Blog Archive

Blog Archive

Actress Erin Cummings Warms Hands and Hearts with Mittens for Detroit

For years, Erin Cummings had found success as a working actress, appearing in television series like Mad Men. In 2010, though, her career took a dramatic leap when she landed her first regular role in a network show, playing a medical examiner in the police procedural Detroit 1-8-7. It didn’t take her long to fall in love with the often-troubled namesake city where the series was filmed.

ServiceWorks Graduate Goes from Hollywood to the White House

By her own admission, Sandy Aguirre’s story is unbelievable. Some would say it’s the stuff of Hollywood. And in this case, it literally is. Only this fairy tale is a true story. Actually born in Hollywood, California, this 18-year-old recent graduate of ServiceWorks at the Youth Policy Institute in Los Angeles, was with her family in Central America, struggling just to get back into her own country. Yet there she was, in late February, sitting in the State Dining Room of the White House – just a few feet away from Michelle Obama and a panel of celebrity recording artists she’d admired for years.

Help, Hope, and the Power of One Tweet in Brussels

Between my news feeds and my faith traditions, I’ve thought a lot this week about suffering and hope; darkness and light. In recent months, images and accounts from every corner of our world have told of the horrific human suffering caused by war, poverty, hatred and injustice.

Helping Senior Citizens Thrive and Rebuild Self-Esteem with the Beauty Becomes You Foundation

Alison O’Neil provides a variety of cosmetic hygiene services for senior citizens who aren’t able to secure these services themselves, through her Beauty Becomes You Foundation. Using her cosmetics and beauty industry experience, she provides services designed to maintain and improve appearance, as well as augment self-esteem, self-confidence and personal pride.

With Garden of Innocence, She Provides Dignified Burials for Abandoned and Unidentified Children

Elissa Davey provides personalized, dignified burials for abandoned and unidentified children. While there’s no clear number, many abandoned children are buried in unmarked or mass graves every year. Davey established Garden of Innocence to provide abandoned children, up to age 8, with a respectful, heartfelt ceremony and burial.

As a Tribute to Her Son, She Builds Accessible Playgrounds to Give Every Child the Chance to Play

In 1997, Curry-Williams and her husband, Scott Williams, were devastated when their son Shane was born with spinal muscular atrophy and died at just 2 weeks old. “The passion of a mother who has lost her child can move mountains,” says Catherine Curry-Williams, who turned grief over the loss of a son into not just one, but 60 fully accessible playgrounds worldwide. “We believe deeply in our hearts that play is the birthright of every child.”

Mother of Fallen Navy SEAL Supports Veteran Entrepreneurs with The Jonas Project

Teri Kelsall understands the drive and potential in U.S. veterans. "The people we've had the opportunity of knowing are truly incredible individuals who work hard and want more for their families than just getting a paycheck," says Kelsall, whose nonprofit organization helps veterans to start their own businesses. "They want to be responsible for building their futures and giving back to their country. They're willing, they're capable and we are going to give them that opportunity."

Promoting Literacy and Avoiding the 'Summer Slide' with Books for Keeps

When her niece confided to her in 2009 that a student she was mentoring wasn’t looking forward to summer because she had no books at home, Melaney Smith wanted to do something to correct the void. She founded Books for Keeps, which gives away tens of thousands of brand-new books each year to schoolchildren across Georgia.

5 Ways to Spring into Volunteering

Spring has sprung, which means sunnier days, weekend barbecues and National Volunteer Week are just around the corner. As the weather warms up, don’t miss out on these fun opportunities to get outside, get involved and make a difference!

A Life-Long Animal Lover, She’s Helped More Than 1,000 Shelter Animals Find Forever Homes

Julie Ogden estimates that over the years, her family has taken more than 1,000 animals, most of them dogs, into their New Jersey home. Even as no-kill shelters and rescue groups have proliferated, Ogden’s fight to save endangered dogs hasn’t slowed down.

Forget Veggies! Science Shows Volunteering Is Healthier

For years, volunteers nationwide have been telling Points of Light that they are happier, healthier people as a result of making a difference in the lives of others. Now, scientists are catching up with what these points of light are telling us, demonstrating that the benefits are tangible — mentally and physically — and a reason why so many keep coming back to help.

Special needs students and youth volunteers learn from each other in Rosie’s Class

As a child, Rosie Arbittier, participated in walkathons sponsored by her local synagogue and placed flags on soldiers’ graves on Veterans Day. That spirit of volunteerism continued into her teens, when she started tutoring special needs students at her middle school in York, Pennsylvania.

A Week of Parties, Primaries, Protests and Purpose

If you're like me, your dinner table, water cooler and social media conversations this week included Chris Rock quotes, primary predictions and a good bit of debate about what's not working – in government and politics, but also in schoolrooms, courthouses and communities.

Paying it Forward on the Open Ocean: How a Child of Immigrants is Helping At-Risk Youth Embrace Opportunities

When Julian Martinez-Prado’s parents immigrated to the United States from Argentina, they envisioned a better life for themselves and their children. It’s safe to say, though, that they never dreamed their son would wind up racing yachts in regattas.