Posts tagged with "families"

Parenting Tips During COVID-19

While this summer may look different than you and your family imagined, it can still be a happy, healthy time for growth and positive development. The Children and Screens network of experts is here to help you have the best summer possible with tips for managing summertime with your children and tweens on- and off-screens.

Read on for details, and be sure to tune in to the next “Ask The Experts” interactive webinar series brought to you by Children and Screens: Institute of Digital Media and Child Development this coming Friday, June 5th, at noon EDT, when an esteemed panel of experts will talk about how to navigate this unique summer with your school-aged children and teens and answer your questions via Zoom. RSVP here.

The workshop will be moderated by Dr. David Hill, a national authority on Child Development, Hospital Pediatrician at Goldsboro Pediatrics, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at UNC School of Medicine, and the author of the new book Co-parenting Through Separation and Divorce.

  • FIND A BALANCE
    Kids thrive in environments that help regulate their sensory systems—sight, sound, touch, hearing, taste, smell, vestibular, and proprioceptive, among others—because it makes them feel calm and ready to learn. Understand that kids may be using media devices to help regulate sensation when ordinary supports like playgrounds and resource rooms are unavailable. Instead of viewing media use as inherently problematic, work with your child to explore other environments, inside and out, that support their sensory regulation so that media use is just one of many options available to them.         

 -Kristen Harrison, Professor of Communication and Media, University of Michigan

  • KIDS PITCH IN
    Parents need help around the house, and children need variety, so take this summer as an opportunity to show your kids how to pitch in. Cooking, cleaning the car, watering the plants – these all give your child a sense of purpose and new skills they’ll need as they grow up. Plus, it provides a welcome hand for overburdened parents and guardians!                                                                                                           

-Susan Tapert, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry and Associate Director, Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development, UC San Diego.

  • KEEP IN TOUCH
    As your child progresses from early to middle childhood, peer interactions become even more important. Peer relationships help children develop important skills like cooperation, conflict resolution, emotional management, perspective taking, creativity, and identity presentation. Even if your family is social distancing, encourage your child to engage with other kids. This can be through video chat (e.g., Zoom, FaceTime, Skype), online games (e.g., Minecraft, Roblox), walkie-talkies, or even talking across fences or through windows. Children need social interactions, and peers are important social partners. Even if parks and camps are limited or closed, social interactions should still be encouraged, and the thoughtful use of technology can help facilitate them.                       

 -Stephanie M. Reich, Associate Professor of Education, University of California, Irvine.

  • GO OUTSIDE
    Strangely enough, stay-at-home orders seem to have reminded people how important it is to get outdoors. Being outside is generally regarded as safe, so long as basic public health guidelines are still observed. Playing in nature promotes curiosity, initiative, and creativity, and it’s a great way to take a break from the screen. The Children in Nature Network (CINN) provides resources for parents and guardians who want to promote exploration and unstructured play in backyards, parks, and other wild spaces during the pandemic. With many local and state parks starting to open back up, families can take advantage of this opportunity to instill a lifelong interest in nature.           

-Jayson Seaman, Associate Professor of Outdoor Leadership and Management, University of
New Hampshire.

  • ENCOURAGE EXPLORATION
    It is important to remember that learning happens through interaction with our environment. We learn through what we do. Letting children come up with ideas important to them, avoiding prescribed activities, taking time, and being patient provides space for creativity to emerge. Whatever the activity – whether a walk in the woods, drawing a picture, experimenting with a recipe or what might seem like just fooling around- letting kids, particularly young ones explore in unstructured ways helps them understand their world and cultivate deeper interest.                 

-Stephen Uzzo, Chief Scientist, New York Hall of Science and Adjunct Professor, Teaching and Learning, New York Institute of Technology Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

  • EXPECT AN ADJUSTMENT PERIOD
    Your child has been using screens to fend off boredom, but that’s not all. Screens are an easy way to distract ourselves from all those uncomfortable feelings during a pandemic: Disappointment. Sadness. Anxiety. Fear. Annoyance. Anger. So be sure to build in antidotes, like daily roughhousing, to help kids work through emotions. And you can expect a certain amount of volatility from your child as they begin spending less time with screens, so ratchet up your patience level. But after this transitional time period, you’ll see your child becoming less irritable and aggressive. You’ll notice more initiative, self-discipline and focus when they play. And best of all, you’ll see your child developing their inner life and discovering who they are by playing, learning and engaging with the world, instead of losing themselves to a screen.             

-Laura Markham, Editor of Ahaparenting.com, Author of Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids: How to Stop Yelling and Start  Connecting and Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings: How to Stop the Fighting and Raise Friends for Life

  • USE YOUR TOOLS
    Families can find a great tool to help them have a screen-use discussion with their kids by checking out the interactive Family Media Use Plan
    at HealthyChildren.org. Not sure how much time your kids really have? Would it help to have some visuals? It’s all there!   

-David L Hill, Hospital Pediatrician at Goldsboro Pediatrics, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at UNC School of Medicine, and the author of the new book Co-parenting Through Separation and Divorce.

  • DETOX FROM SCREENS
    Consider setting aside a full day (perhaps Saturday or Sunday) as screen-free time. If you can’t commit to a day, at least try a designated evening. This regular break allows children to do a “screen detox” and creates a void to be filled with other activities. Not a bad routine for the whole family to do together.   

-Daniel G. Shapiro, M.D., Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics

  • FAMILY FUN WITH MEDIA
    When you do watch media, make it a family affair. We know from research that when children and caregivers watch screens together, children are more likely to learn from what they are viewing. So, bring out the popcorn and have a special movie night, or designate some time during the day when you can sit down and watch educational media together to help make it a positive experience for kids. Children are more likely to learn from what they are viewing if you direct them to specific content (“Elmo is red”) and make it relatable (“that car is blue, we have a blue car too!”).  For older children, you can get them talking or thinking about what’s on the screen by asking engaging, open ended questions (“The dragon seems upset, why do you think that is?”). When family screen time is over, try to engage children in offline activities that get them playing or moving, to help keep their brains and bodies healthy.             

-Sheri Madigan, PhD, Clinical Psychologist, Canada Research Chair in Determinants of Child Development, Associate Professor, University of Calgary and Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute

“Just as resources have been recently prioritized to the transition from work to home,” says Dr. Pamela Hurst-Della Pietra, President and Founder of Children and Screens: Institute of Digital Media and Child Development, “for the foreseeable future, parents need to explore new avenues and adapt their child-rearing techniques to best serve their children’s needs in an uncertain and challenging milieu. It is a lot of ask, especially with fewer outside resources, less time, near constant change, circumscribed opportunities and, on top of it, the constant allure of screen time for everyone, but the payoff is worth the extra effort. We are here to support parents in coping with the new reality.”

Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE, sara sandman, illustration

GameTruck Virtual Gaming Parties

Video Game Party Company Goes Virtual Helping Mom and Dad Save Birthday Parties

Arizona based, GameTruck, is adding Virtual Gaming Parties as part of their suite of video game party experiences guiding mom and dad to provide a virtual party experience.

GameTruck, the industry leader in mobile video game parties, is proud to announce a new offering to its video game party options: Virtual Gaming Parties.

Over the past 15 years, GameTruck, who invented the mobile video game party, has entertained and connected more than ten million children and their families across the country. Due to the extraordinary circumstances the world is facing, GameTruck is constantly looking for ways to get people connected. As a way to support communities, GameTruck officially launched Virtual Gaming Parties to provide entertainment and relief during this difficult time.

Virtual gaming parties offer customers a way to play and experience the joy of a video game party while practicing social distancing. A virtual gaming party will let up to 24 players connect with each other remotely through voice and text chat to communicate and join each other in the online games they share.

The goal of virtual gaming parties is to create a product that allows people to connect virtually while in-person parties are impossible. Moreover, GameTruck will insert the best parts of their in-person gaming parties and to create a virtual offering that is safe, easy, and tons of fun.

Here is how a virtual gaming party works:

GameTruck creates a private virtual party space for customers to join together, remotely.

Customers will play from their homes, and join the fun, remotely.

The GameCoach connects everyone, helps share friend codes, presents special challenges, and monitors the fun.

Customers will provide their own gaming equipment and games.

GameTruck will manage the setup, gameplay and will moderate the entire event.

“At its core, GameTruck is a human connection company. In-person social interaction has been the heart of our business. The current public health crisis gives us an opportunity to reimagine how to entertain communities without physically being together. We are excited to launch our Virtual Gaming Parties,” Founder Scott Novis said.

GameTruck virtual gaming parties are a turn-key solution to connecting people through video games. Scott Novis, GameTruck Founder, believes this offering could be a game-changer in the video game entertainment and esports market.

“With so many people staying home from school and work, our team came together and came up with a solution to connect people,” Novis said. “I am very proud to stand behind our virtual gaming party experience, and I believe we can continue our mission: to connect people through gaming.”

Virtual gaming parties will be available across the United States starting Monday, March 23, 2020. For more information, please visit: www.gametruckparty.com

About GameTruck™ and Global Youth Enterprises, LLC

Global Youth Enterprises, LLC is a human connection company that creates transformational video game experiences through excellence in entertainment, sports and learning. The company operates GameTruck™, and Gameplex™, franchises across the U.S. to deliver high-quality entertainment for private parties and corporate events. In addition, Bravous® Esports, serves the competitive and recreational Esports players of all ages. For more information, please visit www.globalyouthenterprises.com.

Pediatric Health

NEW YORK, NY—June 24, 2019—Pediatricians seeking to address the social and economic concerns that can affect the health of their young patients must first build trusting relationships with parents and alleviate concerns that child protective services may be alerted, according to a report released today by United Hospital Fund and the nonprofit research organization Public Agenda.

“Parents bring their young children to the pediatrician up to 11 times within the first two years of life, and each of these visits offers an opportunity to identify unmet social needs and coordinate care with community-based services,” said Suzanne Brundage, director of UHF’s Children’s Health Initiative. “As screening for social determinants of health becomes more common in pediatric practices, qualitative and quantitative research can help us understand and improve how parents experience these screenings.”

Parents in four of the focus groups were recruited by community-based organizations that are part of UHF’s Partnerships for Early Childhood Development initiative, set up to help pediatric practices routinely screen young children and their families for social determinants and connect them with social services that can address those risks. The rest of the parents were recruited by professional market research facilities. Two of the eight focus groups were conducted in Spanish.

Support for the report was provided by a grant from United Hospital Fund. UHF’s Children’s Health Initiative, which commissioned and collaborated on this work, is funded in part by the William J. & Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation and the Ira W. DeCamp Foundation. 

The full report can be downloaded here.

About Public Agenda Public Agenda works to strengthen democracy and expand opportunity in America by fostering thoughtful public opinion, meaningful public participation and responsive public institutions. Founded in 1975 by the social scientist and public opinion research pioneer Dan Yankelovich and soon-to-be secretary of state Cyrus Vance, Public Agenda is a nonpartisan, nonprofit research and public engagement organization. Find Public Agenda online at PublicAgenda.org, on Facebook at facebook.com/PublicAgenda and on Twitter at @PublicAgenda. 

About United Hospital Fund United Hospital Fund works to build a more effective health care system for every New Yorker. An independent, nonprofit organization, we analyze public policy to inform decision-makers, find common ground among diverse stakeholders, and develop and support innovative programs that improve the quality, accessibility, affordability, and experience of patient care. For more on our initiatives and programs please visit our website at www.uhfnyc.org and follow us on Twitter.   

HACK Is Here To Help

Hack, a full-stack laptop designed to teach kids to code by enabling them to hack games, settings and apps, is announcing the launch of its pre-release beta.
Hack is the only laptop designed for everyday use that has a unique superpower – the benefit of inspiring kids to learn how to Hack. Using the flip-to-hack feature, kids can edit parameters, immediately see their changes and develop familiarity with basic coding in an authentic and safe environment. Built on the Linux-based Endless Operating System, kids access source code and use a real sandbox for learning how to code.
The award-winning ASUS laptop comes with all the apps and tools families need for everyday use, including Chrome, Calculator, Skype, Office Suite, Scratch, Spotify, Steam and more. Recognizing that many parents are eager to introduce STEM to their children and give them a computer of their own, Hack is a dual-purpose laptop great for everyday use and STEM education, for $299. What’s more, it is a safe, ad-free and virus-resistant computer with parental controls. Hack is the screen time that parents should feel good about for their kids.
“As a parent and passionate tech executive I am excited to empower the next generation with digital literacy, creative problem-solving skills and an understanding of how to engage consciously with the world. In turn, we hope to enable and inspire children to create innovative and exciting opportunities for themselves and others,” stated Roberta Antunes CEO of Hack.
Hack characters, based on computer science luminaries including Ada Lovelace and Mary Jackson, guide players through immersive adventures and provide them with new coding challenges every month. For $9.99 per month, Hack families will access an unfolding adventure story and learning quests, and hackable levels that unlock as the player’s skills improve. As the child evolves, so does the product. The first 12 months of the content subscription are free for launch customers.
To participate in the Hack beta, visit hack-computer.com and signup for the waitlist. Pre-orders for the public release on January 24th are also available on Amazon.

Chris Tucker to Host EBONY Power 100 Gala

EBONY Magazine announces the host for its annual EBONY Power 100 Gala and this year’s special award recipients.

Acclaimed actor and comedian Chris Tucker will steer the star-studded event.

Distinguished industry leaders to be recognized with the EBONY Icon Award and Inaugural Chairman’s Award

Following the recent unveiling of its prestigious annual EBONY Power 100 List in celebration those whose work and heroism continue to inspire and influence society, EBONY magazine has announced the host for this year’s highly anticipated EBONY Power 100 Gala, presented by Nationwide, taking place in Los Angeles at the Beverly Hilton on Nov. 30.

EBONY is also pleased to announce the recipients of this year’s coveted special awards which will be presented during Hollywood’s star-studded spectacle.

Helming the celebration of the 2018 EBONY Power 100 list honoring crusaders, innovators, disruptors, business titans, entrepreneurs and MVPs who are making a difference in the community at the EBONY Power 100 Gala is international award-winning actor Chris Tucker. Once a frequent stand-up performer on Def Comedy Jam in the 1990s, Tucker is best known today for playing Det. James Carter in the Rush Hour film series. Chris is currently returning to the stage on his stand-up comedy tour that has received rave reviews all over the world, while spending much of his spare time traveling and working with his foundation.

EBONY Media Operations CEO Michael Gibson will present the inaugural Chairman’s Award to former BET Chairman and CEO Debra Lee. The trailblazing business dynamo joined BET as executive vice president and general counsel in 1986, was promoted to president and COO of the network that reaches approximately 78 million homes in March 1996 and to chairman and CEO in 2005. She guided much of the 38-year-old network’s growth beyond music and into entertainment, news and public affairs programming, including original movies, late-night talk shows and concert specials, with successes such as bringing to cable The Game in 2014 and the miniseries. The New Edition Story in 2017, the launch of BET.com and the acquisition of the television rights to Black Girls Rock!

This year’s prestigious EBONY Icon Award will be presented to Motown Records. There simply isn’t a name in music more synonymous with era-defining hits, star-making, and innovation than Motown. Started in Detroit with a dream and an $800 loan, Berry Gordy’s Hitsville USA became a cultural behemoth that swiftly hooked pop culture with a brand new beat. The unmistakable, irrepressible sound of young America didn’t just dominate the charts–it crossed the racial divide during the social upheaval of the 1960’s. The hits and cultural influence doesn’t stop as Motown and its family of imprints explore new genres in partnerships with labels including Quality Control Music, which set the stage for signings of Migos and Lil Yachty. In recognition of the brand’s iconic relevance and impact, EBONY is pleased to honor Motowns decades of success. The award will be accepted by Motown President, and EVP of Capitol Music Group. Ethiopia Habtemariam, who is also honored in the Women Up category for her outstanding leadership in the music industry.

Habtemariam, whose former title, President of Urban Music & Co-Head of Creative for Universal Music Publishing, is responsible for revitalizing the storied label that boasts hit makers NE-YO and Erykah Badu. Habtemariam has ushered in a new generation of artists with acts like JAMESDAVIS, Lil Baby, City Girls, and BJ The Chicago Kid. Last summer, Billboard magazine recognized her as Universal Music Group’s Most Powerful African-American Woman.

“We are delighted to announce our celebrated host and award recipients for this year’s EBONY Power 100 Gala,” says Gibson. “Since unveiling our 2018 EBONY Power 100 List last month, the anticipation and buzz throughout the country has been very exciting to see. This year’s gala will surely prove to be the most memorable to date, and I would like to personally congratulate all our honorees.”

The 2018 EBONY Power 100 List recognizes the most influential and inspiring from the business, philanthropic, entertainment, and social activism communities in the following eight categories: Community Crusaders, Disruptors, Entertainment & Arts, Entrepreneurs, Innovators, MVPs, Power Players and the coveted Women Up.

Former President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama lead the Entertainment & Arts category, with a focus on Mrs. Obama’s book tour for her new memoir, Becoming. Barry Jenkins, director of the Academy Award-wining Moonlight and the upcoming If Beale Street Could Talk, is also being honored in the category for his achievements in the film industry, as Tony Award-winning actor Billy Porter is for his role in the television series Pose. Other notables being honored in the Entertainment & Arts category include the cast of Black Pantherand rappers Cardi B, Drake and Travis Scott. Athletes being honored in the MVPs category include Houston Rockets guard James Harden, Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and professional WWE wrestler and superstar Thaddeus Bullard, aka Titus O’Neil.

The 2018 EBONY Power 100 List includes politicians and lawmakers who made the news over the past year, such as Stacey Abrams, the first Black Georgia Democratic gubernatorial nominee (recognized in the Disruptors category); Andrew Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee, Florida, and the first Black candidate for governor of the Sunshine State (another Disruptors honoree); Keisha Lance Bottoms, the second Black female mayor of Atlanta (recognized in the Women Up category); and London Breed, the first Black female LGBT mayor of San Francisco (also honored in the Women Up category).

Other honorees run the gamut of industry, community activism and more. Civil rights activist Tarana Burke the Bronx, New York native who achieved global acclaim after starting the MeToo movement will be recognized in the Community Crusaders category. Group President and Chief Operating Officer Rosalind Brewer will be honored in the Women Up category as the first African-American woman to the hold that position as at Starbucks. March of Dimes President Stacey D. Stewart will be recognized in the Disruptors category as the first African-American female president to lead the charitable organization. Junior Flip Kids, honored in the Entrepreneurs category, is a company made up of six schoolchildren aged 7 to 13 years old who met with Oprah Winfrey before starting their business to transform distressed properties into renovated single-family homes in Washington D.C., and Maryland. Cheryl “Action” Jackson will be recognized in the Community Crusaders category as the founder of Minnie’s Pantry, an organization that has provided over 8 million meals to families in need.

Honorees are celebrated each year at the EBONY Power 100 Gala, presented by Nationwide. The event will take place this year in Los Angeles at the Beverly Hilton on November. During the gala, the prestigious EBONY Power 100 special award recipients will be recognized for their contributions to business and industry. The 2018 EBONY Power 100 Gala is hosted by EBONY Foundation and benefits Sickle Cell Disease Association of America. Learn more about sickle cell disease and to donate by texting “EBONY” to 91011 and using #SCDHOPEWINS. Follow #EBONYPower100 on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

The complete EBONY Power 100 List for this year can be viewed here!

Dallas Mavericks To Donate 250 Turkeys To Families In Need

DISCLAIMER: This Is Not A Public Event!

Throughout the NBA Cares Season of Giving, the NBA and its teams are committed to serving their communities to brighten the holiday season for thousands of children and families. The Dallas Mavericks, Devin Harris and JJ Barea are partnering with Albertsons-Tom Thumb to hand out 250 Thanksgiving meals to underprivileged families at Buckner International. A new element to this event will also occur, where 20 families in need will receive car safety seats for their children from the Mavericks.  

Where: Buckner International – 5405 Shoe Drive, Mesquite, TX 75149

When:  Thursday, November 15, 2018, 3:00pm-5:00pm

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery

Starlight Xperience for Children

Starlight Children’s Foundation, an organization whose mission is to create moments of joy and comfort for hospitalized kids and their families, unveiled today its newest initiative, Starlight XperienceTM virtual reality, a groundbreaking new technology program that offers millions of seriously ill children a fun and exciting way to explore the world and beyond through the magic of VR.

To watch a video on Starlight Xperience and how it helps kids, please see here.

Built for the Lenovo Mirage Solo with Daydream, Starlight Xperience features a state-of-the-art and hospital-ready headset that comes preloaded with age-appropriate and dynamic content geared toward entertainment and distraction for hospitalized kids, which has been specifically modified to meet strict infection safety protocols for use in hospital settings. Pre-loaded content includes educational field trips to exotic locations through Google Expeditions and Street View, fun interactive stories like Star Wars: Droid Repair Bay by ILMxLAB, and Lola and the Giant, popular apps such as Ocean Rift and Hello Mars, and meditation exercises and therapeutic games such as Relax VR, which allows the patient to escape into beautiful environments.

Starlight Xperience was created in collaboration with Founding Sponsor, Star Wars: Force for Change, the charitable initiative from Lucasfilm and The Walt Disney Company that harnesses the power of Star Wars to empower and improve the lives of children around the world. Through grant funding provided by The Walt Disney Company and Niagara Cares – the philanthropic arm of Niagara Bottling – as well as charitable donations from grassroots donors, Starlight Xperience will be provided at no cost to Starlight’s network of more than 800 children’s hospitals and other health care facilities across the US.

“We believe Starlight Xperience has the potential to transform the hospital experience for millions of seriously ill children and their families,” said Chris Helfrich, CEO of Starlight Children’s Foundation. “We’re thrilled to stand beside The Walt Disney Company, Google, Lenovo and Niagara Cares in unveiling this exciting new program, which is the latest evolution in our 35-year history of bringing innovative entertainment technologies to hospitalized kids.”

“Providing these unique entertainment experiences reflects our commitment to bring comfort during what can be difficult times for kids and families. This is part of our Disney Team of Heroes initiative, which includes a $100 million commitment to children’s hospitals,” said Elissa Margolis, senior vice president, Enterprise Social Responsibility for The Walt Disney Company. “The collaboration with Google and Lenovo is the perfect blend of technology and content that we’ll be able to deliver to kids during their hospital stay.”

“Our goal has always been to create virtual reality experiences that are accessible, useful, and relevant to as many people as possible,” said Amit Singh, VP of Business & Operations for AR & VR at Google. “Starlight Xperience is a shining example of that goal coming to life in a really great way. We’re thrilled to be able to support Starlight in bringing transporting VR experiences to hospitalized children across the country.”

“We are thrilled to be working with Starlight and Google to bring technology to hospitalized children in their time of need. Helping to provide a solution for the children and their families allows us to truly make a difference for the better,” said Gunjan Shah, general manager for North America Smart Devices at Lenovo.

Starlight Xperience was developed in part through a series of grants provided by Starlight to the CHARIOT program (short for Childhood Anxiety Reduction through Innovation and Technology) at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. CHARIOT implements new technologies in the hospital that are nontraditional yet familiar to children to engage and distract them during stressful or painful procedures, keeping clinical usage in mind and improving upon the typical hospital experience. This past summer, Starlight Xperience was soft launched and tested at five children’s hospitals: Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare in St. Paul, Minn., and Texas Children’s Hospital.

“At Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare, virtual reality has been a fantastic addition for our patients,” said Chantel Barney, Ph.D., a clinical scientist who leads Gillette’s VR program. “In some instances, we’ve been able to curb the anxiety and fears our kids typically experience during procedures such as blood draws, transfusions, wound cleanings, casting and more. It’s a wonderful distraction for kids and parents alike.”

“We’re proud to support Starlight Xperience and look forward to bringing smiles to the faces of hospitalized children through this educational and inspirational program,” said Andrew Peykoff II, President and CEO, Niagara Bottling. “This technology makes learning fun and we’re excited to expand the program to even more children.”

Thanks to the grants provided by The Walt Disney Company and Niagara Cares, in addition to the generosity of charitable donations from individuals, Starlight is on track to deliver up to 1,000 Starlight Xperience kits to its network of hospital partners by the end of 2018, with a goal of doubling that by the end of 2019. A donation to Starlight will entertain, educate and inspire hospitalized kids across the US through stimulating immersive experiences that transport children from the hospital to any place in the world – or beyond – through the magic of virtual reality.

The public is invited to learn more and support the program online at www.starlight.org/starlight-xperience.

ABOUT STARLIGHT CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION
Starlight creates moments of joy and comfort for hospitalized kids and their families. For 35 years, Starlight’s programs have positively impacted more than 60 million critically, chronically and terminally ill or injured children in the US, Canada, Australia and the UK. With your help, more kids and their families will enjoy Starlight Gowns, Starlight Fun Centers and other Starlight programs at a children’s hospital or facility near you. Support Starlight’s work by visiting www.starlight.org and by following Starlight on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

ABOUT STAR WARS: FORCE FOR CHANGE
Star Wars: Force for Change, a charitable initiative from Lucasfilm and Disney, harnesses the strength of Star Wars to empower and improve the lives of children around the world. Since 2014, it was inspired by Star Wars fans, and the countless hours they have dedicated to philanthropy over the past four decades. To date, over $16 million has been raised for charitable causes around the world on behalf of Star Wars: Force for Change. With a bright future ahead, and new Star Wars stories to be told, Force for Change aims to continue collaborating with causes and encouraging others to be forces for change in their own community. To learn more, please visit ForceForChange.com.

ABOUT THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY
The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries, is a diversified worldwide entertainment company with operations in four business segments: Media Networks; Studio Entertainment; Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products; and Direct-to-Consumer and International. Disney is a Dow 30 company and had annual revenues of $55.1 billion in its Fiscal Year 2017.

ABOUT LENOVO
Lenovo (HKSE: 992) (ADR: LNVGY) is a US$45 billion Fortune Global 500 company and a global technology leader in driving Intelligent Transformation through smart devices and infrastructure that create the best user experience. Lenovo manufactures one of the world’s widest portfolios of connected products, including smartphones, tablets, PCs (ThinkPad, Yoga, Lenovo Legion), data centers and workstations as well as AR/VR devices and smart home/office solutions. Lenovo works to inspire the difference in everyone and build a smarter future where everyone thrives. Follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Weibo, read about the latest news via our Storyhub, or visit our website at http://www.lenovo.com/.

ABOUT NIAGARA CARES
Niagara Cares, a philanthropic arm of Niagara Bottling, is committed to supporting local and national community initiatives serving children and families in need by engaging stakeholders and investing its resources. Niagara Cares efforts include national strategic partnerships, local community grants, employee engagement, volunteerism and the Andrew D. Peykoff, Sr. Scholarship Program. For more information, visit www.niagarawater.com/niagara-cares.

Stomp Rocket

Stomp Rocket, fun for all ages!

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, Stomp Rocket 360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, Stomp Rocket

About Stomp Rocket: Run, jump and STOMP! For 25 years, Stomp Rocket has been entertaining kids and their families, and stimulating active, outdoor play. The Original Stomp Rocket is 100% kid-powered, and the product includes rockets that soar up to 400 feet in the air, as well as toys that are appropriate for kids as young as age 3. Stomp Rocket has sold over 5million toys and won numerous awards from industry experts, including Good Housekeeping, Creative Child Magazine, Dr. Toy, iParenting Media and Toy Directory Monthly. Stomp Rocket is made D&L Company Of Minden, Nevada. Stomp Rocket has already garnered national and viral media coverage on The Today Show, Access Hollywood, She Knows and more. Stomp Rocket can be purchased online at Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, Walmart, and in store at Hobby Lobby, Big 5, select Hibbett Sports Stores and speciality toy retailers nationwide.

Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge

Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge, Panama’s newest luxury and adventure outpost, is getting ready to open its doors to guests in January 2019, but it’s already raising the bar for sustainable tourism in the region.

Located 20 miles off the coast of Panama, and with 9 stylishly-designed “casitas” sleeping up to 18 guests, the archipelago of 14 private islands covers more than 1,000 acres in the Gulf of Chiriqui. With approximately 75% of the archipelago consisting of environmentally protected areas, Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge protects the archipelago’s incredible beauty while offering guests a timeless, idyllic setting among one of the most pristine and diverse marine environments in the world.

“Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge is located in an extraordinarily vibrant ecosystem with more than 750 species of fish and 128 species of plants,” said Sergio del Nunez Prado, Property Manager at Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge. “Designed to blend harmoniously with its surroundings with minimal environmental impact, Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge aims to preserve the rich biodiversity of the archipelago while connecting people with nature in its purest form.”

At the core of Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge is a driving passion for the enjoyment and conservation of the archipelago’s natural resources, with a deep appreciation and respect for local culture and history. Sustainability and environmental stewardship are at the core of the facilities, infrastructure and operations of the property, from the use of solar energy to composting all organic materials and recycling water waste for irrigation use. Among the sustainability initiatives and programs implemented by the reserve are:

  • 100% of energy consumption on island is powered by a 300-meter long solar array.
  • 100% of guest water use is captured and reclaimed through a system that includes man-made wetlands, sand filtration system and infrared light process to provide surface irrigation.
  • 100% of food waste are dehydrated and used for composting as fertilizer. There is no waste.
  • Guest facilities were constructed with certified sustainable wood, and interior woods were pressure treated with non-toxic boric acid. These high-quality materials and construction methods were used to maximize the life of facilities to reduce the frequency of future rebuilds.
  • No single-use plastic water bottles.

Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge aims to create a model for sustainable tourism by pairing exhilarating recreation and warm Panamanian hospitality with a strong ethos of environmental stewardship and community support. Understated and under-the-radar, Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge is ready to welcome today’s most discerning and conscientious traveler, including couples, families and groups of friends seeking adventure and an intimate setting where no detail has been overlooked.

For more information on Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge please visit: www.islassecas.com

For reservations please contact 800-377-8877 or info@islassecas.com

ABOUT ISLAS SECAS RESERVE & LODGE, PANAMA:
Officially opening in January 2019, Islas Secas Reserve & Lodge is a new and exclusive property located on its own archipelago of 14 pristine islands in the Pacific Ocean, off the coast of Panama. The secluded retreat will sleep 18 people across four casita sites with of 9 luxury guest rooms, providing the perfect springboard for marine and land adventures in this lesser explored part of Panama. The interiors were designed by renowned interior designer Tom Scheerer and built to reflect the island’s surroundings. Facilities include the Terraza, offering local cuisine, a Hemingway-style lounge and bar and a Dive Center. 2019 will see the addition of a resort pool and a Field Station, while the 2020 season will see the completion of a Wellness Pavilion and a 4-bedroom Villa Residencia with a private swimming pool.

Why Some Women are Delaying Pregnancy

New Survey Shows Women Lacking Information for Informed Healthcare Decisions

New findings from a recent survey show that women living with chronic inflammatory or autoimmune disease feel they don’t have enough information to make informed decisions about how to balance pregnancy with disease management. Some women feel they have no choice but to stop treatment or delay their plans for pregnancy. These women are living with a variety of autoimmune conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis and Crohn’s disease.

Now, a new initiative called the AIM (Autoimmune Motherhood) Movement is being launched to rally these women and provide support, information and a place for them to share stories about motherhood with chronic inflammatory disease. The education campaign and online community aims to help women learn the facts about their conditions and appropriate disease management options, while allowing them to share experiences to empower one another.

AIM Survey Shows:
• Almost half (44%) of U.S. women surveyed had concerns serious enough that they delayed their plans to become pregnant
• 61% believed they could not combine treatment and breastfeeding
• Only 41% consulted a healthcare professional before becoming pregnant, suggesting the need for women to become more engaged in treatment and pregnancy planning earlier

Dr. Grace Wright, rheumatologist at New York University Langone Medical Center is interviewed about the topic along with patient Rosanna, who shares her compelling story of living 30 years with rheumatoid arthritis and the physical and emotional challenges she endures while dealing with her disease. Both guests will help bring awareness to the issues surrounding ways to manage chronic inflammatory disease throughout the family planning journey. They’ll also reveal the results of the AIM Patient Survey to help others in similar situations make the best decisions for themselves and their families. See the recent interview down below: