On Thursday, November 8, 2012, the first Water: Take 1 Online Short Film
Contest Awards Presentation and Party was hosted by Brooks Institute of
Photography on one of the sound stages at their Ventura Campus.
SustainableVentura.TV'sMaryann Ridini Spencer covered the event
attended by Ventura Mayor Mike Tracy and Ventura City Councilmembers
Christy Weir and Neal Andrews. Those present enjoyed refreshments and
mixed and mingled before watching a special video presentation of
finalist and winning films. Also present were local contest winners and
representatives from Patagonia, Limoneira, Ventura Water and iThentic,
all contest sponsors.
Over 125 people attended the free ceremony, open the public with an RSVP.
On Thursday, October 25, 2012 from 4:30-7:30pm, The Ventura Chamber of Commercepresented the "Haunting at the Harbor" Business Expo at the Four Points Sheraton on Schooner Drive in the Ventura Harbor.
The event featured over 60 local businesses showcased in tabletop
exhibits, food vendors, a silent auction and raffles and prizes. The "Sustainable Ventura" TV Series was on hand to talk to attendees.
"Sustainable Ventura," hosted by Maryann Ridini Spencer and Ray Olson,
airs on Caps-TV VTV's Channel 15, Thursdays at 8:30pm. It rebroadcasts
Monday-Thursday and Saturdays at 9:00am, Sundays at 8:30pm and every
other Wednesday at 8:30pm.
"Green Drinks" is a term known in the environmental world as a fun,
meet up for like-minded business professionals in relaxing, celebratory
settings where they can network, exchange ideas and forge valuable
known in international environmental circles, Green Drinks is a network
of unstructured meet-ups where environmental professionals and
locals get together in a relaxing setting to network, exchange
and forge valuable relationships. At last count, Green Drinks
are hosted in over 600 cities worldwide.
mixture of attendees at Green Drinks events usually include
in the areas of: general business, academia, government,
home décor, construction and other fields.
On Wednesday, August 1, The Ventura Chamber of Commerce's
Green Task Force(GTF)
organized this year's first Ventura-based Green
Drinks event at
EcoLogic Life, downtown's designer showroom for
decoration products. The event was a smashing success
with over 50
attendees. Tutti's on Main provided the delicious food.
Alquimia Tequila provided the green drinks, made from organic agave, no food
LtoR: Diane de Mailly and Courtney Lindberg, Green Task Force Co-Chairs
"Green Drinks has been around for a long time," said Diane de Mailly,
President, DDM Metering Systems and GTF Co-Chair. "Recently, the
GTF was asked to step in and organize these events in Ventura. We know
they'll be a big success moving forward because Ventura is such an
amazing community dedicated to the environment. We plan to make
Green Drinks a quarterly event."
the GTF strives to do," added Courtney Lindberg, Environment
with the City of Ventura's Environmental Sustainability
GTF Co-Chair, "is to promote green business development.
We bring local
businesses together and educate them about sustainable
covering such topics as waste recycling, energy, water
pollution prevention and staff education. We highlight successes and
learn from our mistakes so that we can grow as a community with
business practices part of our every day consciousness."
Green Task Force LtoR: Courtney Lindberg (Environmental
Specialist, City of Ventura's Environmental Sustainability Division and
Green Task Force Co-Chair), Janis Shinkawa (Veterinarian, Buena Animal
Hospital), Diane de Mailly (President DDM Metering Systems and Green
Task Force Co-Chair), Kirsten Davis (AdvoCare) and James Davis
you had to paint Ventura one color, it would probably be blue,
color of our ocean. If you added another color, it would be
Rick Cole, City Manager, City of Ventura. "This is a
community and environmentally-oriented to its core.
We all pay attention
to the motto 'Think globally, act locally.'
Whether it be on a global
scale, or a local scale, waste costs money
and pollutes the planet. It's
also something we don't want to pass
onto the next generation."
addition to Green Drinks, the GTF organizes a series of quarterly
Practices Workshops" where local businesses share their
green ideas and
practices with others in the community. To date,
there have been
workshops at Red Brick Pizza focusing on sustainable
practices and the
YMCA focusing on lighting retrofits.
The Jeffrey Foundation(TheJeffreyFoundation.com), a non-profit Child Care/Resource Center offering educational services, childcare and counseling for special needs children, was founded by Alyce Morris Winston in 1972.
Over the past 40 years, the Foundation, which strives to improve the quality of life for special needs children (ages 18 months through 18 years), serves children with such diseases as muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, Down's syndrome and autism.Other children enrolled in their programs have a variety of physical impediments or are victims of abuse, neglect or in utero drug exposure.
At the Foundation, children and families are served through a variety of community-based therapeutic, recreational, educational and social programs including childcare, preschool, K-12 educational programming, speech therapy, occupational therapy, life skills, parenting education, after-school activities and social events.
While the Foundation serves the greater Los Angeles area, Morris Winston is also involved in a national and international outreach program, Special Child USA.Via Special Child, Morris Winston consults with other cities, states and even countries that are interested in developing similar childcare and resource centers.
"There are over 30,000 disabled youth in Los Angeles County that are in need of special interventions," said Morris Winston."Our Foundation is the only one of its kind in LA and we only have a capacity of only 124 children per day, and 40 families per month.So the need is great -- not just in Los Angeles, but everywhere."
Morris Winston, whose adopted son Jeffrey, was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy when he was two, abandoned her career as a Max Factor model and began the Foundation after discovering that there was not enough appropriate child care, resources or support for families with special needs children.What began in her living room is now housed in two professional buildings on West Washington Boulevard in Los Angeles.
"Most of The Jeffrey Foundation's students are referred by Child Protective Services or a Regional Center," said Morris Winston."Many of the families are headed by single mothers with multiple children.In the Foundation's Parent Training program, over 85% of the children are in foster care and 10% are living with a parent who has lost custody at least once due to child abuse, neglect, maltreatment or abandonment."
The emphasis of the classes and programs, which are inclusive, aim to build core competencies such as cognitive skill building, language development, gross and fine motor skills and social and emotional development, as well as provide health and nutrition education.
"We also strive to enrich our student's lives by giving them the opportunity to enjoy some recreation and special events.We encourage them to learn and appreciate art, music and nature.Our mission is to improve the quality of every aspect of their live as well as serve as a support for their families," said Morris Winston.
The current economic climate, and cuts in federal and state funding, are severely impacting the Foundation's ability to keep some of their programs alive.To offset some of the negative impact, Morris Winston recently came up with the creative idea of "Project 40" in honor of the Foundation's 40 years.
Project 40 will be a series of 40 events and happenings to fight the economic turndown.Last night, one of the Foundation's friends, Lladro Boutique on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, hosted a kickoff reception and launch of the YES! Network (Executives for Special Needs Children and their Families).The YES! group will spearhead many of the Project 40 programs which will take place in Southern California as well as nationally.
Morris Winston hopes that through the YES! Network, different members of the business community will also become engaged to network, cross promote, as well as lend their expertise and support in developing new programs and fundraisers to sponsor and boost the Foundation's needed programs.
"We support the community, and we need assistance from those in the community and beyond," said Morris Winston.It does take a village and we want to be around for the next 40 years!"
To find out more about The Jeffrey Foundation, Project 40 and the YES! Network, visit: