Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Warriors Gain Resiliency Thanks to 12-Week Program


Supporting service members and veterans who experienced an injury, either mental or physical, while serving, the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) has launched a number of initiatives to achieve its mission. To that end, the organization developed Project Odyssey, a program aimed at providing veterans with the mental health skills and resources they need to carry on with a healthy and productive life.

Occurring over 12 weeks, Project Odyssey invites veterans to take part in a program that focuses on their mental health. The program employs adventure-based learning to empower veterans, strengthen their skills to remain resilient, and help them overcome any emotional wounds incurred during their military service.

Veterans who take part in Project Odyssey start with a mental health workshop lasting five days. During the workshop, participants remove themselves from their everyday routines, taking a step outside of their comfort zones. The experience includes therapy and rehabilitation with professionals who can help veterans strengthen their communication and coping skills.

The skills veterans learn during the initial five-day workshop are reinforced and enhanced over the following 11 weeks of the program. After completing Project Odyssey, veterans are encouraged to stay engaged with WWP to continue receiving ongoing support.

Project Odyssey and the many mental health programs offered by WWP seek to help veterans experiencing a wide range of conditions. According to the organization, one in three veterans experiences post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), while others live with traumatic brain injury or other brain-related syndromes. At the same time, one in three veterans also feel they do not have access to the mental health care they need.

WWP, with support from donors, has stepped in to fill this gap: the organization has provided more than 42,000 hours of outpatient care and therapy sessions to help our country’s wounded warriors.


Disclaimer: This website contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. This information is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. No guarantee is given regarding the accuracy or validity of any statements or information provided on this website. Do not rely on this information as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or another professional healthcare provider. You should seek immediate medical attention if you think you are suffering from a medical condition. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Triple Play: Three Essential Lessons for Healthy, Active Kids


The Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) operate in communities all across the country with the aim to provide youth with the tools they need to succeed in school and in life. As part of that goal, the organization provides a variety of programs for children and young adults, including Triple Play: A Game for Mind, Body, and Soul. The initiative emphasizes health and wellness education for kids and teenagers.

With the objective of teaching lessons that promote healthy living, BGCA partnered with Anthem Foundation, the philanthropic division of Anthem, Inc., in 2005. Together, the organizations designed Triple Play as a way to deliver comprehensive wellness education to young people in three parts. 


Mind: Healthy Habits

The first component of the Triple Play curriculum covers healthy habits. This section covers the psychological elements involved in making healthy choices, such as eating well and being active. The course incorporates positive modeling that shows students how to make better choices. It also introduces nutrition education and exercises that help students understand how to follow healthy behaviors.


Body: Physical Activity

Next, Triple Play encourages physical activity through daily challenges. As part of this component of the program, students not only take part in physical activities, but earn a level of physical literacy as well. This includes strengthening their abilities in basic fitness and movement, building confidence in sporting skills, and motivating them to stay active throughout their lives.


Soul: Healthy Relationships 

Finally, the Triple Play initiative focuses on what it calls “social recreation.” Kids who participate in the program learn how to create and keep healthy relationships with others and with themselves, while also discovering how to make responsible decisions and regulate their emotions. The activities and materials intend to help students develop the social, emotional, and behavioral skills they need to live healthy, productive lives and get along with their peers. 


Disclaimer: This website contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. This information is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. No guarantee is given regarding the accuracy or validity of any statements or information provided on this website. Do not rely on this information as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or another professional healthcare provider. You should seek immediate medical attention if you think you are suffering from a medical condition. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.


Thursday, March 4, 2021

Job Seekers Gain Digital Skills with a Little Goodwill

 Aiming to provide the training and support people need to earn and keep good jobs, Goodwill Industries International partners with companies to reach these goals. In 2017, Google collaborated with Goodwill to launch the Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator. 

Part of the Grow with Google initiative, established the same year, the Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator aimed to help Google reach its goal of training and providing resources to Americans to give them the digital tools and resources they need to find jobs. The initiative awarded a $10.3 million grant to Goodwill to start a digital training program. Goodwill also received support in the form of Google’s resources, talent, and tools. 

With a goal to reach over one million job seekers and teach them the digital skills they need to get a job, the Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator identified five levels of digital skills and set about creating training programs for each. 

The program’s digital skill levels include: 

  • Digital skills awareness for individuals needing an introduction to computers and other digital topics; 
  • Basic digital skills training, targeted at those who have some knowledge of computers but need help with email, social media, and keyboarding; 
  • Productivity software skills, courses that provide instruction on using spreadsheets, word processing software, and similar tools; 
  • Entry-level digital skills for those looking to gain basic programing or computer support skills; 
  • Mid-level and occupation-specific digital skills, created for people looking to work with technology in specific fields, such as healthcare or marketing. 

Google also pledged to send more than 1,000 volunteers, including seven Google.org Fellows who worked full-time with Goodwill at one of the organization’s nationwide locations.


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

2 Inspiring WWP Fundraising Stories

 Fundraising is vital to organizations like the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP), which relies on community contributions to provide life-changing services to America’s veterans. Recently, the organization made headlines for a few fundraising efforts that saw dedicated supporters using some truly creative methods.  

Let’s look at two of the most inspiring WWP fundraising stories:


Stormtrooper 10k ruck

One Navy hospital corpsman put his own spin on WWP’s virtual Carry Forward event this past year by gearing up with a full set of Star Wars stormtrooper armor for his own 10-kilometer ruck (a fast march carrying weight). The man, Jeffrey Priela, walked along Highway 101 in Carlsbad, California, in late August 2020 to raise money for WWP in a year when veteran demand has risen sharply due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Priela has been wearing stormtrooper armor during fundraisers since 2016 and says that the outfit always garners smiles and attention from passersby. Though the armor is unforgiving, he says it’s well worth it to raise money for the causes he supports.


A veteran’s walk across the country

In 2019, Air Force veteran and Minnesota resident Jerry Meadows set off on a cross-country journey to raise money for WWP. He selected the organization because of its focus on the needs of both veterans and their families. Meadows, who recently underwent triple bypass surgery and brought an oxygen tank along for the journey, aimed to walk more than 1,200 miles from Minnesota to WWP headquarters in Florida for the fundraiser. His wife, Virginia, followed behind him in the family van to make sure he was safe and keep him supplied with his medication. 

Meadows said the journey was challenging, both physically and mentally, but the enthusiasm of passersby kept him going—that, and the worthy cause he was raising money to support.


Tuesday, February 16, 2021

3 Criteria for Selecting a Charity to Support

 As of 2018, there were nearly 1.6 million nonprofits registered in the United States. Wonderful though it may be for all the causes these organizations support, the sheer number of available charities can make it difficult for the average American to choose which to align with. If you’re looking for a nonprofit to support, the following tips can help you make a decision. 


1. Outline your philanthropic goals. 

The first and most important step in selecting a charity to support is to determine your goals for donating or volunteering. Start by looking at your values and interests. Are you passionate about animal welfare? The arts? Helping veterans? Write out a brief mission statement—this can help you narrow down your focus and make it easier to find an organization that not only aligns with your goals, but also has the biggest impact on your favorite cause.


2. Get to know its mission. 

Once you start to research potential charities, you should look closely at each of their missions. Pay close attention to the way they present their values and goals. You should be able to understand exactly what they are trying to accomplish and how their programming and policies are helping them achieve that end. 


3. Research potential choices.

At some point, you should narrow your choices down to a few nonprofits. Now is the time to conduct more in-depth research about each organization. Your due diligence will ensure that your money will make the greatest impact possible, and that there isn’t anything fishy going on with the organization you choose to support. To this end, look into the nonprofit’s finances, governance, and history. You can also use popular charity vetting sites like Charity Navigator and GuideStar to help with your research.


Wednesday, February 10, 2021

3 Big BGCA News Stories from 2020

2020 was a momentous year for the Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA). Despite the numerous changes that the COVID-19 pandemic brought, the organization strived to continue serving kids and teens across the country in any way that it could. From launching new virtual programs to engaging in fundraising efforts, BGCA found new ways to further its mission and build stronger community ties along the way.

Here are three of BGCA’s most significant news stories from 2020:

1. BGCA establishes a COVID-19 relief fund.

In early April, BGCA announced it would be launching a relief fund that would allow it to bolster its response to COVID-19 in the communities it serves. Proceeds from this fund have enabled the organization to transition much of its programming online to keep youth engaged in Club programming while ensuring their safety. BGCA has also used its COVID-19 Relief Fund to supply meals to Club kids and provide for those with front-line healthcare workers in their families. 

2. BGCA receives much-needed funding

As 2020 came to a close, the president of the Larson Family Foundation announced that the organization would be providing $30 million in funding to BGCA. On an immediate basis, this money will help BGCA broaden the scope of its COVID-19 response to communities it may not have otherwise been able to reach. This funding will also set the organization up for the future by allowing it to train employees, develop new programs, and provide more resources to its Club kids.

3. BGCA launched a partnership to provide online STEM learning.

BGCA recently joined forces with Thermo Fisher Scientific to expand its virtual programming. This partnership has allowed the organization to develop an interactive online STEM curriculum known as “DIY STEM,” which is available to youth across the globe.  

Friday, January 15, 2021

3 of the Ways the AHA is Responding to COVID-19

 

As the world continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, medical organizations like the American Heart Association (AHA) have launched ambitious responses to minimize the impact of this novel virus. Let’s look at three of the ways in which the AHA is responding to COVID-19 in 2020:



1. Connecting patients with educational resources.

The AHA has built a comprehensive COVID-19 resource center for both heart patients and the general population. These resources not only help keep individuals informed on how to take the right precautions against the disease, but also outline which heart patients are most at risk for developing serious symptoms. The organization also has resource sections that help educate the public about staying healthy, active, and stress free during these difficult times.


2. Helping frontline health workers.

As COVID-19 began to spread across the US, the AHA responded quickly in an effort to provide training and resources to the nation’s healthcare workers. The organization has begun offering free educational courses on oxygenation and ventilation and has launched a new podcast series on COVID-19 Clinical Guidance. Moreover, the AHA has collaborated with other organizations to improve remote-patient monitoring systems and help ease the burden on hospital workers. 


3. Conducting important research.

This year, the AHA is pledging at least $2.5 million to the research of COVID-19 and its effects on patients with cardiovascular and cerebrovascular conditions. This money is helping fund research grants that seek to enhance our understanding of COVID-19 and its effect on these diseases, with a focus on preventing and treating the virus. The AHA is also setting aside money for its Health Technologies and Innovation Strategically Focused Research Centers, which are creating solutions to help those in the medical field get a better handle on the pandemic.

 

Disclaimer: This website contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. This information is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. No guarantee is given regarding the accuracy or validity of any statements or information provided on this website. Do not rely on this information as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or another professional healthcare provider. You should seek immediate medical attention if you think you are suffering from a medical condition. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website.