Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 19, 2012 05:52 PM
In case it's not marked on your calendar, today is World Toilet Day — and it's no joking matter.
An estimated 2.5 billion people, 37% of the world's population, do not have access to a clean and safe toilet. One in three women worldwide risk shame, disease, harassment and even attack because they have nowhere safe to go to the toilet. Sanitation would make 1.25 billion women's lives safer and healthier, which is why people are being asked to petition governments to provide safe toilets and clean water for the world's poorest people.
As the Gates Foundation tweeted today, "The annual gain in economic productivity if everyone had a toilet is $225B." Putting things in perspective, Matt Damon, co-founder of Water.org, wants it to be known that more people have a mobile phone today than a toilet: “Six billion people have cell phones, but only 4.5 billion have access to improved sanitation.” Bill and Melinda Gates, in case you missed it, are putting serious funds toward reinventing the toilet as part of the foundation's water, sanitation and hygiene platform.
GE sponsored (as part of its Focus Forward three-minute short film series on world-changing ideas) the "Meet Mr. Toilet" documentary by Oscar-winning director Jessica Wu, which debuted this past January at the Sundance Festival earlier this year. It features the late Jim Sim (aka "Mr. Toilet"), who founded the World Toilet Organization and the annual World Toilet Day.
Named a TIME Hero of the Environment in 2008, Sim — who died in 2009 — was frank and enertaining about extolling the need for better sanitation and breaking the taboos about talking, well, shit. In fact, the former mayor of Suwon, South Korea, inspired a toilet museum in his former hometown, which opened earlier this year.Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on November 6, 2012 05:08 PM
For a while, the notion of regulating genetically modified organisms (better known as GMOs) included in food seemed like a good idea, and anti-Big Food advocates in California attracted a lot of support in a state where residents like to be on the cutting edge of just about everything. Calfornians have never minded serving as a bellwether on new regulatory initiatives that end up sweeping the rest of the country, such as automotive emissions.
But the closer today's vote on Proposition 37 loomed, the more that initial support of the idea waned. And this U.S. Election Day, even backers of the anti-GMO initiative seemed resigned to its defeat, although it's still being closely watched. (Update: Prop 37 was indeed defeated at the polling booth.)
What happened? Well, a combination of huge contributions by moneyed CPG brands battered Prop 37's drive to label GMOs in a massive advertising and PR blitz with a "No on 37" drive. And backers of the added regulation alleged dirty tricks by the competition as they sought to sway voters (despite scientific evidence to the contrary) that GMO-containing products are hardly the stuff of "Frankenfood" that really harms consumers.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 15, 2012 04:55 PM
An estimated 3,000 kids die daily, and more than 3.5 million children do not live to the age of five, largely due to diarrhea and pneumonia – both manageable with soap and water. People worldwide wash their hands with water, but far too few use soap, particularly at crucial moments such as after using the toilet, cleaning a child, or before handling food.
In 2008, Unilever, its Lifebuoy soap brand, and Population Services International (PSI) joined forces to declare October 15th Global Handwashing Day. Last year, the public-private partnership produced a PSA starring actress Mandy Moore, among other efforts.
This year's Global Handwashing Day bring a new partnership with the Millennium Villages Project, a joint effort by the Earth Institute at Columbia University and the United Nations Development Program. The PSA simply asks for support for an initiative working with 500,000 people in rural villages across ten countries in sub-Saharan Africa as part of a bigger goal to reach one billion people:Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 10, 2012 02:12 PM
Marks and Spencer has started a ‘shwopping’ fashion revolution. “It's time to open your mind, your heart, your arms and your wardrobe. Shwopping is a way of living and thinking, because we think that old clothes shouldn't just be thrown out, they should do some good,” explained Ab Fab actress Joanna Lumley at the initiative's launch back in April.
Shwopping asks every shopper to donate an old item when purchasing a new one at selected stores, and M&S will pass the clothes along to Oxfam's network of charity shops across the UK to help those less fortunate. The campaign’s Facebook app lets users shwop socially and register for a monthly prize draw.
In-store Shwop Drops (two items per store visit) make donations easy, and items need not be from M&S. “Our ultimate aim is to collect as many clothes as we sell and change the way we all shop,” says the brand, which just launched a "swhopped" ladies coat (above) last week: a stylish black peacoat that is also the first high street clothing product made from used clothing.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 9, 2012 05:18 PM
It's been 20 years since Evelyn Lauder created the Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign, and brands continue to support the work in a variety of initiatives. Indeed, this year's Delta pink plane is adding Lauder's signature, as seen above, to honor the woman and her brands' contributions to fighting breast cancer.
2012 also marks Ford Motor Company's 18th year of involvement having dedicated more than $115 million to the cause so far, and this year’s Ford Warriors in Pink campaign offers a limited-edition T-shirt inspired by film and television actor James Denton. For every shirt sold, 100% of net proceeds go to the Pink Fund, an organization that provides short-term financial aid to people during treatment. "The last thing someone with breast cancer needs to worry about is how they are going to pay their bills," says Denton.
Go Daddy is ‘driving’ awareness with Danica Patrick donning pink gear for the GoDaddy.com No. 7 Chevrolet in Friday’s NASCAR Nationwide race in Charlotte. “It’s time to kick breast cancer’s butt,” Patrick commented. “So many women and their families have been impacted by breast cancer … if we all work together, we can definitely help find a cure sooner, rather than later.”Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 4, 2012 01:01 PM
It's been 20 years since Evelyn Lauder created The Estee Lauder Companies' Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign, which is now active in over 70 countries worldwide. It's a testimony to the work Lauder and her company have done to make October into a monthlong platform for Breast Cancer Awareness.
That journey began in 1992, when 44,000 women in the U.S. were dying of breast cancer each year and nobody was paying attention. Twenty years later, BCA has raised $35 million for research and education and paralyzing fear has been replaced by hope and inspiration.Continue reading...
brands with a cause
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 1, 2012 01:27 PM
Ben Cohen may be a member of the elite 1% in America, but he’s a hippie at heart and always has been up for helping out the other 99%. Although the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream brand he co-founded with buddy Jerry Greenfield is now owned by Unilever, the brand still reflects their left-leaning vision by maintaining a commitment to activism, funded by a foundation to support “social justice, environmental protection, (and) sustainable food systems.” Plus, what makes the world happier than free ice cream? Ben & Jerry’s has been hosting a free cone day every year since it started in 1979.
Well, there’s one group of folks who aren’t too happy with Cohen today: Occupy Wall Street.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 28, 2012 10:01 AM
America's National Coffee Day is this Saturday, September 29, and Caribou Coffee is joining the march of philanthropic campaigns using Facebook to launch initiatives and gather momentum in a new partnership with CancerCare, a national nonprofit that provides free support services for anyone affected by cancer diagnosis. Customers can stop in for a free small cup of Amy's Blend coffee on Saturday, and learn about the woman who inspired this annual philanthropic campaign.
The brand was inspired by Amy Erickson, the company’s original roastmaster, who lost her battle with breast cancer in 1995 and inspired the Amy’s Blend program, which originally partnered with Susan G. Komen for the Cure and is now sharing the love with CancerCare. But as you can see from the packaging, it's not just about Amy's story — it's Gretchen's, Caryn's, Gigi's, Cindy's, Lisa's and so on.
So for the 17th consecutive year, Caribou (tagline: "Life is short. Stay awake for it.") will donate 10% percent of all proceeds from Amy’s Blend collection sales between Sept. 29th and Nov. 7th to CancerCare and for every new “Like” the brand will give an additional $1 to the organization.Continue reading...