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#GreenAtHeart : FROM ITALY TO GHANA: Menaye Donkor, on Charity

Former international model, winner of Miss Universe Ghana, entrepreneur, and philanthropist Menaye Donkor established the Menaye School of Hope in 2004 to provide free quality basic education and scholarships to rural children in Agona Asafo, a village community located in the central region of Ghana. The school currently enrolls over 400 students and was founded through the Menaye Charity Organization, which is dedicated to improving the welfare of under privileged children.

On a recent visit to Ghana from Italy, where she lives with her son and husband, professional footballer, Sulley Muntari, Menaye took the opportunity to meet with school administrators and teachers and bring much needed supplies to the school.

“I decided to bring my 18 month son Jamal along with me on my visit to the school as I want to instill and share my passion for service and giving to him even at this young age. I want him to grow up understanding that although we are living a relatively privileged life in Europe, we are Ghanaians and we are Africans and we will always be committed to the people of our motherland no matter where we are in the world”, says Menaye who envisions expanding the Menaye School of Hope to all 10 regions in Ghana and continuing her work with children affected by HIV/AIDS.

The Menaye School of Hope has been personally financed by Menaye since its inception and a portion of proceeds from her new luxury skincare brand, SHE-Y by Menaye which recently launched in Italy and UK will be donated to support the school. The highest grade of shea butter from Ghana and other rare ingredients from the rest of the world are used to create SHE-Y’s unique collection of body creams and body scrubs while maintaining many of the traditional and artisinal processing techniques native to the women of the Northern region of Ghana.

“My love and respect for shea butter stems from childhood. My mother always kept a tub of butter in our home and it was the solution to every problem. As I traveled the world modeling, I carried shea butter with me because of this. Through my SHE-Y brand I want to share some of my secrets to maintaining flawless and ageless skin while also making an impact in communities in Ghana through fair trade practices, employment generation and education,” adds Menaye who has been honored for her commitment of community service by the Chief and elders of Agona Asafo who chose her to be the ‘Nkosuohemaa’ or ‘Development Queen’ of Agona Asafo. Her official stool name for this prestigious title is Nanahemaa Menaye Afumade Afrakoma I, which signifies her global responsibility to her people and her contributions to society.

With the additional support from sales from SHE-Y, there are current plans to expand programming and make improvements at the Menaye School of Hope, including a breakfast club to provide a meal a day for students, supplying new books for the library and building additional school blocks for the nursery and primary students.

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Credit : Gabriel Myers Hansen , www.enewsgh.com

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International Day of Forests – 21st March

2017 Theme: Forests and energy

This global celebration of forests provides a platform to raise awareness of the importance of all types of woodlands and trees, and celebrate the ways in which they sustain and protect us. This year we highlight the importance of wood energy in improving people’s lives, powering sustainable development and mitigating climate change.

Wood is a major renewable energy source – Wood provides the world with more energy than solar, hydroelectric or wind power, accounting for roughly 45 percent of current global renewable energy supply (27 percent of total primary energy supply in Africa, 13 percent in Latin America and the Caribbean and 5 percent in Asia and Oceania).

Wood energy powers economic development – Almost 900 million people, mostly in developing countries, are engaged in the wood-energy sector on a part- or full-time basis. Modernizing the wood energy sector can help revitalize rural economies and stimulate enterprise development – greater investment in wood energy production and advanced wood fuels can provide revenue to finance better forest management, more growing forests and more jobs.

Wood and trees contribute to optimal urban living and lower energy bills – Strategically placed trees in urban areas can cool the air by between 2 to 8 degrees C.

Wood energy mitigates climate change and fosters sustainable development – Globally, forests hold an energy content approximately 10 times that of the world’s annual primary energy consumption. They thus have significant potential as renewable resources to meet global energy demand. Forests provide clean air, water and energy. Sustainably managed forests can provide renewable and carbon neutral energy for a greener future.

Forests for energy, now and in a future global green economy – Greater investment in technological innovation and in sustainably managed forests is the key to increasing forests’ role as a major source of renewable energy. In this way, we invest in our sustainable future, in meeting several Sustainable Development Goals and in growing a green economy. Increased areas of sustainably household and community woodlots and the use of clean and efficient wood stoves can give millions more people in developing countries access to cheap, reliable and renewable energy.

 

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#GreenAtHeart – Chicago girl, 6, Gives Up Her Birthday Party To Feed Homeless Instead

One Chicago kindergartner wanted to feed the homeless instead of throwing a birthday party.

Armani Crews, who turned 6 earlier this month, had been begging her parents for “a few months” to feed homeless people in her community, but her parents thought “she was joking,” her mother, Artesha Crews

Even when her father, Antoine, informed her that if she wanted to go through with this, she wouldn’t get a birthday gift, the girl, whose birthday was March 5, persisted.

So the Chicago family spent about $300 buying food to deliver to homeless people in the city’s East Garfield Park neighborhood. They purchased chicken, fish, spaghetti, corn, green beans, mashed potatoes, rolls, cake, cookies, fruit and water.

After Armani mentioned her plan at the family’s local church, congregation members donated other items to create care packages for the homeless.

Each care package included a toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, hand sanitizer and a snack, such as a granola bar.

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Armani’s birthday party was a success, with the family feeding more than 125 people who gathered.

Now the 6-year-old wants to host another community meal for the homeless. Her mother said the family plans to return to the park “within the next couple of weeks.”

Credit : www.abcnews.com

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#GreenAtHeart – British PM Recognises Seven Year Old Dedicated To Charitable Causes

A charity supporting seven year old has today been honoured by Prime Minister Theresa May for helping over 24 causes in just 18 months.

Hannah Warburton is seven years old and from Whitley Bay. Inspired by her brother Adam who has epilepsy and cerebral palsy, she has set herself a ‘Hannah’s Helping Hands’ challenge to help as many good causes as possible by picking a new charity to support each month.

Hannah’s unique project started in June 2015 and since then she has done everything from completing sponsored walks for The Alzheimer’s Society, hosting tea parties for Marie Curie and making and selling worry dolls for the Young Minds Trust. Hannah dreams up each activity herself and carefully picks the causes she dedicates so many hours to each month.

With help from her mum she documents her hard work on her blog in order to inspire other people to do good deeds too.

Hannah is the latest recipient of a Point of Light award, which recognises outstanding individual volunteers, people who are making a change in their community and inspiring others. Each day, someone, somewhere in the country is selected to receive the award to celebrate their remarkable achievements.

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#GreenAtHeart – Chance the Rapper Inspires Michael Bennett to Donate His 2017 Endorsement Money: ‘The System Is Failing Our Kids’

Seattle Seahawks defender Michael Bennett pledges via a wall text on Instagram page to donate all his 2017 endorsement money to “rebuild minority communities through s.t.e.a.m programs.

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He also said that monies donated will go to “initiatives that directly affect women of color.” He says the action was inspired by Chance’s pledge to donate $1million to the Chicago Public School system.

He also stated that half his jersey sales money would go to programs that would provide proper nutrition to inner-city communities.

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National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

March 10 is National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, sponsored by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Women’s Health. The theme, The Best Defense Is a Good Offense, calls women to take effective steps to protect themselves and others from HIV. This day is an opportunity to join partners across the nation and take action to ensure women have the knowledge and tools needed to prevent HIV.

HIV is often characterized as a disease that overwhelmingly affects gay and bisexual men, subsequently obscuring the significant and unique risks experienced by women. In truth, 27 percent of all new HIV cases are attributed to women, making HIV/AIDS the leading cause of death worldwide for women aged 15-44. Women are subjected to various institutional barriers that escalate the risk of infection and prevent access to treatment.

 On National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, it is imperative that we recognize the threat of HIV facing women of all ages, encourage steps towards ending the epidemic among women, and empower women to affect the global response to HIV.
 Interesting Facts To Know About HIV/AIDS In Relation To Women & Girls
 1. New HIV infections among children in Malawi declined by 67% and by over 50% in Botswana, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe. By contrast, Nigeria only achieved a 19% fall and accounted for a quarter of new HIV infections among children in Global Plan priority countries in 2013 (51,000 cases).
2. The Ghana AIDS Commission has revealed that the Greater Accra region still has the highest HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in the country.
3. Ghana’s HIV prevalence rate continues to decline as it currently stands at 1.37 with women making 57 percent and 43 percent made up of men.
4. Among the respondents, 78 percent of men and 52 percent of women had never been tested. A survey conducted among people between 15-49 revealed that overall, one percent of the women reported that they had had two or more partners in the past 12 months, while among the women who had two or more partners in the past 12 months, 11 percent reported using a condom during their last sexual intercourse.

 

 

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#GreenAtHeart – Ezekiel Ansah launches foundation to support Ghanaian youth

Ezekiel Ansah launches foundation to support Ghanaian youth

A Ghanaian born American Footballer, Ezekiel Nana “Ziggy” Ansah on Tuesday, launched a sports initiative foundation, aimed at supporting the youth in Ghana.

The ‘‘Ezekiel Ansah Foundation’’ is also purposed to provide young athletes, the opportunity to demonstrate their talents through Physical Education.

Nana Ansah, who is a defensive-end, plays for Detroit Lions of the National Football League (NFL), is expected to whip up the interest of young people in physical education, which has over the years dwindled in the educational sector.

Speaking at the launch ceremony at the Labadi Beach Hotel in Accra, Nana Ansah, also known as “Ziggy” who is on record to be the first Ghanaian to be drafted into the NFL in 2013, said he comes from very humble beginnings and wanted to use himself as an example to inspire, educate and support the youth to a brighter future.

According to him, he is very passionate about giving back to the community and has been doing so throughout his career.

An emotional Nana Ansah urged the youth to be determined and persistent in chasing their aspirations adding ‘‘don’t let your parents or anybody deter you from following your dreams. Set a goal for yourself and achieve it but don’t put your education away’’.

He added that, the Ezekiel Ansah Foundation’s objective is to create opportunities and leadership skills among the youth through education, identifying individual sports talents and inspiring a brighter future.

Dr. Emmanuel Owusu-Ansah, who represented the Minister for Youth and Sports, encouraged the youth to grab the opportunity offered and commended Nana Ansah for the initiative.

He pledged his outfit’s readiness to support the foundation to achieve its target.

Nana Ansah, the 29-year old, who played soccer and an American footballer, is also an enthusiastic basketball fan, having played regular basketball games at Golden Sunbeam Montessori School.

He attended the Presbyterian Boys Secondary School, Legon, in 2004, before gaining admission at the Brigham Young University, where he played on the Golden Sunbeam basketball team and became the most valuable player and led his team to win many games.

 

By : Edna A. Quansah GNA

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International Women’s Day 2017: Five things you need to know about this year’s celebration

Wednesday 8 March is International Women’s Day, an event held around the world to commemorate the struggle for women’s rights.

Here are five facts about the day:

1. Originally called International Working Women’s Day, it was first celebrated on February 28, 1909, in New York in remembrance of a 1908 strike of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union when 15,000 workers, including many immigrants, marched through the city’s lower east side to demand social and political rights.

2. The first modern International Women’s Day was held in 1914, five years after its inception, on March 8. The day was chosen because it was a Sunday, which the majority of women would have off work allowing them to participate in marches and other events, and has been celebrated on that date ever since.

3. The day was declared a national holiday in the Soviet Union in 1917, and was predominantly celebrated by the socialist movement and communist countries until it was adopted by the UN in 1977. Since 1996, the UN has assigned a theme to every IWD. This year’s theme is “Be bold for change”.

4. According to the UN, it is “a day when women are recognised for their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political. It is an occasion for looking back on past struggles and accomplishments, and more importantly, for looking ahead to the untapped potential and opportunities that await future generations of women.”

5.  The day is now an official holiday in several countries including Afghanistan, Cambodia, Mongolia, Vietnam and Zambia and for women only in countries including China, Madagascar and Nepal.

 

 

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#GreenAtHeart – Chance the Rapper Announces $1 Million Donation to Chicago Public Schools

Chance the Rapper held a press conference today at Westcott Elementary School in Chicago to announce that he is donating $1 million to Chicago Public Schools. “Our kids should not be held hostage because of political positions,” he said. He later revealed that he and Common will speak on the phone to discuss further funding. The announcement follows his meeting with Illinois governor Bruce Rauner last week, where they discussed public education and other “important issues affecting” the city of Chicago and Illinois as a whole. Immediately following the meeting, Chance expressed his frustration, saying, “It went a little different than it should have,” and that he was given vague answers when speaking with the governor. At the press conference, he reiterated that Gov. Rauner gave him “vague” answers, and shouted, “Gov. Rauner, do your job!” Watch the press conference below.

 

Credit : www.museafrica.com