Nonprofit news: Jeunesse Kids makes extraordinary impact in 2020
In our most recent Jeunesse Kids Impact Report, we are pleased to share how you’re making a difference for children around the world.
“While 2020 was a year that presented unique challenges no one could have imagined, we were incredibly honored by the way the Jeunesse Family stepped up to support the Jeunesse Kids mission. In addition to exceeding the $1 million goal to fund our 2020 Global Initiative to build the WE College School of Entrepreneurship in Kenya, with your support, we were able to support 13 additional initiatives, making an impact on six continents.”
—Chief Visionary Officer Scott Lewis
What has Jeunesse Kids been up to? Check out our 2020 timeline below!
But first, here are some things you should know:
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JEUNESSE KIDS WAS HARD AT WORK IN 2020
2020 Global Initiative: WE College School of Entrepreneurship
At the start of 2020, we set a goal to raise $1,000,000 USD to fund the WE College School of Entrepreneurship, a fully accredited college in Kenya. We launched this year-long initiative at LEAD Jeunesse 2020: Los Angeles, where $166,770 was raised.
ABOUT THE ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROGRAM
- All students must meet admission requirements and will attend on a scholarship basis
- The 2.5-year program will offer theoretical and practical skills and experience
- Students will earn a Diploma in Entrepreneurship
- Students will be encouraged to start small businesses while in college and present complete business plans as their final year project
- Students will be empowered to contribute to the development of society in their home communities and beyond
- Once the college opens in 2022, the Jeunesse Founders and Distributors will have the incredible opportunity to guest lecture at the college
$100,000 USD donated for Australian Bushfire Relief
Catastrophic bushfires swept across Australia in 2019-2020, destroying communities and habitats, as well as displacing thousands of families and claiming the lives of 33 people and more than 1.25 billion animals. Jeunesse Kids provided $100,000 USD in total aid to address short- and long-term recovery efforts.
A $50,000 USD grant to the FRRR Strengthening Rural Communities Grants Program helped support community projects focused on improving long-term recovery efforts. Funds from Jeunesse Kids were earmarked for infrastructure projects that benefit children and families, such as providing a preschool with bus service, creating a community-based youth program and constructing a community center’s playground.
Funding of $35,000 given to WWF Australia was used for veterinary care, food and water, and to help with habitat restoration.
Save the Children Australia was given $15,000 in funding to provide crisis intervention services to children who had been evacuated to emergency shelters, helping them process the traumatic events.
$500,000 USD donated to COVID-19 relief
The COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund reacted quickly to the pandemic, providing funding where it was needed most. By September 2020, the Fund had already dispersed $219.7 million in aid across the globe.
Jeunesse Kids donated $500,000 USD of this, which is helping make a notable impact, as the Fund is:
- Working with the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize-winning World Food Programme to scale up global logistics distribution of essential supplies
- Distributing 15.5 million COVID-19 test kits to 152 countries and more than 220 million pieces of personal protection equipment (PPE) to 173 countries
- Supporting research on vaccines
- Creating an alliance to distribute 2 billion doses of a vaccine in 2021
- Combatting misinformation related to COVID-19
- Strengthening countries’ contact tracing programs
- Ensuring vulnerable and displaced people can access services to stay safe
- Coordinating global research to better understand the virus and inform the public how to limit its spread
2020 Jeunesse LEAD: Russia Local Initiative — SOS Villages Russia
SOS Children’s Villages leads the world’s largest family care movement for orphaned, abandoned and other vulnerable children. When children are unable to stay with their family or have no family, SOS Villages offers a safe family home that allows them to stay with their siblings and grow up in a loving and supportive environment.
At the LEAD Jeunesse 2020: Russia event, $29,454 USD was raised to support repair projects at four SOS Children’s Villages in Russia:
- Oryol-Lavrovo — home repairs for two of the family homes
- Tomilino — replacement of ceramic roof tiles and interior painting of the village office
- Kandalaksha — interior and exterior repairs to two family homes and drain restorations
- Vologda — roof repairs, family home interior repairs and stair repairs
By supporting SOS Children’s Villages, we are helping to create a brighter future for vulnerable children in Russia.
Jeunesse Kids was named Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in the American Business Awards.
2020 Global Initiative Update: WE College School of Entrepreneurship
Mid-way through 2020, contributions from our generous Jeunesse Family were right on track toward funding the $1 million WE College School of Entrepreneurship project.
The first of its kind, the WE College School of Entrepreneurship will help lift communities out of poverty by empowering entrepreneurs to stimulate jobs, increase wages, improve local economic growth and address problems in their society. Volunteering and giving back to their local villages are integral parts of the WE College program, and post-graduation community involvement is a key performance indicator of success.
We’re so thankful for our Distributors’ commitment to build this WE College in Kenya! Funds raised for this global initiative equaled an impressive $478,840 in June.
$200,000 USD for Social and Racial Justice with National Urban League
In the summer of 2020, lives lost to social and racial injustice prompted an outcry across the United States and around the world. Knowing children can only truly thrive in communities where social and racial equality exists, Jeunesse Kids made a $200,000 donation to the National Urban League, a historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization that works to uplift African Americans and underserved urban communities in the United States.
Our donation was used to support communities in need with initiatives such as:
- Mentoring young people and assisting schools to provide mental health outreach to students
- Providing laptops and broadband centers for students who otherwise couldn’t participate in remote learning
- Instituting COVID-19 testing sites
- Providing tens of thousands of boxes of food, masks and toiletries to people in need
- Reskilling people who have lost jobs
- Offering remote orientations for small business owners to connect to services needed to keep their businesses afloat
WE Villages — Antri, India
Before the COVID-19 closures in India, the WE Charity team was hard at work with several construction projects in Antri:
- School classrooms
- Latrines with proper segregated washrooms for boys and girls as well as running water for drinking and handwashing
- A boundary wall surrounding the primary school to keep students safe from outside elements, such as animals
Two of the five school rooms are complete, with three under construction. The first two latrine blocks are complete and include nine latrines and four sinks. The remaining two blocks are under construction. Construction for these projects will resume once the country’s COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.
In addition to construction projects, important workshops have taken place in the village. Workshops are often lifechanging, resulting in a decline in common illnesses, as well as self-esteem and confidence building. Antri students and new mothers have taken part in health and hygiene workshops focused on female health, hygiene and breastfeeding.
“Through WE trainings, we’ve learned how to maintain health and personal hygiene, keep the village and school clean, and boil water. Now I don’t get sick as often.”
—Mohini Kumari Bhil (14), Antri Student
Jeunesse Kids was named Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in the International Business Awards.
Randy Ray Memoir Mud Pies to Blue Skies Launches
In 2020, Jeunesse Founder and CEO Randy Ray released his memoir, a gripping tale of his rags-to-riches life story with exclusive details and photos.
Mud Pies to Blue Skies: The Colorful Life of Randy Ray explores his history, inspiration for Jeunesse and Jeunesse Kids, and unyielding hope for brighter tomorrows. In the book, Randy shares how he unleashed his potential and helped others do the same. To commemorate his humble beginnings, all proceeds benefit Jeunesse Kids.
Want to give kids a hand up and get your hands on the book? The hardcover is available in multiple languages in Joffice™, and the eBook is available in English.
DOWNLOAD EBOOK IN ENGLISH
Update on Jeunesse EXPO Thrive 2019: Orlando Local Initiative
At the Jeunesse EXPO 2020 Vision: Global Virtual Event, we received an update on the Kids Beating Cancer Cellular Therapy Lab project that was funded by a $1 million grant from Jeunesse Kids in 2019. The organization’s COO, Sam Azar, gave information on the project and introduced us to a Kids Beating Cancer hero, 11-year-old Karthikeya.
Karthy, who benefitted from transplant treatment utilizing the new lab equipment funded by our grant, shared his experience and the progress he’s made since finishing treatment. We were overjoyed to hear that approximately a year and a half after his transplant, Karthy is doing great and is back to enjoying some of his favorite things.
While the pandemic caused project delays in 2020, the lab project is now proceeding with the completion of the exterior construction anticipated in April 2021, and the interior buildout is expected to begin just after.
In the meantime, Kids Beating Cancer continues to utilize the new lab equipment to improve patient care at the existing lab.
Jeunesse Kids was named Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year in the Golden Bridge Awards.
Jeunesse Kids was named Community Involvement Program of the Year and was honored as Organization of the Year in the Stevie Awards.
Jeunesse Kids was named Company of the Year — Nonprofit in the Women World Awards!
Brazil Local Initiative: GRAAC Hospital’s Adopt-a-Patient
The Adopt-a-Patient program helps children win their battle with cancer by funding these life-saving treatments, directly helping those who need it most.
Childhood cancer treatment is highly specialized and individualized. In their battle with cancer, children at GRAAC Hospital undergo surgery, radiation, chemotherapy and transplant procedures. The average annual cost of cancer treatment for each child is approximately $6,625 USD. With our donation, we were able to fund lifesaving treatment for 14 children!
Jeunesse Brazil will continue to support the GRAAC Hospital’s Adopt-a-Patient program throughout 2021, hoping to save the lives of many more children battling cancer in Brazil.
2020 Global Initiative Update: WE College School of Entrepreneurship
In November, we not only met our goal of raising $1,000,000 USD to fund the WE College School of Entrepreneurship, but we exceeded it by more than $40,000 USD! THANK YOU, Jeunesse Family!
“This idea for this project began a few years ago, and we are so pleased to see it come to fruition. The WE College School of Entrepreneurship is an amazing opportunity to make a lasting impact for communities in Kenya for generations to come. The students who attend will become the entrepreneurs who make a huge positive impact in their communities. This is an incredible opportunity for the entire Jeunesse Family to leave a legacy of empowerment in Kenya.”
— Chief Visionary Officer Scott Lewis
Construction of the building is underway, with all infrastructure expected to be completed by August 2021. We are excited to report that the inaugural class of 20 students are scheduled to begin their studies in September 2021. Their degree program will be 2.5 years long.
$300,000 USD for Global Hunger Relief
In the wake of the global hunger crisis unfolding under the strain of the COVID-19 pandemic, an estimated 2 billion people worldwide face moderate to severe food insecurity. Children are particularly vulnerable, with 41% of those under 15 at risk of hunger. Jeunesse Kids donated $300,000 USD to food bank organizations on the frontlines of tackling this critical problem.
The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN) provides meals to those in need through its network of 949 food banks across 44 countries. The grant to GFN will enable immediate hunger relief, keeping food bank warehouses stocked and trucks running, while also helping food banks scale operations to meet demand. GFN will allocate a portion of the grant to its European Food Banks Federation partner to help its network in 29 countries respond to a 30% increase in food assistance need.
Prior to the pandemic, food insecurity was at a 20-year low in the United States. However, with an average increase in need of 60%, it’s now estimated that one in four U.S. children may go hungry. A grant to Feeding America will help the organization’s network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food partners support children and families across the country, 40% of which are seeking food assistance for the first time.
“Children are particularly hard hit by food insecurity, and the ramifications for their physical and cognitive development can be long lasting. We are proud to support the world’s leading food bank organizations as they rise to meet this extraordinary challenge.”
—Chief Visionary Officer Scott Lewis
THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO CONTRIBUTES TO JEUNESSE KIDS!
We are so humbled by the leaders who live with purpose, live with passion and live Jeunesse — the leaders who make it to the top and then make it their top priority to give back!
Our Jeunesse Kids Champions program recognizes those who have shown outstanding servant leadership with their contributions to our nonprofit. To learn more, click below.
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