Thursday, October 27, 2011

Jay-Z Throws A Carnival For College Kids' Scholarships

On Thursday night, Jay-Z hosted a carnival at the Hudson River Park pier for his Shawn Carter Foundation. But it wasn't all Ferris wheels and funnel cakes — unfortunately Momofuku doesn't make those. The event was called Making the Ordinary Extraordinary, and it sought to raise funds for college scholarships.

Jay and his mother, Gloria Carter, started the foundation in 2002 to help those facing socioeconomic difficulties further their education at institutions of higher learning. The foundation started with one student earning a full ride through college and grew to offer 50 scholarships to students in 50 different states annually from 2003 to 2005. More than 750 students have been awarded scholarships totaling in excess of $1.1 million, and nearly 500 kids have taken part in the foundation's college tours — some even rode the bus with Jay's mom.

MTV News caught up with Mr. Carter at the event, where he said the evening was about having fun while raising money for a good cause. Jay said two of the worst things in life are a waste of talent and a person who applies him- or herself but is unable to advance due to financial hardship. He hoped this foundation would help ease such burdens and assist people in recognizing their potential.

"Just providing opportunity and seeing what people do with that opportunity. If you want to go further and you want to further your education, just giving someone that extra little push [so] that maybe you'll turn out to be someone special," Jay said.

"My mom has been running this for a number of years," said Jay. "My mom gets on the bus and takes the kids and takes them to their orientations and she's been riding around the college. It's a real grassroots thing that she's been doing on her own, and I'm just really trying to help her expand it so we can help more people. It started out as a Brooklyn thing, and then it started as a New York thing, and now hopefully we can take it to a worldwide thing."


Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith buy minority ownership in Philadelphia 76ers NBA basketball team

Will Smith just bought a much bigger playground to spend most of his days.
The Philadelphia native and wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, are officially minority shareholders of the 76ers NBA team in a deal that was confirmed by the league on Tuesday.
The "Men In Black" star and his wife are part of an ownership group that includes a former NBA executive, leveraged buyout specialist Josh Harris and an Indonesian media magnate, according to the league's website.
The group takes ownership from Comcast-Spectator, which, led by chairman Ed Snider, purchased the team in 1996.
"This is one of the hardest business decisions I've ever had to make," Snider said in a statement on Tuesday. "The Sixers are family, and it is very difficult to say goodbye to an organization of great people with whom we have worked so closely over the last 15 years."
Forbes magazine valued the team at $330 million this year – which is 17th in the league. The Philadelphia Daily News reported that the new owners paid about $280 million.
The Smiths join rappers Jay-Z, Nelly and Usher as entertainers-turned-part NBA owners with the investment.
Smith was rumored to be part of a group interested in purchasing the group as far back as 2006, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. That group was assembled by Julius Erving.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Diddy Saves Boys and Girls Club of Harlem

According to a press release, "The Boys & Girls Club of Harlem, an organization dedicated to youth development by providing access and opportunities for young people in their community regardless of economic, social and family circumstances, today announced a remarkable contribution from business magnate Sean Combs, founder of the entertainment conglomerate Bad Boy Entertainment Worldwide."

The Club was facing major financial set backs due to a decrease in funds from federal, state, and private funding.

"Mr. Combs' contribution comes at a time when we were faced with the possibility of eliminating existing programs and/or club sites. 100% of Mr. Combs' contribution will go directly to the young people, and provide educational, recreational and social enrichment programs allowing us to move forward as a club, uninterrupted." said Willie C. Bentley, Jr. Board Member and Resource Development Chair. 

Diddy, who grew up in Harlem, was recently in the news for being one the closest men to hit the billionaires list. Well done!


Sunday, October 23, 2011

B.E.T.: Reed Between The Lines

A blended family with an Psychologist and English Professor as mom and dad - children growing up in today's ever-changing society, and a family friend who has not been so lucky in love.

Next Episode Tuesday, October 25 at 10:00pm

Thursday, October 13, 2011

AAPDEP: Help Support

$4000 Needed for Travel to Sierra Leone in November

The All African People’s Development & Empowerment Project (AAPDEP) is calling on all friends, members and supporters to help with urgently needed resources to send an AADPEP leadership contingent to Sierra Leone.
The purpose of the November trip is four-fold: 1) to finalize the plan of action and timeline for building the new AAPDEP-WIND birthing center,  2)to initiate plans for a 2012 AAPDEP winter project that would bring volunteers from throughout the world into Sierra Leone to participate in AAPDEP healthcare and agricultural work,  3) to establish the  organizational and legal infrastructure necessary to build our economic development capacity in the country, and 4) to document AAPDEP’s work through video and photographs that will be used in the creation of a short film on the fight to improve birth outcomes for African women and babies.
In the six months since Nurse Midwife Mary Koroma’s return to Sierra Leone following the successful US-wide Stop the Hemorrhaging Tour, AAPDEP has made incredible advancements in our work to improve the lives and health of pregnant women and children in the country.
Under Nurse Mary’s dynamic leadership, AAPDEP-Sierra Leone has been established in four cities and has a diverse membership of almost 500 people.  Work is currently underway to renovate the existing clinic inAllentown, now known as the AAPDEP-WIND Health and Birth Center (AHBC), even as planning and fundraising is ongoing for the new facility slated for completion in early 2013. 
Despite the national average of one in eight women dying in childbirth, Nurse Mary and AAPDEP TBA’s have helped to deliver hundreds of  healthy babies over the last six months, including 2 sets of twins-- without one fatality!
In Mokanji, we have launched the AAPDEP Vocational Institute (AVI).  AVI opened its doors on September 26th with seventy registered students who are now receiving training in midwifery (Traditional Birth Attendant training), carpentry, catering, craft making, gara tye dying, tailoring and hair dressing.  A preschool has also been opened alongside the AVI for our students who are in need of childcare. There are currently 20 children ages 0-4 attending our preschool.
It doesn’t end there. AAPDEP-SL has established a 2-acre cassava farm in Mokanji, a 4-acre corn farm in Moriba Town and a 3-acre ground nut farm in Makolo, all in an effort to address food security and economic development for our members and the broader community.
AAPDEP’s programs in Sierra Leone are important advancements not only for AAPDEP itself, but for the dispersed nation of African people around the world.  Our work is a livingembodiment of African self-sufficiency and self-determination and serves as an example of what is possible when African people unite ourselves, our skills and resources in the interests of our people! 
The November organizing trip will play a critical role in taking this work even further and four thousand dollars ($4,000) is needed urgently by October 31st to help with the cost of plane tickets and in-country travel.

Please make a tax deductible donation today! Spread the word to friends and family! Online donations can be made at .
Checks and money orders made out to “AAPDEP” can be sent to:
Attn: Sierra Leone Trip
P.O. Box 17014
Huntsville, AL 35810.
As always, AAPDEP thanks you- our supporters, members and friends- for helping us to continue our work toward development for liberation!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Manifest Your Destiny: Camp

Our Mission is to provide underserved youth a path to empowerment and educational excellence through academic programming, college access skills, and personal development.
The Beginning

Manifest Your Destiny Foundation, is a non-profit youth organization established by Ivy League actor Hill Harper. Despite his many accolades and awards, or maybe because of them, Hill Harper made a commitment to work in service of our youth – to pass along the lessons he learned and to provide a foundation for young men and women to use as a launching pad to success.