Tag Archives: ONE.org

The Alex & Ani #NewBeginnings Charm Bangle In Partnership With ONE

The Alex & Ani #NewBeginnings Charm Bangle In Partnership With ONE
The Alex & Ani New Beginnings Charm Bangle

The Alex & Ani New Beginnings Charm Bangle

 “The 8-sided sun represents the universal law that life’s outcomes are a reflection of your efforts and power as an individual. You have limitless opportunity to positively lead and affect others, to empower yourself to shine brighter than yesterday, to let your passions spark action. Embrace the energy of this powerful charm and create your own new beginning.”-Alex & Ani

I love everything about the New Beginnings charm bangle that Alex & Ani Charity By Design has released in partnership with ONE.  I love the design, the message behind it, and the ideals that a percentage of the proceeds go to support.   After all, life is really a series of New Beginnings; each new day brings us new possibilities, and change is the one constant we can depend on.  As a mother I often feel that as soon as I’ve mastered one stage of parenting, it’s time to move on to the next. Each stage brings new gifts and new challenges, and I suppose that has kept my husband and I on our toes. In the meantime we try to truly appreciate each stage knowing that it is fleeting. So as my children grow, my own identity shifts as well. I am no longer the mother of babies all consumed with their care, now as a mother of school age children,  I have broadened my energy towards not just positively influencing my own children, but the world beyond. This has opened up exciting New Beginnings for me, returning to my documentary background in a new digital platform by founding documama.org. This phase of new beginnings for my work life, is exhilarating, I’ve loved getting back to the global issues that spark my passion.

Elizabeth Atalay and Alex & Ani Founder Carolyn Rafaelian

Elizabeth Atalay and Alex & Ani Founder Carolyn Rafaelian

Like many other Rhode Islanders I have been cheering Alex & Ani on from the sidelines since the first store opened in Newport.  At a time when job prospects in Rhode Island faltered, giving us one of the worst unemployment rates in the country, Alex & Ani has managed to thrive and grow. Not only did the company add much-needed jobs to the economy, but the positive energy philosophy it espoused brought hope to the state as well.  In the spirit of New Beginnings, Carolyn Rafaelian had breathed new life into the family jewelry business, the Rhode Island economy, and singularly launched the charm bangle frenzy that has gone viral. Along with my love of their meaningful designs, one of my favorite aspects of Alex & Ani all along has been their Charity By Design commitment.  Through Charity By Design Non-Profits are supported in their mission to make the world a better place, and consumers are given the opportunity to use their purchasing power for social good. A portion of the proceeds for Charity By Design Bracelets goes directly to the organizations that they represent.

IMG_2317One of the first things I did upon launching documama.org was to become a ONE Moms community partner. I have since participated in grassroots campaigns on nutrition, immunization programs, energy, and foreign aid with ONE. ONE Campaign has been cultivating new beginnings for millions around the world in the quest to end extreme poverty and preventable disease through advocacy, and action for decades.  These actions have global impact both large and small. From the new beginnings of one tiny baby who will go on to survive due to health programs funded by the G-8 pledge ONE secured in 2005, or the massive impact the newly passed Electrify Africa Act will have on the lives of 50 million people gaining electricity for the first time. As a ONE Moms Community partner, and a Rhode Islander enamored by the Alex & Ani commitment to social good, I knew collaboration between the two would be a perfect match.

One of my favorite things is to connect amazing people and see what magic happens, so I connected the two organizations a couple of years ago in hopes of exactly that.  The New Beginnings charm bangle is the result of that collaboration, so to me it feels like a dream come true. The hope and possibility of new beginnings are what both ONE and Alex & Ani support on a daily basis, and the dynamic teams of ONE and Alex & Ani Charity By Design came up with a talisman so powerful and beautiful, that it sold out in the first two weeks it hit the stores.   The poignant message of the New Beginnings charm bangle not only symbolizes the positive energy of the wearer, but the positive energy put forth into the world when it is purchased.  Soon my New Beginnings charm bangle will be glinting in the African sun as it dangles from my wrist. As I embark on my International Reporting Project New Media fellowship trip to Ethiopia, it will be there to remind me:

“You have limitless opportunity to positively lead and affect others, to empower yourself to shine brighter than yesterday, to let your passions spark action. Embrace the energy of this powerful charm and create your own new beginning.”-Alex & Ani

(RED), U2 & Bank of America Soup Up Super Bowl Sunday

(RED), U2 & Bank of America Soup Up Super Bowl Sunday

The Super Bowl is all about the commercials for me.

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During this Sunday’s game my favorite was the commercial featuring U2 performing their new song, “Invisible”. You can download that song from iTunes, for free, and in doing so you will be helping out in the fight agains HIV/AIDS.  From 6pm EST Sunday, until 11:59pm EST Monday, every time the track is downloaded, anywhere in the world, Bank of America will donate $1 to the Global Fund to help end mother-to-child transmission of HIV. This Super Bowl Sunday, was an incredible moment in the fight to end AIDS as the new partnership between (RED), U2, and Bank of America launched. Check it out & download the song :

Every single dollar raised will go to the Global Fund to provide life-saving HIV/AIDS treatment, testing and prevention services to tens of millions of people in the world’s poorest countries. Over the next two years the partnership between (RED), U2 and Bank of America will mean more than $10 million for the Global Fund. 

#(RED) Hot Gift List

#(RED) Hot Gift List

This holiday season (RED) products make a red hot gift list while offering a great way to really make an impact with your purchasing power. When you choose a (RED) product proceeds go directly to The Global Fund where 100% of that money is used to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria.

These are fabulous finds you would want to give anyway because (RED) partners with the world’s most iconic brands to produce super cool products, that happen to save lives. Here are a few of my favorites:

(RED) Hot Gifts! Read the rest of this entry

Black Friday & Cyber Monday Are Over: 5 Ways To Give On #GivingTuesday

Black Friday & Cyber Monday Are Over: 5 Ways To Give On #GivingTuesday

Today,December 3 is #GivingTuesday, a movement inspired by The United Nations Foundation & 92Y to create a national day of giving that kicks off the giving season on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Here are just a few of the ways you can give back this year:

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1.  ONE thinks the perfect #GivingTuesday gift is Heifer and ONE’s Limited Edition GoatGiving just one goat to a family in need can be enough to change their entire lives. One goat can provide up to one ton of milk a year – and that translates to milk, cheese, butter and other dairy products a family can sell on the market for income. And not just temporarily – the benefits of livestock are long-term and only grow over time. Just take a look at this infographic .

diapers copy2. Shop on #GivingTuesday at Diapers.com or any of these sites  and  they will be donating one life-saving vaccine through the Shot@Life campaign with every $50 purchase when you use code SHOTATLIFE50.


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3. For #Giving Tuesday every dollar donated to WaterAid for safe water and toilets will be matched. If Water Aid can raise $50,000 by midnight, that amount will be doubled! Sip it, quench it, save it, give it, #doubleit with WaterAid for #GivingTuesday.

4. Support Every Mother Counts For as little as $5, you can help provide transportation for a pregnant woman in Uganda, so that she has access to life saving care when she may need it most.  100% of every dollar that is contributed will be directed to programs on the ground.

every mother countsOr order your  custom holiday cards with Minted, where 10% of every purchase made here will go directly to Every Mother Counts. 

Or Purchase some Oiselle EMC running gear here, where 40% of the proceeds go to support Every Mother Counts.



5. Give while you shop by purchasing from companies that give back.

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Happy #GivingTuesday!

The Global Team of 200 Trip to Johannesburg, South Africa 2013

The Global Team of 200 Trip to Johannesburg, South Africa 2013

The Author & Jennifer James in Soweto

It already seems like a dream that less than a week ago I was in Johannesburg, South Africa as a member of the Global Team of 200, for the #socialgoodmomsjoburg Insight Trip.  There I met up with Global Team of 200 founder Jennifer James who arrived by way of  Zambia where she had just spent the week with Malaria No More. She had been with them to report on the rolling out of their #PowerofOne campaign to provide malaria tests and treatments for children in regions of Africa, where Malaria claims a child a minute.

So we met in Johannesburg, the second largest city on the African continent with a population of over 3.6 million,  its O.R.Tambo airport is the busiest in all of Africa.  I’ll be honest, it took us a few days to begin to figure out this massive modern city, that locals refer to as either Joburg or Jozi.  There are eleven official languages spoken in Johannesburg, and from our experience, no attempt at political correctness when talking about the three main racial categories its inhabitants are put into. People are plainly referred to as white, black or colored (lighter skin blacks or referring to Indian or Malaysians from what I gather). We were there to meet with Global Team partners and NGOs to get an on the ground look at the issues they tackle first hand.

From the surface Johannesburg could be any large American city, but the vibe is very different, and as Americans one of the first things we noticed was the lingering racial divide. It is also said to be the wealthiest province in South Africa, and while we glimpsed the luxury lifestyles in the suburbs from the outside, our work took us into the homes of the poorest of poor. We witnessed first hand the great disparity of wealth that  exists, and as an outsider to a country with so much wealth, is difficult understand at any level.

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Johannesburg also has a reputation as being one of the more dangerous cities of the world. Fortunately we never felt threatened in any way and of course used the same common sense we would have in any major metropolitan area.  Certainly the townships we visited for our work would be considered some of the most dangerous areas in the city.  As in most places, statistically the crime occurs at the highest rate within residents of communities themselves and not on visitors, aside from petty theft, but the warnings are still to be taken seriously.  While visiting with the women’s collective Rebecca’s Well we took a walk through Alexandra Township with a local woman from the organization as our guide.   Our greetings were met with smiles as people went about their daily lives.  The people we met in the township were friendly and some asked to have their pictures taken. When others noticed, they wanted their picture taken too, just to be able to see the images of themselves that I captured with my lens in the viewfinder, laughing or smiling in approval when they did.

One of the launching points for Jennifer’s social good work was her trip several years ago to Kenya as a ONEMom. Her experiences with ONE in Kenya made her realize how valuable the impact of seeing the things we write about first hand was, and that is the experience she decided to give her  Global Team of 200 members.  Documama is a ONE Moms Community Partner, so we were thrilled to have the opportunity to visit the ONE offices in Johannesburg that are the Headquarters for all of Africa.

South Africa has the highest AIDS rate in the world, so the work of one of our Global Team of 200 partner organizations, Marie Stopes , is critical here where it works to provide services to curtail the spread of the disease.  They also provide education and critical family planning services to underserved populations around the city.


In between visits with organizations we  toured the area to get a better sense of Johannesburg, and even had the chance to visit a lion reserve outside of the city. In Soweto we made sure to visit the Mandela house, and Hector Peterson square.  We got out into the suburbs to see the lifestyle outside of downtown and found areas with amazing restaurants like Melrose Arch and Parkhurst.  In Sandton and Rosebank we passed by large modern shopping centers, juxtaposing the Alexandra Township that we knew to be just down the street. It wasn’t until our last day in Joburg when we went to the Neighborgoods Market in Braamfontain, that we found the South Africa we had both expected, or hoped for. In a neighborhood undergoing gentrification downtown we witnessed the type of community interaction we had been looking to see all along. It struck us that apartheid fell just a short twenty years ago. People my age would have been in their mid-twenties already when it ended, and so the young hip crowd that populated the marketplace would truly be the generation to hopefully grow up and change the divided face of Johannesburg. Looking around the diverse crowd, they already are.


I can’t wait to share the insights from our trip and each of our NGO visits throughout the week , each one different, enlightening, and educational in vastly different ways. I hope you’ll join me!

global teamI travelled to Johannesburg, South Africa as part of The Global Team of 200, a highly specialized group of members of Mom Bloggers for Social Good that concentrates on issues involving women and girls, children, world hunger and maternal health.

Our Motto: Individually we are all-powerful. Together we can change the world. We believe in the power of collective action to help others and believe in ourselves to make this world a better place for our children and the world’s children.