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Archive for : POTUS

Repair Interview: Steven Weinberg of Will Work for Food

Since 2007, an organization called Will Work for Food – which was founded by students at the University of Michigan – has worked to raise funds to combat global child hunger and malnutrition. And they do it in a very unique way.

Instead of simply raising money, WWFF participants engage in a local volunteer project and encourage friends, family and neighbors to pledge money in support of their service. Think a cancer or MS walk – but replace the walking with community service. To date, WWFF and their partners (mostly student groups) have raised over $70,000 to support the global hunger relief work of Doctors with Borders.

WWFF co-founder and pre-med student, Steven Weinberg, took the time to talk to Repair the World about the importance of doing tangible work, how WWFF doubles an individual’s service impact, and what in the world Plumpy’Nut is.
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9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance

Last year, President Barack Obama amended the Patriot Day proclamation to make September 11th a nationally recognized day of service and remembrance. In the proclamation he wrote:

As we pay tribute to loved ones, friends, fellow citizens, and all who died, we reaffirm our commitment to the ideas and ideals that united Americans in the aftermath of the attacks… I call upon all Americans to join in service and honor the lives we lost, the heroes who responded in our hour of need, and the brave men and women in uniform who continue to protect our country at home and abroad…

Originated by the family members of those who lost loved ones on 9/11, the National Day of Service and Remembrance is an opportunity to salute the heroes of 9/11, recapture the spirit of unity and compassion that inspired our Nation following the attacks, and rededicate ourselves to sustained service to our communities.

In honor of the 9/11 day of service, people in towns and cities across the country are planning acts of service – large and small – to strengthen their communities and build stronger bonds with the issues and people they care about. The range of service projects being posted on 911dayofservice.org includes everything from reading to kids in an after school program, to organizing food drives, donating blood, spending a day visiting elderly people in the hospital, and giving funds to cancer research organizations.

Find out how you can help to make 9/11 more than “just another day” by doing an act of service or adopting a local charity here.

Read President Obama’s full proclamation here.

Thursday Link Roundup: Jewish American Heritage Month

In honor of Jewish American Heritage Month (which is May, for the record), President and First Lady Obama are hosting a reception at the White House tonight.

While the President’s office won’t disclose the full list of attendees, the evening will be packed with innovative Jewish leaders, including Rabbi Sharon Brous who heads up LA’s social justice-oriented spiritual community, IKAR, and Jewish Women’s Archives’ Executive Director, Gail Reimer. (And the amazingly talented Regina Spektor is slated to perform – but I digress.) To celebrate the month and this historic event, here are some inspiring bits from the Jewish service blogosphere. Enjoy!

CHECK IT OUT

  • (NY Jewish Week) After several years of planning, the Magen Tzedek (the ethical Jewish food certification pioneered by Rabbi Morris Allen) is nearly ready to hit the shelves.
  • (Dowser) Graduating from college, know someone who is, or just want an extra shot of hope? Check out these 5 inspiring graduation speeches from the last few years – featuring Muhammed Yunus, Bill Gates, Ellen Degeneres and Paul Hawken.
  • (BJPA) The Berman Jewish Policy Archive just hit a milestone: their 5,000th policy document is now online accessible to the public. Check them out here. With categories like social justice, women, youth engagement, social services, immigration and global responsibility, there’s plenty of fascinating service-relevant information out there, just waiting to be explored!
  • (Social Citizens) Check out this fascinating article on balancing idealism and pragmatism within a life of service.

GET INVOLVED

  • (Tom’s of Maine) The environmentally-friendly company known for their natural toothpastes and other beauty products is giving away $100,000 to 5 non-profit organizations. Know a deserving org? Nominate them before July 2 here.

Repair Hero: Eli Winkelman

Who says a college student can’t change the world? When Eli Winkelman was an undergrad at Scripps College in California, she started a program called Challah for Hunger. The idea started out small: bake fresh, delicious challah every week and sell it to students and faculty to raise money for hunger and disaster relief.

The program was a hit (even former President Clinton took notice) and began to spread to other colleges. As of 2009, Challah for Hunger had chapters on 30 campuses across the country and had raised more than $130,000, with half of the proceeds going to American Jewish World Service’s Sudan Relief and Advocacy Fund, and half going to local, national, or international organizations chosen by campus organizers.
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