Archive for July, 2011

Celebrating a 131st Birthday

Friday, 29 July, 2011

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor even touched, but just felt in the heart.”

So said Helen Keller, whose birthday was celebrated last month. She taught the world to respect people with different abilities by setting a personal example of courage, determination and conviction despite her multiple disabilities.

The Amway Opportunity Foundation in India, along with 14 National Project for the Blind partners, celebrated the 131st birthday of Helen Keller on June 27.

Volunteers made the day more special day for all visually challenged students by engaging them in a variety of interactive programs like debates, reading and singing. Participating students were given special certificates.

Amway Human Resources teams conducted communications skills and personality development workshops for visually impaired students at computer centers in Mumbai, Pune and Ahmedabad.

To top off the day, Amway used this celebration to inaugurate its 14th computer center for visually challenged students at the Guwahati Blind School.

What a happy birthday!

Thanks to Raj Narain for sharing this story.

Feeding the mind and the body

Wednesday, 27 July, 2011

Can you concentrate when you feel hungry?

Neither can 72% of the students in rural Western China schools, according to a survey conducted by the China Development Research Foundation (CDRF). The study of 1,458 students in a dozen boarding schools, ages 10 to 13, found 12% of the students show signs of stunted growth and 9% are below normal weight.

In 2007, CDRF initiated a Nutrition Enhancement Program for elementary boarding students in rural areas across Guangxi and Hubei provinces. The program provides nutritious meals for the students to ease hunger and encourage proper nutrition and growth. Amway China was one of the major sponsors of the project.

The program is making a difference in the growth and development of students. Two years it began, a professional observation panel found that the average height of the students is already 1.4 centimeters higher than students who are not in the program.

Inspired by this survey, the Chinese government has begun to grant food subsidies to students in rural China.

This is a milestone, but the subsidy is far from sufficient. The needs require continuous support from public and private partners so Western China students can continue to grow.

Thanks to Rowley Luo for sharing this story

Amway recognized for community efforts in Canada

Monday, 25 July, 2011

Amway employees and Independent Business Owners (IBOs) in Canada have been consistent supporters of Easter Seals Canada for many years, through a combination of quiet collections and dramatic events.

Last month, the Direct Sellers Association in Canada recognized Amway Canada with its Making a Difference Award. The award represents efforts through the Drop Zone events that have raised nearly $360,000 for Easter Seals.

During Drop Zone events, Amway employee and IBO superheroes rapel down skyscrapers to raise visibility and funds for Easter Seals in a dozen cities across the country.

From child development centers to adaptive technology and physical rehabilitation, Easter Seals Canada offers a variety of services to help address life’s challenges and achieve personal goals. We celebrate this success with a fantastic partner!

Thanks to Carmela Ianni for sharing this story.

Rebuilding a village with a flock of sheep

Friday, 22 July, 2011

Singlar village is located in the foot of Mt. Merapi in Central Java, Indonesia. Late last year, its peaceful life was disrupted by the volcanic eruption of Mt. Merapi. Many homes and lives were lost.

Even though nature has slowly healed itself, the economic activities have not returned because hundreds of acres of farmland were destroyed. When a group of Amway employees and distributors visited Singlar village, they asked, ”How can we make a difference when the needs are so great?”

Through its foundation, Yayasan Amway Peduli, Amway presented nearly 150 flocks of sheep to the leader of Singlar village. These flocks were given to more than 220 households to raise, breed and hopefully increase the size of the flock.

Amway worked with the local government to provide lessons and rewards that encourage the villagers to make a profit and earn money from the flock.

 

Through animal husbandry, we hope to create a brighter economic future. Amway Indonesia General Manager Koen Verheyen said, “Making a difference to a community is more than just writing a check. We want to help the people of Singlar rebuild a prosperous village for themselves.”

Thanks to Sri Soekarmoen and Riana Nurwulan for sharing this story.

Nutrition of a different flavor

Friday, 22 July, 2011

From guest blogger Rowley Luo of Amway China:

How does steamed soybeans and rice taste for three meals a day, 365 days a year?

Boarding school students in DuAn, Guangxi Province in China have the same meal every day because kitchen facilities are unaffordable in the school.

This is a snapshot of the malnutrition situation for children of migrant families in rural China. The Chinese government provides food subsidies to children in these areas, but it is far from enough.

The Amway Charity Foundation (ACF) recently announced the Spring Sprout Nutrition Project to help with child malnutrition in rural China. It will spend $7.7 million in the next three years to build 1,000 “Nutrition kitchens” and train 1,000 nutritionists in boarding schools across ten provinces. Approximately 500,000 children will be impacted.

“It’s not just a meal that matters,” says Eva Cheng, Chair of ACF, “but the physical and intellectual development of the next generation.”

Hunting for clues while helping a cause

Wednesday, 20 July, 2011

Ten teams of adults running around the streets of Grand Rapids, Michigan in matching t-shirts and medical gear could hardly go unnoticed.

This was the second Grid70 Scavenger Hunt, where 25 Amway employees volunteered to raise money for the Heart of West Michigan United Way, a nonprofit organization that strives to “create opportunities for a good life for everyone in the community through giving, advocating, and volunteering.

The all-day event included a scavenger hunt and after party, complete with a silent auction of products donated by local companies. Scavenger hunt initiatives included digging blindfolded in a mud bucket to find cockroaches (plastic ones, of course), carrying an egg baby and capturing photographs of all completed tasks.

Throughout the action-packed event, the teams proved that fundraising doesn’t always have to be bowties and speeches.

Thanks to Jency Schnettler (on the far left of the photo) for sharing this story.

Announcing Habitat build schedule in Latin America

Friday, 15 July, 2011

Amway has formally launched the Habitat for Humanity Latin America partnership that we announced in February.

Following is the preliminary schedule for 2011. Click on a country to visit the home page.

Argentina:

  • September
  • La Matanza, Buenos Aires

El Salvador:

  • September
  • Depto, de La Libertad

Costa Rica:

  • September
  • Cartago

Colombia:

  • October
  • Soacha, Depto. de Cundinamarca

 Thanks to Nancy Cortez for sharing this update.

Party in the Park!

Wednesday, 13 July, 2011

6 West Michigan locations

30,000+ children and families

2 hours packed with fun activities and free food

Amway has again partnered with WOODTV8, its local NBC affiliate, and Maranda to provide six highly anticipated park parties, known for packing lots of food and fun in two hour blasts.

Each party offers kids under the age of 18 a lunch from the Michigan Department of Education and area public schools, as well as fun and educational activities provided by local nonprofit groups.

 

You can find children making arts and crafts, getting their faces painted, and joining a new project through the Amway One by One Art Area. Here, kids will work with artist Corey Van Duienen to create cool art that will be part of his 2011 ArtPrize entry.

The piece is called “The Child Shall Lead Them” and will be displayed in front of the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum.

There are still a few parties left in West Michigan. Join us from 12:00-2:00 pm at these locations:

  • July 14, Kollen Park, Holland
  • July 21, Upjohn Park, Kalamazoo
  • July 28, Allegan County Fairgrounds, Allegan

Thanks to Angela Nelson for sharing this story.

The Other Mothers

Monday, 11 July, 2011

A couple years ago, Amway celebrated the Christmas holidays by hosting foster families from across West Michigan at a special party just for them at our public museum.

Talking to foster parents at that event, we realized that these are some of the most selfless, caring and talented people I have met, and the impact they have on children – that may only be a temporary part of their lives – is immeasurable.

That’s why we were delighted to hear that the winner of the SOS Children’s Villages “Other Mothers” contest in the US went to a foster mother in Tampa Bay, Florida.

After raising six children of their own, Brenda Wenning and her husband Larry were licensed as foster parents. The day after their paperwork was complete, they were contacted about a sibling group of eight children. They said yes, and four years later, the children continue to grow and thrive under their care.

Amway has partnered with SOS Children’s Villages on various projects around the world, but this was the first time supporting a project in the US. What a great way for SOS Children’s Villages to celebrate the type of mother that cares for children in their Villages around the world.

Thanks to Marsha Champion and Lisa Vogt for sharing this story.

A special chess tournament

Friday, 8 July, 2011

To encourage greater participation in competitive sports and activities by the visually challenged, the Amway Opportunity Foundation and its partner, the Devnar Foundation for the Blind, organized a five-day chess tournament in Hyderabad.

Approximately 100 visually challenged players from across India participated in the 34th National Chess Championship.

All participants were awarded with certificates, and winners received special recognition and prizes. Winners will also advance to international competitions representing India.

The event was honored by participation of senior members of the Government of Andhra Pradesh and Amway Business Owner leaders.

You can read more about how the game is modified for the visually impaired in an article in The Hindu.

Thanks to Raj Narain for sharing this story.