Greenheart Beat: March Edition
March is Women’s History Month! In this issue of Greenheart Beat, you will learn more about and ways to help the continued struggle for women’s rights all around the world. It may be 2013, but we are quite a distance from equality and justice, not just in other countries, but right here in the USA, too. This issue also provides ways that will help you fight through the winter blues and navigate your way through the Wells bridge closure. Enjoy!
“We Are Experiencing a Delay and We Regret this Inconvenience”
By: Annan Shehadi
How many times have you heard those words while sitting on a CTA train? Well, if you’re a Brown Line rider coming from the South Side, you’re in luck! Because of the ongoing construction of the Wells Street bridge, those who take the Brown Line North cannot do so for two periods: March 1–11 and April 26–May 6. You get a little break from that awful phrase! Does this mean you should start driving during those periods? Nope! There are plenty of other ways to get around in a more sustainable fashion:
>> If you would still like to take the CTA, the CTA has provided multiple shuttles to take you to and from the River North area and downtown, as well as a few more bus routes. Click here for more information regarding the Wells Street bridge construction and how the CTA is trying to help riders with alternative routes.
>> Walking! If at some point during your normal commute you transfer to the Brown or Purple Line at any of the Loop stops or Merchandise Mart, considering walking for the remainder of your trip. From Washington/Wells to the Wells office, it is a 20 minute walk (25 minutes if you are taking your sweet time). I strongly suggest this option during the April to May shut down because the weather should hopefully be warming up and it’s a great way to get some exercise before sitting at a desk all day.
>> Biking. If you have ever thought about biking to work, but never took the initiative, this might be your chance to pick up the habit. While it may be rough to bike to the office when it’s very windy, cold and snowing, consider a test ride on a day when the weather isn’t so bad, possibly during the April to May Wells bridge shut down. Many Greenheart staff members bike to work so if you are nervous about biking on the streets through the city, consider riding with a more experienced coworker.
>> Teleportation. A pollution-free, smooth way to travel. If you have invented a machine, please let me know.
Serving Greenheart Soup: Recap of Winter Volunteering
By: Molly Friend
Originally posted on the CCI Greenheart Blog February 27
Each winter the CCI Greenheart staff ventures out of our offices to Chicago’s north side to volunteer at the St. Thomas of Canterbury Soup Kitchen. This winter was Greenheart’s third year volunteering at the soup kitchen. Each year is the same. Consistency and quality make this soup kitchen a fun, warm, welcoming place to be. We are welcomed by seasoned volunteers who have committed themselves to serving others. CCI Greenheart volunteers are immediately put to work. Once we have our aprons on, we are sent to chop vegetables, sort bread, and set tables. Then Jim the soup kitchen coordinator, who has been there for over 30 years, brings the volunteers together. He talks about the importance of giving a good, warm meal to the homeless of Chicago. Jim emphasizes the respect and care each guest is given at the soup kitchen and that there is no limit to the amount of soup anyone can eat. There is always enough to go around. We served nearly 200 guests on the nights we were there. All of our Greenheart volunteers leave feeling grateful to have connected with a population of our city that is often ignored. We look forward to doing the same thing next year, sharing a meal with the homeless of Chicago.
Props to the following staff members who volunteered at the soup kitchen:
Martha Rauch, Paula Herrmann, Jason Nusser, Alex Cahue, Andrea Dennis, Molly Friend, Mary Teeter, Lauren Coffaro, Erica Wiethorn, Erica Clapp, Ben Baney, Lucas Hollow, Allison Graham, Stephanie Nosek, & Erin Kelly
Beating the Blah, Blah, Blah-Bah-Tee-Blah-Blah
By: Andrea Dennis
Winter. It is grey. It is cold. And winter depression is real. This fall I had a full medical checkup for kicks. The M.D. did the works, which to my surprise included a blood test for Vitamin D. I’d never been tested for it before. While the results showed I had plenty of it, the doctor said no matter what, take Vitamin D supplements this winter. It was the ONLY medical advice she gave me. Nothing about my allergies, osteoporosis prevention, or anything that seemed logical to share… just Vitamin D. As it is known in the medical community, Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or “The Winter Blah”, is believed to be caused by a various set of triggers (including a lack of sunlight). SAD is for the most part a mystery to doctors and researchers, but it can lead to depression, lack of productivity, etc.. With our long winters, and lack of sunlight, Chicagoans are especially susceptible. If you are feeling slightly out of whack and don’t know why, here are some basic reminders to keep you radiant:
1. Exercise: Release endorphins, activate your metabolism, energy equals energy. If you are feeling blah, do this first.
2. Fresh Foods: Snack on raw veggies, eat a salad for your next meal. Be good to your body. One of the fundamental parts of Yoga is “you are what you eat”.
3. Take a Walk: Even on grey days, you can catch rays. Go on a walk around the block for fresh air and sunshine.
4. Watch a Sunrise or Sunset: When I occasionally drag myself out of bed to catch a sunrise, it changes my whole day for the better. Inspiration. Meditation.
5. Take Vitamin D: Because the doctor says so!
104 Years Later, the Struggle Continues for Women’s Rights
By: Melissa Trinley
From the labor movement’s socialist roots of the early 20thcentury, International Women’s Day (IWD) has spread from the U.S. and Europe to the far corners of the world. In 1908, women garment workers in New York City went on strike in protest for better working conditions. One year later, the United States observed the first National Women’s Day, later named International Women’s Day, in honor of those protesters. This began the annual gathering together of males and females alike in recognition of the brave women who have fought for justice and to call for the advancement of female humanrights. According to the United Nations, the commemoration of the day creates a rallying point to build support for women’s rights and participate in the political and economic arenas. Although there has been much progress for women’s rights there is still a lot of work to be done to achieve global female equality.
Each year, the UN chooses a theme for International Women’s Day; the theme for 2013 is “A Promise is a Promise: Time for Action to End Violence Against Women.” Secretary-Generals Ban Ki-moon has combined IWD with his UNiTE campaign, which calls on all governments, civil society, the private sector, the media and the entire UN system to join forces in addressing this global pandemic. Here are some issues women around the world are working to combat:
● Globally, 603 million women live in countries where domestic violence is not yet considered a crime
● Gender-based violence is one of the most widespread-but least recognized-human rights abuses in the world; globally 1 of every 3 women will be abused in her lifetime
● Up to 70% of women in the world report having experienced physical and/or sexual violence at some point in their lifetime
● Domestically, the pay gap in the U.S. between men and women in 23%
● 61 million children around the world are out of school, the majority of these young people are girls
● In the developing world, 42% of girls are not enrolled in school
● More than 80% of women in Asia Pacific are employed in “vulnerable jobs”—unregulated, home-based work
● Over 60 million girls worldwide are child brides (married before the age of 18)
>>> What can you do this Friday, March 8, in celebration of International Women’s Day? Being informed is the first step in helping create change. To learn more about the abundance of initiatives organizations are taking to stop violence again women have a look at these non-profits and learn more about how you can get involved:
Read more about the United Nations “A Promise is a Promise” campaign.
CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty and places special focus on working alongside poor women.
Global Fund for Women seeks to advance the rights of women and girls worldwide by increasing the resources for and investing in women-led organizations and women’s collective leadership for change.
Room to Read’s Girl’s Education initiative believes that educating girls is the most powerful and effective way to address global poverty. Room to Read supportsgirls so that they not only graduate, but also develop the skills they need to negotiate key life decisions.
Pro Mujer provides poor women in Latin America with the means to build livelihoods for themselves and futures for their families through microfinance, business training and health care support.
For a historical and cultural perspective on this holiday, please read Leslie Patt’s “March is Women’s History Month,” blog. http://greenheartcci.wordpress.com/2013/03/02/march-is-womens-history-month/
“Gender Equality must become a lived reality.” —Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UN Women
Monthly Yoga is Back!
Friday, March 8 @ 12 in the Greenheart Center! Come and unwind for 30 minutes with our in-house Yoga Guru, Andrea Dennis.
Greenheart Transforms: Envisioneers
Thursday, April 9, 7–9:30pm
5 SPEAKERS | 10 MINUTE TALKS | 75 TICKETS | 1 CHICAGO MOVEMENT
For tickets and more information visit: http://www.greenhearttransforms.org/event/envisioneers-event
Greenheart Launch Party
Friday, May 3
Open Bar, Staff tickets are free! Invite your friends and family! 4 guests per staff person.