I am writing this post to let you know I have made the decision to leave my position here in Schipul-land. It has been an absolutely amazing ride and I am grateful and privileged to have gotten to work and play alongside these fabulously talented folks the last 2 ½ years.
I am not leaving to seek position in another company’ instead I am leaving to seek more time in the company of 2 very special little men in my life, AK & The Z-Man.
With much soul searching and thought I have decided that for this very brief time in my life and in theirs it is incredibly important that I be there in a more hands on way to guide them, encourage them, and support them in being as successfully as they chose to be.
In a world full of emerging technology choices, it can feel as though technology serves as only a distractionâ€¦ something used distances us from each otherâ€¦ something used to market to us. At the same time, these same technologies can be used for truly amazing purposesâ€¦ to empower us, encourage us and inspire us.
It also took an honest look at the real threats unsafe and uneducated use of technology pose with the hopes that the audience would take pause and consider their own use of technology. Finally, with a quick exercise and highlight of useful monitoring tools, the audience was themselves empowered with a personal technology mission statement and the encouragement to share in the online world the gifts they are already bringing to patients offline.
For more about the ‘The Impact of Technology on Dementia Care Servicesâ€ Closing Remarks see the presentation below.
For about the Alzheimer’s Association: Houston and Southest Texas Branch visit:
It seems there may be a storm a brewingâ€¦ or maybe (hopefully) a change in the nonprofit donation policy from Apple.
With Beth Kanter’srecentblogposts shining a light on Apple’ s policy barring solicitations of donations by nonprofits groups’ many nonprofit focused individuals as well as plain ol’ big heart-ed folks are getting behind a campaign asking Steve Jobs and Apple to change their ways. In fact, donation lovers to the tune of 6000+ (at time of post) have already signed a care2 petition asking Apple to ‘Support Our Great Nonprofits.â€
A Little Background
Jake Shapiro kicked the hornet’s nest a few months back with what Beth calls a ‘must-read editorialâ€ outlining his position that Apple’s reasons for not allowing nonprofit donations aren’t reasons at all, but rather just excuses. Next, Beth threw down the gauntlet announcing when her contract is up she is switching to the more nonprofit friendly Android, where none of the in-App donation challenges apply (I, for one, am certainly in love with mine.) Finally, with the help of Sue Ann Reed from Care2, a petition was created and Beth is rallying the troopsâ€¦ ‘Send Steve Jobs A Message: Let Us Give Donations on the iPhone.â€
Soâ€¦ What’s Next?
Well, if you are like most of the folks out there whose smartphone is becoming more and more a part of their lives and you would like yours to help you connect to the causes you care aboutâ€¦ go sign the petition here >>
Thenâ€¦ we wait and observe. It will be interesting to see if a group of users can use the social media tools of today to make a company change their product and the way they do business. We keep saying in our social media trainings that marketing has changed to a two-way streetâ€¦ the power is now truly in the hands of the people. I am curious to see just how this one turns out?
In keeping with the feel good’ giving spirit of the season’ we want to help a non-profit with their web marketing efforts. We want to help an organization focused on doing good to do even more good by giving away 5 copies of ‘The Networked Non-Profitâ€ as well as a half day ‘Social Media Book Campâ€ Training.
The Networked Nonprofit
Beth Kanter’s blog describes Networked Nonprofits as:
‘â€¦ simple and transparent organizations. They are easy for outsiders to get in and insiders to get out. They engage people to shape and share their work in order to raise awareness of social issues, organize communities to provide services or advocate for legislation. In the long run, they are helping to make the world a safer, fairer, healthier place to live.â€
My son Z-Man turns 7 today. SEVEN! Time moves so quickly with little ones. One of my goals in life is to stay as present as possible, to absorb each moment of life as it happens’ especially when it comes to familyâ€¦ especially when it comes to my guys.Z-Man is such a great inspiration for living in the moment. He still lives in a world where magic happens’ where Santa is real. He is just now sorting out that Scooby-Doo is imagined and MythBusters is true.
Z-Man lives his life fully present and in the NOW. Things that are sad saturate him’ and then in 10 minutes’ something that’s funny tickles him to his funny bone. He lives with excitement for almost everything (the only thing that deflates his sails is putting away clean clothes.) He races to get the mail, zooms to brush teeth, zips out the door to go ride his bike. Everything is adventure’ everything is worth getting exciting about.
We have a Thanksgiving Day Tradition here at the Schipul Office. We munch, we mingle, we visit with family, and thenâ€¦ we race. We race PlasmaCars in the parking garageâ€¦ younger and olderâ€¦ we race. And Z-Man, bless him, he believes we race every day. He has asked me at dinner, ‘Did you race the cars today?â€ He gets super excited when he comes to visit me at work and asks me every time, ‘Where are the racing cars?â€ As many times as I tell him we only race on Thanksgiving’ he has believed we race all the time.
Todayâ€¦ today is the dayâ€¦ today we race! And Z-Man has finally gotten it down that we don’t race every day. So today, he thinks we are racing just for his birthday! He popped his head into our dark room this morning before 5AM and quietly snuck back to his bed only to happily emerge at 6:23 exclaiming, ‘Today is my BIRTHDAY!â€
And I am inspiredâ€¦ what would it be like to live my life with that much excitement- to cherish each moment and the magic in it.
Z-Man teaches to me to live each day like its PlasmaCar Race Day.
Happy Birthday Sonâ€¦ you are blessing and a treasure and a joy.
My life is richer because you are in it.
Thanx again everyone for sharing – now… go eat some Turkey!
It’s November again in Schipul-land (well, it’s really November everywhere else too, but is makes for a good opener) … and we are once again focusing on thankfulness. This November we are celebrating the sources of our inspirationsâ€¦ those people, quote, movies, books, etc. that have influenced us, motivated us, inspired us to do bigger, better, awesomer things.
To celebrate our celebration of inspiration we have a super special giveaway!
While our blog posts are sharing those things that have helped us get farther down the road of life, we want to give away a copy of book that focuses on how we can all give to someone else’ to inspire them, help them grow, lift them up, guide them through the obstacles of the work place, or community space, or fill-in-the-blank space.
Greater Than Yourself: The Ultimate Lesson of True Leadership is a book devoted the idea that the goal of genuine leader is to help others. To help those around us become more capable, confident, and accomplished than we are. That’s rightâ€¦ a leader’s goal is help the people we lead to be Greater Than Ourselves.
‘Real leadership, in other words, is an extreme act rooted in love and motivated by a desire to create a better world’ whether it’s the world of your company, team, neighborhood, or family.â€
Written using the now very popular allegorical form, Greater Than Yourself wraps the three tenets of Greater Than Yourself’ Expand Yourself, Give Yourself, and Replicate Yourself – inside a fictional narrative. We follow the main character on his journey towards understanding and embracing the ‘GTYâ€ way of life. The book is a short and sweet readâ€¦ ending with a perfectly useful recap of the steps to the Greater Than Yourself philosophy. It strips out the entire story and gives you the guidance you need to embark on your ‘GTYâ€ way of life. The book is also supported by a vast and active online community at www.greaterthanyourself.com
‘One tricky part of a Greater Than Yourself project is that you cannot truly give in a worthwhile way to those around you without accepting within yourself the qualities the program emphasizes. You must be willing to expand yourself, to give your abilities to another, to tap into the greatness inherent not only in you, but it those around you.â€
So’ we want to inspire you! We want to inspire you to inspire others! We want to give you a copy of ‘Greater Than Yourself.â€
How do you win this amazing book? Glad you asked:
Leave a comment below’ who or what has been a source of inspiration in your life?
We will pick a winner using the random integer generator on Wednesday, November 24th.
PS –Be sure to let us know a good way to contact you when you win!
For those who have not heard of NetSquared before:
NetSquared is focused on the intersection of technology and social impact. We create opportunities for all those involved in creating change to connect: whether you are a nonprofit or a foundation, a designer or a developer, a changemaker or an entrepreneur.
The Houston NetSquared Meetup is focused on ‘Social changemakers and technological forerunners coming together at Net Tuesday events to mix, swap stories and ideas, build new relationships, and reinforce the online NetSquared community.â€
Ryan (Ryan Marsh, president of the Layla Grace Foundation) speaks geek and can talk to the more technical challenges facing online non-profit organizations from a technology and a human perspective.
Having spent a lot of time over the last 15 years involved with Non-Profits, I can say the way they function has changed substantially over the last 3-5 years with society’s rapid adoption of new technology and the introduction of Social Media into the mix. In order for a NPO to stay viable, I believe they have to passionately embrace technology and the social-sphere in order to overcome challenges, meet goals, and, most importantly in today’s economy, do more with a LOT less.
The Layla Grace Foundation was founded by Ryan and Shanna Marsh in April 2010 in honor of their daughter Layla Grace Marsh who gained her eternal wings on March 9, 2010. You can learn more about the foundation at their site: http://laylagrace.org/ . With more than 16 thousand Facebook Fans, I was keen to hear what a very successful and VERY young Non-Profit had to say about the technology choices they had made.
Ryan did a wonderful job of balancing the very tender topic of childhood cancer with talking about the tech tools the Layla Grace Foundation has used to serve their mission:
“The Layla Grace Children’s Cancer Research Foundation is a non-profit organization focused on the discovery of new treatment options for children with high-risk cancer. We empower parents with the tools to become effective advocates for their children and raise public consciousness about our cause.”
In fact, Ryan offered up such a phenomenal top 10 list for Non-Profit Technology choices’ I was taking notes like a mad woman in order to be able to share them here. What I really like about this list is that it came from someone who has a history in the Tech Industry and has also tested, evaluated, tried and failed fast with a lot of the technology options out there today. This is a tried and true list of options that have floated to the top of the list for a functioning Non-Profit Organization and it can save other organization out there a lot of time and money.
So, without further ado, here is the Non-Profit Top 10 Tech Tools Recommended by the Layla Grace Foundation:
If you are an Admin on a Facebook Page you may have noticed already the new ‘Spamâ€ option on your pages. You may also already seen it at work hiding those pesky sales pitches for Magic Acai Berries and the like.
Facebook is now helping Page admins ensure that the most valuable content posted by users on their Page wall is more visible to anyone viewing the Page. We are now offering automatic content filtering on Page walls that will ensure that posts soliciting spam are removed from public view as well as ensure that posts containing good content remain more visible.
If you have your page setting such that posts to your page are separated by your organization’s and then all others, you will see the ‘Spamâ€ link as the 4th option in this list. Not to worry’ only Page Admins can see this link.
Clicking the ‘Spamâ€ link will show you all the content Facebook as deemed spam worthy and moved off your page.
Mouseing over the spam post will reveal a little ‘Xâ€ to the top right of the post. Clicking the ‘Xâ€ will reveal several options:
1. Remove the post
2. Unmark as Spam
3. Report as Abuse
If the post does really belong in the general content of your organization’s Facebook pageâ€¦ then by all means click that Unmark option. If however the post does fall into that dark side of the internet category called spam, then I suggest you report as abuse and then remove it. This will alert Facebook to the insidious nature of the offending poster and may hopefully save a fellow organization admin a few moments of time later on down the line.
If you have a mixed wall, meaning you show all posts from your organization mixed with other’s post, you won’t see the spam link. You will want to first click the ‘Optionsâ€ link, then following the same instructions above.
Thanks to popularity of Facebook we can use it connect with like minded people and promote, support and grow our non-profit and for profit organizations alikeâ€¦ andâ€¦ due to the popularity of Facebook the spammers will start to show up more and more. Thankfully, Facebook is putting measures into place to make the Facebook experience a good one for both admins and users.
Imagine a place where you never hear “you can’t” – a place totally focused on learning what you CAN do…
Imagine you live life with a challenging illness or special needs… you get told “you can’t” a lot.
Imagine a place where they don’t say you can’t do that… only… let’s find a way so you CAN do that.
From giant swings to giant turtles… to canoes… to tree houses… to finding gold… there is a place that is solely focused on helping people learn what they CAN do… for people of all ages and abilities. Camp For All is a unique, state of the art facility that is totally barrier free, not just accessible.
Camp For All is a unique camping and retreat facility that works in collaboration with other non-profits to provide life changing programs for children and adults with challenging illnesses and special needs. Campers of all ages and abilities gain self-confidence and independence while having fun, learning new skills and bonding with others who share their challenges in a safe and understanding environment.
Campers learn what they can do at Camp For All, not what they can’t do. For the first time, they are surrounded by others with the same challenges and the feeling of loneliness goes away. Surrounded by understanding and acceptance and immersed in the Camp For All activities and positive environment, they have an opportunity to focus on the joy of life. That feeling of independence and confidence goes home with them. And regardless of how much longer they have to live, they are not just survivors, they have become strong survivors.
This unique barrier-free organization has partnered up with one of our favorite Houston based suppliers of libations, St. Arnold’s Brewery, to throw a party! A party to raise funds to help children and adults with cancer, HIV, epilepsy, spina bifida, sickle cell, burns and so much more have a chance to DISCOVER LIFE!!
Last year my family joyfully discovered CityPassâ€¦ the kiddos were finally old enough to enjoy all the museums and attractions our fair city has to offer and so, we decided to take a few days off and make a staycation of it.
Upon researching the CityPass, I was even happier to discover that CityPass is offered in a multitude of really awesome vacation spotsâ€¦ New York, Seattle and San Francisco to name a few. And new to the list, Southern California! Yes, that’s right, Universal Studios, Disneyland, and the San Diego Zooâ€¦ plus a whole lot more are now easier to afford.
For the cost of a family of four to visit any 2 local attractions’ you can purchase a CityPass and gain access to at least 6 of the big name museums and local city draws.
Plus no waiting in lines (reallyâ€¦ Space Center Houston, locally just known as NASA, has a special line just for CityPass folks.) It made site seeing with the kiddos just a little bit easier.
Another really cool feature is the pass lasts for 9 daysâ€¦ have some time off stacked up, don’t want to rush through your visit, no worriesâ€¦ you can wrap your travels around 2 weekends.
So, from this mom to youâ€¦ I pass along the gift of the CityPass. Thinking about vacationing this summer’ I suggest picking your spot from one of the those listed on www.citypass.com