Over the past two weeks we had many exciting updates, which included hosting the eighth Clinton Global Initiative University meeting at the University of Miami and the release of No Ceilings’ Full Participation Report. The Foundation also recently announced that Donna Shalala, President of the University of Miami and former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, will join the Foundation as President and Chief Executive Officer at the end of the academic year. Read more about this news in the press release here, and learn more about our program updates below.
On Friday, March 6, the Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) kicked off its eighth annual meeting where more than 1,000 students representing more than 300 universities and 75 countries participated at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, where students made 700 new Commitments to Action. CGI U began with a Codeathon, led by the Clinton Health Matters Initiative, to spur innovation in the technology space and increase the scope, reach, and impact of CGI U's Commitments to Action.
The Codeathon brought together leaders in the technology and social innovation space to serve as mentors to student developers, designers, and technologists and as judges to evaluate the final presentations. Speakers and judges included Chelsea Clinton; Wifredo Fernandez, Director, CREATE Incubator, Miami Dade College & Co-Founder, The LAB Miami; and Ben Wirz, Director of Venture Investment, Knight Foundation. You can catch all of the plenary sessions from CGI U at live.cgiu.org and read CGI U highlights on our blog. Last Tuesday Fusion aired Alicia Menendez’s interview with Chelsea Clinton, featuring two CGI U students and their commitments – see the clip here, and read a series of CGI U participant op-eds and features, which appeared in outlets such as EliteDaily, Forbes, Fusion, and Levo League.
Launching No Ceilings events, Secretary Clinton and Chelsea Clinton spoke to student leaders at CGI U in Miami, where they unveiled a preview of No Ceilings Full Participation Report and NoCeilings.org. On Sunday, March 8 on International Women’s Day, No Ceilings launched an awareness campaign and social media movement called Not There. No Ceilings, along with a multitude of partners symbolically and temporarily removed images of women from traditional media and social media channels, replacing them with the url Not-There.org. Watch the Not There video featuring Amy Poehler and Cameron Diaz – which has been viewed more than half a million times since it launched! Read some of the top stories about the campaign and event in the New York Times, Vogue, Refinery29 and Fortune.
The Foundation’s marketing team created a highlights reel of what happened when New Yorkers woke up on Sunday to find that women were not there – watch it here. On Monday, March 9, Secretary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, and Melinda Gates hosted "Not There Yet: A Data Driven Analysis of Gender Equality," to officially release the report and noceilings.org. At the event, global and community leaders came together to share their stories and their work as they brought the data to life. On Tuesday, at the 59th session of the United Nation’s Commission on the Status of Women, Secretary Clinton released the Full Participation Plan – a set of principles for action that we can use to accelerate progress and ensure that commitments to gender equality translate into measurable improvements on the ground.
Last Thursday, the Clinton Development Initiative (CDI) inTanzania hosted a delegation from the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, with representatives from N2Africa, Catholic Relief Services, and private sector companies. The delegation toured CDI’s Ngongwa Farm and visited two smallholder demonstration plots. During the first week of March, CDI hosted a delegation from AGRA (Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa) in Rwanda where they visited smallholder farmers benefiting from improved soil fertility management training and pre-season contracts with the Soyco processing facility that purchases farmers soybeans.
Last week, Burger King announced it was following the example of McDonald’s’ September 2013 Commitment to Action with the Clinton Global Initiative and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation by eliminating soft drinks from its children’s menu. In January fast food giant Wendy’s announced a similar decision. Read more about the announcement in USA Today.
Last week, the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) signed a MoU with the Government of Rwanda to develop a national emissions estimation system, which will help inform policy and decision making for Rwanda’s land-use sector. In addition, through CCI’s financial rebate program, designed in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme and the Global Environment Facility, the installed cost of solar PV in the Seychelles has fallen by 40 percent since 2013. Furthermore, solar capacity on the island has increased from less than 10kW to over 1,000kW over the same time period. The growing market has also increased the number of certified solar installers from 1 to 8. On a separate note, CCI CEO Dymphna van der Lans gave a keynote speech at last week’s Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture in Abu Dhabi, UAE on the important role of forest and landscape restoration in addressing the climate system. You can read the speech here.
Last week, the Clinton Presidential Center hosted Harriet Glickman, a former Los Angeles schoolteacher, and her longtime friend, Ken Kelly, who were instrumental in the creation of Franklin, the first African American character in the Peanuts comic strip. In conjunction with our two Peanuts exhibits, they shared their story at two well-attended programs—one for a professional development workshop for educators, and the other for the general public.
On March 5th and 6th, the Clinton Health Matters Initiative (CHMI) convened top executives from Humana, Dell, Masimo, McDonalds, IBM, and others in Tucson, Arizona to build on our efforts in improving the health and wellness of employees. All attendees identified specific business practice changes that they could incorporate into their organization and collectively agreed to continue to engage with CHMI through this executive council to advance leadership on this issue with their peers and other national institutions and organizations.
Earlier this month, CHMI organized a convening with Texas Medical Center (TMC), University of Texas School of Public Health, GE, and Shape Up Houston to discuss the obesity epidemic within TMC Hospital Systems. As a result of the convening, CHMI will be anchoring the work related to the hospital environment and assessing vending machine and beverage policies. The goal is to engage the local vendors and form sustainable partnerships for all of their clients to offer healthy food options. Also in Houston, CHMI is partnering with CSH’s Source for Housing Solution to host a round-table event in conjunction with their annual state-wide conference, which will take place from March 31-April 2 in Austin, Texas, and will be focused on the intersection of health and housing sectors. This effort will help to advance CHMI’s priority focused on coordination of care and patient information, but also indirectly help to reduce care costs by extending health and social service needs into public housing spaces.