Touchdown for Charity!! NFL Ballers Invest in 12-year-old’s Lemonade Business

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Minute Maid better watch their back, ’cause Mikaila Ulmer is coming through with her Me & The Bees lemonade, and she’s got some major backup.

From heavy hitters.

The Houston Chronicle reports current NFL players—Arian Foster, Glover Quin, Duane Brown, Jonathan Grimes, Omar Bolden, Bobby Wagner, Darius Slay, Sharrick McManis, EJ Manuel and Malick Jackson—banded together to invest $810K into Mikaila’s lemonade stand-turned-grown-woman biz. (Me and The Bees lemonade is on Whole Food shelves, y’all)

“She’s so humble,” Foster told the Houston Chronicle. “You always have to be open and willing to learn, and she is. I’m learning from her, too. It’s a cycle. You have to keep an open mind and continue to grow.”

“Of course, any time you invest in anything you look at if it’s going to be profitable,” Foster said. “We look for companies that match our main focus of developing a good product, but are also good people and do it for the right reasons. It’s more than about money to us. We believe that investing in small black businesses is extremely important.

The beverage tween and Austin native, met Arian Foster and Glover Quin at “Been Brilliant Entrepreneur Day” at Holthouse Boys & Girls Club in Houston Thursday.

“It’s awesome that I get to work with and around these two,” Ulmer said while sitting next to Foster and Quin, according to the Houston Chronicle. “They’re very smart. I learned a lot from them in the past couple of hours. I’m very happy that I’m able to work with them and they invested in my company and them helping us and mentoring us and believing in our mission. I think we have a better chance of achieving our goals. That keeps me pumped and excited every day.”

Mikaila, who also charmed $60,000 out of those temperamental sharks on ABC’s “Shark Tank,” using her great-grandmother’s recipe of flaxseed sweetened with honey.

What really makes Mikaila our queen bee is her donating a portion of profits to preserve honey bee colonies.

 

Buffalo Bills Player Marcell Dareus Takes Philanthropic Sojourn to Haiti

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Buffalo Bills tackle Marcell Dareus wanted to do more than donate $25 Gs to Hope for Haiti charity. The NFLer wanted to see how it was spent.

So he hopped a flight and landed in his father’s homeland this week. Where he visited orphanages, schools and a hospital, reports AL.com

The Alabama native got a warm welcome from the island nation that is still reeling from October’s Hurricane Matthew and the powerful 2010 earthquake that left thousands homeless and dead.

“I’m happy that I’m able to partner with Hope for Haiti, which is giving me the opportunity to meet and understand the people who are benefiting from my support,” Dareus said . “… I love giving back, especially to kids in need, but this is extra special because I’ve never been on a trip like this before. The Haitian people have seen hardship after hardship with the earthquake and then the hurricane. Being able to meet with them and show them that I care about them is really important to me.”

Hope for Haiti charity–that aims to improve the lives of Haitian children through education, health care, water and infrastructure–was happy to see their philanthropic partner in person.

“We are inspired by the generosity of Marcell Dareus and the Dareus Foundation for their investment in the Haitian people,” said Skyler Badenoch , the CEO of Hope for Haiti. “Without the support of investors like Marcell, Hope for Haiti’s work would not be possible. We are so grateful and we look forward to making an immediate and lasting impact together.”

The service-oriented sojourn already had a major influence on the star player for his father’s roots there. Marcell’s dad died before he entered the NFL.

“My dad grew up in Haiti, and I always hoped I would make it there some day,” Dareus said . “Although my dad died when I was younger, I’m lucky to have other family here in the States that have told me stories since I was a kid about life in Haiti. Being in a position to not only visit, but also make a donation that will really impact Haitian kids and their families is a great feeling. I know it will be an eye-opening trip.”

Looks like it was.

Feel Good Friday | Three Awww-Worthy Stories

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As if we need  a reason to feel good about a Friday. Well, I’ve got three more to make you smile. Starting with a real heart warmer, former NFL player Warrick Dunn celebrated giving away his 145th home to a single-parent family through his charity. And that’s not all. The Tampa Bay running back–who started the org in 1997 (as a rookie) to honor  his late mom–provides food, furniture and other living essentials to combat poverty. Dunn just raised giving goals.

Speaking of giving, a motorcyclist and proven animal lover gave a kitty an extra life after rescuing him from an intersection. The bad ass cyclist stopped traffic and scooped up Skids (his new name) after falling from a moving vehicle. The whole ordeal was captured on the cyclist’s Go Pro camera. Watch the drama play out below.

Now all together now: awwww Oh, and Snitches is doing just fine.

Finally, Two Texas police officers pulled over a dad of three daughters with zero car seats. Before the reckless dad could pull out his wallet, the boys in blue pooled their own money to get the seats. Protect and serve, indeed.

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And that’s your feel good Friday roundup. Happy Friday, Friday…

Sources:

KTLA 5 News
MadameNoire
Huffpost Good News

Feel Good Friday|The Gift of Prevention

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NFL player DeAngelo Williams is taking Breast Cancer Awareness aka Pinktober to a whole ‘nother level. Not only is the Pittsburgh Steelers’ runningback trying to extend his pink uniform of awareness–pink hair, nails, toes and clothes–until November (The NFL said no…boo hiss), but also paying for the prevention out of his own pocket.

Earlier this month, Williams tweeted he’s paying for 53 woman’s mammograms through his foundation–“53 Strong for Sandra. The life-saving donation is in honor of Williams’ mother (Sandra) who died of breast cancer.

What a great way to honor his mama and help other woman.

Kerry Washington Uses Fashion to Spotlight Domestic Abuse

kwpurpleNew York Fashion Week may be kaput, but “Scandal” star Kerry Washington introduced the hottest accessory for a woman’s safety. The purple purse.  The tasseled, chain-strapped purse was  designed by Olivia Pope  Kerry herself, and Vanna White debuted yesterday at Allstate Foundation’s Purple Purse Challenge. Fashion aside, this purse carries a strong message for any woman or girl suffering financial abuse, a little known form of domestic abuse where a partner uses money to control a spouse’s freedom.

In light of the tsunami-sized public uproar over NFL players Ray Rice and Adrian Peters alleged physical abuse cases, now is as good a time as any to jumpstart a convo about a form of abuse that is very rarely talked about. To bring you up to speed, financial domestic abuse is experienced in 98% of abusive relationships and is cited as the top reason for why victims stay in unhealthy  relationships, according to the National Network to End Domestic Violence.

It starts by slowly pulling away a woman’s purse strings, until she’s financially trapped.

“When the victim finally realizes she wants to take back some control, she often can’t. That whole hashtag #WhyIStayed that happened last week, you saw how many of those responses were about feeling trapped financially,” Washington, the purple purse ambassador told The Huffington Post.

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The Allstate Foundation’s Purple Purse Challenge aims to take back the power stolen from these women by using the handbag (adorned the color of domestic abuse awareness) to be a topic of conversation. As well as a source of funds for charities advocating for domestic abuse victims.

So, here’s how it works, when you donate $10 or more, you will enter a daily drawing to win one of three purple purses Ms. Washington designed. There will be three winners every day. You can enter here and for those that prefer email: purplepurse@crowdrise.com with the subject line “Please enter me in the sweepstakes-Win a Purple Purse.” In the email include all your contact info. You have until October 3rd to enter.

So far the purple purse challenge has taken in over $500k in donations. I guess survivors of domestic abuse are in good hands….sorry, couldn’t help myself. To learn about other charitable pursuits the Allstate Foundation contributes to click here.

And if you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse and need help, know that you are not alone. Go to a safe place and contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE for help, because no one deserves to be abused.