Archive for : health

Top 5 Ways to Volunteer While Getting Healthy

January is Healthy Living Month here at Repair the World. Stop by all month long for interviews with our favorite health-focused organizations, inspiring stories, and tips to change your life while changing the world.

Lots of people begin each January with resolutions. Some folks resolve to get healthy – to eat better, exercise more, or give up an unhealthy habit. Others make a resolution to volunteer more often and engage with their communities. We say, why not combine the two? Here are our Top 5 ways to volunteer while getting healthy. Win. Win.

Be a Big. Enroll with the Big Brothers Big Sisters program and you’ll get paired up with an awesome kid who can double as an exercise buddy. Shoot hoops together, go on a hike, or try kayaking or bowling together with your “Little.” You’ll make connections and change not one life, but two!

Staff a Health Fair. Volunteer to run a table or help set up or clean up at a local health fair. While there, chat up all the great organizations and health providers in attendance.

Volunteer at a Yoga studio. Are you a yoga fiend? Get your stretch on while making a difference. Most yoga studios have some kind of work study program where you volunteer a few hours a week or month at the studio and get free or reduced-price classes. The Kripalu Center, a well-loved yoga retreat center in Massachusetts, also has a great, 6-month volunteer program for those who want to make a long-term commitment.

Run it Out. Volunteer with a local fitness and community organization like the New York Road Runners. Help others achieve their fitness resolutions by staffing a race, and get hooked into a health-focused community.

Play for Peace. Peace Players International is an awesome organization that uses basketball to bring children together in conflict-ridden countries like South Africa, Northern Ireland, Israel, the West Bank, and Cyprus. Volunteer at one of their sites and make a difference in kids lives while shooting hoops for peace.

What’s your favorite way to get fit while volunteering? Let us know in the comments or by tweeting @repairtheworld.

Focusing On Women’s Health on World Population Day

Last fall, the world’s population hit a record 7 billion people. Today, approximately 8 months later, we’re up to 7,025,433,781 (and growing). At an abstract level, all those new babies being brought into the world is a beautiful thought. Be fruitful and multiply, right?

But the world’s quickly expanding population has its challenges too – putting a stress on ecological and community resources, and a strain on many families – and particularly women. That’s why today, World Population Day aims to raise awareness about population issues across the world.

The focus of this year’s celebration is family planing and reproductive health. According to the UN: “Reproductive health problems remain the leading cause of ill health and death for women of childbearing age worldwide. Some 222 million women who would like to avoid or delay pregnancy lack access to effective family planning. Nearly 800 women die every day in the process of giving life. About 1.8 billion young people are entering their reproductive years, often without the knowledge, skills and services they need to protect themselves.”

The UN has organized lots of initiatives to support women’s reproductive health in the coming years – like working with the Gates Foundation to increase women’s access to family planning. But you can get involved too by supporting like-minded organizations like Repair the World grantee-partner AJWS, the International Women’s Health Coaltion, Population Action International, and others, (Check out a great, user-generated round up of organizations here.)

Learn more about World Population Day at the video below: