Journalism

The Future of Giving is Local


What Mindfulness Does for Urban Kids

In a bright room at Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore, a group of kids sit around the edge of a colorful checkerboard rug. They close their eyes, and an instructor walks them through a belly breathing exercise.

Technically, they’re there because they acted out: they got in a scuffle on the playground, or spoke out of turn in class. But this is not detention: the Mindful Moment Room is Robert W. Coleman Elementary’s attempt to break the entrenched cycle of disruption and punishment in schools.

Since 2014, the school has partnered with the local nonprofit Holistic Life Foundation to...


Federally Funded Companions Keep Seniors Connected To Their Neighbors

Isolation is an issue for many seniors, especially in rural places. It can lead to loneliness, which many experts consider a serious public health issue.

That's where Kitty Gee comes in.

Gee, a spry 87-year-old lives in western Maine, which is known for having picturesque rural mountain landscapes and an aging population. Five years ago, she decided to join a federal grant program that combats senior loneliness the old fashioned way: by sending visitors door to door.

The Senior Companions program has operated for decades in nearly every state, connecting isolated seniors to a friendly visitor every week. To qualify as a senior companion,...


Closing the Connectivity Gap for SF's Homeless Youth

Moving into a shelter is often the first step in getting off the streets permanently, and access to Wi-Fi can be the lure that attracts homeless teens.

(TNS) — For people of means, a smartphone is a handy essential. For those without a home, it’s a lifeline.

Data plans are the real luxury. Many homeless people go seeking Internet access at public libraries and fast-food chains. Little more than half of adult shelters in San Francisco have wireless Internet.

That’s starting to change, because San Francisco city officials and community leaders have seen how phones help the neediest people stay safer on...


Operation Food Bank Feeds 390 Families

After weeks of planning and assembling, a small army of volunteers — including some who are literally in the army — needed only 60 minutes to place a tractor trailer’s worth of food in the trunks of 357 cars at Hamden Middle School.

Normally, the food distribution that took place Wednesday afternoon would feed 150 families. The Connecticut Food Bank would use its staff and volunteers to hand it out at the Christ Bread of Life Church in Hamden.

This time, it was not the food bank’s volunteers, but an impromptu army of volunteers and National Guardsmen assembled by town staff who...