Posts tagged with "underserved communities"

360 MAGAZINE Swarovski encrusted bottle designed by Vaughn Lowery for NFT-VIP and minted on Solana

NFT-VIP

NFT-VIP is hosting its inaugural conference in the tech space to network their businesses, advance knowledge and engage intimately. In the recent past, similar NFT meetups have been held in multiple cities across America: Miami, New York City and Los Angeles. This year, NFT-VIP will be holding its series at Margaritaville Resort Time Square, June 19 – 22. 360 MAGAZINE serves as the official media sponsor of the episode.

As a rapidly growing digital industry, NFT-VIP has become a popular way for people to trade outside the conventional financial system. It continues to stimulate the development of a virtual economy based on digital strengths in various forms: music, art and fashion.

“The idea of using cryptocurrencies is not only a form of currency. Along with a deliverable channel, knowing that entities could be built on them and using them is mind-blowing,” states Julie Lamb, CEO of NFT-VIP. This is the first major 360 MAG Podcast promotion that will serve as the official launch. Interviewee Jefferson Noel is scheduled to speak on the NFT-VIP agenda. Other notable guests: Andrew Yang, Young Paris, Alex Alpert, Vaughn Lowery, Chris Carter, Genesis Johnson, postVerrone, Fanzo, Sal DiGuardia and FoodMasku.

Helen Indelicato, Julie Lamb, Sal Di Guardia, Vaughn Lowery are speakers at the NFT-VIP conference in nyc via 360 Magazine
Helen Indelicato, Julie Lamb, Sal Di Guardia, Vaughn Lowery will be on the NFT-VIP stage via ‘press panel’ Sun., June 19 at 2:30pm EST (click image for full agenda).

The NFT-VIP festival was fabricated with the unique digital identifier enthusiast in mind, providing a golden opportunity to intensify transmissions and interrelations. The number of leading brands and celebrities involved in this field is increasing exponentially with the world’s first and largest crypto collectibles market—OpenSea. With that, 360 MAGAZINE has minted and released a loveable Animal set.

360 MAGAZINE Animal Series NFT character, Lucky Lenox, coming soon under the direction of Vaughn Lowery
(Minting Lucky Lenox on OpenSea)

As a media partner, 360 MAGAZINE aims to liaise between NFT-VIP participants and disadvantaged business enterprises. 360 is determined to spread the word on NFT-VIP to countless cohorts: the elderly, women, racialized groups and the queer community. “We now coexist in a multi-generational society with multi-racial people who have multi-educational backgrounds and who possess multi-hyphen lifestyles. Our purpose here is to create an environment of inclusiveness and to further facilitate sustainable relationships beyond the metaverse,” Lowery shares.

During the engagement, 360’s Swarovski encrusted bottle, made in collaboration with Integrity Bottles and Good Vibe Gliders, will be forged on Solana with partial proceeds donated to a charity. 360, freshly announced pet NFT, apace with Reebok’s Looney Tunes footwear, will go to a handful of lucky guests with Best Tech Style. Additionally, in real time, the publication will interview the speakers in their ecletic enclosure with bean bags and a bejeweled e-bike.

NFT-VIP RECAP HERE.

About 360 MAGAZINE

360, an internationally acclaimed LA-based magazine, represents the celebration of societal change through racial and sexual ambiguity as a youthful popular culture and design journal. As a certified National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) business, it progressively supports various under-represented communities: women, POC and queer. Just last month, 360 was crowned Business of the Month.

Previous celebs on the cover: Saweetie, Demi Lovato, David Guetta, Sebastián Yatra, Will.i.am, Steve Aoki and Tyga. Infographics on the journal can be downloaded HERE.

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About Vaughn Lowery

Vaughn Lowery, the founder and president of the NGLCC certified, 360 MAGAZINE, has always strived for positive social change. Lowery is the executive producer of 360 MAG Podcast on AudibleApple and Spotify as well as a new NFT Animal Series on OpenSea. His self-help marketing memoir, Move Like Water × Be Fluid is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Walmart. He’s a graduate of Cornell University’s ILR School and grandson of the late Dr. Joseph Lowery–a leader of the civil rights movement with Martin Luther King as well as the minister at Barack Obama’s Presidential Inauguration.

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About NFT

According to Wikipedia, non-fungible token is a financial security consisting of digital data stored in a blockchain, a form of distributed ledger. The ownership of an NFT is recorded in the blockchain, and can be transferred by the owner, allowing NFTs to be sold and traded.

NFT-VIP Agenda HERE.

Listen to NFT-VIP Speakers on 360 MAG Podcast HERE.

Reebok Best Style Tech Winners BELOW.

NFT VIP tech series in nyc media sponsored by 360 MAGAZINE
Sal DiGuardia, CEO of Crypto Radio Network at NFT-VIP in NYC via 360 MAGAZINE
illustration by Mina Tocalini for use by 360 Magazine

DELTA VARIANT PUTS NORMAL BACK-TO-SCHOOL SEASON AT RISK

By: Clara Guthrie

There was a period in the late spring and early summer of this past year in which it seemed America’s COVID-19 struggles were nearing some long-awaited conclusion: the last few moments of breathlessness before a collective sigh of relief. At that time, students and their parents looked forward to a seemingly normal back-to-school season. Yet, the recent rise in the Delta variant has introduced a new wave of doubt.

On August 8 alone, The New York Times reported 36,068 new Covid-19 cases and a seven-day average of 110,360 total cases in the United States. Covid-related deaths are also on the rise, with a seven-day average of 516 deaths. This figure has risen from a weekly average of 188 deaths only one month prior, on July 6. Experts attribute these rising numbers to the highly contagious Delta variant overlaid with low vaccination rates in certain areas across the country. When asked about these trends in mid-July, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said, “This is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated. We are seeing outbreaks of cases in parts of the country that have low vaccination coverage because unvaccinated people are at risk.”

Unfortunately, as the Delta variant continues to run rampant throughout unvaccinated communities, people who are fully vaccinated are also being infected. Although, it is far rarer. These “break-through” cases speak mainly to the wild infectiousness of the Delta variant, coupled with the facts that no vaccine is 100% effective and that our knowledge of how long immunity lasts after vaccination is still quite murky. According to CNBC, however, “break-through” cases still represent fewer than 0.08% of those who have been fully vaccinated in the United States since the start of the year.

With that being said, the Delta variant is impacting the hopes of a normal back-to-school season in two distinct ways. The first, perhaps more obvious way, is that parents and teachers are fearing for students’ health. This fear suggests a potential return to online learning and more strict social distancing and mask mandates enforced within schools.

It is important to note that COVID-19 poses a far lesser threat to young children than to adults; the risk of becoming severely ill from the virus increases for those over the age of 50 and only grows with age. According to the CDC, the risk of serious illness or complications from COVID-19 for children is actually lower than that from the flu. However, children under the age of 12 are not yet eligible for any form of vaccination. This restriction is raising concerns about how susceptible younger age groups are to becoming sick, even if that sickness does not lead to any serious complications.

Thus, many parents and school districts are pursuing a range COVID-19 precautions to ensure the safety of students. Time Magazine shared a story last week of a school board in Des Moines, Iowa that has already decided to offer a virtual learning option for elementary school students. The ability to transition to in-person learning is available whenever the family feels comfortable enough to do so. This move was, in part, forced by the recent ruling of eight states, including Iowa, to ban schools from being able to require masks – despite the CDC’s recommendation that all students should wear masks inside schools, regardless of whether or not they are vaccinated. “Had we been able to follow the CDC recommendations that everyone in school is masked, regardless of their vaccine status—if we were able to mandate that, then I think we’d be having a different conversation here,” Phil Roeder, a spokesperson for Des Moines’ Polk County public schools, said.

Other counties are having similar struggles, even without the imposition from state governments to ban mask mandates within schools. For example, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in May that all online learning would be eliminated come fall, a decision that he has not yet reversed. But many parents are now petitioning for online options for their children as safety concerns continue to rise. One parent, Farah Despeignes, who is the president of the Bronx Parent Leaders Advocacy Group and has two middle-school-aged sons, said, “When you think about the conditions of the schools with old buildings, with not enough ventilation, that are co-located, that are overcrowded—for us, in the Bronx, in underserved communities, it’s not as simple as, ‘Well, let’s just get back to school.’”

In California, options for students are equally limited. According to The Los Angeles Times, the state has done away with “hybrid learning, ”a combination of in-person and online learning. As a result of such, Los Angeles County parents had until August 6 to choose between either solely in-person or online learning for their children. The latter option is expected to take the form of an independent study, rather than the supportive online learning of last school year. On August 6th, L.A. Unified School District reported that only 10,280 of their almost 665,000 students opted for the online option.

The second prominent way in which the Delta variant is affecting back-to-school season is through the shopping behavior of students and their families. Back when the hopes of a normal school year were still high, The National Retail Federation predicted that consumers with children K-12 would spend a record-breaking 37.1 billion dollars this year. Furthermore, it was predicted that back-to-college spending would reach 71 billion dollars. These predictions were due to the excitement associated with a long-awaited return to the classroom after over a year away, when items like lunchboxes and backpacks seemed superfluous.

However, according to a recent poll by First Insight, many consumers are feeling anxious about returning to stores, trying on clothing in dressing rooms and making big purchases due to the risk of the Delta variant. In fact, 56% of respondents said they are actively cutting back their spending at retailers. The CEO of Bath Bed & Beyond, Mark Tritton, told CNBC that their stores have observed people delaying their back-to-school investments, and that peak spending may extend further into September than usual.

As many students return to their classrooms and the Food and Drug Administration continues to work on improving vaccines for individuals under the age of 12, it will become more and more clear how great of a mark Covid-19 has left on the American schooling system and the children within it.

Sean and Myra Anderson illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Big Sean × Myra Anderson

BIG SEAN & HIS MOTHER MYRA ANDERSON LAUNCH WELLNESS VIDEO SERIES PRESENTED BY THE SEAN ANDERSON FOUNDATION TO COMMEMORATE MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH

Today, multi-platinum artist, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Big Sean, and his mother, Myra Anderson, have announced the launch of their wellness video series presented by their non-profit, the Sean Anderson Foundation. Beginning May 1st, a new video will be released every Saturday during the month of May at 12pm EST/9am PST to commemorate Mental Health Awareness Month. The videos will live on the Sean Anderson Foundation’s IGTV HERE and will also be featured on the Sean Anderson Foundation website HERE.

In each episode, Sean and Myra will have a 10 – 15-minute candid conversation surrounding a specific area of wellness. Topics include mindset, sleep/circadian rhythms, meditation, diet/exercise and the emotional freedom technique (EFT).

“I feel that Mental Health Awareness Month is the perfect time to talk with my mom about some of the things I have learned from her that have helped me along the way, and I hope will help others,” says Big Sean.

“Sean and I wanted to share some of the no or low-cost techniques that we have used over the years to help us attain and maintain emotional balance. In the future, we may do a deeper dive into some of these techniques and other tools that we use,” says Myra Anderson.

The Sean Anderson Foundation is committed to improving the quality of life for underserved youth and their families. Previously, the foundation hosted a Mental Health Awareness panel, which explored the narrative and stigma around mental health in the Black community. Throughout the past year, Sean and the foundation have engaged in a variety of initiatives to help those in need during these unprecedented times. Sean hosted virtual fundraisers to benefit COVID-19 response efforts, as well as partnered with McDonalds for their Black & Positively Golden Mentors Program. The Detroit native was recently appointed Creative Director of Innovation for the Detroit Pistons, where he and the foundation work with the team to create opportunities and programs in the Detroit area.

About the Sean Anderson Foundation


The mission of the Sean Anderson Foundation is to assist in the education, health, safety and well-being of school aged youth in underserved communities across the country.

Sean is a living example of what can be accomplished through focus, determination and hard work. He strives to serve as an instrument of encouragement for us to help support ourselves and to support one another.

The Sean Anderson Foundation’s signature program is “Mogul Prep”, a digital and live event curriculum that focuses on developing entrepreneurial skills, preparing students for college and/or the workforce, and ultimately for a successful life. In addition, the Foundation partners with a number of existing charitable programs whose objectives are consistent with the objectives of the Foundation. 

For more information about SAF, visit the Sean Anderson Foundation.

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Medical illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Mental Illness × Addiction Crisis

With Pandemic Worsening the Mental Illness and Addiction Crisis, Biden Administration to Provide Nearly $2.5 Billion to States, Territories for Treatment, Prevention Aid

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Funding to Support Comprehensive Community Prevention, Treatment, Recovery and Health Services

The Biden Administration will provide nearly $2.5 billion in funding to states and territories to address the nation’s mental illness and addiction crisis, which has worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will direct $1.65 billion in Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant funding and $825 million in Community Mental Health Services Block Grant funding to states and territories. The Community Mental Health Services Block Grant program allows states and territories to provide comprehensive community mental health services and address needs and gaps in existing treatment services for those with severe mental health conditions. The Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant program allows states and territories to plan, implement and evaluate activities to prevent and treat substance use disorder. This funding will also allow recipients to maximize efficiency in existing treatment and recovery infrastructure, promote support for providers and address unique local needs to deliver substance use disorder prevention.

“We know multiple stressors during the pandemic – isolation, sickness, grief, job loss, food instability, and loss of routines – have devastated many Americans and presented unprecedented challenges for behavioral health providers across the nation,” said Acting Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use Tom Coderre. “During this time of increased urgency, we want to assure them that funding is in place to help states and territories provide pathways to prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery services, especially for underserved populations.”

Recently, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data confirming a rise in fatal overdoses during the pandemic. This year’s increases in calls to helplines across the country indicate growing anxiety, depression, and trauma in Americans. The COVID-19 pandemic and the corresponding economic crisis have been especially devastating for Black and Latino communities, which are experiencing a disproportionate number of COVID-19 infections and deaths as well as higher-than-average unemployment rates.

“SAMHSA resources connect Americans to evidence-based treatment and services every day,” said Coderre. “Focusing on both mental and substance use disorders – challenges that pre-date the COVID-19 pandemic but that have worsened over the past year – will be a crucial part of SAMHSA’s approach to helping the nation move forward.”

In addition to the $2.5 billion awarded today, SAMHSA has awarded $686 million in Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) Expansion Grants; Emergency Grants to Address Mental and Substance Use Disorders During COVID-19 (Emergency Response COVID-19), and supplements to the fiscal year 2020 Emergency Response COVID-19 grant recipients.

Funding allocation tables can be viewed here:

FY 2021 Community Mental Health Block Grant Program COVID-19 Supplemental Awards

FY 2021 Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant Program COVID-19 Supplemental Awards

People searching for treatment for mental or substance use disorders can find treatment by visiting SAMHSA’s website or by calling SAMHSA’s National Helpline,
1-800-662-HELP (4357).

soccer illustration by Kaelen Felix for 360 Magazine

MUSCO LIGHTING INVESTS IN U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION

MUSCO LIGHTING INVESTS $5 MILLION IN U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION TO KEEP KIDS MOVING DURING PANDEMIC AND BEYOND.

Musco Also Announces Grant Program for Communities to Bring Soccer to Their Areas.

Five-year investment supports Foundations goal to engage 1M kids in soccer programs and create safer places to play in underserved communities.

At a time when families are stuck at home because of a pandemic that has hit underserved communities particularly hard, Musco Lighting announced today that it is investing $5 million over the next five years in soccer programs and facilities to get American children moving. Specifically, Musco is donating this money to the U.S. Soccer Foundation to help fund the Foundation’s goal of engaging one million kids and installing one thousand mini-pitches by 2026 to provide youth in underserved communities with the same opportunities to learn, play, and grow as their peers.

Additionally, Musco is announcing a new grant program that will allow communities to apply for funding to install mini-pitches or fund soccer lighting projects in their areas. Leaders can learn more about these grants and apply for one at https://www.tfaforms.com/4871632.

Musco is a longtime partner of the Foundation having already contributed more than $5 million, including the company’s recent support as a funding partner in the Black Players for Change and Black Women’s Player Collective mini-pitch initiative earlier this year. Since the partnership began with the Foundation in 1999, Musco’s support has helped create or refurbish 200 fields and mini-pitches nationwide.

“Investing in youth soccer and this work is an investment in our communities. Eighty-one percent of kids in our program feel better about their future; eighty-three percent are healthier; and eighty-eight percent work better on teams”, said Ed Foster-Simeon, President & CEO of the U.S. Soccer Foundation. “These positive outcomes stay with kids throughout their lives and help prepare them to enter the workforce one day. We are grateful to Musco Lighting for their longstanding partnership with us to brighten the futures of children across the country.”

“The U.S. Soccer Foundation has spearheaded so many important initiatives across the country aimed at empowering young people with essential life skills, relationships, and fitness habits, things that will have a positive impact throughout their lives,’ said Jeff Rogers, President of Musco. ‘We believe strongly in the Foundation’s mission and couldn’t be more proud to be their partner in this significant work.”

For more than twenty-five years, the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s evidence-based programs, and the coach-mentors who run them, have been nurturing children’s personal growth both on and off the field while providing underserved communities with safer places to play.

ABOUT U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION

The U.S. Soccer Foundation’s programs are the national model for sports-based youth development in underserved communities. Since its founding in 1994, the Foundation has established programs proven to help children embrace an active and healthy lifestyle while nurturing their personal growth beyond sports. Its cost-effective, high-impact initiatives offer safe environments where kids and communities thrive. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Soccer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization. For more information, visit their website or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

ABOUT MUSCO LIGHTING

Since 1976, Musco Lighting has led the world in the design and manufacture of sports and large area lighting solutions. The company has pioneered lighting systems that enhance the venue and its purpose, are sensitive to the neighborhood and the environment, and are cost-effective to own and operate. Musco has been engineering systems around the LED for more than a decade, and has designed permanent and temporary solutions for everything from local Little League fields to international Olympic Games. The company has earned awards including an Emmy for the quality of its lighting in television broadcasts and a Technical Academy Award, Oscar, for movie lighting. Musco’s global team of experts partner with customers to plan, complete, and maintain a trouble-free solution for their facilities.

Kicking a Soccer Ball illustration done by Mina Tocalini of 360 MAGAZINE.

U.S. Soccer Foundation – 300 Mini-Pitches

300 Mini-Pitches from the U.S. Soccer Foundation Bring Soccer to Underserved Communities Research shows youth sports improve physical and mental health as well as academic performance in communities hit hardest by COVID-19 July 27, 2020 U.S. Soccer Foundation As a traumatic pandemic continues to grip much of America, particularly communities of color, efforts are underway to ensure that children and families across the country have positive recreational opportunities to look forward to when they return to school and play. 

The U.S. Soccer Foundation, with the support of its partners, this week reached an important milestone with the installation of the 300th mini-pitch in underserved communities nationwide since 2015. Through a collaborative effort with local governments, youth organizations, school districts, and companies of all sizes, the U.S. Soccer Foundation has continued installing mini-pitches during the pandemic, fulfilling a long-term commitment to children living in underserved communities. 

These communities are the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and will be the slowest to recover, which underscores the importance of these investments. “The trauma that young people in underserved communities face from this pandemic, from the loss of lives to family member’s loss of jobs to the closure of schools and community centers, has been profound,” U.S. Soccer Foundation President & CEO Ed Foster-Simeon said. 

“This is an unprecedented escalation in the already challenging circumstances that young people live with, day after day.” “The U.S. Soccer Foundation and our partners are sending a very real message to young people and their families through these projects: We are here for you. We continue to ensure that when communities are ready, more mini-pitches will be there for play.” The U.S. Soccer Foundation’s mini-pitch initiative is responding to a significant challenge faced by youth in underserved communities—a critical shortage of safe places to play.

Since 2015, the Foundation has worked with partners to install mini-pitches in more than 200 communities across the United States and more mini-pitches are on the way. The Foundation plans to install more than 100 in the next year, with a goal of creating a total of 1,000 mini-pitches coast to coast by 2026. With safe surfaces and high-quality lighting, these mini-pitches serve as an ideal place for both pick-up games and free play, as well as high-quality programming, including the Foundation’s Soccer for Success program. 

Mini-pitches fit into urban environments or other areas where space is at a premium, providing a safe place for kids to play and for community members to gather right in their neighborhoods. Corporations including Target, Adidas, and Major League Soccer and its clubs are national partners in this initiative and have partnered with the Foundation on hundreds of mini-pitches to date. Last September, Musco Lighting partnered with the U.S. Soccer Foundation to update the mini-pitch with a new modular system including lights, fencing, and goals. On average, these lighted mini-pitches add 2.75 hours of playing time per day on each pitch. 

Although participation in youth sports is associated with better health and academic achievement, more than 80 percent of children living in households making less than $25,000 miss out on the benefits of team sports. Furthermore, one in three Americans don’t have a park within a 10-minute walk from home, leaving too many kids without access to a soccer program or safe place for free play. To address these barriers, the Foundation and its partners have committed to increasing access to quality youth development programming and creating 1,000 new mini-pitches nationwide. In addition to providing access, the creation of mini-pitches has lasting community benefits: 98% of communities report that the people in their community are more active and feel safer with the addition of a mini-pitch. 

Further, soccer mini-pitches serve as neighborhood gathering places for families, and nearly one-third of the kids who come to play on them are new to soccer. To learn more about the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s work to make soccer everyone’s game, visit itseveryonesgame.org

The U.S. Soccer Foundation’s programs are the national model for sports-based youth development in underserved communities. Since its founding in 1994, the Foundation has established programs proven to help children embrace an active and healthy lifestyle while nurturing their personal growth beyond sports. Its cost-effective, high-impact initiatives offer safe environments where kids and communities thrive. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Soccer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Follow U.S. Soccer Foundation: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter