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Local creatives team up to give back

Ornaments designed by the newly formed grassroots group Creativity for a Cause will be auctioned off December 2 to support the Contemporary Arts Center’s involvement with Memories in the Museum—a newly developed art program, intended for individuals dealing with memory loss.
 
Creativity for a Cause’s “Making Holiday Memories” is the first of what Elizabeth Olson, who helped found the group, hopes to be many efforts aimed at not only giving back to the community, but also providing local designers the chance to become inspired.
 
“I’m in design at P&G, and am regularly in contact with people who work there and in the at-large community who are creative with timelines, projects and budgets, and that’s their day-to-day vocation and avocation; but what I’ve noticed is, a lot of times, people will say, ‘I’m short on inspiration,’” Olson says. “They get tired or worn out, and I’ve watched what they do to try to get inspired. And what I recognized was that they didn’t want to listen to or watch somebody—they wanted to make stuff.”
 
So Olson, who also serves as a board member for the CAC, came up with the idea to engage designers across the Tri-State in a way that would allow them to apply their craft in a new way.
 
“Designers—the really good ones—are motivated by empathy,” Olson says. “And they want to help people. They want the things they create, even in these commercial products, to make a difference in peoples' lives.”
 
About 14 designers are involved in the group’s first project, and because the group is so individualized and organic, Olson says she expects a variety of ornaments, created through different mediums.
 
“I like to work with textiles. There’s some industrial designers who might decide to do 3D printing,” Olson says. “It’s intentionally left open so people can bring whatever they want to explore or feel proficient at.” 

Do Good: 

• Attend the CAC's event One Night, One Craft and support Memories in the Museum by bidding on Creativity for a Cause's ornaments in the silent auction.

• Contact Erica Camp if you're a designer or creative interested in participating in Creativity for a Cause's future efforts.

• Like the Contemporary Arts Center on Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia.

 

Celebrate community, gratitude at ninth annual Fall Feast

Six thousand meals will be served this Thanksgiving as the community joins together at this year’s Fall Feast to celebrate Cincinnati and the individuals who call the city home.
 
“Anyone can come to this event—we’ve built it on the idea of incorporating all walks of life at one table to share a meal,” says Erin Klotzbach, Fall Feast coordinator. “I wanted this to be an event where there were no demographics—there were no visual signs of ‘I’m from an upper echelon, you’re from the lower monetary demographic,’—I just wanted it to be more of an experience where you’d go to an event.”
 
Klotzbach got involved with Give Back Cincinnati five years ago when she attended Fall Feast and was a member of the planning committee. After one year of involvement, Klotzbach adopted the role of chairperson, and she’s served in that capacity for four years now, while working to transform the gathering into what it is today.
 
“The first year I chaired the event, we asked City Gospel Mission to join as a partner, and along with that came a few extra things they would do at their Thanksgiving dinner—coats and haircuts—because it was something they offered their guests,” Klotzbach says. “So we built that into our dinner, and it kind of evolved from a dinner to a dinner and resource day.”
 
The Duke Energy Convention Center will serve as the venue for the 3,500 guests who come to dine together, while 2,500 meals will be served to-go at various locations throughout the city. In addition to food, free haircuts and a coat giveaway, the event will also include free health screenings, pediatric and dental checkups, a children’s play area, live music and a big-screen television for community members to enjoy the national staples of Thanksgiving Day: parades and football.
 
“What makes Cincinnati great is its community—it’s a very giving culture—there’s lots of different resources for people in need,” Klotzbach says. “And it’s really an opportunity for different people to sit down at a table and interact with people they might not necessarily interact with. It’s bridging the gap in a situation where it might normally be uncomfortable, or you might not know how to engage that way, but because you’re sitting at the same table and you don’t see those lines, it’s very clear that we’re all there for each other.”

Do Good:

• Make Fall Feast part of your family's Thanksgiving Day tradition by attending the event. Meals are served between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Doors open at 9 a.m.

• Donate new or gently used coats and other winter accessories to be given away at Fall Feast. 

• Like Give Back Cincinnati and City Gospel Mission on Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

UIU employees team up to support women in transition

Sophie Stanford doesn’t take anything for granted. Instead, she says she understands and appreciates life’s basic necessities.
 
“I myself had been homeless at one point years ago—in transition from a bad relationship,” Stanford says. “So I know how important it is to have organizations like the Tom Geiger Guest House in a community, and what it does for a person’s self-esteem and helping them get back to where they need to be.”
 
Stanford, who works as Records Maintenance and Transcript Specialist at Union Institute & University’s Office of the Registrar, also serves as co-coordinator for the school’s partnership with the Geiger House.
 
Each month, she helps organize and collect supplies from other UIU employees who want to help support women and their children living in affordable housing offered by the Geiger House.
 
“Once they get a new family in, they provide them with a welcome bag which includes toilet paper, garbage bags, soap, paper towels, dish liquids, bleach, general cleaning supplies, gift cards for Kroger—things to just get them started in their own apartment,” Stanford says.
 
“They go there and take advantage of the support services to either stay there as long as they need to or transitionally—they’ll link them with educational services and all different types of things until they’re self-sufficient and can move out. But in the meantime, Geiger House helps them by providing those basic necessities that they need, and this is what we collect on a monthly basis.”
 
While providing supplies for daily living is important, Stanford says she and others at UIU also hope to provide a sense of empowerment to other women in the community.
 
“Part of our mission and vision statement is to be a beacon of hope for people—just to be there and try to bridge that gap,” Stanford says. “That’s what makes a community a community. Hopefully, this will take that family far, empower them to go to the next step, whether it’s education, housing or employment. But the smallest things make the biggest difference in a person’s life.”

Do Good:

• Support the Tom Geiger Guest House by donating. 

• Contact the Tom Geiger Guest House if you'd like to donate items for Welcome Bags. 

• Connect with Union Institute & University on Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

Price Hill Will and XU partner to offer free entrepreneurship workshop

If the thought of starting a business has ever crossed your mind, you’ll have the chance to take that thought one step further at LaunchCincy.
 
LaunchCincy is a free, three-part entrepreneurship workshop offered in partnership by Price Hill Will and Xavier University’s Sedler Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.
 
“You can come with a business idea or just the idea to own a business, and we’re going to step back either way and teach people how you observe your environment—whether at a coffee shop or a grocery store—and look at what people are struggling with and then see those as potential business ideas,” says Diana Vakharia, Price Hill Will’s director of economic development. “Any idea is a solution to a problem.”
 
Problem identification is the focus of the first workshop, while other topics in the series include creating a business plan, marketing and fundraising. Each session is led by a combination of business professionals, Xavier faculty and MBA students.
 
“It’s a very unique opportunity to have that sort of expertise guide you in the early stages as you’re developing an idea,” Vakharia says.
 
Price Hill is a prototype for the series, but according to Vakharia, the goal is to take the workshops to other neighborhoods throughout Greater Cincinnati so they, too, can allow community members to grow their own small businesses.
 
“There will hopefully be individuals who, after the program, can move into an incubator space and share rent and work out their business idea in a safe environment, and maybe eventually get a storefront,” Vakharia says. “It’s in a theoretical state right now, but that’s what we’re envisioning.” 

Do Good:

• Register to attend LaunchCincy. The workshop series is free and open to anyone in Greater Cincinnati.

• Connect with Xavier X-Lab on Facebook.

• Connect with Price Hill Will on Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 


SparkRecipes gives back, fights hunger with recipe contest

SparkPeople wants you to be inspired to live a healthier and happier life, and with the re-launch of its SparkRecipes website, you can do just that while finding nearly 600,000 quick, tasty and nutritious options to incorporate into your meal preparing routine.
 
To celebrate health and fitness site’s re-launch and to give back to its community of members, as well as the communities in which its members reside, the company is hosting the $10,000 Split-the-Pot Recipe Contest.
 
The aim is to find the best slow cooker recipe in the country, while also providing assistance to individuals who are facing issues of food insecurity.
 
“Slow cooking is a style that’s very popular with our members—it’s usually pretty vegetable heavy, it’s healthy, it’s easy,” says Joe Robb, SparkPeople’s digital marketing manager. “But we also wanted to make this a contest with a social component. So we came up with a split-the-pot idea where the grand prize is $10,000 dollars split down the middle—half to the winner and the other half to the soup kitchen or charity of their choice.”
 
According to Robb, it’s important for SparkPeople to give back because it’s the site’s community of members that makes SparkPeople “America’s largest diet and healthy living website.”
 
“We believe the reason our site does so well is not just because we have tools to measure exercise and goals, but a big portion is the community aspect,” Robb says. “It’s a reflection of what we see in our daily lives—if someone is having trouble getting those last few pounds, they get positive motivation to get them to their goal—and in Cincinnati and all across the world, they’re part of a community. So this is a way to help out our online community while also taking half that prize money to help out their local community.” 

Do Good: 

• Vote for your favorite recipe daily, and if you come across a local member's recipe, vote to support a close-to-home nonprofit. 

• Browse SparkRecipes to find healthy eating options.

• Volunteer and support nonprofits in your local community. 

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

Girls on the Run inspires physical, social, emotional confidence

When Girls on the Run Cincinnati launched nearly a decade ago, the organization served about 12 girls. But this spring, when it celebrates its 10-year anniversary, the nonprofit will reach its 10,000th girl.
 
GOTR Cincinnati offers a semester-long program to girls in third through eighth grade that provides a running-based curriculum that inspires confidence, healthy living and happiness with an end goal for participants to complete their first 5k.
 
“If you’re ever there to see them cross the finish line, the expression on their face—you can’t put that into words,” says Jo Craven, GOTR Cincinnati’s new Executive Director. “It gives them the sense that, if I can do this—set this goal and train and meet this goal—I can do anything, because for them—8- or 9-year olds—to run 3.1 miles, it seems like probably quite a daunting task when they first start training, and many don’t even understand the concept of how far that is.”
 
Craven began her work with GOTR Cincinnati in 2009 as a volunteer coach; and now, as a retired school principal, the nonprofit has become her priority.
 
“When I first heard about Girls on the Run, my daughter was in fifth grade, and I thought, ‘Wow, that’d be so great—not only for my school and the girls, but also for my daughter,” Craven says. “So I became a volunteer—a head coach—and started a team in our school last spring.”
 
Although running is a central component to the curriculum, Craven says it’s “the whole social, emotional, self-confidence piece” that’s incredibly powerful for the girls.
 
After spending 31 years in Northern Kentucky school systems, Craven says she had the advantage of watching girls grow up, and she saw first-hand the ways the program positively influenced the girls who took part.
 
“We had a little girl who was very shy and who lacked confidence in and out of the classroom; so in fifth grade, she participated, and it made just a huge difference in the way she carried herself,” Craven says. “She’d walk down the hall and have her hair over her face, not make eye contact with anyone—she didn’t really participate in class—but we saw quite a transformation in her socially and academically. And if you talk to coaches and parents across the country, you’d hear that same story over and over again. It really impacts the whole girl—socially, emotionally, and physically.” 

Do Good:

• Register to participate in GOTR Cincinnati's Fall 5k to support the organization's scholarship fund. 

• Register your girl for an upcoming session of Girls on the Run. 

• Support the organization by volunteering.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia.


Lighthouse Youth Services simplifies adoption process for foster parents

November is National Adoption Month, and Lighthouse Youth Services is celebrating by working with families to provide an easier transition into parenthood with its recent certification as a foster-to-adopt agency.
 
“For our current foster families, we’re dually certifying them as foster to adopt—that way, when a child becomes available to adopt, it lessens the length of time they have to wait,” says Jami Clarke, who serves as program director for Lighthouse Foster Care and Adoption. “There’s a six-month waiting period once a child’s been placed in the home, but if they’ve already been certified, they can go ahead and match. It speeds up the process.”
 
For children looking for a place they can finally call home, this new certification can make all the difference. “We’re helping children get out of the system at a quicker pace,” Clarke says.
 
Since the certification took effect, Clarke says 10 families have been approved for adoption. Ten more are in the process, and14 more finalizations will occur in the next couple months.
 
“Prior to the certification—from May to May of last year—we had 26 adoptions,” Clarke says.  “But for this year, we’re expecting that number to double. There are so many kids awaiting permanency, and we don’t want them just hanging out there.”

Do Good: 

• Support Lighthouse by giving.

• Learn about becoming a foster-to-adopt parent.

• Contact Jami Clarke if you're interested in mentoring or signing up for foster-to-adopt classes.
 
By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

One City, One Symphony connects community through music

For Sylvia Samis, 40-year veteran violinist with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the One City, One Symphony initiative has provided the opportunity to share stories of the personal connections she has with the music she plays.  
 
“I think so many times, when people come see us on stage, the guys wear tuxedos and we’re formal. So this is an opportunity to have a more close-up relationship and be able to talk to each other and have a discussion and maybe to see that the people involved are just the same as the people in the audience—that we’re together on this,” Samis says. “And I think the idea is just to make the music as important to the community and worthwhile so that they see it as part of their everyday lives.”
 
For the two years One City, One Symphony has been in existence, Samis has participated as a speaker in various listening parties across the city, where community members come together to listen to recordings of the pieces the CSO will play at the One City, One Symphony culminating performances November 14 and 16.
 
Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 and Mozart’s David Penitente are the focus pieces for this year’s initiative, so the CSO will explore themes of love, fate and redemption.
 
“I knew right away what I wanted to talk about,” says Samis, who says she connects closely to themes of fate and destiny.
 
“As it turned out, my husband and I—his mother and my father were next door neighbors in Poland before the war in the 1930s,” says Samis, who did not meet her husband Charles until 1969 when they both took jobs in New Orleans, arriving just three weeks apart from each another.
 
“From being possibly boy and girl next door had the war not come, we still wound up together all those miles and years later,” Samis says. “And at the listening parties, many times they want to know more personal things. So once I’ve opened up my life to them, they’re really very interested in hearing more and I’m happy to share that with them—they ask almost anything—and I think they’re just glad to know the people on the stage.” 

Do Good:

• Purchase tickets to the One City, One Symphony performances November 14 and 16 at Music Hall.

• Learn about CSO Parties of Note, and attend an event. All proceeds directly benefit the CSO. 

• Support the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra by donating. 

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

Cincinnati Youth Collaborative takes interest in student success

Cincinnati Youth Collaborative alumni Chloe Nared began her involvement with CYC when she was in the third grade, and she continued with the organization through her senior year of high school.
 
“I’ve been in it almost all of my life, and can definitely say they’ve been a great support system for myself in trying to make it through personal hardships,” Nared says.

CYC makes a difference in the lives of young people in second grade through college by providing mentoring, dropout prevention, high school success, college readiness and college success services. The organization brings together more than 1,700 volunteers and 100 local businesses and organizations to help young people graduate from high school and successfully make the leap forward into college and career.
 
Nared’s first CYC experience was with the mentoring program, which she entered into after her aunt, who worked at the organization, enrolled her.
 
“She decided it’d be good for me to have a mentor—who turned out to be her—but I didn’t know what the program was until fifth or sixth grade. I just knew I was hanging out with my aunt/mentor,” Nared says. “But it was good for me because it got me out of the house and away from situations. Everything was going into a downward spiral as I got older—things became harder, I was less focused in school—that’s something the program definitely helped with.”
 
Nared, who is now a freshman at the University of Rio Grande, says had it not been for the mentoring program, she wouldn’t be where she is today.
 
“She pushed me, practically shoved me through the door to get me from middle school to high school, high school to college,” Nared says. “She’s definitely been a positive motivator in my life.”
 
College Access’ Talent Search and Jobs for Cincinnati Graduates are two other CYC programs that Nared took part in—both of which eased her transition from high school to college.
 
“My career specialist was definitely interested in keeping me in school—I can’t even explain it. I don’t know if it’s that she took a personal interest in me or just all of her students period, but just making sure that they had something to do after high school, whether they enlisted in the military, enrolled in college or just simply being employed after high school,” Nared says.
 
“I love to give back as much as I’ve received, and I feel like because I’ve been given that chance—an opportunity—I feel like it would be great for me to do the same thing as someone else and just help guide them the way that I was guided by my mentor, my college advisor from CYC and my career specialist from JCG.” 

Do Good: 

• Volunteer with CYC as a mentor or tutor.

• Support CYC by donating.

• Connect with CYC by liking the nonprofit's page on Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

Random Snacks of Kindness benefits nonprofit community

If you’re in need of a locally made $10 dollar holiday gift, Random Snacks of Kindness is now available, and 100 percent of the profits will benefit ArtWorks, a nonprofit organization that employs and trains local youth and talent to create art and community impact through three strategic programming areas: public art, art therapy and entrepreneurship.
 
The snack mix is the first of what local chef Frances Kroner hopes will be many productions in her philanthropic line.
 
“My parents are in social work and nursing, and I always felt a little guilty—like I didn’t give back as much as I’d like to in my life or my career,” says Kroner of Feast and Sleepy Bee Café, which is her newest venture, set to open next month in Oakley.
 
Random Snacks of Kindness is what Kroner calls “a sort of merging of a lot of different things in life all at once.”
 
In addition to being a way to give back, the idea for the first project came as a response to her experience in ArtWorks’ SpringBoard business development program.
 
“I got to know them better and how they work with apprentices and thought it was a really cool organization,” Kroner says. “I had seen the murals and heard of them, but I got a glimpse into the back end of things once I went through SpringBoard, and after I finished, I wanted to stay connected.”
 
So Kroner pitched an idea to the organization that would take the apprenticeships the organization already had in place, and expand them from mural-based art to food-based design and entrepreneurial skills.
 
“I didn’t realize how big an impact it was going to have on them, but you can tell already that it was such an eye opener to them to see how much work goes into a product—how much work goes into a business,” Kroner says. “I think they’ll probably retain that knowledge—they’ll remember for a long time.”

Watch a video introducing Random Snacks of Kindness to learn more.

Do Good:

• Support ArtWorks by purchasing the apprentices' Ginger Coconut Snack Mix. 

• If your nonprofit would like to partner with Random Snacks of Kindness to create a mix in the future, contact Frances Kroner.

• Like Random Snacks of Kindness on Facebook, and share the page with your friends.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

Band of Helping Hands enables children to pursue life goals

Chelsea Piper, who works at a mental health agency that services children with special needs and who are in need of foster care, saw a need for more activities and extracurricular opportunities in the lives of those she encounters on a daily basis.   

So she and a co-worker founded Band of Helping Hands.

“We realized how many of the kids don’t have access to services like dancing or computers or art lessons or karate—stuff that a lot of kids get to do but they don’t,” Piper says. “So we started it as a way to find activities for them.”

Band of Helping Hands is now in its second year of operation, and since last August, the nonprofit has helped about 75 young individuals further explore their passions.

“There are a few kids we’ve had that just have such a talent for art but who haven’t had a chance to express themselves,” Piper says. “They didn’t have supplies at home or anything, so we’ve given supplies, and kids have entered them in contests because they want to grow up to be artists. And we’ve had some phenomenal dancers who haven’t had lessons from a professional, but it gives them an outlet and something to look forward to in a safe place."

The nonprofit has also purchased a computer for the children to use to complete homework and conduct job searches, and has set up a space with equipment like a pool table and a basketball hoop for students to utilize.

“I have a letter from one little boy who wanted to play baseball, but he didn’t have a glove or uniform, so we purchased him a baseball and bat and glove to practice with, and he wrote us just the sweetest letter thanking us and telling how he was able to play in his first game,” Piper says. “And I was in tears—he was just so appreciative and excited to be able to do something he hasn’t been able to do for 12 years.”

Do Good:

• Support Band of Helping Hands by donating.

Contact the organization if you'd like to volunteer teaching a class or extracurricular activity.

• Connect with the nonprofit on Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia.



OVRS executive director's reach extends beyond one nonprofit

For more than 20 years, Jamie Steele has worked to provide residential services for individuals with developmental disabilities; but his passion and drive to help others reach their full potential has been strong since the age of 4.
 
“My little brother Andy was born with developmental disabilities—he could never walk or talk throughout his life—and he passed away at age 30,” Steele says. “He and I were close in age and pretty good friends, and all the activities he went to, I then would go to, too, and volunteer, then become staff, so he was definitely the most influential person on me.”
 
Steele has now accepted the role of executive director of Ohio Valley Residential Services, a nonprofit that differs from other residential service providers in that it allows individuals to engage in independent living, as opposed to the group home model.
 
“They can be in their apartment and thus feel more independent,” Steele says. “A number of people with disabilities are like you and me. They want to have their own space and participate in activities of daily living—bathing, dressing cooking—so it’s our job environmentally to provide an atmosphere where they can reach their individual potential.”
 
In addition to heading a nonprofit, Steele makes it a priority to help other organizations fulfill their own missions. As an avid music lover, he’s formed a rock band called The Code, which donates its proceeds back to the nonprofit community.
 
“It’s always been engrained in me that this is a community,” Steele says. “And if I want to ask the general community to accept people with disabilities, then I have to be willing to also give back.”  

Do Good: 

• Connect with Ohio Valley Residential Services on Facebook.

• Support OVRS by donating.

• Contact OVRS if you are interested in becoming a board member.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 
 

Autumn Air Art Fair prioritizes art education

When fiber artist Pam Irvin traveled to Tennessee one weekend for an art show that she says ended up being more of an outdoor street market, she was prompted to do something different, and on a local level, to help support artists by putting their work at the center.
 
“I wanted a focused target audience—one that wanted to buy art and not elephant ears and pizza and stuff like that,” Irvin says.
 
So five years ago, Irvin founded the Autumn Air Art Fair, which she hosted in her backyard as a way for 13 artists to gather together to showcase and sell their work.
 
“We had a great turnout, and the next year we took it to the next level; and since I live in Clifton, I wanted to support the Clifton Cultural Arts Center, so we decided to rent the facility and have the show there,” Irvin says.
 
The show is now in its fifth year, and it’s grown steadily since 2009. For the first few years, Irvin saved proceeds from the event, which she donated to the Art Academy of Cincinnati last year to provide scholarships for four individuals.
 
This year’s show, which took place this past Saturday, generated revenue for what Irvin hopes will be enough to provide 10 scholarships toward art education.
 
“The Art Academy has a portfolio prep class geared toward sophomores and juniors in high school who want to go on and pursue a career in art and who need a portfolio for college admissions, so that’s a three-week intensive thing over the summer, and I’m hoping we can award at least two of those this year,” Irvin says. “That one that makes the biggest impact, because obviously some kids have the talent but don’t necessarily know what they need for the application or don’t have the materials.” 

Do Good:

• Follow the Autumn Air Art Fair's blog to keep up with the event's artists throughout the year. 

• Support art education in your local schools or at the Art Academy of Cincinnati.

• Support the Clifton Cultural Arts Center by donating.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 

 

ReSource offers free shredding for nonprofits

Kevin Torch, senior transaction manager at CBRE, has served on the board for ReSource for the past three years now, and he’s passionate about it because it’s a way to help hundreds of nonprofits at once.
 
“You’re not really working for just one nonprofit—you’re really working for like 400,” Torch says. “We’ve been involved in the community for over 20 years, and to date have saved nonprofit members about $36 million dollars. We’ve served over 1,400 nonprofits, and we continue to redirect hundreds of tons of useable products from local landfills.”
 
ReSource distributes corporate donations like office furniture and supplies to member nonprofits that can then shop at the organization’s warehouse for pennies on the dollar.
 
As a way to raise awareness about ReSource and what it offers to the local nonprofit community, Torch is heading up Shred Week, sponsored by CBRE and Cintas, which will take place at the organization’s Sharonville office November 4–8.
 
“Most nonprofits are all required to shred their documents, but they don’t necessarily have the resources to do so, so it allows a company like ReSource to help them out in that capacity,” Torch says. “The goal, though, is to generate more community awareness and in turn hopefully drive more potential nonprofits to join the warehouse as they learn about who we are. There’s so many, and as you go around and talk to people, a lot of them don’t know who ReSource is. Hopefully it gets more people to understand the green use of ReSource.” 

Do Good:
• Contact Molly Lohr of ReSource if you'd like to volunteer during Shred Week. 

• Bring your nonprofit's documents to ReSource, along with proof of your 501(c)(3) status November 4–8 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. for Shred Week, and join together with community members for food and entertainment between 12 and 2 p.m. November 8.

• If you're a nonprofit, consider becoming a member of ReSource. 

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 


Library adds to digital collection, streams film and TV

Watching television shows and movies online just became even easier—and free—as a result of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County’s recent addition of streaming services like Hoopla and Freegal Movies into its collection.
 
“We’ve been talking about this for a while with Netflix and Hulu and all those other products out there that consumers are used to seeing,” says Holly Varley, PLCHC’s material selection and acquisitions manager. “We definitely wanted to stay up to date with that digital content. That’s a goal of ours with the community—to make sure we’ve got digital content for e-books and audio books—and streaming and movies was the next piece of the puzzle.”
 
Hoopla offers library cardholders the opportunity to stream up to eight movies or television shows per month, while Freegal Movies enables users to view as many as three movies or television shows every 48 hours.
 
Both services eliminate any worries of damaged or lost materials and late fees, which makes borrowing and loaning materials easier and more convenient for all parties involved.
 
“There’s nothing to break, nothing to melt in your car, to get peanut butter on—it’s all just going to be there on your device,” Varley says. “And we just thought with as many people out there in the world who have tablets and smartphones, and as that gets more prolific, people expect to be able to use things on their device. We want it to be right there in terms of technology needs.” 

Do Good:
• Familiarize yourself with the library's digital material, and begin to use it. 

• Support the library by volunteering.

• Connect with the library through Facebook.

By Brittany York
Brittany York is a professor of English composition at both the University of Cincinnati and Xavier University. She also edits the For Good section of SoapboxMedia. 
 
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