Category Archives: Non-Profit/Charity

25 Ways to Say Mahalo to Your Husband #ProjectMahalo

Mahalo means ‘thank you’ in Hawaiian and King’s Hawaiian is giving YOU the chance to help them say Mahalo by voting for the charity of your choice.

Giving generously to others without expecting anything in return is at the heart and soul of Hawaiian culture, and a core value of KING’S HAWAIIAN. Giving is more than just a social formality; it is a way to say ‘thank you’ or to offer assistance. Giving brings joy to those around you.

– King’s Hwaiian

My husband is my best friend and often my biggest supporter in whatever I do – whether it is career wise, personally or even in my health pursuits he backs me up, and for the most part willingly :). So, to honor our crazy supportive relationship I have listed 25 ways to say Mahalo (thank you) to him. I’m sure their are many more! If you have an idea on how you can say thanks to your husband for supporting you and being an awesome dad, or ideas for saying Mahalo to someone else important in your life, make sure to scroll down and tell me for your chance to win $100 for yourself and for the Charity you voted for at Project Mahalo.

If you haven’t already, make sure to vote for your charityEach Project Mahalo charitable partner will receive a minimum $10,000 donation, and the partner earning the highest number of votes will instead receive a $25,000 donation. I voted for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, because I believe every child deserves that person they can look up to as a mentor and to have positive experiences with.  Big Brothers Big Sisters of America mentoring programs have proven, positive academic, socio-emotional and behavioral outcomes for youth – areas linked to high school graduation rates, avoidance of juvenile delinquency and college or job readiness.

Kellogg’s Share Breakfast Movement Believes in the Power of Breakfast

Kellog's Share Breakfast Campaign logo

The Kellogg’s Share Breakfast Movement is on a mission to show families how a wholesome breakfast can help kids reach their full potential every day. As a former teacher, I have seen how poorly kids can perform in school when they do not start their day off with a proper nutritional breakfast. One of the most memorable speeches I heard while I was in teacher training was from an elementary school principal who described the Belly, Heart, Brain theory. He likened it to a Maslow’s Theory for unlocking a child’s full potential. Basically, if a child’s belly wasn’t full and their hearts not brimming with love, we as teachers would not be able to fill their minds. As a teacher, it was our duty to reach out to the child’s family and figure out what was missing from the Belly and Heart part of the equation – without these 2 things being full, their would be no way for us to fill their brains with literature, drama, math and phys ed class no matter how interesting we made it.

Through my time as a teacher, seeing the signs of the child whose belly was not full was often times easy. You see, parents of these children dropped them off at school, showered them with kisses and even told them they loved them. Their hearts were full with love, but clearly their bellies were growling. Inability to concentrate, tiredness and moodiness were just some of the heartbreaking traits I witnessed. Thankfully, I didn’t see this too often but when I did, I always wished a proper program was in place to help these children get the proper breakfast they needed.

Fast forward to over a decade later and it warms my heart to know that my son’s school offers a free, no questions asked breakfast program each and every school day.  We’re fortunate that we have not had to take up this offer, but programs like these are not offered nationwide, but they should be.

Nearly one in five children across our communities go without breakfast.

– Kellogg’s Share Breakfast

Save the Children and Bring Down Barriers to Breastfeeding

Proud to have been able to breastfeed my babies

Save the Children released a report this past Sunday highlighting the barriers women face in their decision to breastfeed. Rather than supporting a moms desire to breastfeed, moms in developing countries instead experience roadblocks. Did you know that breastfeeding is critical to preventing malnutrition and saving children’s lives in the developing world? Breastfeeding immediately after birth could help save 830,000 newborn babies from dying a year, and exclusive breastfeeding for six months could save even more babies and children.  To me it is staggering that Save the Children’s report has identified legislative barriers, aggressive marketing tactics, and cultural myths that prevent those first bonding moments of breastfeeding between mother and child. As someone who has breastfed both of my children, I feel lucky, honored and above all blessed to have had the support and health to do so.

Save the Children identified the ‘Power Hour’, that initial breastfeeding moment when babies suckle the colostrum as a lifesaving consumption of a Superfood. The colostrum jump starts a baby’s immune system – and why if mom is healthy and able to, would you not want to provide this for your baby?

On the heels of President Obama’s State of the Union address pledge to help to save children around the world from preventable deaths, Save the Children’s new report investigates what is keeping more women from breastfeeding immediately after birth or continuing for six months.

– Save  the Children,  Superfood for Babies press release

Support UNICEF’s End Trafficking Project

Human Trafficking is a very real issue that does not just affect young women “over there”. I know many of you probably think that as a civilized Western country, their is no way this could be happening on our soil. Unfortunately, this is not true. Human trafficking touches every corner of our world, and incidents have been reported right here in each of the 50 states. Does that make it any more real? I bet it does.

UNICEF has created an initiative to combat human trafficking by mobilizing communities to fight back. Actress Angie Harmon echoes my sentiments of shock and passion to end this horrible practice. She was recently named a UNICEF Ambassador, focusing her energies on this initiative.

After learning about the horrifying practice of child trafficking both in the United States and abroad, I knew I had to do something about it. That’s what drew me to UNICEF. I believe that ZERO children should be forced into prostitution or made to work, especially at dangerous jobs. I look forward to working with UNICEF to help reach a day when every child has a safe and healthy childhood.

Angie Harmon,  UNICEF Ambassador and Actress

Play the Giving Game and Give Back for the Holidays

Teaching my children the idea of giving back and how they can put it into practice is so important to me. For my Little Miss who is only 1, this is a concept that she cannot yet grasp, but with my 5 year old, I can easily start to expose him to opportunities where he can give and feel good doing so. The Boys and Girls Club of America (BGCA) is built on the strong tradition of teaching kids to give back. This Christmas is no different for BGCA as this year marks the 2nd annual BCGA Give the Gift of a Great Future Holiday Campaign.

The Boys and Girls Club of America have created 3 easy ways that we can all get involved in giving back. The best part is even if money is tight for you this year, they offer suggestions for volunteering and even a Giving Game that you can play – your prize for playing (and winning!) this simple game is a donation to a Club Kid! Cool, eh? My win scored a Club Kid an art kit.

Feel Good Friday : Save a Life This Christmas

In North America, we have so many choices of how we give birth. From state, to state, city to city the choices of midwives or obstetricians, doulas and so many other facilities and specialists may not be as abundant as we hope. But overall, we have a choice of how we bring our children safely into the world. That is why it is staggering when I hear that one mother dies every 2 minutes in pregnancy and childbirth, 800 each day.

Having a baby should be a time of great joy and hope. But every year across the world 287,000 women die in pregnancy and childbirth.

London-based Maternity Worldwide, works to ensure safe births and increased maternal health in developing countries. If you would like to  ‘Save a Life This Christmas’, consider the alternative Christmas gift of a Safe Birth Certificate for $24 and $81 for an emergency delivery for a mother in sub Saharan Africa. You can find out how you can purchase this life saving gift from Maternity Worldwide, from this UK organization. If you do click over, please notice that the donation amounts are in pounds and will convert to dollars at checkout.
It should not be that women and young girls in developing countries are losing their lives because they do not have access to maternal health and family planning resources. A Safe Birth Certificate can be personalised with your own message and either sent directly to the recipient or to you to give to them.