Friday, November 28, 2008

Will there be a Generation C – for Cure?

By Stephanie Brummell, Interactive Content Specialist

First, there were the “Baby Boomers;” known for adding to the worldwide increase in birthrate just after World War II. Naturally soon after came the “Baby Busters” – better known as Generation X.

These people grew up with an affinity for pop culture that may never be challenged.

In between live the “Jonesers,” whom people reference when speaking competitively about “keeping up with the Joneses.” And who could forget Generation Y? Steadily making their way to the top even as we speak?

With each sweep of a new generation comes change; some for better some for worse.

But as we celebrate World AIDS Day on Dec. 1, and all thoughts turn toward raising awareness for the global epidemic that affects more than 33 million people worldwide, we can’t help but ask, “Will there be a Generation C?”

That is, do you think there will be a Cure for HIV/AIDS in your lifetime?

“Wow, that’s a big question,” said William Fleming, HIV/AIDS Program Specialist for CCF. “I doubt it, but then we have had major breakthroughs before. Most folks are talking about chronic disease management – like diabetes, or cancer in some ways.”

According to Fleming, efforts to combat HIV have had positive spill-over effects in many areas, driving innovative research toward finding a cure. So far, however, nothing concrete has surfaced.

“For now prevention and treatment are our best weapons.”

Get in on the discussion. Why do or don’t you think you will see a cure for HIV/AIDS happen in your lifetime? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

Monday, November 24, 2008

What Are You Thankful For?

By David Hylton, Public Relations Specialist

This year has been one of doom and gloom according to the nightly news and the morning headlines in newspapers – home foreclosures are at record highs and the stock market seems to have no bottom. We say (for at least a few days anyway) enough is enough. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and it’s time to think about the good things life has to offer.

To celebrate the holiday, we asked several of our CCF employees what they are thankful for this year. Here are their responses.

Gary Duncan, assistant director of marketing
“Despite the economy in the U.S., the increasing job losses, and high prices for basic daily needs, I am thankful that there is reason to be positive for the future. In many impoverished countries, there are children and families who have no hope, no dreams, and no one to encourage them.”

Eli Rivadeneira, assurance officer in CCF’s Americas Region
“I am thankful for my life, the opportunities I have had, the moments I have lived, the persons I have met. I am thankful for my great family and for my parents who always support me. I am thankful for my husband, my son and my daughter; they are blessings in my life. I am thankful for my professional life, for the opportunity to be in CCF, because since I visited the communities and shared with the children and their parents, I changed my priorities in life. I understand the important things to live and enjoy and I am really thankful for it.”

David Hylton, public relations specialist
“I am thankful for the opportunities and challenges that each new day brings in both my professional life and my personal life.”

Cynthia Price, director of communications
“I am thankful for friends and family and the blessed life that I have. I know I’m fortunate that my basic necessities and then some are covered, but all this was reinforced this summer when I traveled to my first developing country. I was in Senegal and The Gambia for Christian Children’s Fund. I no longer take for granted access to health care and education, water from my tap, and so much more.”

Annelore Temple, executive secretary, Marketing and Sponsor Services
“I am thankful, even as our world is facing an economic crisis, that we still have hope – hope in our future, hope in our new leader and, most importantly, hope in our God, who will preserve this country called America.”

Welbert Luis S. Gonçalves, administration officer, Brazil
“I am thankful for my wife, who has always supported me in my professional and personal life. I am thankful for my little son, who is only 1 year old. He came into our lives bringing so much joy and so many lessons to be learned. I am thankful for him to have the opportunity to be raised in a home where he can not only have access to basic needs, but also to be loved. I am thankful for our health, for our friends and for each new morning.”

Stephanie Brummell, interactive content specialist
“I’m thankful for my family and for the foresight that brought me to CCF. Not only is my passion for writing used each and every day, but that same passion is also transformed into my own way of helping children all over the world. Who knows what my words might inspire?”

Cheri Dahl, vice president of International Communications and Fundraising
“I am thankful that I work with a team of people that I like, who laugh and have fun, and who are committed and work hard.”

Nicole Duciaume, documentation and sponsorship support officer
“I am thankful for my family’s unconditional love and support, friends who make me laugh, opportunities to touch the lives of others, my dogs’ effervescent personalities, and warm dryer-fresh towels.”

Ellie Whinnery, public relations manager
“I am thankful for family and friends and the freedom to celebrate together on Thanksgiving. I am thankful that in these tough economic times we truly understand that being together and giving of ourselves is more important than material things that won’t last. Everyone contributes a part to our Thanksgiving meal. We take a long walk before eating and have dessert first, then our meal … otherwise we are too full to really enjoy pumpkin and pecan pie.”

* * *

Now it’s your turn. What are you thankful for this year? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Hear How Children’s Lives are Changing

Children in Senegal and The Gambia in West Africa are learning in schools and gaining confidence thanks to Christian Children’s Fund’s programs. In August, Cynthia Price, director of communications for CCF, traveled to this region with CCF President and CEO Anne Goddard to get a first-hand look at CCF’s programs in action.

This week Cynthia will share her experiences from the trip. The presentation will be held from 2-4 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 20, at the Twin Hickory Library in Glen Allen, Va.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Want to Give a Goat? Buy it Here

By David Hylton, Public Relations Specialist

We’re no David Letterman, but we're borrowing his idea of a top 10 list to help you with your holiday shopping. We know that you just threw out that Halloween pumpkin, and the Thanksgiving turkey may already be in your freezer, but the holiday season is right around the corner.

Christian Children’s Fund can help you with your holiday shopping with its "Gifts of Hope and Love" catalog. From solar lanterns to paper and pencils to chickens and goats, all of our gifts change the lives of the deprived, excluded and vulnerable children and families in developing countries.

Items from this year's "Gifts of Hope and Love" catalog can be found by clicking here.

We know you don't want to get up at 5 a.m. to shop on Black Friday – besides, that flat screen TV will be on sale again in January and that Nintendo Wii you've been dying to have will eventually be back in stock. You know you really don't want to wrap and ship gifts this year – just think of that headache of looking for that roll of tape you thought was in the kitchen drawer.

Do you still need more reasons to shop our "Gifts of Love and Hope" catalog? Well then, here are 10 more:

You don’t have to dig around your attic for a gift box or wrapping paper for your gift. CCF takes care of that for you. No bows required.

You don’t have to bite your fingernails or wring your hands waiting for it to be delivered in time for your holiday celebration.

You don’t have to ask the help of cranky, overworked store clerks for the size you need or wait for them to check for it in the back room.

The item you order will not be out of stock, backordered, sold-out, or no longer available. There is an unlimited need for “Gifts of Love and Hope” and CCF has all of the items available.

We have gifts that will fit any budget and don’t require you to pay shipping and handling. Gifts start at $6.

Gas prices may have come down, but who wants to search for a parking space at the mall? And with the “Gifts of Love and Hope” you don’t have to fear forgetting where you parked.

You can shop in your jammies anytime of the day, or night. Shop and order online.

Your gift will reduce your income taxes because it is tax deductible (if you itemize).

You will get a heartwarming feeling about the gift you purchased in honor of your friends or loved ones.

The number one reason why you should shop from CCF’s “Gifts of Love and Hope” catalog – Your gifts provide a brighter future for children and families in the 32 countries CCF works.

So what are you waiting for? Get your shopping done now and then sit back and relax with a smile on your face knowing that you’ve helped change the lives of children around the world.

To learn more about the gift catalog, click here to watch a video from CCF's Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Resources Mike Pressendo. For more information on Christian Children’s Fund, click here.