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October 12th, 2018

Roundup victim? Here is where you can find help

type:Campaign, Project
by:Yair Oded

Following the historic decision of a California Superior Court jury ordering Monsanto to pay $289 million to Dewayne Lee Johnson for their weed killer’s role in causing his cancer, thousands of others have filed lawsuits against the corporation.

Monsanto’s popular weed killer, which has been scientifically proven to contain the chemical glyphosate, and has been marketed to the public as the brand Roundup, has been linked by a growing number of researchers to various types of cancer, including non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and leukemia., an organization committed to informing the public about potentially dangerous or problematic products (including drugs, medical devices, home repair products, and more), has launched a page dedicated to assisting people who were diagnosed with cancer after using Roundup.

The page offers extensive information regarding the history of the Monsanto cases, an overview of the science and research linking Roundup to cancer, and a guide that explains who may be eligible to file a lawsuit.

According to Consumer Safety, “Anyone who has used Monsanto’s Roundup and later been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma or another form of cancer may be eligible to file a lawsuit. Surviving family members may also be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit against Monsanto, should their loved one have passed away as a result of their cancer.”

Finally, Consumer Safety links visitors with attorneys who may conduct a free-of-charge assessment of their case and determine their eligibility and options.

If you or your loved ones were adversely affected by Roundup, please consider visiting their page for more information and guidance.

Image: Taken from video interview by Democracy Now!
October 10th, 2018
type:Donation, Education, NGO, Project
by:Yair Oded

As the global community faces the dire consequences of climate change, residents of urban areas grapple with a particular set of challenges. Cities currently grow at a dazzling pace. It has been reported that by 2050, two thirds of the world’s population will reside in urban centers. As cities rapidly increase in size, so does their footprint, which puts millions of urban residents across the globe at risk of deteriorating human health and safety due to the contamination of air, water, and land.

The Nature Conservancy, an organization committed to tackling climate change by spreading knowledge, promoting education, and facilitating practical actions on the issue, has launched an initiative aimed at building healthy cities.  The organization provides valuable information and key strategies on how to develop an environmentally conscious and responsible urban community. For instance, their Healthy Trees, Healthy Cities Tree Health Initiative organizes local communities and guides them on how to increase greenery and plant healthy trees around their city. By circulating information on the importance and benefits of trees as tools to clean our air, water, and ultimately food supplies, and providing extensive training for local community leaders and members on how to plant and maintain the health of trees in their neighborhoods, The Nature Conservancy encourages city residents to take matters into their hands and actively work to achieve a greener future.

The Nature Conservancy’s Healthy Trees, Healthy Cities program is part of a large scale initiative launched by them called Plant a Billion Trees, which takes action to restore the health of forests across the United States, China, and Brazil.

The organization’s virtual Carbon Calculator, assesses one’s annual carbon footprint based on their lifestyle, level of income, and consumption habits, well as provides a personalised guide on how to take action to reduce their footprint.

In addition to providing practical tools and information to local community members and city residents, the Nature Conservancy advocate for environmental agendas to be translated into national policy, and urge their supporters to apply pressure on their local representatives to take an active stance in the fight against climate change.   

Visit their website to learn more about the organization’s work in both urban centers and on the global stage, make a donation, or get involved.
October 08th, 2018
type:Donation, NGO, Petition, Volunteering
by:Yair Oded

Ravaged by years of brutal civil war, South Sudan currently faces an acute humanitarian crisis. Out of the country’s nearly 13 million citizens, 7.1 of them are at risk of severe food insecurity. The widespread destruction and utter collapse of the local economy as a result of the war left million of South Sudanese unable to produce crop and obtain sufficient food, rendering them dependent on imports and exacerbating the rampant famine in the country.

As of 2018, 1.7 million South Sudanese are internally displaced and roughly 2.5 million of them are refugees in neighboring countries.

As chaos rages in the African nation, numerous organizations engage in hands on efforts to tackle the crisis, provide humanitarian aid, and help local communities heal and become self-sufficient.

Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO) is a South Sudanese NGO which promotes peace and conflict mitigation, human rights, rule of law, livelihood, governance, and democratic transformation. The organization trains South Sudanese university students and graduates to facilitate significant and practical change in their home communities. They provide training to local state and county institutions, facilitate and organize dialogues between different communities to foster solidarity and cooperation, and provide training and workshops aimed at understanding the causes of poverty, the challenges faced by local communities, and instructing them to develop more sustainable livelihoods. The organization also raises awareness of the importance of the rule of law and principles of democracy, educates communities regarding existing laws, expands paralegal services, and advocates for implementation and enactment of legislation and democratic policies (such as elections culture).

Visit their website to make a donation, learn about volunteer opportunities, or report issues across South Sudan.

For those tuning in from the United States, CARE (a U.S. based humanitarian aid organization), has launched a petition urging congress members to increase humanitarian aid in South Sudan and support conflict resolution efforts in the region.Sign their petition and call on your local representatives to get involved and do all in their power to help end the catastrophe in South Sudan!
Protest against Planned Logging in Hambach ForestProtest gegen Rodung des Hambacher Walds durch RWE
October 06th, 2018
type:Campaign, Donation, NGO, Protest
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Protestors and activists defending the Hambach forest near Cologne/ Germany reached a mile-stone in climate history after weeks of resistance: Following a halt of the clearing of the ancient woodland ordered by the senior administrative court in the city of Münster on Friday, the administrative court in Aachen overruled a police ban on an anti-coal rally near the forest due Saturday, referring to the right of peaceful assembly, anchored in Article 8 of the German Basic Law.

Thus the planned anti-coal march "Save the Forest- Stop Coal!" will take place:

MARCH 06.10.
12 o’clock
Hambach Forest
Buir Train Station

Further informations about the march, materials and the possibility for donation are available on the campaigns webpage. Feel encouraged to take part in a movement which aims at conserving a thousands of years old forest, endangered native wild life and set a clear sign against fossil-based energy politics!
October 05th, 2018
type:Donation, Education, NGO
by:Yair Oded

Across Africa, girls often lack access to education. This is particularly true of girls who are pregnant, sick, or live in remote and deprived areas that have poor access to government services. Some governments, such as in Tanzania and Burundi, went as far as to forbid pregnant girls from taking classes, so as not to encourage pregnancy at a young age.

Many have openly objected the restrictions imposed on girls’ access to education across Africa. Campaign For Female Education (CAMFED) is a nonprofit organization which works to increase the access of African girls to secondary education. By forming connections with thousands of partner schools across thousands of rural and poor regions in various African countries, CAMFED have thus far facilitated the education of over a million African girls in Tanzania, Malawi, Ghana, and Zambia. Their work is funded, supported, and executed by donors from across the globe, well maintained communities of allies and volunteers, as well as a robust network of CAMFED alumnae.

CAMFED provide elaborate statistics, testimonies, and information regarding the long-term positive impact on the economy and society of increasing girls’ access to secondary education. Their method and work are constantly being reviewed and studied by research and interviews.Visit CAMFED’s website to learn more about their mission and work, make a donation, support their fundraising efforts, and get information about one of their events.
October 03rd, 2018
by:Yair Oded

As consumers, we hold great power in shaping the culture and environment of businesses of all kinds. By choosing to support (or not) a business, we inevitably grant them our stamp of approval regarding the manner in which they conduct their business and treat their workers.

Particular groups, such as racial, sexual, and gender minorities, are particularly vulnerable to discrimination in employment and are often subject to poor treatment at the workplace. Seeing as there is no nation-wide law that protects LGBTQ people from employment discrimination in the public or private sector, many of them still suffer from blunt discrimination in employment. In many states, business owners suffer no consequences for firing LGBTQ employees for their sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), an LGBTQ advocacy organization, have put together a buyers guide which reports on the treatment afforded to LGBTQ workers by numerous businesses across the country. In a virtual and downloadable index, the HRC rate businesses according to how inclusive and respectful they are of their LGBTQ employees.

The guide is now available in an app (for both Android and Apple), so that buyers could access such information in real time as they shop.

Please consider consulting the app or index as you shop and express your solidarity with the LGBTQ community and its fight for equal and fair access to employment.

Image: Human Rights Campaign
October 02nd, 2018
type:Campaign, Donation
by:Yair Oded

Peter Biar Ajak, a prominent peace advocate and academic, is being held in detention in Juba, South Sudan, for no reason other than his desire to promote peace and justice throughout the war-torn country.

Displaced by the ongoing civil war, Ajak grew up in several refugee camps outside South Sudan before being resettled to the United States by humanitarian charities. In the U.S., Ajak attended high school and finally graduated from the Harvard Kennedy School in 2009 with a Masters in Public Administration and International Development. Prior to his arrest, Ajak has been pursuing his PhD at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom.

Throughout his professional career, Ajak has remained focused on South Sudanese issues, and worked tirelessly to promote peace and tolerance, particularly among the nation’s youth. Ajak has founded South Sudan Young Leaders Forum (SSYLF), an organisation dedicated to bringing together South Sudanese youths from across ethnic and political background and foster dialogue and fellowship between them (through educational and sports activities). His ultimate goal is to spawn a new generation of young leaders who collaborate to build peace in the country.

Ajak was arrested at the Juba international airport in July 2018, and has been held in detention by the National Security Services (NSS) ever since. Ajak is one of many South Sudanese who have been apprehended by the NSS due to their ethnicity, political affiliation, or activist agenda. As indicated by Amnesty International, such prisoners are subject to inhumane treatment and torture while in the state’s custody. Several reportedly died while in detention.

Ajak’s loved ones have launched a GoFundMe campaign raising money to advocate for his release.

Please consider donating to this important cause, and help reunite Ajak with his wife and two daughters.

Image: Courtesy of Catherine Lee to GoFundMe.
October 01st, 2018
type:NGO, Petition
by:Yair Oded

In a bid to ease the Obama era restrictions on coal emissions, the Environmental Protection Agency has recently announced the abolishment of the Clean Power Plan and its replacement with what they titled the Affordable Clean Energy Rule. In essence, the new policy enables states to determine their own cap on greenhouse gas emissions, to the sheer delight of oil industry entities and politicians who benefit from their endorsements. The expected rise of CO2 emissions due to the new policy is sure to have a dire impact on both the environment and the health of millions across America (and ultimately around the world).  

The Climate Reality Project, a nonprofit group dedicated to mobilizing individuals and communities against climate change, has recently launched a petition calling to abandon the EPA’s new policy and restore the standards set by Obama’s Clean Power Plan. “Add your name to fight back against the Dirty Power Scam – and demand that EPA puts people before polluters.” the petition reads.

Led by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and CEO and President Ken Berlin, The Climate Reality Project currently operate in over 100 countries, where they are represented by over 14,000 leaders mobilizing communities. Across the U.S., the organization has over 80 activists chapters advocating for clean energy policies.Visit their website to learn more about their mission and work, sign the petition, learn what you can do to take action, or donate to their cause.
September 29th, 2018
type:Campaign, NGO
by:Murat Suner

Did you know how fast the world's population is aging? By 2030, there will be more people over 60 than under 10.

HelpAge International, a global network of organisations, set out to promote the right of all older people to lead dignified, healthy, and secure lives.

Their value-based position puts the experience of older women and men at the center of their work.

The organisation works with older women and men in low and middle-income countries, promotes better services and policies concerning their needs, and advocates for changes in the behaviours and attitudes of individuals and societies towards old-age.

The world HelpAge wants is one where every older woman and man, everywhere, can say:

"I have the income I need"; "I enjoy the best possible health and quality of life"; "I am safe and secure, free from discrimination and abuse", "My voice is heard".

Join or support their campaign by sharing their valuable work on the occasion of UN International Day of Older Persons October 1st, 2018. 

Image: (c) Sarah Hertzog/HelpAge
September 28th, 2018
type:Education, NGO
by:Yair Oded

“We’re taking control of our future. Climate Change is our generation’s biggest challenge. Let’s take action.”

This is the slogan of Alliance for Climate Change (ACC), a non-for-profit organization dedicated to educating the youth about the science of climate change and encouraging them to take action. The organization provides extensive and engaging education programs and multimedia tools that acquaint the students with the facts and science behind climate change in a manner that ties them directly to the issues at hand, yet do so in a way that encourages a sense of “justice and optimism”. They also provide teachers with lesson-plans which provide guidance on how to incorporate climate change issues into the curriculum.

In addition to imparting knowledge and increasing awareness, the organization empowers students and teachers to take action and instructs them on how become ambassadors of change. The type of engagement and action promoted by ACC ranges from simple steps that are easy to incorporate into people’s daily routine to large scale mobilization of students and volunteer teams. Through various workshops and training programs, ACC give students the tool to become climate change leaders enact change in their local communities.  

Thus far, ACC have educated nearly 3 million students across the U.S. about climate change, facilitated 1 million student led climate change actions, and trained roughly 4,000 students to become climate change leaders.

Too often the narrative about climate change portrays the issue as a calamity that befalls us and which only world leaders and industry tycoons can tackle. That is not to detract from the responsibility of those in power to mobilize a large scale, policy backed, comprehensive shift in how they approach and handle human induced climate change issues. Yet, groups such as ACC and their work remind us that we, the dwellers of the earth, play a major role in both causing and fighting climate change. By educating the younger generation about the facts surrounding issue and the impact their daily habits have on the environment, ACC fosters a generation of conscious individuals who lead climate change action from within their communities.

Visit their website for more information on their programs, and to learn how you can become a climate change leader.