SOCIAL GOOD: Could You Be a Foster Parent?

ChildWe are pleased to share a guest post with you this week from the founders of “Meaningful Volunteer“, a 100% non-profit organization based in Canada that empowers international volunteers to make a meaningful difference in developing communities around the world. Malcolm and Megin Alvarez had a very unique comment that changed their perspective and their life. Their story on fostering is inspiring!

When women thrive, all of society benefits, and succeeding generations are given a better start in life.   — Kofi Annan

Building schools or building businesses and then handing them over to the locals in developing communities  is very satisfying.  At Meaningful Volunteer, we build solar powered schools in developing countries.  That’s what we do and that’s how we empower women. (more…)

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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SOCIAL GOOD: Look Kids, Mom’s on TV!

SOCIAL GOOD: Look Kids, Mom’s on TV!

Actress, Amanda Peet, with World Moms Blog Founder, Jennifer Burden, in Times Square in NYC advocating for Shot@Life, life-saving vaccines for children in developing countries.

In January, World Mom’s Blog’s advocacy for global health and children began offline at the pilot grass-roots party thrown at my house for the UN Foundation’s new Shot@Life campaign.

For the first time, at that party, I talked candidly in front of my friends and my mom about why the movement for life-saving vaccines for children in the developing world resonated with me.

It was a difficult, personal story for me about my many pregnancy losses, how desperate I felt and how I want to prevent mothers around the globe from ever having to feel that desperate, tragic feeling. There are mothers in the world losing their children to diseases that we have the know-how to prevent. And I want to help.

I have since shared my story at a UN Foundation Volunteer Summit in Washington, D.C. and at my friend Jodi’s grass-roots Shot@Life Party in New Jersey.  But, this past Friday was, well, a little different…

I accepted an invitation from the UN Foundation to open my heart and speak for a larger audience in NYC at the launch of the Shot@Life Public Service Announcement (PSA) on the big Toshiba Screen in Times Square. (more…)

Jennifer Burden

Jennifer Burden is the Founder and CEO of World Moms Network, an award winning website on global motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. World Moms Network writes from over 30 countries, has over 70 contributors and was listed by Forbes as one of the “Best 100 Websites for Women”, named a “must read” by The New York Times, and was recommended by The Times of India. She was also invited to Uganda to view UNICEF’s family health programs with Shot@Life and was previously named a “Global Influencer Fellow” and “Social Media Fellow” by the UN Foundation. Jennifer was invited to the White House twice, including as a nominated "Changemaker" for the State of the World Women Summit. She also participated in the One Campaign’s first AYA Summit on the topic of women and girl empowerment and organized and spoke on an international panel at the World Bank in Washington, DC on the importance of a universal education for all girls. Her writing has been featured by Baby Center, Huffington Post,, the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life, and The Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists.” She is currently a candidate in Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs in the Executive Masters of Public Affairs program, where she hopes to further her study of global policies affecting women and girls. Jennifer can be found on Twitter @JenniferBurden.

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SOUTH AFRICA: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

I guess I have a slightly different perspective on South Africa because my parents emigrated from Italy to here in search of a better life for us.

In 1977 I was 8 years old.  I knew nothing of Apartheid.  All I knew was that Cape Town was beautiful, and we could afford a large house with a garden (as opposed to the tiny flat at the top of many, many stairs, where we’d come from).

We had a full-time nanny, one rand was worth as much as one U.S. dollar, and we lacked for nothing … except TV because back then the South African Broadcasting Television only broadcast for about 2 hours in English and 2 hours in Afrikaans every day. (Since I couldn’t understand either language at that stage, TV didn’t impact my life much!)

It’s hard for people to understand that South Africa is a very large country with 9 distinct provinces.  Cape Town was spared most of the riots, police clashes and other human rights abuses which happened elsewhere in the country. We did not know what was happening at the time due to the total censorship of the media. (more…)

Mamma Simona (South Africa)

Mamma Simona was born in Rome (Italy) but has lived in Cape Town (South Africa) since she was 8 years old. She studied French at school but says she’s forgotten most of it! She speaks Italian, English and Afrikaans. Even though Italian is the first language she learned, she considers English her "home" language as it's the language she's most comfortable in. She is happily married and the proud mother of 2 terrific teenagers! She also shares her home with 2 cats and 2 dogs ... all rescues. Mamma Simona has worked in such diverse fields as Childcare, Tourism, Library Services, Optometry, Sales and Admin! (With stints of SAHM in-between). She’s really looking forward to the day she can give up her current Admin job and devote herself entirely to blogging and (eventually) being a full-time grandmother!

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