Sunday, July 13, 2008

Democrats put advocacy back in the hands of the people

When Sen. Obama and the DNC refused to accept money from lobbyist they put special interest lobbyist on notice. Advocacy organizations and individuals can talk directly to their congressmen. Now we have to rise up and make our voices heard!All it took is one man to stand up and now we have campaign finance reform! This was a good start.

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Tony Snow, you either loved him or not….

Not to speak ill of the deceased, ask yourself what did you think of Tony Snow when he was alive? Did you like him? If you did, then you should morn his untimely death. If you didn't like him, then you may feel sympathy for the loss of another human being.

When I look in the major broadcast media and see all these commentators throwing out all these accolades about Tony Snow it bothers me. Whatever happened to fair and unbiased reporting? Over the years these same news commentators spoke about how Tony Snow and the Bush administration deceived the American public about the war in Iraq. Tony Snow's job was to put a positive spin on the information that came out of the White House.

Ask the parents of the soldiers who lost their lives in Iraq if they think Tony Snow was honest and a man of integrity. This is how mainstream media is portraying him as now that he has died. Mainstream media is working hard to convince us that Tony Snow was a wonder person, and he really might have been. My prayers go out to his family.

We should watch the company that we keep. Sometimes we are remembered by the company that we kept. Being connected to the Bush Administration may have cause a good man's reputation to be tarnished.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Drinking Juices my be bad for you!

Please don't squeeze that orange...unless you plan to peel it and eat it...but if it's juice you have in mind, forget it. I'm no doctor, nutritionist or dietitian, but I know something about healthful eating, and I'm about to give you an important health warning that your doctor either forgot to mention...or perhaps doesn't know about it.

Simply put, don't drink juices if you value your orange, grape, apple, or tomato fruit or vegetables juices at all. Unless you know something about your digestive system, you may be endangering yourself by drinking juices, even those you made yourself from scratch. Bottled juices can be even more hazardous, especially those made from citrus fruit.

By now you must be in denial or disbelief, saying to yourself, What is she talking about? I'll get right to the point. Drinking juices requires no chewing, but poursdirecty into your stomach, where it ferments because it hasn't been properly digested. All fruits and vegetables are properly digested in the mouth by the enzymes in your saliva. Once digested, the body is allowed to absorb its nutritionalproperties. As a result of improper digestion and subsequent fermentation, which may block the digestion of proteins, fats and carbohydrates in your stomach,you develop indigestion, bloating, flatulence and even sharp gas pains.

If you doubt it, walk down the aisles of any drug store or supermarket and observerows and rows of anti-acid pillls, liquids, and other remedies for indigestion and acid-reflux symptoms and diseases. Even those expensive prescriptions doctors givetheir patients to relieve the discomfort and harm from juice drinking does notprevent continued symptoms and eventual illness.

Citrus juices are particularly harmful because most of their Vitamin C disappearsshortly after the fruit has been opened or squeezed and the resulting juices arevery acidic. Besides, fructose sugar is concentrated in most juices, which canlead to higher blood sugar and possibly the risk for diabetes.

If you must have your juices, you have to chew them before swallowing them.That is not very appetizing. I've read that diluting juices with at least half watermake them less destructive to your digestive system, but diluted juices areno more appetizing than chewed juices.

Your best bet is to eat the fruit and veggies whole. You'll be getting more nourishment, you won't be wasting the fiber and nutrients, and you won't begetting as much sugar in your bloodstream as you would from juices.

If this makes sense to you...or not...check it out with your doctor, or a nutritionist or dietition, or go online, search under digestion, juices, acid indigestion, nutritionalbenefits of particular foods, and other related categories. That should convince you.If you suffer from acute acid indigestion, and you are a juice drinker, you might want to start by eliminating all juices for awhile to see if that makes a difference. There are other bad health habits besides juice drinking that cause indigestion and acid-reflux disease, but juices are a big part of the American diet, and indigestion isa major health problem. Once a person's digestive system is harmed, many otherserious health problems can arise as a result.

We' ve been told that Food is Your Best Medicine and that You are What you Eat.I agree, but how you eat that food is an important health consideration. We've also been told, You Can Dig Your Grave with your Teeth. What you eat and how you eat it and what you know about it has a solid impact on your health, and the health of your children and family. If you didn't know about the dangers of drinking juices,I hope this is the wake-up call that will make an important difference in your life.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Non Profit Organizations Get in Their Own Way!

In my day job I'm the president of my public relations firm. I've been in meetings with clients while they discussed which organizations they should give funding to. The outcomes of these meetings are the same. Companies give sponsorships to organizations that they feel will be effective, are pleasant to work with and are professional.

Some organizations don't understand the project they are taking on. Don't laugh, there have been organization that were turned down for funding because they didn't ask for enough money, the proposal was viewed as not credible. It demonstrated a lack of vision by the organization. Think things through. Pay attention to the details. Ask for enough funding to reach your goals and objectives.

Be pleasant. You would be surprised how many people are not pleasant to the very people who they are trying to get funding from. This means to nice to everyone including the security guard down in the lobby. If you have people that I call "blockers" in your office get rid of them. Many times they are putting up barriers that frustrate potential sponsors, allies and volunteers who may want to work with you. If you are a "blocker", change the way you screen or prioritize your duties. Respond to all calls, faxes and emails that are legitimate within 24 hours. This is a great lead into my next point.

Be professional. I feel silly even having to bring this up. There is a laundry list of things that I've heard sponsors say. I'll list a few of the top reasons organization get skipped over for funding:

  1. Paperwork is not up to par.
  2. Fail to meet deadlines.
  3. Not responsive to sponsors request.
  4. Does not return phone calls.
  5. Shoddy reporting.

If this is you, fix it today. You are shooting yourself in the foot by not being professional. I suggest that you do an honest SWOT analysis. Get lean and mean as sponsorship budgets are being cut. Increase your chances of getting funded by doing what is necessary to survive these tight economic times.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Right Way to Use a Press Release

The National Association of Woman Business Owners (NAWBO) recently appointed Cynthia McClain-Hill Esq. President of the Virginia based organization. NAWBO mission is to propel women entrepreneurs into economic, social, and political spheres of power worldwide. This organization is well organized, politically active and highly successful.

According to Ms. McClain-Hill, there are 10.6 million woman-owned businesses in America. With that statement in the organizations press release, it's clear that they are putting the presidential candidates on notice that they must address their issues. This I a wonderful example of how to utilize a press release.

Advocacy is a powerful tool that can be used to address a organization's needs and concerns when used properly. As stated in a one of my earlier blogs, the "democrats have put the power back in the hands of the people." When the DNC refused to accept campaign money from lobbyist, savvy organizations and advocates started to flex their political muscles. They started to implement their media plans, rewrite their SWOT analysis and rally the troops. Not only is the political landscape changing in the next election, the way we interact with our elected officials is going to change. This is an exciting time to be an advocate.

We recently taught an advocacy training class in Chicago. For those of you who have attended one of my trainings, copy the linked press release and use it as an example of a great tool for advocates. As we said we will continue to help you strengthen your advocacy skills.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Act Now America

I have highlighted this video as it screams for Americans to take action. A picture can say a thousand words; this video multiplies that by over 100 billion. If we think it’s bad now what are we doing to our grandchildren? We have a responsibility to future Americans to bite the bullet and fix the financial mess we have made!

Please post your comments and pass this on to other concerned Americans. We can’t just talk among ourselves, contact your elected official and let them know your thoughts. On this site I do not endorse any candidate for president. The video I found on YouTube. If you have information about the national debt that you would like to share please do.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Continuing with the series on healthcare, I will lay out a few things that advocacy and grassroots organization can do to help change unhealthy behaviors in our communities. If we avoid taking a myopic few of healthcare and educate communities about the simple changes families can make to increase their own quality of life, we could save billions of dollars in healthcare cost. Prevention of disease is more cost effective than treatment.

There is strength in numbers. People are more likely to change a behavior if they have a partner striving with them; group efforts promote lasting change. There also has to be an emphasis on individual responsibility for taking care of the things that is within your control. Parents have to be the responsible adults for their children. Love and good parenting means doing the right things for your family members even if it's not the most popular.

A good place to start is with diet and exercise. Vibrant Health
delivers its' healthy message through public education on nutritional and lifestyle choices.  Community organizations can play a critical role in creating a paradigm shift. Advocates and community organizations across different disciplines need to partner to address all the needs of people. The tools and best practices already exist for changing lifestyles from unhealthy ones to ones that promotes good health.

  1. Broadly educate families about the symptoms of common diseases and encourage them to speak with their primary care providers about the disease, further encourage screenings, diagnoses and treatment.


  2. Educate family members who already have been diagnosed with an illness about the importance of on-going education, utilization of local risk reduction resources vs. emergency room treatments.


  3. Build local voluntary coalition partners and support groups that can assist families to take control and ownership of their care and treatment by utilizing "do-it-yourself" tools and guidelines that address risk factors such as obesity, smoking and second-hand smoke, improved housekeeping—habits and behaviors that may unknowingly increase their potential risk for disease.


  4. Strive to provide outreach, education and services that are culturally competent, and indigenous to the community. There may be a need to provide services that are easily accessible for people rather than far away from their homes. Culturally competent services will require an emphasis on linguistic and language differences, as well as racial and ethnic issues. Provide training to move providers and healthcare professionals to a more culturally competent approach to service delivery.


We don't have to recreate the wheel. Use what we know works. Make small changes in the way we think and we will change our behavior. Behaviors are only a reflection of the way we view the world.