Friday Findings | Seed 20

Happy happy Friday guys!  I'm so excited the weekend's here!  No big plans for the weekend, but those weekends typically are the best! 

Instead of our normal Friday findings, we thought we'd switch things up this week and share 4 non-profits who deserve some recgnition.  J.D. and I attended Charlotte's Seed 20 this past Tuesday night, and as usual it was a REALLY great evening.  (Last year, I shared a description of Seed 20 that you can find here for more info.)  Basically, it's a competition between 20 local non-profits that each make a "pitch" to win up to $50,000 in prize money toward their non-profit.  Below are the 4 in the competiton that really caught my attention:

ONE:  Uncommen - this is such a simple, brilliant idea!  Dee Lanier founded Uncommen after being let down by his own father countless time.  His simple idea was to create a mobile app that reminds men to be better leaders, fathers and spouses.  Men simply download the app, and every few days they will get reminders on how to be an active, contributing dad.  Ideas like write your wife a love letter, take your child on a $3.00 date, get off the couch and do a chore!  simple things!  I love this because it's simple and inexpensive to access, plus we have way too many dads who aren't showing up these days. 

TWO:  Present Age Ministries - this non-profit works to council, mentor and shelter women who are victims of human trafficking.  North Carolina rates in the top 10 states for human trafficking, with Charlotte as the leading hub.  I've worked in the past on human trafficking awareness, and sadly it's an unbelievable problem in our community.  (It's mind blowing that there is a market for human trafficking, but there is.)

THREE:  Charlotte Bilingual School - this non-profit took home first place and earned a standing ovation from the crowd.  I had NO idea how few resources we have in place for Spanish speaking children entering our school system, and the impact that this has on our overall economy.  (1 in 4 students entering kindergarten at CMS is Latino.  I had no idea.)  So many issues come from children failing out of school, and we're going to have a big problem on our hands in the future if we don't address this.

FOUR:  Charlotte Food Innovation District - at first glance, this non-profit probably tugs at your heart-strings the least, BUT I think their initative is hugely important and I think it would have a big positive impact on our economy and culture.  The Charlotte Food Innovation District's mission is to create a food "hub" in Charlotte that clusters food related business and creates an agrotourism destination - think farmers market/urban farm/foodie retail destination.  Like I said, this may tug at your heart strings the least, but supporting local food sources has SO many benefits - it increases healthy eating, helps eliminate "food desserts" in underprivileged areas, reduces obesity if people are eating more seasonal, healthy foods, it's more sustainable to eat from local sources, etc....  You get the idea!  Overall, a really forward thinking concept and a handful of other cities have had success with this model.

So, all in all it was a really eye opening evening.  The kind of evening that makes you feel like 99% of the typical stuff we and everyone else blogs about is pretty darn unimportant.  It's nice every to have a reminder to count our blessings and do something to give back.  Hope everyone has a good weekend!!

~Mary Keller

one; two; three; four


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