Last week I attended a film screening of A Path Appears: Violence and Solutions Part 3, a PBS documentary on the organization Shining Hope for Communities and hosted by NET IMPACT NYC. Shining Hope for Communities is a nonprofit in Kibera, Kenya. Kibera is a neighborhood of the city of Nairobi and is the largest urban slum of this city. Kennedy Odede, the founder and CEO of Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO), was raised in in Kibera where he experienced extreme poverty and the hardships that this bring to himself and his community. While working in a factory, Kennedy saved 20 cents to buy a soccer ball and started SHOFCO.
SHOFCO is an all-girls school located in the center of Kibera. They have a strong focus on holistic education, this means that they are not only educating the young girls in English and Math, but also developing their health, and focusing on community empowerment. They also have a water and sanitation initiative that not only provides clean water to the school and community but also provides as a source of income for the nonprofit. Many ask “why is it an all-girls school and not a youth school for boys and girls?” Kennedy explains this in the documentary, he also elaborated on this at last week’s event. Girls in his community need to be empowered and shown that their needs are important.
It is not unusual or surprising that there is a type of male hierarchy in Kibera. Sometimes this idea of manliness morphs into domestic violence and rape of the young girls. A Path Appears features a few of these stories and how the institution of law does not always provide for these young girls. Many perpetrators will go without arrest, even if there is conclusive evidence. SHOFCO offers a community solution to this problem. By providing the girls with not only the education and health measures they need they also provide them with social and workers and assistance with their rape cases. Through the empowerment of these young girls, SHOFCO is able to change the mindset of the community and hopefully build a resistance to the domestic violence shown in the young girls’ homes.
If you'd like to get involved with SHOFCO, take a look at their Summer Institute, an annual competitive program that takes place from mid June to mid July that provides civic-minded university students with on-the-ground experience teaching at The Kibera School for Girls (KSG) in Nairobi, Kenya. We encourage all LiVEDNDY goers to travel abroad and what better reason than for an amazing cause!
By: Meghan Justice
This past weekend LiVEDNDY decided to get out of NYC and take a trip to Washington DC to do some sightseeing and embrace the last days of hot summer weather.
Choose a destination that is a comfortable car or bus ride away. No more than 2 to 4 hours travel time. You don't to spend the majority of the weekend on the road. If traveling by bus, Mega Bus is a really great option. They travel to several cities and have buses that come and go multiple times a day.
We arrived on Friday night to the District Hotel, located downtown near an endless amount of restaurants, bars and boutiques. Plenty of rooms were available and the price ranged from $80 - $100 a night (Bookit.com).The hotel was located only a 10 minute walk away from U street which was packed with people enjoying the nightlife and filling the sidewalks and streets.
An affordable hotel, or bed and breakfast option is key. The room doesn't have to be extravagant as long as its safe and centrally located. Keep in mind that you're not going to spend much time in the room if you're out exploring the city so don't spend the bulk of your budget on the room.
The U Street neighborhood of Washington DC is one of the city’s most lively historical areas that attracts a very diverse crowd. Back in the 1870s, the U Street neighborhood was the center of Washington DC’s African American community with many black owned businesses, entertainment venues, and institutions. U Street is also near some of the best places to grab a bite to eat.
Ben's Chili Bowl (1213 U St NW) - Sandwiches/Subs, Hot Dogs/Sausages, Burgers
Eatonville- (2121 14th St, NW) -Southern/Soul, Cajun/Creole, Vegetarian
Explore your surroundings! Take advantage of the nightlife! Take note of the neighborhood eateries and give them a try. Stay away from chain establishments and patronize the businesses that give the city character.
We also visited the DC Veg Fest which took place on Saturday.
The festival was free to attend and perfect for attendees of all ages. The event catered to people who are health conscious and curious about vegan and vegetarian lifestyles and diets. There were free food samples, live cooking demonstrations, and over 130 vendors! I am a foodie and love tasting anything fresh and new. One of my favorite exhibitors at the festival was Vegan Treats (http://www.vegantreats.com).
Check to see if there are any special event happening in the area during your visit (concerts, farmers markets, festivals, plays). Festivals are alway nice because they are usually free and have a little something for everyone.
As the temperature increased to 90 degrees, we headed to the "main attraction" to see the White House, Lincoln and Washington Memorials. Luckily in DC they're bus lines and a metro system so getting around is pretty easy but all the attractions are fairly close in walking distance with plenty of sights to see walking from one destination to the next. We stopped and took a ride on a carousel, saw the sculptures in the Korean War Veterans Memorial and walked past the Nation Museum of American History.
Transportation can eat up a pretty big part of your budget if you aren't in a city with sufficient public transportation. Rather you need a car for a portion of your tripod for the entire time, Zip Car is a great rental option. The company is located in several cities and allows hourly and daily rentals.
Experience the main attractions in the area. Chat with locals that live there and inquire about what makes that place special. Be spontaneous! Take a ride on a carousel if you can because you are there to unwind and have fun!
Create your weekend friendly budget and plan a refreshing getaway to some place new. Share with us your photos and getaway experiences on our Facebook page using the #LiVEDNDYtravel.
According to Mashable, the mobile payment transactions are predicted to reach $1.3 trillion per year by 2017 and the restaurant industry seems to be a big player. There are many new ventures gearing up to be part of this trend. One new company joining this trend is called Split, an app that is native to the D.C area.
The Split app allows consumers to not only pay their tabs on their mobile devices, but also find events, restaurants, bar, and other venues in their neighborhood. It is your friendly, next-door neighbor app.. Launching for iPhone first then switching over to Android, this app is a first of its kind. To get a little taste of the features of the Split app, download the Broccoli Festival App. This app was powered by Split to create a virtual experience at the festival. The app allowed consumers to see the performers, the venders, and to see what their friends are doing.
While this app has great features, unfortunately it is only beneficial for people living in the D.C area. If you are a born and raised New Yorker, or a new resident of this beautiful city, then you know how overwhelming it could be to take advantage of all the events and venues that it has to offer. Here are a list of apps, like Split, that helps us New Yorkers out when it comes to finding venues and even provides mobile tab payment:
MyCheck allows consumers to pay their bills at select restaurants and other venues. Users will be able to split their bill, tip the server, redeem offers and many more. This app is partnered with PayPal (for the US and the UK. This app works with over 3,000 merchants worldwide, 150 of which are located in NYC.
Cover creates the ease of paying the bill at restaurants when you’re out with a group of friends. Based in New York City, Cover is partnered with local restaurants that integrate their software with their payment system. With using this app, you can eliminate the payment process altogether while dining.
NY Times The Scoop
Our favorite newspaper, the New York Times, provided us with an app, called The Scoop, to help out locals find events, performances, restaurants, bars, and many more within the five boroughs. While you may not be able to pay for your meal via mobile device, the app allows you to have a digital view on the unique spots only located in NYC.
Let us know what new apps you’re using to help you navigate throughout the concrete jungle using the hashtag #LiVEDNDY