On Saturday night, we attended the Spice Up Inaugural dinner – an innovative dinner concept sharing stories and culture of immigrant chefs, to help build cultural ties in the city. I had a lot of fun meeting new people, hearing cool stories and eating good food… check them out!
COHatch is an innovative co-working space, design to bring people together to help them thrive with their mission and their purpose. Their workspaces are inspiring… but they also have a deeper mission, to connect people in the community that are making an impact. They support a lot of social enterprises and non-profits, so it’s exciting watching them grow. COHatch is creating environments that bring people together to make new connections and share ideas that make an impact.
I missed Positioned to Prosper this year – but they brought in some great social enterprises, and made sharing their story easy. They also announced the finalists for the social entrepreneurship of the year awards – of which Wild Tiger Tees is a finalist for emerging social enterprise… the Aspire awards are Wednesday, September 18th, so mark your calendar.
Reading to children out loud is the best way to improve literacy for children, so Everybody Wins! Atlanta works to instil a love for reading in kids. Earlier on my podcast, I spoke with Reading for Change – another mission fueling reading at a young age. Reading spurs the imagination, fuels curiosity, which help youth succeed. I’m sure George Lucas with his 27,000+ book collection would be proud.
Transience is a huge issue in the foster care system. For a kid in the foster care system for 18 years, it’s possible to be in 18 placements, in 18 different schools… kind of a disorienting situation for no fault of their own. Interesting piece on having the department of education responsible for tracking a school of origin for foster youth to see if it’s possible to minimize these disruptions. The Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute is working to raise awareness on what families and educators can do to make the foster experience more grounded.
More Than Words is a social enterprise in Boston – they serve as a job training program for youth who have been through foster care, homelessness, or the justice system. They teach them to run brick & mortar stores, but also give them time to work on themselves at the same time… and are accompanied by intensive case management so they get the support they need.
 Happy Jail
Watched a great documentary on Netflix called Happy Jail – about the CPDRC jail in the Philippines that had a viral video in 2007 of their Michael Jackson dance video Thriller. It’s a really interesting documentary around the end of their public performances, and the shift in power in the Philippines that gave rise to their war on drugs… it’s a look at prison life that makes you really feel for what the inmates are going through. Many of them are pre-trial… often waiting 6-7 years for a trial, where if convicted, their sentence could be a week to a year. Serious overcrowding, and understaffed… and quite a brilliant mix of life in the prisons, and the overlap of politics which bends the story without context. Worth a watch… but also a reminder that there is a better way to rehabilitate people, especially when most of the crimes are drug-related. One that is built of discipline, respect and hope.