At a downtown luncheon before nearly 1000 nonprofit supporters, Magnified Giving was recently named by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater Cincinnati Chapter as the 2014 Outstanding Youth In Philanthropy Honoree.
The Award is given to an individual, group, organization, corporation or foundation with a record of exceptional leadership and results in encouraging youth (through age 18) to: learn about and participate in philanthropy by planning and implementing a fundraising program to benefit a specific organization(s) or cause(s); demonstrate leadership in a specific organization(s) or cause(s); serve as role models for other youth and/or encourage other youth to participate in philanthropy. Magnified Giving was nominated by CancerFree Kids, Nantucket Creative Management, Northern Kentucky University, Roger Bacon High School, Seton High School, and Villa Madonna Academy.
Founded by philanthropist Roger Grein, Magnified Giving educates, inspires and engages young students in philanthropy through their schools. The vision of Magnified Giving is for every high school student in America, beginning with Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, to someday have an opportunity to learn firsthand how to be generous and wise philanthropists through hands-on experience. Participating school groups are challenged to determine how they want to invest more than $1000 in a nonprofit.
Since its beginning in 2008, the Lockland-based nonprofit organization has given over a quarter of a million dollars through student-awarded grants to local charities; and has grown to include 59 school programs with more than 3000 students involved in Greater Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky, Dayton, and Northeastern Ohio. For the school year 2013 to 2014, youth participant groups granted nearly $75,000 to more than 60 nonprofits; and for the 2014 to 2015 school year, that number is expected to be over 70 charitable grants totaling more than $80,000.
For more information about Magnified Giving, please visit http://www.MagnifiedGiving.org
It is during the holiday seasons when we are reminded the most of how kindness, compassion and love can boost spirits and change lives. While we are celebrating with our families, it is important to remember there are adults, parents, families and children who are struggling to have their basic needs met. We need to keep them in our hearts but we also need to reach out and give as we can to help eachother – a few coins in the kettles, food for meals, gifts for wishlists, your donated time through a social service agency or simply helping a neighbor or friend, even a simple smile can make all the difference.
A teacher, at Oyler School in Cincinnati’s Lower Price Hill Danielle Codling-Mangano wrote for a parenting group about her observations of the impact of kindness on students there. (I am reprinting it with her permission.) Please take a few moments to read her note. And, if you feel moved to make a donation, please contact the school at (513) 363-4100.
“Today was amazing. The staff and an army of moms arrived and worked to get the room organized. We sorted bags and boxes of clothes. We tried to cozy the boiler room with the posters kids made and put a rug down so they could sit on something comfy while waiting to shop. We also put out some fresh fruit for kids…
Let’s start there. We had a seven year old sing a song about getting a banana! Did anyone eat their bananas or cuties? No they packed them… probably for hungrier times but they were very happy to get fruit! Access to fresh produce is very limited Lower Price Hill it is classified as a food dessert.
The book that a 6th grade girl had donated from CMH was given to a fantastic young lady!!! Her face lit up like a Christmas tree when I told her a 6th grader from another school wanted a nice student at Oyler to have it. She told me she would pass it to friend when she is done. She was reading it walking up the stairs!
We had some staff at Oyler come to shop for kids who were too embarrassed to come down themselves.
The staff was looking for a double stroller for an 18 year student who just had her second baby. Someone called me to say, for that student’s birthday her mom gave her $150 to spend on kids at Oyler! This mother of two will be picking up a double stroller at Once Upon a Child tomorrow, which also means the young lady will be able to bring her kids to daycare at school and finish her studies and graduate. Today she couldn’t bring her one year old because she only has a single stroller.
I helped a 10 year old boy who the staff identified as “having nothing” get some clothes. In this district that label means a lot. He was wearing a short sleeve shirt and pants that didn’t fit. Every time he tried something on that fit, his face went into a smile that just melted me. He was thrilled to have a coat, socks, pants that fit and a sweet down vest that one of you donated. He asked me after filling up his bag if he could keep it all. I said yes and shamelessly asked if he wanted a hug… He did… SO AWESOME…
We had a preschool class come through that couldn’t be cuter… some were wearing shoes about two sizes too small.. one boy had a huge hole in his jeans and mud caked on them..Though these little ones had little material things they had a lot of smiles!! They were so happy to get new clothes, etc…
I saw friends helping kids frustrated when they couldn’t find the sizes kids needed…However we had a list and guess what tomorrow they will receive PJ’s and things that they needed! A friend who was there for the first time today… left and began to shop around she dropped off bags full of clothes at my house… more people offered support via text….! Oyler’s community bucket is overflowing with love and compassion from you!!!!
We had a staff member come close to tears expressing her complete awe for all that you are doing for this community!!”
Written by Good Things Going Around intern, Indian Hill High School student Andrea Francisco
When I give back, it makes me realize how even the smallest acts of kindness can make a difference. Even just a smile or simply telling someone to “Have an awesome day” can cause such a positive effect on the world. One of the best things about giving back, such volunteering as a Vacation Bible School Guide, is that you get to meet so many people that would otherwise be strangers to you. Just having a positive conversation with someone you don’t know very well can uplift both people and turn their days around.
I believe that giving back is truly a chain reaction, like in Rachel’s Challenge, whose representatives came to our school a few years ago. Rachel, who was sadly killed in the Columbine School shootings of 1999, inspired the world with her acts of kindness and belief in the “chain reaction”. Rachel wrote before she died, “I have this theory that if one person can go out of their way to show compassion, then it will start a chain reaction of the same. People will never know how far a little kindness can go”. In my life, I sometimes struggle with this concept, conversely thinking that I must do something big in order for it to have any lasting effect. However, Rachel reminds me that this is not true, because even a small act of kindness will make a huge difference, as this act may inspire countless of other acts of kindness.
When I really put my full heart into volunteering and helping others, I realize how easy it is for me to positively influence others and give them confidence. It warms my heart when I see the little kids in my Vacation Bible School group following my lead by having fun dancing during worship time and playing the fun games. They really look up to you as someone to trust and respect — even if I am just an ordinary person. When giving back, I am amazed at how treating others with respect, kindness, and enthusiasm can change their mood and make their day.
I have always been a fan of the popular NBC sitcom, Seinfeld. And some of my favorite episodes involved the volatile, quirky character of Mickey Abbott (Kramer’s friend) played by actor Danny Woodburn.
It was through my work with the Inclusion Network many years ago that I got to know a different side of Danny, a deep, passionate, caring and loving man who is not afraid to stand up for what he believes in. And, one thing he believes in is the equality, inclusion and dignity of those who have differences. Please click here to read an article about him and his role in Mirror, Mirror in the Wall Street Journal.
I hired Danny to speak at our Inclusion Leadership Awards Event, and I’ll never forget that more than 900 people attended to hear him speak while a blizzard was making roadways dangerously treacherous outside. Danny received a standing ovation that night and as he looked out into the crowd of cheering voices, he told us with a tear in his eye, “Even thought every script is a battle to see how much I’ll compromise, it’s worth it as long as there’s dialogue,” adding, “It’s inspiring to me as I look out at all your faces and see that there are comrades in this battlefield.”
It should be no surprise that I’ve stayed in touch with Danny. He is a friend and role model to me in so many ways. And how absolutely exciting it was for me to get an email from him this past summer telling me he is coming to town for the Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival, for whom I am proudly now director of public relations. I can hardly wait to see him and his wife, Amy, and share his message once again with our great city.
Danny won’t be the only television and film celebrity joining us.
Oscar and Golden Globe Award Winning Actress Marlee Matlin heads a list of big screen stars coming to Cincinnati February 27 to help celebrate our region’s largest film festival, the Cincinnati ReelAbilities Film Festival organized by Living Arrangements for the Developmentally Disabled (LADD), and presented by Macy’s. We are expecting to attract thousands through world class film and speaking events and celebrates our community’s diversity and shared humanity.
Marlee, currently starring in ABC’s Switched at Birth, will be the key note speaker for the ReelAbilities Awards Premiere Luncheon.
Additional stars to participate in the Festival events are Justin LeBlanc, popular finalist on Project Runway Season 12, and current contestant in Project Runway All Stars Season 4; Daryl Chill Mitchell, who starred in the FOX sitcom Brothers with NY Giants football player Michael Strahan and currently can be seen on CBS’ NCIS New Orleans; and Kurt Yaeger, whose many film credits include Dolphin Tale and War Flowers, and whose most recent television role is as the fan favorite character on FX’s hit show Sons of Anarachy.
The Festival hashtags are #DifferentLikeYou and #CincyRA.
As I am looking forward to spending more special time with my family today, I was inspired this morning to write a poem (or quote depending on how you look at it) about what life has given me to be thankful. May you too, find many reasons to be grateful. Happy Thanksgiving!