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Talent : For Good

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ReSource, Phillips Edison launch "On the Rise" initiative to connect YPs with nonprofits

When ReSource isn’t helping area nonprofit organizations by distributing corporate donated furniture and office supplies, it's connecting them with talented young professionals.

ReSource’s new YP program, On the Rise, is the product of a partnership with Phillips Edison real estate investors.

Maybe a nonprofit needs help setting up its website or taking a closer look at its finances. Maybe it need someone who knows a little about marketing or event planning. On the Rise will pair those non-profit organizations with Cincinnati area young professionals who have experience in relevant subjects.

“This allows young professionals to help nonprofits in a meaningful way beyond just volunteering,” says ReSource Executive Director Christie Brown. “They might not have money early in their careers to support a cause, but they do have talents and skills.”

ReSource plans to host a series of networking events designed to pair its nonprofit members and their business needs with skilled young professionals, essentially playing matchmaker.

“We are excited about this partnership because it allows us to impact multiple organizations at the same time while also accessing a key talent base in the Cincinnati area that we will need to engage in order to support our growth as a company,” says Phillips Edison COO Bob Myers.

Do Good:

• Like ReSource on Facebook to learn more about how they serve the nonprofit community in Cincinnati.

• For more information about the On the Rise initiative, contact Christie Brown.

• ReSource is always looking for gently used donations to redistribute to nonprofits in need.

Greenhouse Rock! fundraiser supports musicians with developmental disabilities

Melodic Connections hosts its annual Greenhouse Rock! event Oct. 10 at Krohn Conservatory to support its music therapy services for children and adults with developmental disabilities. The fundraiser will feature food, raffle baskets, a silent auction and performances by local bands SwampthangJody Stapleton and Chris Comer Trio.

The fundraiser will also feature performances from Melodic Connections’ own student musicians.

“This is a night where we celebrate them and highlight their abilities as musicians,” says Communications Manager Lynn Migliara. “It’s a place where they finally get to play for all their friends and family.”

Students chose their own songs to perform and have been rehearsing every day. 

The fundraiser is a great time for the students as well as for their parents.

“Most of these parents have spent a lifetime advocating for their child with a developmental disability and always wonder what adulthood is going to be like,” Migliara says. “They are so grateful that they get to see them up on stage with confidence. A lot of them never thought this would happen for their kids.”

Greenhouse Rock! will take place at 6:30-10 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 10 at Krohn Conservatory, 1501 Eden Park Dr. 

Do Good:

Purchase tickets to attend Greenhouse Rock! at Krohn Conservatory in Eden Park. Tickets are $75 each.

• Melodic Connections is still looking for event sponsors.

• To learn more about Melodic Connections, visit its website.

Greater Cincinnati Earth Coalition raising money for Earth Day 2016

The Cincinnati Earth Day Celebration isn’t typically celebrated until April, but the Greater Cincinnati Earth Coalition (GCEC) is raising money now for next year’s event. The fundraiser is scheduled for Oct. 9 at City Barbeque locations in Blue Ash and Florence.

Not only will 25 percent of purchases go toward the April event, but customers will be educated on what Earth Day is really about and how to have a better impact on the environment.

“There are different approaches to ‘being green,'” says event chair Standish Fortin. “We want to educate people on what they can do to be a better steward for the Earth. They can come and learn about what they can do and what others are doing.”

Do Good:

• Visit City Barbeque in Blue Ash (10375 Kenwood Road) or Florence (8026 Burlington Pike) on Friday, Oct. 9 and help raise money for Earth Day 2016.

• Check out the Greater Cincinnati Earth Coalition’s Facebook page to learn more about how you can help the environment.  

• The 2016 Earth Day event is looking for sponsors. There are a few different levels of sponsorship to choose from. 

Mt. Healthy studio teaches dance, life skills

When Kelli Harmon-Dobson formed the Highsteppers Studio 16 years ago, she had no idea how much of an effect it would have on young girls in the community. The structured program uses dance and drill to form positive self-esteem, interpersonal skills and help girls ages 3-18 uncover their leadership abilities.

There’s no doubt the dance teams are talented — they’re state, regional and national champions in the high kick, pom and hip hop categories. Still, Harmon-Dobson doesn’t want dance competitions to be strictly about winning.  

“Competition or not, we don’t tell them to be better than another team,” she says. “We tell them to do an amazing job and be better than the team they were the day before.”
The structured program is a little underhanded, as most of the girls don’t realize what the program is really about until they graduate.

“We want them to have a different outlook on themselves and what they’re doing,” Harmon-Dobson says. "We try to have our girls become leaders and express themselves better. We want them to better respect themselves, each other and the community.”
The Mt. Healthy studio goes far beyond just dance, drill and building leadership skills. After spending hours together after school each week, the girls form a close bond, much like sisters do.  

“We’re more than just a dance team,” Harmon-Dobson says. “We’re family. The studio is our home.”

And the girls treat is as such. They keep a tight schedule between practicing, studio chores ad doing their schoolwork. The program requires a minimum required grade point average of 2.0.
Many of the girls participate in the bridge program, the Highsteppers Sisterhood, once they graduate high school and make the transition to college or the workforce. They come back to the studio as mentors.

The Highsteppers’ next performance is Oct. 10 at Tri-County Mall, where they’ve been performing since 2007. Their performance will incorporate breast cancer awareness, something that touches many lives of the girls and their families.
“They could be doing plenty of other things, but they're doing this,” Harmon-Dodson says. “They're choosing to be positive.”

Do Good:

• Attend the Highsteppers performance on Saturday, Oct. 10 at Tri-County Mall, 11700 Princeton Pike. Performances will take place at 2 and 5 p.m. and last approximately one hour each.

• Like Highsteppers on Facebook.

• For more information, email Director Kelli Harmon-Dobson.

COV200 seeks input for what to put inside Covington bicentennial's time capsule

Covington residents, business owners and friends recently voted to determine the winning Covington Bourbon Barrel design for a time capsule they’re creating in commemoration of Covington’s bicentennial. Now COV200 — the volunteers behind the year-long celebration of all things Covington, who aim to showcase the city’s rich 200-year history, culture and potential — is working with the community to determine the time capsule’s contents.
“We have received quite a few ideas from the community, including 2015 mint coins, menus from all Covington restaurants, the Covingtonopoly game, photos of families, letters from kids to future kids, list of top music in 2015, the COV200 book and much more,” says Kate Esarey, COV200 Project Manager and Community Development Specialist at The Center for Great Neighborhoods of Covington.
The time capsule itself, designed by local maker Steven Sander, will be created from the reclaimed floor of a home on Scott Street. Once filled, it will be preserved in a glass case and put on display in the new Hellman Creative Center next summer, where it will remain until 2115.
“I think a time capsule is a great way for our community to reflect on Covington’s 200th year and explore what makes our community special,” Esarey says. “I hope folks in 2115 will really enjoy understanding how we perceived Covington in 2015 and what made it unique 100 years prior.”

Do Good: 

• Contribute your ideas for the content within the time capsule by contacting Kate Esarey.

• Connect with COV200 on Facebook to keep up with upcoming events. 

Support The Center for Great Neighborhoods of Covington.

Park + Vine paying it forward to help those in need

Customers can pay it forward at Over-the-Rhine shop Park + Vine by pre-purchasing meals for those in need, specifically the homeless.

Owner Danny Korman was inspired this summer while visiting one of his favorite restaurants, Rosetta’s Kitchen, in Asheville, N.C., and noticing they offered a similar program.
Here’s how it works at Park + Vine: Customers order something off the menu for themselves and add any dollar amount to their ticket, then fill out a post-it note with that dollar amount and tape it on the wall next to the lunch counter. Each note can be redeemed by someone who really needs it, regardless of his or her financial situation.
“One thing I love is that for a moment in time it removes our own ego,” Korman says. “We get so caught in our own head and worries that it separates us from what’s happening around us and with others.”
Tabs can pay for a beans-and-rice dish priced on a sliding scale of $2 to $7, but customers can purchase any menu item for a stranger in need.
The act of kindness movement at Park + Vine is only two weeks old, but it’s already resonating with customers.
“Last week, we had a woman who was having lunch with some folks take two of the tabs on the wall to put toward her purchase,” Korman says. “She charged the remaining amount on her card and then added $3 to pay it forward to someone else.”
The contagious pay-it-forward movement is happening all across the country. A recent NPR segment highlighted a pizza shop in Philadelphia, where 10 percent of sales come from paying it forward by the slice.
The Park + Vine lunch counter is open 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday for brunch.
Do Good:

• Buy a meal for a stranger at the lunch/brunch counter at Park + Vine, 1202 Main St., Over-the-Rhine.

• Follow owner Danny Korman's blog on Park + Vine's website.

• Find ways to pay it forward within your own community.

Grateful Grahams' founder coordinates A Grateful Plate to honor NKY's female farmers, producers

Nearly four years ago, Rachel DesRochers launched her culinary dream job, Grateful Grahams, in which she prepares and sells handmade, vegan graham cracker treats while promoting gratefulness among her customers.
Now she’s coordinating A Grateful Plate so the community can express its gratitude for Northern Kentucky’s base of female farmers, producers and chefs.
“My goal with both my personal life and my business is to spread gratitude, and this event is a wonderful opportunity to do just that,” DesRochers says.
A portion of proceeds from the farm-to-table, dinner-by-the-bite event — which takes place Sunday, Sept. 27 at New Riff Distillery — will benefit the Community Farm Alliance, a Kentucky-based nonprofit that promotes farmers and the idea of bringing a public voice to policy makers.
All food served at Sunday’s event uses ingredients exclusively sourced from Northern Kentucky’s female farmers. One of the sample offerings features a biscuit bar with goat gravy and gooseberry jam from The Delish Dish, with pork shoulder and hominy by Nectar.
“The women farmers, chefs and producers joining us for the evening are all amazing at what they do,” DesRochers says. “And as a community, Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati are so lucky to have these women and their talents.”

Do Good: 

• Learn how you can help the Community Farm Alliance by getting involved.

• Learn more about A Grateful Plate and buy tickets here.

• “Like” Grateful Grahams on Facebook.

Athletes, outdoor enthusiasts excited for annual Great Ohio River Swim (moved to Oct. 10)

UPDATE: The event, originally scheduled for Sept. 27, has been moved back to Oct. 10 at the same time and locations. A statement on the event website says: The algae is not clearing from the Ohio River as fast as expected. With no rain forecast and algae as far upriver as Huntington, it is hard to predict if it will clear by September 27. Rather than make a last minute call, the Great Ohio River Swim has elected to proactively postpone the swim to Saturday, October 10.

Over the past seven years more than 850 people — as young as 10 and as experienced as 85 — have completed the Great Ohio River Swim. Oct. 10 marks the eighth annual year for the event, and it’s expected to be a record-breaking year for the timed 900-meter venture across the Ohio and back.
"We are anticipating record participation this year by area high school, college and club swim teams," says Jonathan Grinder, President and CEO of Tuscon Racing Inc., which manages the event. "It’s a great way to highlight Greater Cincinnati's national reputation as a center of excellence for competitive swimming."
While the River Swim does draw participation from triathletes and conditioned swimmers, it’s also open to anyone who can swim and wants to engage in a unique and fun opportunity to take advantage of the last remaining weeks of warm weather.
Proceeds benefit Green Umbrella, a nonprofit alliance that promotes environmental sustainability in our region. Specifically, the Great Ohio River Swim will benefit the nonprofit’s Meet Me Outdoors website, which highlights recreational outings around town.

Event organizers are monitoring the recent "algae bloom" reports about the Ohio River that would make conditions unsafe to swim but say on the event website that "the weather has changed dramatically with cooler temperatures and recent rain, making the likelihood of a health threatening algae bloom increasingly remote. Nevertheless, the Great Ohio River Swim is committed to swimmer safety. We are working closely with ORSANCO and the Cincinnati Health Department to monitor all conditions that might affect swimmer safety."

"This is a fun and safe opportunity for people of all ages to swim across the Ohio," says Brewster Rhoads, Swim Chair and volunteer with Green Umbrella. "Swimmers are invariably impressed with the cleanliness and beauty of the Ohio, and they become more committed to protecting it." 

Do Good: 

Register for the Great Ohio River Swim, which takes place Sunday, Oct. 10 at 8:15 a.m., beginning and ending at the Serpentine Wall/Public Landing in downtown Cincinnati.

• Check out Meet Me Outdoors and find an event to attend with your friends or families. 

• If you're interested in supporting Green Umbrella, find out how you can get involved.

Rank & select area healthcare providers through new searchable databases at Your Health Matters

Area residents can make better choices about their healthcare, specifically when it comes to choosing a primary care physician or hospital, thanks to YourHealthMatters.org. The online rating tool was developed locally by the Health Collaborative based on patient experience data.
Results are calculated from a survey mailed to patients who have recently visited their doctor. To eliminate bias, patient responses are randomly sampled and compiled by an independent research company, which are then submitted to Your Health Matters. 
Practices are measured in four core areas: getting care when needed, how well doctors communicate, courteous and helpful office staff and overall rating of the doctor.
“Everyone needs a provider,” says Health Collaborative Director of Communications Shannan Schmitt. “Everyone wants to know who is doing well and who’s listening. This is exactly what we want Your Health Matters to be — a one-stop shop for finding the right doctor.” 
Your Health Matters also rates practices on diabetes care, cardiovascular health and colon cancer screenings.
Since its launch in 2010, YourHealthMatters.org has seen an overall improvement in doctor and hospital ratings, with Cincinnati ranking higher than the national average.  
"Your Health Matters has become a model of our region,” Schmitt says. “Not everyone has this platform. This is a model that can be replicated in other cities and is definitely something our community should be proud of.”
New ratings are set to be released later this month or in early October.
Do Good:

• See for yourself and compare ratings of area medical providers.

• Stay connected with Your Health Matters on Facebook.

• To learn more about YourHealthMatters.org, visit the website.

Greater Cincinnati STEM Collaborative receives national support to further learning

The Greater Cincinnati STEM Collaborative (GCSC) is one of just 27 organizations nationwide chosen to pilot the STEM Ecosystems Initiative, a project more than 10 years in the making that’s funded by the STEM Funders Network. The project seeks to “nurture and scale effective science, technology, engineering and math learning opportunities for all young people.”
The GCSC has made it its mission to facilitate partnerships that afford students increased learning opportunities such as the STEM Bicycle Club, a cross-sector collaboration that models the innovative approach the STEM Ecosystems Initiative hopes to foster.
“Through innovative programs like the STEM Bicycle Club, we’re bringing together partners from across the region for the good of students and their futures,” says Mary Adams, program manager for the GCSC. “Support of the STEM Funders Network and collaboration with colleagues across the United States will accelerate progress against our mission to create a robust STEM pipeline of talent to meet the accelerating demand for STEM jobs in our region.”
The 27 groups piloting the STEM Ecosystems Initiative will convene at the White House in November to share ideas with one another and to receive support and coaching from leaders in education, science and industry. The overall goal is to find a way to move beyond gender, racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and linguistic barriers that sometimes stand in the way of young people, preventing them access to rigorous learning opportunities that extend beyond the classroom.
For STEM Funders Network Co-Chairs Gerald Solomon, Executive Director of the Samueli Foundation, and Ron Ottinger, Executive Director of the Noyce Foundation, the design of STEM Ecosystems Initiative will allow for a more immersive educational experience for all.
“It is an initiative to design the kind of infrastructure that ensures that STEM learning is truly ‘everywhere’ and is a top priority for communities supporting youth to develop the skills and knowledge they need for success in a global workforce,” Solomon and Ottinger said in a joint statement.

Do Good:

Support the Greater Cincinnati STEM Collaborative.

• If you're an educator, learn how you can do your part in facilitating STEM learning opportunities.

• Like the GCSC on Facebook.

Local salon owner wants to do Kim Davis' hair, address differences

For local salon owner Jim Brofft, compassion and open lines of communication are key when it comes to addressing differences. That’s why he’s made an offer to Rowan County (Ky.) Clerk Kim Davis, who has refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses and is now serving time in jail for contempt of court.
Brofft, who owns Salon Central in Over-the-Rhine, wants to meet Davis to cut, color and style her hair free of charge.
"Maybe after a hour with me in her jail cell, she will see that homosexuals are just like everyone else," Brofft says.

It’s an approach that Brofft says is non-confrontational and fosters shared experiences and openness toward those who are different.

Brofft, an openly gay Cincinnati native, has successfully owned and operated his salon since 2009 and has trained at seminars across the world — Vienna, Prague, London, Montreal, Los Angeles, New York City and Chicago. He is experienced when it comes to hair, but he’s also experienced when it comes to providing clients with a relaxing experience that leaves them feeling refreshed and confident with a look that suits their features and lifestyle, he says.

"I believe in the transformative power of great style," Brofft says. "Kim will look in the mirror after a hair makeover and see not only a more beautiful woman but perhaps one who can open her heart and accept that gay people deserve to love and marry.”

Do Good: 

• Visit the Gay & Lesbian Community Care Center to learn about and access local resources. 

• Support the GLBTQ Center by purchasing your ticket to Pride Night 2015 Sept. 11 at Kings Island.

• Make an effort to talk to someone unlike yourself. 

Coalition Academy unites community members together against substance abuse

Community members and public health professionals are joining forces to battle substance abuse at the 2015 Coalition Academy on Sept. 30. 
The annual all-day conference, hosted by PreventionFIRST! at the Great Wolf Lodge in Mason, will feature Ann Barnum, Vice President of Community Strategies at Interact for Health, as its keynote speaker. She will speak on opioid prevention and its impact on coalitions and local communities in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

The academy is an opportunity for people in the community and coalition leaders to learn more about substance abuse prevention and public health. There will also be a heavy emphasis on coalition development and what those coalitions can do within their communities, such as changing policies and norms.

There will be three different presentation tracks for attendees: media and promotion of prevention, coalition development and the public impact of substance abuse prevention. Local speakers and leaders will share the effective strategies they're using in their communities.

“Effective prevention is always what we are trying to strive for,” says PreventionFIRST! Executive Director Mary Haag. “Substance abuse has been around for a long time, but it has to hit home before someone will want to take action. We want to make sure we make this applicable so people can go back and use these strategies in their communities.”
The 2015 Coalition Academy will take place 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 30. A continental breakfast and lunch are included in the registration fee.
Do Good:

• There is still time to register for the 2015 Coalition Academy. Tickets are $50 for the general public.

• Join a coalition in your own community and help prevent substance abuse.

• Support PreventionFIRST! by making a donation

Rain Pryor's "That Daughter's Crazy" to open 2015 Cincinnati Film Festival

The Cincinnati Film Festival begins Sept. 10 with That Daughter’s Crazy as its opener. The documentary, directed by Elzbieta Szoka, explores the life of actress and comedienne Rain Pryor, daughter of Richard Pryor, through footage, photos, press clipping and various interviews.

“This year we have another amazing line up of over 100 films from all over the world, and many from our own backyard,” says Kat Steele, director of the Cincinnati Film Festival. “We’re honored to be able to bring Rain and Daryl (Sledge, the film’s producer) here to Cincinnati for this special opening night premiere event.”

A stand-up comedy show featuring a few Queen City natives will precede the film screening. Ally Bruener, Kelly Collette, Teri Foltz, Kristen Lundberg and Ky Platt will take the stage with Pryor headlining the show.

Bruener, who hails from Alexandria, Ky., was born with muscular dystrophy and uses dark humor in her cynical bit, “I Laughed at the Crippled Girl.”

"I'm amazed by the amount of diversity, with regard to both personal backgrounds and comedic stylings, that this lineup has to offer,” Bruener says.

That Daughter's Crazy will be screened at The Carnegie in Covington at 9 p.m. Sept. 10, preceded by the comedy show at 7:30. Tickets to both the comedy show and film are $20. The VIP meet-and-greet package, which includes cocktails prior to the show and film, is $40.

The Cincinnati Film Festival recently received a micro-grant from Fuel Cincinnati to support the 2015 schedule running Sept. 10-20 at various venues.

Do Good:

Purchase your tickets to the comedy show and film screening online.

• For more information about That Daughter’s Crazy, visit the film's website.

• Check out the full schedule of film screenings on Cincinnati Film Festival’s Facebook page.  

Cincinnati Food + Wine Classic returns with another star-studded collection of chefs

Washington Park becomes one big kitchen for the Cincinnati Food + Wine Classic throughout the weekend of Sept. 11-13, the event's second year of hosting the best food and beverage flavors in the Midwest. Locals can enjoy culinary demonstrations, chef competitions and wine, beer and spirit tastings right on the park's event lawn across from Music Hall.

Not only will you be able to sample incredible food and drink, but CF+WC is partnering with Findlay Market and Freestore FoodBank to provide more than 14,000 meals to locals in need.

Cincinnati was recently called out as the next big food city in the U.S. by Keith Pandolfi, a Cincinnati native and freelance writer for Saveur magazine. Pandolfi — who served as a judge last year for CF+WC's Pork Chopped competition — shined a light on the restaurant scene in Cincinnati and the Midwest with good reason.

“This is the kind of thing we want to stand for,” says Courtney Tsitouris, CF+WC co-founder. “Never again and never before have you seen this particular collection of talent together. We've pulled people from the Midwest and all over the country.”

Do Good:

Register for tickets to the Cincinnati Food + Wine Classic Sept. 11-13 at Washington Park. Ticket packages are available for each day as well as for the full weekend.

• Lend a hand and volunteer your time for the weekend.

• Check out the full list of this year’s participating culinary talent.

Party like a rock star at Music Resource Center fundraiser

The Music Resource Center (MRC) in Walnut Hills is hosting its annual Party Like a Rockstar fundraiser Aug. 29 to raise funds to support the after-school program, which hosts kids learning to play guitar, singing opera, rapping and playing jazz under one roof.

The benefit will feature a performance from MRC students, a silent auction and an open bar featuring craft beer, draft beer, liquor and wine, says Executive Director Karen D'Agostino.

The MRC provides recording and performing equipment to local teens between the grades of 7 and 12 for $2 a month. Kids can take private lessons, train in rehearsal rooms and record music in the multi-track recording studio.

MRC recently launched a low-frequency radio station, 95.7-FM, that features original content recorded at the studio, ranging from music to talk shows and public service announcements.

But the organization is more than just about recording music and performing arts. Mentors use life skills to create a sense of empowerment for the kids who spend their afternoons at the MRC.

“Some of them have very low confidence and struggle at school,” D’Agostino says. “But that kid who can’t concentrate comes in and sits in a studio for three hours straight. He’s found a passion he hasn’t had the opportunity to explore elsewhere.”

Do Good:

• Register to attend the Party Like a Rockstar benefit event on Saturday, Aug. 29 at The Redmoor in Mt. Lookout. Tickets are $65 for one person and $120 for two.

• The Music Resource Center depends on volunteer teachers, so please donate your time for a good cause.

• For more information about MRC’s radio station, 95.7, visit their website. 
397 Talent Articles | Page: | Show All
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