Spreading the word to save lives around the world

Through social media and targeted online listings, the Children's Prize has reached people in 109 different countries with our offer to save lives. That figure is as of this morning. It's a great start to our efforts to get the word out! However, penetration into the majority of the areas is very light, with only a handful of visitors to our website in many of the countries that are scoring lowest on the UN Human Development Index.


Stories with Heart: A Commitment to Child Survival

red heart laceThe Children's Prize recently hosted via a G+ Hangout Stories with Heart: A Commitment to Child Survivalwith guests Jacqueline Cutts from Safe Mothers Safe Babies (SAFE) and Rachel Zaslow from Mother Health International (MHI). These two ladies shared heartfelt experiences from their time in Uganda which inspired their journey to pursue their current work in maternal and child health. Through compelling stories, Mrs. Cutts and Ms. Zaslow offer an insider's perspective of the complex issues involved for those receiving interventions, those directly providing the interventions and also the role of foreign aid in this process. "We really need to be transparent about the work that we’re doing and about the potential impact for harm when you come into another community," states Rachel Zaslow.

The Stories with Heart video uncovers the challenges faced when working in maternal and child health and how these two organizations are committed to mother and child survival through a community and holistic approach to care. "Rather than assuming that as a public health professional that I know what the community needs, I want to go into that community and I want to really understand and help from their perspective, within the local context," says Jacquie Cutts. The examples shared by our guests not only raise awareness of the issue at hand but also allow us to more critically analyze how solutions to the issue are complex and sometimes carry unintended consequences. Both organizations have implemented innovative solutions that consider cultural norms and community limitations in order to best serve the people that they are working with. An excellent example is Mother Health International's Heart Strings to monitor fetal heart rates throughout pregnancy and delivery making the difference between an infant who lives and an infant who dies.

As the conversation focused on technology, Dr. Caplow posed thought-provoking questions for our guests. Given that more accessible technologies like cell phones and video represent the human revolution of our lives, our guests provided specific insight on this point. "The collaborative process is absolutely technologically dependent in some ways," says Jacquie Cutts and describes how SAFE provided a Ugandan community with cameras and used photography to help discuss maternal and child health from their perspective to better understand what was working and what wasn't. Mother Health International is also witnessing the impact of technology in the communities they serve, "cell phones are loaded with credit to call the ambulance and have women be transported to a clinic and receive immediate care. The people in the community know who has the phone that is loaded with credit."

It was interesting that both donor and recipients shared their frustrations with the current philanthropic model. Our guests discussed how being able to connect with the donor is critical and that recipients of aid should not be afraid to make mistakes. After all, "making mistakes with the community is where you create better outcomes", points Rachel Zaslow. As Dr. Caplow summarizes, "the more there’s a two-way communication in place [between the donor and the recipient], the more fine tuned and sensitive that aid assistance can be."



14 Ways to Show Love to your Child

Valentine's Day  is a great opportunity to express, share, celebrate and show LOVE that we feel for those that touch our lives, especially our children. This is why the American Academy of Pediatrics recently published 14 Ways to Show Love for Your Child This Valentine's Day and Every Day.

Here are some quick tips (or just reminders!) to show your child some love:

happy mom child

  1. Use plenty of positive words and avoid sarcasm around your child. Children have a difficult time understanding sarcasm.
  2. Respond promptly and lovingly to your child. Make sure that you make yourself available even if the timing isn't convenient for you.
  3. Be a good example at home and in public - use words like "I'm sorry," "please," and "thank you." This suggestion reminds me of the following anonymous quote I read, "children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate."
  4. Be affectionate to your child when (s)he is in a bad mood. Let them calm down and feel better before you try to talk with them about their feelings.
  5. It is very important to implement rewards and restrictions with children. These are appropriate disciplining methods that encourages your child to respect rules.
  6. Spend quality time to your child, and do something that (s)he enjoys doing.
  7. Dedicate family time on a regular basis and take turns on which family member chooses the activity for the entire family to share.
  8. Having pets in the home offer children constant companionship and it enhances their attitude in general.
  9. Encourage good food choices for your child and involve them in the food process. This will familiarize your child with food choices, planning meals, shopping for different ingredients, preparing the table and serving. Plus remember: Good food, good conversations.
  10. As your child grows, you should be there to help refine their abilities and skills. Children need encouragement and instructions as they're developing. The AAP recommend that you avoid TV in the first two years and start reading to your child at six months.
  11. Implement regular preventive health care visits for your child. A child's health depends on the care and guidance that are provided during their early years - provide nutritious food, encourage exercise, etc.
  12. Help your child develop positive relationships with friends, siblings and members of the community.
  13. One of the most important gifts that you can give your child is the gift of a healthy self-esteem. Provide steady support and encouragement so that (s)he can discover his/her strengths. A child needs for you to believe in them - to give them love, your time and praise their accomplishments.
  14. And remember to say "I love you" to children of all ages!


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Google+ Hangout On Air: Stories with Heart

On Feb. 14, 2013 at 2pm, the Children's Prize will host Stories with Heart: A Commitment to Child Survival during a live broadcast via Google+ Hangout On Air.

The Children's Prize together with Rachel Zaslow (Mother Health International), Jacqueline Cutts (Safe Mothers Safe Babies) and Lorna Owens (Footprints Foundation) will share a candid dialogue about their commitment to child survival through their work.

The information for the guests speakers and their respective organizations is as follows:

Rachel Zaslow, Mother Health International

Rachel Zaslow is the Executive Director for Mother Health International, which is an NGO supporting high volume midwifery model of care centers in Uganda and Haiti. She co-founded  Earth Birth: International Women’s Health Collective to promote local practice, the sharing of skills across culture and protect the role of the traditional midwife. Rachel also holds a masters in Performance Studies and is a candidate for a PhD in Women’s and Gender Studies. She teaches courses in Women’s Health and International Development, War and Trauma, as well as the intersections between Narrative and Medicine.

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Website: http://www.motherhealthinternational.org/index.html

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mother-Health-International/127150717329272

Google+ https://plus.google.com/108026719595567233519/posts

Jacqueline CuttsSafe Mothers Safe Babies 

Jacquie Cutts is the Founding President and CEO of Safe Mothers, Safe Babies (SAFE), a nonprofit organization working to improve maternal and child health (MCH) in rural Uganda through community-based methods. She graduated in 2009 from Vassar College with a BA and Departmental Honors in Political Science, which she received for writing a 100-page thesis researching the relationship between failing development projects and the non-participatory process of their design in international reproductive and maternal healthcare. It was this research that resulted in the founding of Safe Mothers, Safe Babies and shaped its methodology of “participatory development,” in which target populations are engaged as true partners in the defining, identification, and solving of urgent health and development problems affecting MCH populations. Jacquie’s expertise includes integrated approaches to the improvement of MCH—with a focus on triangulated methods that simultaneously address health systems and infrastructure, infectious disease, and citizen demand for services—and the use of solar, information, and communication technologies to accelerate impact.

safe mothers safe babies logo



Website: http://www.safemotherssafebabies.org/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/SafeMothersSafeBabies

Twitter https://twitter.com/safemothers

Google+ https://plus.google.com/u/0/109982611383195043855/posts

Lorna Owens, Footprints Foundation

Lorna Owens is an Attorney, Legal Commentator Nancy Grace Show HLN AND TRU TV IN SESSION,Gender Expert,International Speaker,Executive/ Life Coach and Author who travels the World teaching the Art and Science of Success to Women’s Groups and organizations. She has appeared on NBC, TBN and TV in Jamaica, Cayman Island and Bermuda. The Miami Herald called her a Pioneer and the Mother of Reinvention; Advance for Nurses says she wows her Audiences. Lorna Owens is a Former Registered Nurse as well as a Midwife. Her AMAZING New Book EVERYDAY GRACE EVERY MIRACLE set in Jamaica tells life changing stories from men and women around the world. Her third book a legal thriller THE LADY LAWYER will be out next year.

Footprints Foundation logo



Website: http://footprints-foundation.org/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lorna.owens1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Lornaowens

8 Ways to Share your Love for Kids #Hearts4Children

Children's Prize heart logo valentine's day

#Hearts4Children Children's Prize Valentines Day

Our #Hearts4Children is inspired by Valentine's Day, and is a way to celebrate love & share from the heart. This is a week-long celebration organized by The Children’s Prize. The goal is to raise awareness of the nearly 7 million children around the world who are not here today to celebrate LOVE and LIFE in 2013.

You can also be a part of the campaign by becoming an ‘Agent of Love.’ Take a moment this week to cherish and celebrate all the little people that deeply touch our lives everyday! Join us, and remember that at some point you were a little person too.

Show and share your love:

1)     It’s easy! Simply be original & creative, tell us why you have #Hearts4Children.

2)     How will you celebrate love for children this Valentine’s Day? Share your story & pictures. Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook and Google+

3)     Now is the time to call your friends to action! Help raise awareness for a good cause and "Share" by spreading the love #Hearts4Children

For any additional information, please contact info@childrensprize.org

Children's Prize girl Valentine's red heart balloonThanks for getting involved with the ‘Hearts4Children’ Campaign. Here are 8 Ways to help get you started:

  1. Take heart pictures all over the world and share them #Hearts4Children
  2. Do you love children?  Then post how you express this love for Valentine's Day#Hearts4Children
  3. Do you have a memorable quote, moment or saying by a child, share it with us! #Hearts4Children
  4. Did your child make you a Valentine’s gift at school? Take a picture & post it! #Hearts4Children
  5. What sweet candy will your child enjoy on this Valentine’s Day #Hearts4Children
  6. What’s the best song moment you've enjoyed with a child #Hearts4Children
  7. In memory of a child, express & share your love #Hearts4Children
  8. Join us, and get creative in how you show your #Hearts4Children

This Kid is Motivating!

Have you seen this video by Kid President? Here, have a look:


A Pep Talk by Kid President is a light-hearted, wise and witty reflection on life. It somehow seems more impacting to have a child give the world a pep talk, doesn’t it? With highly enthusiastic appeal, Kid President challenges us all to do something meaningful and make the world better for each other because “we were made to be awesome.” Being awesome could be simple and refer to an everyday kind gesture or to more spectacular ideas that transform the world for the best.

Two roads diverged in the woods and I took the road less traveled. In the context of the Kid President video, Robert Frost’s poem reminded me of our work with the Children’s Prize. In the world of philanthropy, the Children’s Prize offers an alternative to donors and an opportunity to expand philanthropy to awesomeness (as stated by Kid President!). No, we're not asking for donations. Instead, we're asking for the best solution anywhere in the world! The Children's Prize represents a model that empowers donors to act more directly and deliberately about  causes that they are passionate about.

Sure, the world is full of challenges and it is exactly for this reason that we need different and creative ways to energize the philanthropic base. The more charitable choices available to donors and people in general, perhaps the easier it may be to make more  awesome contributions as individuals.

After all, Kid President asks us all: how would you make the world awesome?


Prizes Throughout Human History

children's prize contest winner medalThroughout human history, prizes have been used as incentives for past achievement recognition and for future motivation to improve outcomes and competitive efforts. Prizes offer a simple and effective way to invite people and organizations to offer solutions to the problems around us and fund the best one. These are concepts that we are familiar with through the Nobel Prize, the X Prize and the Hilton Humanitarian Prize. These are all prizes that range in audience and focus. The Children's Prize is structured as a peer-to-peer contest that, to a large extent, bypasses the need for a large charitable organization to act as an intermediary between the donor and his or her goal.

Today's tech-mediated world seems to facilitate prizes. This is the idea behind the Children's Prize being an online, global contest. In a world connected by the Internet and social media, a truly global conversation is beginning to take place. With today’s socially-enabled communication networks, organizations are no longer the only players effecting social change. Individuals now have the tools to more actively engage in solving social problems directly. The relationships created with these tools are igniting change in the world every day.

Interestingly, The New York Times published an article by Paul Sullivan indicating that "a report released last year by the consultant McKinsey & Company, the dollar amount for prizes over $100,000 has tripled in the last decade to $375 million a year. There has also been a shift from prizes that recognized past accomplishments to what Mc Kinsey calls 'inducement-style prizes' that focus on achieving a specific, future goal.'"

The Children's Prize is a simple, global contest idea that is about money (i.e. philanthropy), children and saving lives. Below is our animation video detailing the Children's Prize concept: