All Articles Tagged "philanthropy"

Memphis Native Proves She’s A Boss By Giving Back To Her Community

November 16th, 2015 - By jade
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We created a contest where we encouraged women to share their journey to becoming a boss. The winners received a makeover by a celebrity glam squad. Memphis native, Tracey Woods, shows us how you can be a boss by giving back to your community and helping others.

More information on Tracey:


About Rikya Taylor

Rikya Taylor is the Founder and Owner of Keep it Natural Salon in Smyrna, GA. She is a Hair Extensions Specialist who takes pride in providing natural services and bringing the best out of your hair. She not only caters to her celebrity clientele to whom hair extensions are an expected necessity and luxury but also to women who want to bring the beauty out of their hair to feel that celebrity glamour. Some of her celebrity clients include, Kelly Rowland and Toya Wright just to name a few.

About Neema Ali

Neema Ali is a professional makeup artist with over 16 years of experience. She is the Founder of Kreating New Faces, LLC and has worked in Atlanta, New York, LA, and DC. With over tons of celebrity clientele and experience in the entertainment industry, she has recently worked on shows such as Married to Medicine, Love & Hip Hop Atlanta and Basketball Wives Miami.


Want more Be The Boss?

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Beyoncé Lends Helping Hand To Haiti With Proceeds From BeyGood T-Shirt Sales

June 3rd, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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BeyGOOD Haiti

BeyGOOD Haiti

Last month, Beyoncé ventured to Haiti on a United Nations humanitarian mission to assess how much progress the nation has made since a devastating earthquake ripped through the country five years ago.

During the trip, social media was flooded with photos of the Grammy Award-winning singer wearing a white t-shirt emblazoned with her BeyGOOD charity’s logo. She has since decided to sell the popular t-shirt. All proceeds will go to the Saint Damien Pediatric Hospital in Tabarre.

The hospital, which provides high-quality medical care to underprivileged and sick children in the country, has lost a significant amount of funding due to a recent reduction in contributions. The cutback has resulted in a decrease of staff members as well as the number of children that the hospital is able to treat. The 33-year-old’s website explains:

Your purchase of a BeyGOOD Haiti t-shirt can help solve an urgent funding crisis with all proceeds from sales of this shirt directly aiding St. Damien in re-opening an abandoned wing and continuing to aid the people of Haiti. To help support this incredible campaign, Teespring will also make a donation to Saint Damien for each shirt sold.

The t-shirts are priced at $24.99 and will be available until Saturday, June 13.

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise

It’s #RedNoseDay! NBC To Host New Star-Studded Fundraising Telecast

May 21st, 2015 - By Kimberly Gedeon
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You’ve probably noticed #RedNoseDay trending on Twitter today. But exactly is Red Nose Day? It is originally a British tradition, first launched 30 years ago, that helps to fight child poverty. The United Kingdom has raised more than $1 billion from the telecast, which, according to British Council, takes place every two years in the Spring.

“Money raised during the Red Nose Day campaign goes to the Red Nose Day Fund, which then distributes grants to charities that benefit children and young people,” the campaign’s main web site said. “All of the grant money distributed by the Red Nose Day Fund will be given to a variety of nonprofit organizations that transform children’s lives.”

Red Nose Day UK was an idea that came to Richard Curtis, a scriptwriter best known for his work on Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill, in response to the severe famine in Ethiopia during the 80’s.

According to Curtis, “it will be funny and entertaining while giving viewers the opportunity to pitch in to help kids in the US and around the globe,” according to The Guardian.

Half of the donated money will be spent at home, in the U.S., while the other half will be spent on some of the poorest communities in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Now, the event is coming overseas to the United States. Airing on Thursday (tonight) on NBC at 8 pm ET, Red Nose Day will be a star-studded three-hour TV event. Expect to see Julia Roberts, Will Ferrell, Reese Witherspoon, Neil Patrick Harris, Jodie Foster, Julianne Moore, Coldplay, Kim Kardashian and more. The network is hoping the fundraising telecast will become a new franchise.

As part of the promotional build-up to tonight’s event, is hosting  a 24-hour “dance-a-thon”live stream hosted by Nick Cannon at the NBC Experience Store in 30 Rock that launched at 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday.

Time to dig out that old Rudolph costume! If you put on that big red nose, and post it on social media, the Gates Foundation will donate $25 for children living in poverty. And the Gates Foundation, a non-profit founded by Bill Gates and his wife Melinda, will donate $25 for every big red nose photo posted on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #RedNose25.


Do I Put My Actions Where My Rants Are?

April 29th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Volunteer Donations


This is something I find myself battling on a frequent basis. Am I doing enough for my community? Do I really put my complaints into action?

Sometimes your vocation doesn’t line up with your calling. I know that sounds Oprah-ish, but it’s true. There are too many examples of people in this world who hold a particular profession and spend their downtime doing other things that bring them joy. Who says you can’t be a Jack or Jane of all trades?

For over a decade, I’ve been involved in youth mentoring and various community empowerment efforts. Whether through my church or nonprofit organizations, I’ve always felt a need to try and pay it forward in some way. God has blessed me way too much not to care about others around me and their needs. While I’m certainly no Mother Teresa, I do try my best to make an impact.

So many of us have an opinion about a current event or situation that makes us take to social media to express our feelings. All of that is fine and dandy, but what are you doing to make it better? No one expects you to be a miracle worker (kudos if you are), but you might want to take a look at ways you can back up your rants with action. If everyone pointed fingers and did nothing to make life better, where would we be? Nowhere new.

Granted all of our schedules and personal demands are different, there are plenty of ways–especially, thanks to modern technology–to get out and do something.

“I can’t do anything, I’m just one person.”

Everything in life requires a single step to get started. There are too many examples of good people doing “small things” that have impacted society in a major way. Even if there are no cameras or a spotlight, that doesn’t mean your actions can’t inspire someone or a group of people to make improvements in their life for the better.

Hurricane Sandy relief in Brooklyn, photo credit Tanvier Peart

Volunteering to “muck” out homes devastated by Hurricane Sandy with New York Cares

Not all of your efforts have to be one-on-one or some mentoring partnership. Not everyone has the time to dedicate after work in this sort of capacity, and that’s okay. There are other ways you can get involved that include donations and collaborative efforts through your company. You just have to find what works best for you.

Given the recent events happening back home in Baltimore, I’ve been at a standstill when it comes to daily activities. I still work as I need to pay my bills. It’s just hard to concentrate on my industry (interior design) when I know folks in my community are hurting. Unfortunately, I can’t hop on a plane (I now live in Oklahoma) as I’m a month away from giving birth to my second child. My husband kindly reminds me that even though I’m away from the hometown I love, I do dedicate a good portion of my downtime to helping out around Oklahoma City.

Have you ever felt a pull to do something outside of your career that benefits others? When something in the news tugs at your heart strings, are you a person who looks for ways to get involved, or simply talks about what’s going on and leave it at that?

University President Tweets Photo With Shirtless Students, Lands In Hot Water

December 22nd, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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East Stroudsburg University President Marcia Welsh is currently receiving a lot of criticism for tweeting a photo of herself with the Hawthorn Hotties, a student group known for performing erotic dances to raise money for prostate cancer research, domestic violence and sexual assault awareness. Many faculty members at the university believe President Welsh did not mean for the photo to have a sexual undercurrent, however they do believe if she were a male president who took a picture with female students dressed in revealing attire, she would have been fired.

Cosmopolitan says the group suggested the photo with President Welsh: “We asked to get a picture with her. She didn’t have any prior knowledge of that. There’s no promiscuous or sexual reference at all within the picture. There’s really nothing to negatively take from that except for the fact that the guys have their shirts off.” Despite this, followers on Twitter were very upset with President Welsh posting the picture:

Several students did note to the Penn Live publication that faculty may be attacking President Welsh because of her decision to eliminate the university’s music program which prompted laying off faculty members from that department.

No matter the reasoning for the backlash, President Welsh seems unfazed by the criticism she’s received. She released the following statement:

“Our campus community is inspired by students who put forth a tremendous effort to raise funds for causes that are close to their hearts. The students who refer to themselves as the ‘Hawthorn Hotties’ were raising money for the American Cancer Society. To exploit the support of our students is not only an insult to them but a malicious disservice to the good work they do for our university and the community.”

Cricket Awards $5K Grand Prize In Community Giving Contest

December 21st, 2014 - By Tonya Garcia
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Russell Hicks (center) surrounded by Cricket store staff.

Russell Hicks (center) surrounded by Cricket store staff.

Cricket Wireless, the mobile service provider, has awarded its $5,000 grand prize in the Community Stars: Salute to Solopreneurs contest to Russell Hicks and Ebony Suns Enterprises, which provides business consulting services, mentors young people, and creates social entrepreneurship programs.

The top prize also includes a year of free Cricket service.

“He currently works with more than 75 young entrepreneurs through various green industry sectors including eco-tourism, sustainable real estate, organic apparel design and merchandising,” says the press release announcing the contest winner.

The other finalists were Zondra Hughes, founder of Six Brown Chicks, and Michael Ferrera, founder of Michael Ferrera Custom Clothing, who took the second and third place prizes in that order. All three will receive a Samsung Galaxy S5 device along with a cash prize and limited time Cricket service.

The contest was open to residents of  Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. I served as was one of the finalist judges. Attached is the video Hicks submitted with his entry.

Congrats to all of the contestants!

Silicon Valley Investor Donates $500K To Diversify The High-Tech Industry

October 8th, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Silicon Valley investor Marc Andreessen along with his wife, Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen will donate $500,000 to three nonprofits that will invest in recruiting diverse professionals to enter the high-tech industry. The nonprofits that will receive the funds are Code2040, Girls Who Code and Hack The Hood, which have a unified mission to increase the ranks of women and minorities in the high-tech industry.

A portion of the donation came from the Andreessen financial award from the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering. Instead of accepting his award, Andreessen allowed two students from Code2040 to accept his prize from Queen Elizabeth II. In offering the award to these children, he believes the young people will be inspired to become engineers.

In an exclusive interview, Andreessen tells USA Today, “Tech is not yet inclusive enough. There is no question that there is a huge opportunity to make it more inclusive and open it up to traditionally underrepresented groups such as women and underrepresented minorities.” The grants given by Andreessen are meant to create momentum in the Silicon Valley to close both the gender and racial gap in the high-tech industry.

Andreessen is known as one of the developers of Mosaic that was the first used Web browser. He also co-founded Netscape Communications, which was one of the first commercial Web browsers. Andreessen sits on the boards of Facebook, eBay and Hewlett Packard. He also is the CEO for the capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz. With Andreessen’s help, we may be seeing the first steps toward making the inclusion of underrepresented gender and racial groups the new norm in the tech industry.

Nikia Vaughan Is Fighting Sickle Cell Anemia For All Those Who Suffer, Including Her Family

October 6th, 2014 - By Rachael Devaney
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Cimone at Mt. Sinai

Cimone at Sinai Hospital

Nikia Vaughan said she will fight to find a cure for Sickle Cell Anemia until there is “no more breath” in her body. The wife and mother of two is the president and founder of “Cimone and Friends,” a website dedicated to uplifting those that suffer from sickle cell anemia.

“’Ladies Who Lunch’ was an idea I came up with after I saw different ladies luncheon’s on social media.  I thought it was a wonderful way to bring the ladies of my city together while raising money and awareness at the same time,” Vaughan said.

Her last endeavor was “Ladies Who Lunch,” hosted by Fox News’ Crystal Berger. On September 13 at Blue Hill Tavern in Baltimore to benefit Sinai Hospital’s 10th annual “Race for Our Kids.” With Berger at the helm, the affair will also feature guest speakers Joan Marasciulo, a pediatric hematology nurse at Pediatric Hematology Sinai Hospital; Kimberly Hemby, founder of Dainty in Pink; Sheri Booker, author and NAACP Image Award winner; and attorney Marilyn Mosby.

The event is just one of many fundraisers that Vaughan hopes to undertake in the future. Her passion surrounding the disease stems from the fact that her husband Charmon Vaughan and daughter Cimone Vaughan both have sickle cell. Vaughan and her son Langston Outlaw both carry the sickle cell trait. While her family continues to battle this disease, Vaughan said that with the help of the doctors at Sinai Hospital and the support of her family, she knows she “can handle it.”

“Six weeks after her birth, it was confirmed that my baby girl had sickle cell. We found out and my husband broke down and blamed himself,” Vaughn said. “I had to be strong and let him know that this is not anyone’s fault. Since then Cimone has had three pain crises and has been hospitalized three times. However, I know what God has set me to do and I will [continue to] advocate until there is a cure.”

As stated in MadameNoire’s earlier piece “The Unusual Business Of Standing Up For Sickle Cell Anemia,” sickle cell is one of the most common genetically transmitted diseases, with two million people worldwide and approximately 100,000 in the United States carrying the disease. Dr. Michael DeBaun, director at Vanderbilt-Miharry Center for Excellence in Sickle Cell Disease, said the disease can cause an immense amount of pain in child and adult patients alike. With treatment and health care options dwindling for adults with sickle cell in the U.S. and around the world, DeBaun said the problems related to this disease have “become more of a humanitarian issue.”

Vaughan knows the extent of pain her husband and child suffer and said on her website that having the disease can mean a “lifelong fight against health problems like infections, anemia and stroke.”

“Whenever they are hospitalized, it’s tough because I see the pain they go through and its heart wrenching,” she told us.

But Vaughan is determined to not only create a supportive movement surrounding the disease, but also awareness. And with events like “Ladies Who Lunch,” Vaughan said she is on her way towards giving sickle cell the “attention it deserves.”

“I want sickle cell to be recognized for being the most known ‘unknown’ disease and I will continue to raise funds to eventually lead to a summer camp for children with sickle cell,” she said. “My hope for other families is to know that we must work together to bring as much awareness that we possibly can nationwide, ultimately leading to a cure.”

Heat Free Hair Founder Ngozi Opara Offers Tips For Partnering With A Charitable Organization

October 2nd, 2014 - By Tonya Garcia
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Ngozi Opara Purple

For the second year in a row, Heat Free Hair has partnered with the TigerLily Foundation for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. A portion of the proceeds from all Heat Free Hair sales during the month of October will benefit TigerLily and its good works. There will also be a custom wig giveaway for women undergoing breast cancer treatment.

This sort of support and philanthropy is exactly what this month — and all of the other health awareness months — are about. And while we all want to participate in some way, we want to do it in a way that is generous without intruding upon the normal course of business.

“I have always been a huge advocate of supporting smaller organizations because I believe your donations will go directly to someone in need without having to worry about some of the overhead costs that a lot of larger organizations have. Last year, I researched breast cancer organizations that were doing amazing things and having a great impact and found Tigerlily,” Ngozi Opara, founder of Heat Free Hair, told us in an email.

Finding an organization that you believe does the most good is the first step in a charitable act that makes you feel like you’re making a difference. Then you get into the logistics.

“What I loved the most about the Tigerlily Foundation is that they don’t just raise awareness, they also support the women and their families during and after treatment. They do things like get them groceries and do a lot of the tasks that may be taxing on a patient during treatment and then they continue support after treatment,” Opara continued. “After I researched them I found out that one of my employees at the time was actually cousins with the founder and that made it very easy to connect and after speaking with the founder Maimah Karmo, I knew I had made the right decision to support their efforts.”

For Opara, last year’s commitment was made as the company was still in its first year of business. So “luckily,” she says, they were able to keep their word.

“For other small businesses who want to enter into a philanthropic partnership, a great way to protect yourself financially in the event that sales are slow that month is to commit to donating a flat number or wait until all sales are calculated at the end of the month and then announce your contribution or donation amount,” Opara advises.

If you have a charitable program that you’d like to call out, please feel free to do so in the comments.

Dance This Way: The Felix Organization Host Dance-A-Thon Fundraiser For Foster Children

September 25th, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Felix Organization Host Dance-A-Thon


Camp Felix and the Felix Organization was created eight years ago by RUN DMC’s Darryl “DMC” McDaniels and casting director, Sheila Jaffe. The nonprofit helps support children growing up in the foster care system.

The Felix Organization will be hosting a dance-a-thon fundraiser called “Dance This Way” this upcoming Sunday in New York City at The Cutting Room.

The fundraiser will cover the cost of sending children to camp and other essentials they need. A donation of  $500 sends one child to camp for a one-week period and the organization has sent 1,000 children to camp for one-to-four week sessions.

Currently, their Dance-This-Way fundraiser has earned $176,226. Their goal is $300,000. You can donate, here.

Last month, MadameNoire traveled to Camp Felix to host a Career Day workshop with their girl campers, ages 8-to-14.

During our workshop our staff gave the girls manis and pedis as we discussed self-esteem, body image, online bullying and social media. Campers also received the opportunity to ask staff about their day-to-day work schedules and how they entered the media industry.

H/T Pix 11