National Service Blog

  • Posted on Jun 15, 2015

    Forty percent (PDF) of asthma episodes are caused by preventable hazards found in homes, including mold and dust mites. Social Innovation Fund (SIF) grantee Green & Healthy Homes Initiative (GHHI) is helping low-income individuals and families reduce such asthma triggers in their households.

    It is doing so using a cost-effective and integrated approach that utilizes a comprehensive environmental assessment based on eight elements of “green and healthy homes:” dry, clean, pest-free, safe, contaminant-free, well-ventilated, well-maintained, and energy-efficient. A review of published studies (PDF) by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services suggests that such home-based, multicomponent asthma interventions provide substantial return on investment.

    GHHI’s asthma program is part of its integrated intervention services that also includes remediation and education for home health, safety, and energy efficiency. Its first pay for success project is located in Baltimore, Md., and will include Calvert Foundation and other investors providing up-front capital to scale the program. Program partners Johns Hopkins Health Care and the Johns Hopkins Health System will then pay back to the Calvert Foundation a portion of avoided medical costs if the program achieves agreed-upon outcomes, such as decreased asthma-related emergency room visits and hospitalizations.

    To show funders the program was...

  • Posted on Jul 21, 2009
    What happens to those elementary students who do not need special education, but need additional help in the classroom? For many schools, there is not enough staff available to reach these students on a timely basis. RSVP volunteer, Darlene S. has decided to take it upon herself to help fill this void.
  • Posted on Jul 21, 2009
    The Red Cross was there for John R. when he needed help. Now he’s a Mile High Red Cross volunteer helping others. John was in the military, stationed in Hawaii when he had a family emergency back home in Minnesota. “The Red Cross helped me get emergency leave and arranged my travel to get me home,” he said. He never forgot what they did for him. John went on to a career in information services with United Airlines. When he retired, he wanted to spend his time giving back. He called his local Red Cross chapter to volunteer.
  • Posted on Jul 20, 2009
    On June 25th, I got on the 5 Train and headed up to the La Iglesia Cristiana Shekinah block party at 3rd Avenue and 149th Street in the South Bronx. But I wasn’t going for the festivities.
  • Posted on Jul 20, 2009
    MillionTreesNYC is a 10-year initiative to plant and care for one million new trees throughout the City’s five boroughs. By planting one million trees, New York City will ultimately expand the City’s urban forest by 20%, provide New Yorkers important health, economic and environmental benefits, and create a more sustainable urban environment.
  • Posted on Jul 20, 2009
    As a longtime blood donor, Kerri P. knows the importance of giving blood. But she never knew that the need for blood would hit so close to home. Her two-year-old daughter, Mary Clare, was born with a heart defect. She underwent surgery at five days old, and had another surgery six months later. Multiple units of blood were given to aid in her recovery.
  • Posted on Jul 20, 2009
    Kathy Gallagher is volunteering as a reading mentor under the United We Serve program. This summer she is helping two brothers improve their reading skills during summer vacation.
  • Posted on Jul 20, 2009
    I have been a Red Cross Volunteer affiliated with the Washtenaw County Chapter in Ann Arbor, Michigan for almost 4 years. Because I have a full time job, I cannot volunteer as much as I would like but am able to find 8 or so hours a week to join in the efforts of a fixture of my hometown.
  • Posted on Jul 17, 2009
    I am an advocate for energy efficiency. In 2004, my neighbor told me about energy efficiency (compact fluorescent) CFL light bulbs. Since then I have bought all energy efficiency light bulbs and replaced all of the light bulbs in my house. In addition, my workplace also replaced all of their light bulbs to CFL’s even though they are more expensive in the short term but long term they realized they were saving money because the bulbs lasted longer and used less electricity. If my neighbor did not tell me about CFL’s, i would not have made this change.
  • Posted on Jul 17, 2009
    A 15 year old sophomore at Great Oak High School in Temecula, contacted Melissa, the Unit Director at the Great Oak Clubhouse in Temecula, CA. The student was looking for a community service project that would truly have impact on the community and make a difference for children in her own town.
  • Posted on Jul 17, 2009
    I have been a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member in Cobb County, Georgia since 2004. It all started with my desire to help my family and neighbors to survive a disaster.

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