Black Friday, Cyber Monday #GivingTuesday!

 

GiveTuesday_700x

We are one week away from #GivingTuesday, a global movement brought together by over 10,000 organizations worldwide. It’s a chance to share some of your blessings with someone else.

As we get closer to the holidays we hear about Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals but we must also remember to be grateful for what we can buy during these deal-filled-days and think about GIVING. On every 1st Tuesday of December (after cyber Monday) you can choose to give to ANY non-profit organization as long as you GIVE. Wherever you give to a small or large non-profit, you will have an impact on someone’s life. A small blanket, a few dollars or canned goods are just some things you can donate that will make a difference in life.

Of course we encourage you to give to The Orphaned Earring cause as we are working hard to raise money for a few projects:

HelpMingo
Christmas parties for all our centers
Help Guatemala orphans + indigenous community

You can donate by CLICKING HERE

When you give to ANY organization be aware of NOT giving “leftovers,” make a conscience decision of giving something you would like to receive. Would you like to receive old torn clothes or broken toys? Be mindful of what you give, give from the heart. Donating is a thoughtful act to bless someone else and not a way to get rid of your junk.

On Tuesday, December 2 upload a selfless selfie on your instagram account and use the hashtags #UNselfie and #GivingTuesday and pledge to GIVE to a charity.

For more information and to pledge your support visit http://www.givingtuesday.org/

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Named Best Social Good Blog by LATISM

ForGood1We’re honored to be named Best Social Good Blog by Latinos in Social Media (LATISM). It’s never been about receiving awards or recognition, it’s about raising awareness of the extreme poverty, hunger and abandonment that our orphans live with in Latin America.

Although we cannot fulfill ALL of our orphans’ needs, we strongly believe that every child deserves a fun and healthy childhood and strive to at least fill their bellies with nutritious food and give them our love. With your help we create a fun environment and give them lots of love through arts & crafts, dance and music in hopes that they may find  healing from the harsh life experiences they’ve endured at such a young age. We work hard so that any sadness becomes a distant memory.

What’s Up With the MO? #Movember

Previously posted on LatinaGeeks:movember_letterhead copy

It’s mid-month and you might me wondering what’s up with all the extra facial hair in November! Suddenly we have more men allowing their facial hair to go wild in support of Movember, but what’s all the fuss about?

Movember is a campaign that starts every year on November 1st focused on men’s health issues aiming to change the ‘face’ of men’s health and reverse the reluctant way of thinking (men not going to see a doctor) by putting a fun twist on this serious issue. Its primary objective is to raise awareness and funds for men’s health issues, specifically prostate and testicular cancer initiatives. Using the moustache as a catalyst, Movember wants to bring about change and give men the opportunity and confidence to talk about their health more openly.

Although we are half way through the month of November, men can still pledge support through the entire month of MovemberNovember. As the loving Latina you are, encourage the men in your life to grow out their moustache, called “Mo” de cariño.

Once registered at http://www.movember.com, men start with a clean shaven face and for the rest of the month, these Mo Bros groom, trim and wax their way into raising vital awareness of men’s health issues such as prostate and testicular cancer. Supported by the women in their lives, Mo Sistas, Movember Mo Bros raise funds by seeking out sponsorship for their Mo-growing efforts.

Let us know how you take care of the men in your life, your concerns, and personal stories of support and survival – becoming a Mo Latina Sista supporting your Mo Latino Bros! #Movember

The Facts:

Did you know that even in men most cancers are highly curable if caught in the early stages, therefore Movember aims to increase early detection, diagnosis and effective treatment. This will ultimately reduce the number of deaths from cancer.

  • The average life expectancy for men is five years fewer than women (presently 77 years old compared to 82).
  • 1 in 2 men, and 1 in 3 women, will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime.
  • Evidence suggests that about a third of the 571,950 cancer deaths expected to occur will be related to OBESITY, physical inactivity and poor nutrition, and thus could be prevented.
  • 1 in 6 men will be diagnosed with PROSTATE CANCER in his lifetime.
  • In 2012, more than 242,000 new cases of the disease will be diagnosed and more than 28,000 men will die of PROSTATE CANCER.
  • Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in American males between the ages of 15 and 35.
  • 8,590 men will be diagnosed with the disease and 360 will die.
  • 6 million people die every year from tobacco use and exposure to tobacco smoke. One person dies every six seconds.
  • 1 in every 13 men will develop LUNG CANCER.
  • While not as common, men can get breast cancer. About 2,140 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed among men and about 450 men will die from the disease.
  • More than 3.5 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed each year in the US.
  • An estimated 13 million or 11.8% of all adult men over the age of 20 in the US have DIABETES.
  • Approximately 76.4 million men and women in the US have high blood pressure- 1 in 5 do not know it.
  • About 1 in 3 adults has high blood pressure, and blood pressure tends to rise with age.
  • Researchers estimate that at least 6 million men in the United States suffer from a depressive disorder every year.
  • Four times as many men commit suicide compared with women.
  • 24% of men are less likely to go to the doctor compared to women.

Studies show that many men don’t get regular health checks for the following reasons:

  • Fear it will lead to a hospital visit
  • Embarrassed to discuss their health issues
  • Find it too hard to see a doctor because they just can’t fit it into their schedule
  • Just can’t be bothered making an appointment

Statistics show that, on average, men die at a younger age than women – the average life expectancy for men is five years fewer than women (presently 77 compared to 82). That said, despite trailing the women’s health movement, things are beginning to change, but much more progress needs to be made to close the gap between the state of men’s and women’s health. Established taboos and barriers relating to men’s health are gradually being broken down.

Adamari Lopez, Official Orphaned Earring Godmother!

In Studio AdamariWe are extremely excited to announce that our 300+ kids have an official godmother, a madrina! The beautiful and talented celebrity Adamari Lopez has adopted all our kids as her godchildren and is very excited to support The Orphaned Earring cause.

The popular actress already inspires women worldwide. A cancer survivor herself, Adamari’s advocates and helps raise awareness for breast cancer awareness. She is now expecting her first child, a baby girl who will be named Alaïa. Her pregnancy is nothing but a gift from God, a little miracle that He has sent her way. Adamari is so grateful with God that is determined to continue helping those around her especially orphaned children.

I first met Adamari through work. We would see each other every month in Miami during the morning show Un Nuevo Dia where she’s a host and I coordinated a client segment. We would chit chat during breaks and eventually I shared The Orphaned Earring with her. She loved the idea and I even made a special bracelet for her using a gold and ruby earring she’s had since she was a little girl.

Adamari has an even greater soft spot for children. The love for her unborn daughter is immeasurable so she’s saddened by the thought of so many children without a mom to sing to them, tuck them in at night or dry their tears when they are hurt. She can’t imagine a child cry out for their mommy and reach out just to find emptiness.

Adamari Rubi“I’m so happy to support The Orphaned Earring,” said Adamari, “I encourage everyone to also support these innocent kids who do not have the love of their parents.”

Adamari will mainly support The Orphaned Earring through her social accounts and by wearing the bracelets we create to sell where 100% of revenue benefits the children.

Words can’t express how happy we feel. Adamari is truly a modern day hero.

SPANISH: 

Adamari Lopez, La Madrina Oficial de El Arete Huerfano!

Estamos extremadamente contentos por anunciar que nuestros 300 niños oficialmente tienen una madrina! La bella y talentosa Adamari Lopez ha adoptado a todos nuestros niños como sus ahijados y esta muy contenta de apoyar al Arete Huérfano.

La popular actriz ya inspira a mujeres alrededor del mundo. Siendo ella misma sobreviviente de cáncer, Adamari  también es defensora y ayuda a concientizar acerca de la importancia de la prevención de cáncer de mama. Ahora espera su primer bebe cuyo nombre es Alaïa. Su embarazo no es nada más lejos que un regalo Adamari Telemundode Dios, un milagrito que Él le envió.  Adamari esta tan agradecida con Dios que esta determinada a continuar ayudando a aquellos a su alrededor especialmente niños huérfanos.

Conoci a Adamari a traves del trabajo. Nos veíamos todos los meses en Miami durante el show Un Nuevo Dia donde es presentadora del programa y yo coordinaba un segmento para un cliente. Platicábamos un poco entre comerciales y con el tiempo compartí con ella El Arete Huérfano. Le encanto el concepto y me pidió le hiciera un brazalete usando un arete de oro y rubi que guardaba desde niña.

Adamari tiene un corazón aun más bondadoso hacia los niños. El amor que le tiene a su criatura aun por nacer no se puede medir, por eso la entristece la idea de tantos niños sin mama quien les cante, los arroye con amor por las noches o sequen sus lagrimas cuando lloran. No se puede imaginar a un niño llorar por su mami y al extender los brazos solo encuentre vacío.

“Estoy muy contenta de apoyar El Arete Huérfano,” dijo Adamari, “e insto a las personas que también demuestren amor a los niños inocentes que no tienen el amor de sus padres.”

Adamari apoyara El Arete Huérfano primordialmente a través de sus redes sociales y al usar las pulseras que creamos para vender donde 100% porciento de las ganancias benefician a los niños.

Las palabras no pueden expresar que tan contentos nos sentimos. Adamari es verdaderamente una heroína!

Knott’s, A Southern California’s Holiday Tradition!

Peanuts CharactersI’ve endorsed Knott’s Berry Farm several times over the last few years because it’s the theme park that’s allowed my imagination to run wild since I was a little girl. It’s important for every child to have fun memories that will build up their confidence as adults and that’s what Knott’s did for me. I have nothing against other theme parks but Knott’s was the one place I knew I could have fun without spending more than half the day fighting the crowds.

My absolute favorite time of the year is Knott’s Merry Farm which celebrates the Christmas season November 22 through January 4, 2015 – a Southern California Holiday Tradition since 1985! The holiday event includes park-wide lavish decorations, live entertainment, festive food, and a shopping wonderland filled with local artisans – it’s a fun experience that transports you to majestic and enchanted world.

The fun doesn’t end with Merry Farm, with Knott’s 2015 Seaon Passes you can enjoy Snoppy and the gang the entire year! This year I plan to visit the park during Merry Farm, courtesy of Knott’s Berry Farm, and take those I love so they too can enjoy some of my favorite things:Calico Carolers

  • A performance by the world famous beagle, Snoopy performs a brand new ice spectacular, Merry Christmas, Snoopy! inside of the 2,100 Charles M. Schulz Theatre.
  • A unique live performance of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol or O. Henry’s A Gift of the Magi in an intimate setting of the historic Bird Cage
  • Snoopy’s Merriest Tree Lighting at Calico Stage
  • Climb aboard the vintage railcar to meet an ever-changing group of Ghost Town residents eager to share their Christmas plans and songs with us

The Wilderness Dance Hall in Ghost Town becomes home to Santa’s Christmas Cabin for the holiday season where the culinary elves are amazing! They create delicious festive treats including Santa’s homemade cookies, sundae bar, decadent hot chocolate topped with hand carved chocolate shavings, including fresh made-to-order Maple Lollipops, churros from the Churro Factory, cakes, cookies, muffins and gingerbread men in the Farm Bakery, as well as the legendary cooking at Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant. YUM!Sign w-family

Christmas Crafts Village

Relax and unwind in Knott’s Christmas Crafts Village as it transforms Ghost Town into a shopping wonderland filled with dozens of local artists and artisans selling their unique wares including a chainsaw sculptor and glass blower. Entrance to the Knott’s Christmas Crafts Village is free Monday through Thursday and is included daily with theme park admission.

Give Water, Give life! Tweet to help!

This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with The Clorox Company and Latina Bloggers Connect and all proceeds are donated to The Orphaned Earring kids.

GirlDrinkingWaterLiving in the U.S. and having access to all the amenities and commodities of life, we forget how precious basic things are, such as water.

Growing up in different cities my family and I had to adjust at the different practices each town has for water consumption. In Esteli, Nicaragua we had to collect water at night when the running water has available since there was no running water from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm daily. We connected water hoses to faucets that led to a barrel. That full barrel of water had to last us all day, including showers, toilets, cleaning and even laundry so we were very careful on how we used water. I became an expert on one bucket of water showers.

In Managua, Nicargua we had running water all day but the water pressure was very weak. At night time water had better pressure and we collected water in smaller containers for dishes and laundry. Here are some ways we learned how to conserve and even recycle water:

  • Closing the faucet while brushing our teeth
  • Turning off the water while shaving
  • Using water we used to clean vegetables to water plants
  • Using water from doing laundry to water the streets to control the dust

There many other countries that face greater challenges. One in seven people in Peru don’t have access to safe water. In turn, unsafe drinking water is a leading cause of illness, malnutrition and death for children in the country. Around the world approximately 88% of deaths due to diarrheal illness are attributable to unsafe water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene. In fact, diarrheal diseases kill more children than AIDS, malaria, and measles combined, making it the second leading cause of death among children under five.

There are easy and cost-effective ways to support public health such as bleach, a powerful and safe disinfectant.

clx_agua-segura_logo_BlueDuring the next three years, the Safe Water Project powered by The Clorox Company will help bring 400,000 liters of safe drinking water each day to more than 25,000 individuals in Peru where one in seven people don’t have access to safe water. The Project will help install public bleach dispensers by community water sources to help treat and disinfect water, as well as provide health and hygiene education.

We do our part by conversing water but we can also join The Clorox Company and help other communities that desperately need help. You can get involved just by tweeting #safewaterproject! Each tweet will donate to the Clorox Safe Water Project to expand their presence in Peru. Each $1 donation provides one Peruvian with safe water for four months.

Tweet the message “Every time you tweet #ProyectoAguaSegura Clorox will make a $1 donation, up to $20,000, to bring safe drinking water to kids in Peru.”

Together and with the wonderful support of The Clorox Company we can make a difference.

Create A Bilingual Book with Read Conmigo Contest!

This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with Read Conmigo and Latina Bloggers Connect, all proceeds are donated to The Orphaned Earring.

School supplies donationsThis past weekend a friend had a birthday and asked to celebrate it with The Orphaned Earring children located at the orphanage in Rosarito Mexico. As part of her birthday wish she asked her friends on social media to help her collect the essential educational tools that children need to succeed. So we collected pencils, crayons, folders and notebooks!

People also wanted to donate books and I was completely excited about it but my friends couldn’t find any bilingual or Spanish books to donate. Our children at the centers eventually learn how to speak English but they learn to read in Spanish first so we need Spanish or bilingual books.

Less than two percent of children’s books written last year were Latino-themed and only 1.5 percent (or 48 books) of the 3,200 children’s works published in 2013 in the U.S. were written by Latino authors. It got me thinking, if it’s difficult to find bilingual Eng/Spa books, how will our kids living in the U.S. get the benefits of an bilingual education such as increased cognitive ability, boost in brain power and higher intelligence to name a few.

In an effort to change these startling statistics, one book at a time, the nationally recognized bilingual literacy program Read Conmigo sponsored by Infinity Auto Insurance, is introducing the “Preserving our Culture through Bilingual Literacy” contest for budding Latino children’s book authors based in the Southern California area. The contest will run through October 31, 2014.

Participants in the “Preserving our Culture through Bilingual Literacy” contest will compete for an opportunity to have their children’s story published – stories in BOTH English and Spanish. The story must feature one of several ADORABLE Read Conmigo characters and the winning author(s) will receive $1000 in prize money.

What a great way to make a difference in children’s lives! Enter your children’s story and you can also receive $1000 prize!

To submit a manuscript and for complete rules and contest details visit www.ReadConmigo.org.

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ChristinaContest MaryContest LeoContest

Active Girls, Healthy Life + $50 JCPenney Giftcard Giveaway

This is part of a sponsored collaboration with JCPenney and Latina Mom Bloggers. However, all opinions expressed are my own and all compensation benefit our orphans.

LOGOKOLITAEvery girl deserves a life filled with joy and a healthy upbringing and there are several ways to do that, even through sports such as soccer. Among the many things we do for our girls at the orphanages is give them Quinceaneras to let them know they are loved, that are esteemed and that we celebrate womanhood.

We also bring sports to each of our centers with soccer being one the favorite sport of our kids, but it’s not only for the boys, the girls love soccer too! Soccer has become a healing vehicle for the girls at our centers.

Monica1In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, JCPenney has partnered with Monica Gonzalez, an ESPN soccer commentator, and Gonzo Soccer to host a free soccer clinic for Houston-area girls ages 8-16 years old.

Monica Gonzalez and Gonzo Soccer align with the passion, strength and dedication JCPenney stands for by empowering young Hispanic women of today to become the Latina leaders of tomorrow.

It’s great to see that in the U.S. organizations such as the Gonzo Soccer’s leadership academy is providing young girls with premier soccer training along with valuable leadership and life skills. Girls between the ages of 8-16 years old with an interest in soccer gathered in Houston this week to learn about Gonzo Soccer Academy, the importance of physical condition as well as hear decision-making tips to help them become future leaders of their Hispanic communities.

Monica Gonzalez’s Soccer Tips for New & Beginner Players

  • Set goals. Determine why are you playing, is it for fun or to become a pro? Once you have clarity as to why you play, keep those goals in mind and create actionable steps to reach them.
  • Get as many touches to the ball as possible – the more you practice, the better you’ll become.
  • Play at your level, and find a team or league that’s just above your level. That way you’ll be challenged to improve your game and reach the next level.

Share with us why you think it’s important to help support young women in areas of sports and education for the chance to win a one (1) $50 JCPenney gift card!!! 

Classic JCPenney 4c

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Traditions Packed In My Bag

Collective Bias

 

 

 

Fabuloso CleanerAlthough I’ve moved around and lived in different countries, there are family traditions I’ve packed in my bag and I’ve carried them with me no matter where I go. From food to all-purpose cleaners, there are things that keep us connected to home.

It’s curious to see how people that migrate from all over the world may have left their countries behind but never leave traditions. Have you ever talked to someone who is from another country and although they’ve lived in the U.S. for most of their lives they refer to their country of origin as “back home”? I’m guilty of that!

The forces behind why we migrate vary, from political to financial to safety reasons… it’s always a hard decision to leave home; so we grasp to a little piece of home and not only bring it with us, we pass it along to the generations that are being raised in a new country. These are some things I’ve brought with me and share with my family:

 

Food
Before migrating to the U.S. I was lucky enough to learn how to cook Nicaraguan food. A staple at the table is gallopinto, small red or black beans and rice cooked together – simple but delicious! The reactions I get from my family when I cook the delicious food we ate growing up are priceless!

Music
There is no family gathering without salsa, merengue or cumbia music. Music is an invisible vehicle that takes my family to a happy place. Music usually goes hand-in-hand with food, it’s never one or the other.

Language
Latin America is so fun with each country having a distinct accent and language that makes each one so unique. In my family we use words that only other family members of Nicarguenses know: puchica, caramanchel, tuco, solo mate, chiguin, chavalo – it’s really fun when we get together and talk Nicaraguense.

Cleaning habits
Back in Nicaragua we cleaned on a daily basis but once in U.S. we simply designate one day as our deep cleaning day. But the desire to keep a fresh home daily is still with me. I still put on comfy clothes and walk around barefoot listening to my music and using the product I used growing up in Nicaragua, Fabuloso, the household essential and best cleaning product used to clean floors, clean surfaces and clean bathrooms. I bought my Fabuloso Twin Pack at Walmart This is the way my abuelita and mom taught me how to use Fabuloso:

  • #MiFabulosoPour a little bit of Fabuloso in the toilet on a daily basis to keep it clean
  • Dilute it to clean the kitchen floors after each time I cook to remove the unwanted odors that linger in the air
  • Put just a cap-full in the washer to keep my cleaning rags smelling fresh and clean.

The smell of Fabuloso transports me to my teenage years when I had to clean my home and mop the floors every day before going to school. The house was NOT clean unless the evident smell of Fabuloso lingered in the air. It’s definitely the essential multi-purpose cleaner for my family – its #MiFabuloso. Thanks #CollectiveBias for the hook-up!

We’re truly lucky to live in a country that embraces our differences and allow us to bring that little bit piece of home with us. That’s why the U.S. will always be the best country in the world!

 

Ignoring Domestic Violence Doesn’t Make It Go Away

Disclosure LBC

Abused in GuatemalaDomestic violence is a hot topic lately. With the NFL scandals and actresses revealing their abusive relationships, domestic violence is finally getting the media spotlight it deserves. But it’s not that domestic violence is not on the rise, it’s been a hidden problem that many rather ignore and look away than get involved.

Most people only think of the physical affects that domestic violence leaves, yet, financial abuse happens in 98% of all cases of domestic violence and is one of the most powerful ways to keep a victim trapped.

When I was in Guatemala I heard a story of the lady pictured in this post. In the darkness of night, her screams could be heard through the lush trees and penetrated the hard mountain sides, her husband beats her. With no immediate family to help her and under the anguish of poverty, she has nowhere to go. Her husband is part of a community that works picking coffee at a farm and they live in one big warehouse-type building along with at least 30 people. Of all those people, no one interferes when she’s being abused. Finally the coffee farm administrator threatened the abusive man with kicking him off the workforce.

When I met her in person I gave her clothes, extra food for herself and her young child because I knew she had no other option than to stay with her abusive husband because of the financial abuse that comes with this situation. We promised we would continue helping her and hopefully her situation gets better.

Even though domestic violence and financial abuse often go hand-in-hand, only 8 in 10 Americans have not heard much about financial abuse as a form of domestic violence. The number one reason domestic violence survivors stay, leave or return to an abusive relationship is that they don’t have the financial resources to break free.

Allstate Foundation Purple PursePurple Purse movement is making easier to talk about domestic violence and the financial abuse that traps women in abusive relationships. The program ignites fundraising for more than 140 national, state and local domestic violence organizations. Funds raised will support life-changing financial empowerment services to help domestic violence survivors build safer lives for themselves and their families.

Two out of 3 Americans think domestic violence is a serious problem, yet just over 1 in 3 have talked about it. Allstate Foundation #PurplePurse is changing that. Allstate Foundation Purple Purse aims to break the cycle of violence in our nation – one family at a time.

How you can help

  • You can help ensure domestic violence survivors – likely someone you know – aren’t financially trapped in an abusive relationship by joining the Purple Purse Challenge. Open your heart and wallet to stand up for survivors and the organizations that serve them at PurplePurse.com.
  • Go to #PurplePurse.com between 9/2 and 10/3 to join the Challenge and help a nonprofit near you compete for Allstate Foundation funding.
  • To turn any purse into a Purple Purse, The Allstate Foundation is widely distributing Purple Purse charms so you can show your support and attach to your favorite bag year round. They are being distributed with inspiring survivor stories through Purple Purse Challenge participants and Allstate agency owners.

Helping in GuatemalaThe Allstate Foundation is investing more than half a million dollars in the Purple Purse Challenge. The more donations each nonprofit gets, the more it can compete for Allstate Foundation incentive funding. Go to PurplePurse.com between Sept. 2 and Oct. 3 to join the Challenge and help a nonprofit near you.