-magnifies-the-invisible/

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Filed under Campus Times, International, Philanthropy

Shropshire’s peace of music

As published in the Campus Times

In 1999, on an ordinary afternoon, music instructor Liz Shropshire was driving to the home of one of her piano students while listening to National Public Radio. Shropshire, who has over 20 years of experience in instructing emotionally troubled students from four to 60 years of age, had an illustrious career as a teacher in Los Angeles.

But her afternoon went from ordinary to life altering after she heard one particular story that troubled her. The NPR news reporter was interviewing women who were thrown out of their homes in Kosovo and had to resort to living in refugee camps in Albania. The conditions of their homeland were abysmal — former president of the Socialist Republic of Serbia and Yugoslavia Slobodan Milosevic’s ethnic cleansing of Kosovo’s minorities and the retaliatory NATO bombings left them husbandless and sonless. All that they had left were their firsthand youngest children and the clothes on their backs.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2010/09/30/shropshire’s-peace-of-music/

In 1999, on an ordinary afternoon, music instructor Liz Shropshire was driving to the home of one of her piano students while listening to National Public Radio. Shropshire, who has over 20 years of experience in instructing emotionally troubled students from four to 60 years of age, had an illustrious career as a teacher in Los Angeles.

But her afternoon went from ordinary to life altering after she heard one particular story that troubled her. The NPR news reporter was interviewing women who were thrown out of their homes in Kosovo and had to resort to living in refugee camps in Albania. The conditions of their homeland were abysmal — former president of the Socialist Republic of Serbia and Yugoslavia Slobodan Milosevic’s ethnic cleansing of Kosovo’s minorities and the retaliatory NATO bombings left them husbandless and sonless. All that they had left were their firsthand youngest children and the clothes on their backs.

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Filed under Campus Times, International, Philanthropy