Archive for the ‘Man/Woman of the Day’ Category

For those of you who have spent your valuable work hours poking around the Roozt site in hopes of further procrastination, you may have noticed White Apricot on our Partners page. Much more than just a whimsical name, our peeps (oh, the bad Roozt “hatchery” puns are SO much worse on a Monday!) over at White Apricot are one of THE top eco-fashion websites out there.

In fact, just recently Lucky magazine named them one of “5 Eco Sites to Love” and “the best place to go for Major Deals.” And because we love to brag about our good friends, we figured they definitely warrant a special shout out for all their hard work and success!

Much like Roozt, White Apricot was founded on the realization that there was a void in the market, and that something should be done to fix it. In this case, it was the observation that eco-fashion was evolving into the mainstream, but no one had created a spotlight specifically for the fashion and beauty industries.

So, what was to be done? White Apricot came to the intelligent conclusion that being a middle-man (or woman) platform for eco-fashion companies would give the brands the greatest visibility and be most convenient for the consumer.

It’s much easier to be environmentally conscious when you don’t have to sniff out these fashionable brands yourself, but have someone else do it for you!

Founder Carrie Pollare sums it up best when she says, “It’s all about making small changes in your life. You certainly don’t have to become a ‘treehugger’ to make a difference.  Don’t give up your designer jeans, [just] pair them with tops made from sustainable fabrics.  Try an organic skincare regimen, instead of chemically laden ones you’ve been using.  In other words, just do whatever you can comfortably do, but try to do something.”

White Apricot carries everything from runway-worthy sustainable clothing to comfortable yoga wear, high-end eco-friendly handbags to lead-free lipsticks. Even if they weren’t our good friends, we would love them for the work they’re doing to continue mainstreaming eco-fashion.

If you’re a fan of Roozt, we really encourage you to treat yourself to White Apricot. We promise you won’t be disappointed!

Peace, Love, Roozt

-CG with the Roozt team

Meet Arifa.

She is a twenty-eight year old woman who lives in the slums of the Kadapa District in Andhra Pradesh, India. As with most slum children, Arifa was never educated and cannot read or write. She has an eight year old daughter and currently lives with her mother. Arifa’s husband broke his legs in an accident and his medical bills put the family in severe debt…

Her husband now works in Kuwait but barely earns enough money to cover the cost of the interest on the debts, leaving the family with nothing to live on. Arifa was in dire straits when she arrived for training and work. She had suffered two miscarriages and the death of one child, and was struggling to feed her daughter and herself. Her daughter was sent to the local village school and was not receiving a proper education.
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Arifa’s life has changed for the better since becoming a One Thread Fair Trade artisan. With the fair wages she earns, she is able to feed her family and improve their living conditions. Her daughter now attends the Aarti School in the city of Kadapa and is becoming a good student. When One Thread Fair Trade asked Arifa how she feels about herself now, she answered that she feels good that she is able to stand on her own feet.
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Arifa believes in family. Her dream is for her daughter to become an educated, successful woman and grow up to lead better life than what she had. Arifa is a wonderful mother and we are privileged to have her cushions featured on Roozt.com!
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– Arifa is a featured artisan from one of our vendors, One Thread Fair Trade. To see Arifa’s work and support her check out the OTFT cushions here.

The more business owners I meet and work with in the realm of Social Enterprise the more I see a list of personality traits that are industry wide. The most obvious, of course, being that the Social Entrepreneurs weigh both profits and purpose on similar levels (in many cases with purpose being the primary focus). But a trait that occurred to me is that Social Entrepreneurs are really just big time problem solvers. They see a problem and they work to fix it. They see an opportunity and they work to create something new. They have a passion for both building and creating so they combine their passions.

This is the case with one of our partners whose story I thought was a perfect example. Jen Darling has been making her own clothing and shoe bags since 2008. It turns out the standard plastic bags were not only bad for the environment, but also for the high end clothes themselves. So what was Jen’s solution? Start producing her own quality bags of course. Bags that were good for both the environment and the clothes. Like a true problem solver she put the pieces together and by the end of the year her bags were being debuted in an event for London Fashion Week. Fast forward some more and you’ll see her bags featured by everyone from TreeHugger to NBC with celebrity fans ranging from Anne Hathaway to the New England Patriots (hey, even Tom Brady needs a fashionable, eco-friendly garment bag sometimes).

Jen Darling is definitely a problem solver. And the best part is her bags are Roozt Approved on all levels: Fair trade approved, eco-friendly textiles, eco-responsible and even made in California. She gives a portion of revenues to Surfrider! Check her out here and look for her bags coming to Roozt soon!

Cheers,

ND with the Roozt team

Today I had the distinct pleasure of talking with Ethan Zohn, Survivor Africa Champion, Philanthropist, Motivational Speaker, and most recently, Cancer survivor. Ethan may be one of the most inspirational people I have met in a long time. We connected today to talk about collaboration between Roozt and an inspiring non-profit that he founded called Grassroot Soccer, a youth focused organization that uses the power of soccer to teach HIV / AIDS education to children in Africa. We are in talks of partnering with Grassroots Soccer to sell their T-Shirts on Roozt as well as make them a beneficiary of our customer’s donations. I encourage you all to check out the amazing work they are doing in their video and witness how they have harnessed something seemingly unrelated to a massive global epidemic and used its influence to create positive change in the world.

Ethan Zohn (left) & Kids from Grassroots Soccer

What further inspired me was that just today Ethan announced the Survivor Stand Up To Cancer initiative where they are using one of the worlds most popular TV shows to help raise money for direct cancer research so we can one day soon find a cure for this devastating disease. Ethan tells his story here, and it is a powerful one that you should all read…

Ethan Zohn is shining example of how one person, even when faced with the biggest challenge of his life, can stand up and make a difference in the world. He is a prime example that harnessing the power of business, entertainment, and sports to make a difference in the world is not only a great idea, but an inspiring reality.

I look forward to the opportunity for Roozt, our team members, and our supporters to  be able to collaborate with Ethan, Grassroot Soccer, and the StandUpToCancer initiative. Thank you for your amazing work Ethan!

Brent Freeman, Founder / CEO of Roozt.com

I was told about the Khan Academy recently and looked it up as soon as I got to a computer. I immediately realized the impact something like this could have on the world. For those that aren’t familiar with the Khan Academy, it is an online library of recorded videos on almost all educational subjects. Literally everything from Stoichiometry to Polynomials to the Abdication of Napoleon Bonaparte. These videos are offered both in a Youtube channel and in the Khan Academy’s own website.

So how is this revolutionary?

First off, the courses go to college-level learning. That means for those that need a brush up on their Finance or Algebra fundamentals, the Khan Academy can give them some quick schooling. Most importantly, though, this endless supply of education in one place can offer something much broader: a free education for anyone with access to the internet. The fact that it goes to college level makes it all the more amazing. Some possible applications:

Salman Khan Academy

Salman Khan: Man of the Day

-Educating women in an area where they are otherwise severely oppressed

-Educating citizens in third world countries who don’t have access to adequate educational systems

-Businesses training their employees

-Current students who need a new or visual perspective on the subject

-ANYONE who wants further education in nearly any subject

The possibilities are endless and the results are inspiring. Organizations like the Khan Academy level the field by taking the barriers to entry for education out of the equation. In the information age, information is finally readily available. The only bottle neck on the equation now is the willingness of the individual to learn. That is equality at its finest. A future with education available freely will allow everyone who wants to do big things the opportunity to do so, instead of being constrained by setbacks financially, geographically, etc.

The Millenial generation is the most educated in history and, with programs like the Khan academy, there is a good chance higher education will spread even further.

If you haven’t heard or seen the Khan, definitely check them out. This goes without saying that today’s ROOZT man of the day is Salman Khan. He has a truly inspirational story and mission

Check out an intro video:

Much peace and much love,

ND with the ROOZT team

So in case you missed it Monday night, the Do Something! awards were on VH1. After myself and Christina went to the Do Something! bootcamp this weekend, all of us at the ROOZT office were excited to see the winners of the awards show. There were some definite surprises but in the end it was a fun little ceremony with an awesome cause behind it. Without further adieu, the winners:

THE Do Something! Award:

Jessica Posner

From her own bio :

Sad fact: 66% of girls in Kibera (the largest slum in Africa) trade sex for food as early as age six and only 8% of women in Kibera ever attend school. Jessica co-founded Shining Hope for Communities to combat gender inequity and poverty in Kibera. Through the Kibera School for Girls, the first free school in Kibera, and the Shining Community Center, Jessica has helped over 5,700 residents gain education and employment.

Awesome girl that’s making an amazing impact. She won the $100,000 prize and the top honors at the event. A BIG congratulations to her from ROOZT! For this achievement and her efforts in Kibera she is also our WOMAN OF THE DAY.

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Do Something! Movie Star of the Year:

Leonardo DiCaprio

And no not for Inception (although it might have changed your life for better or worse). His most noted contribution was his $1 million donation to the Haiti Relief Fund as well as his continued Executive Producer role of “Greensburg”. Mr. DiCaprio beat out Jessica Biel, Matt Damon, Salma Hayek, and Natalie Portman for his title as the reigning Do Something! movie star of the year.

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Do Something! City of the Year:

Austin, Texas

This was a shocker to me. I wasn’t aware how awesome the city of Austin was. The local slogan of “keep Austin weird” could refer to that Austin has a huge car sharing program in the midst of the state with the largest average cars. Or it could refer to the fact that the city is the only major Texan city with no ordinance against women being topless in public. Either way the huge amount of bike users and social entrepreneurs have earned Austin the title of the Do Something! City of the Year. Runners up included Portland, Salt Lake City, and Boston.

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Do Someting! Twitterer of the Year:

Alyssa Milano

Alyssa Milano has been tremendously successful in using Twitter as a tool to raise money for Charity: Water, a nonprofit working to supply clean water to those in need. On her birthday, she asked her followers to donate money to the charity instead of purchasing birthday gifts. Today she has raised $92,568 for the charity.

The runner up twitterers include Hugh Jackman and Edward Norton (who raised $1.2 million for the Maasai Wilderness Conversation Trust).

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Do Something! with Style Award:

Tyra Banks

First off, congrats to Tyra. The reason for her award was her mission of “celebrating inner and outer beauty and owning and rocking what you’ve got.” I think that translates to wanting to end the unhealthy expectations of women’s bodies but I’m not sure… Ms. Banks beat out Donatella Versace and Victoria Beckham.

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Do Something! Comedian of the Year:

Kathy Griffin

Apparently Ms. Griffin’s big contribution this year was getting a pap smear poolside at a hotel in Westwood. Her cause was her “Smear Campaign” for increasing awareness about different types of cervical cancer. A very aggressive awareness campaign to say the least. Despite the aggressiveness of Kathy’s Smear campaign the cause is awesome and admirable.

Griffin beat out Eddie Izzard who ended up running 42 marathons in 53 days for the sake of Sports Relief and Ellen Degeneres who auctioned her wardrobe with the money going to the Humane Society. It will take a lot for someone to top the public pap smear bar raised by Kathy Griffin.

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Do Something! TV Show of the Year:

Glee

I personally have never watched the show but love their idea of auctioning screenings and backstage type of tickets. Glee raised money for the Grammy Foundation and Grammy In The Schools by selling preview screening packages to the public. Little things like this add up to make a huge change and a what cost? Virtually none.

Among the runner ups, American Idol’s “Idol Gives Back” raised over $45 million. Yes over $45 million.

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Do Something! Athlete of the Year:

Hannah Teter

Wow if anyone deserved an award it’s Hannah. She wins by a landslide. It’s to even start with her. For one she sells underwear online (called Sweet Cheeks), 40% of the proceeds going to benefit Doctors Without Borders. On her personal website, Ms. Teter sells maple syrup to help provide water to a village in Kenya (I will definitely be ordering some soon), Ben & Jerry’s has released a flavor which she endorses with all proceeds going to charity, and last but not least Hannah has raised over $250,000 for Kirindon. An amazing Social Entrepreneur who challenges us all to step up our philanthropic game.

Runners up include Reggie Bush for his Haiti relief and New Orleans High School Relief, Derek Jeter, and even Ryan Sheckler…

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Do Something! Music Artist of the Year:

The Jonas Brothers

Apparently the Brother’s Jonas do more than captivate the tweenage female market nationwide. And apparently they are so highly regarded in the field of Diabetes benefit that they testified before congress to promote further diabetes research. Do they testify individually or as a group?… Either way I’m proud of the Jonas’. On top of their Diabetes support, they have also helped other organizations including the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund, the Special Olympics, and multiple appearances on shows and fundraisers. Congratulations to the Jonas Brothers from all of us at the ROOZT team.

The big name runner ups include Lady Gaga for donating the proceeds of one of her shows to Haiti relief and Shakira for her charity work with both the Chilean and Haitian earthquakes.

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Do Something! Docu Style award:

I Am Because We Are

This documentary follows the lives of orphans living in Malawi. Inspiring, shocking, painful, “I Am Because We Are” is a wake up call for the Social Entrepreneurship industry and philanthropy groups worldwide. Check out the website here. Definitely a must see documentary

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Do Something! Charities on Facebook award:

The Bali Orphanage

I wasn’t personally familiar with this organization. Do Something’s descpription:

The children of the Tuka, Bali, Indonesia orphanage have a “fan” page on Facebook. The orphanage is located in a remote village and had few visitors. Once Facebook users started to discover their page, it took off rapidly and now has over 1,500 members, many of whom joined after asking how they could come meet the children and bring gifts.

An amazing story about how social media can have a positive impact on the world if applied correctly. In the wake of all the Facebook controversies with privacy it’s refreshing to see the amazing potential that people wanting to do good can have through new mediums.

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A huge congratulations from ROOZT to all winners of the Do Something! Awards. The show was fun and went well and we look forward to seeing the winners next year!

Cheers,

The ROOZT Team

In the midst of the chaos shown on the news surrounding the earthquake in Haiti, it was hard to know really who was actually doing what. The media seemed just as confused. There was even controversy as to whether the relief funds were actually reaching their destinations…

All the depressing negativity aside, this was an opportunity to see who in the public eye would step up and take charge of getting Haiti relief in the wake of the massive quake. While many did answer the call and step up, one name in particular stood out: Samuel Dalembert. While others were tweeting, he was making calls to his homeland, while others were giving comments to the press he was giving press conferences before games, and while others in the spotlight were urging people to donate money he was setting up his own foundation.

He came up recently in an office discussion of who stepped up big in the wake of some of the huge natural disasters in recent times and for his efforts, Samuel Dalembert is the” Man of The Day”

-Samuel Dalembert Foundation for Haiti Relief

Peace and love,

ND for the ROOZT team