Zyaldar

This week we are spotlighting Zyaldar 

Working in the industry for over 2 years now, I have not come across a more dedicated, caring, and well rounded individual as Todd.  He has raised over $7000 dollars since he has started his Extra Life campaign, and is one of the top earners of bees on the swarm network.  I talked with Todd cough... (Zyaldar) about writing a spotlight.  Of course he was super excited to contribute.  Here are some of his responses to questions I asked. 

There is a bonus video that gives you some insight to what he is all about at the end too!  Share this article and help spread the hype of Extra Life United 2018.

Where does your name Zyaldar come from?

There's actually a long story behind my name. It all started when I was about in 2nd grade, probably about 8 or 9 (I honestly don't know how old.) I used to go to a summer camp where I had a really good friend that would tell me all about these amazing games. One game in particular I wanted so bad called Asheron's Call (It's an MMORPG like Ever Quest, which I believe came out before EQ did.) I never heard of a game where you can play online with other people before so naturally I wanted it! Sadly my parents wouldn't allow me to get this game because we had dial-up internet and they always needed the phone to not be tied up. I was so hopeful back then that my friend told me to come up with a username. It took me about a week but I finally came up with Slayer!

Now back then I was an ignorant kid and I thought that name belonged to me. Little did I know it was actually a popular name. I never got the game but I kept the name with me growing up and using it with everything. Unfortunately I had to add numbers to it so I added my favorite number 176 (coincidentally that was also the number for Cartoon Network). Everywhere I went I was either Slayer or Slayer176. As I got older and played more games online I naturally met more and more people. Usually when they saw my name they would say, "Slayer? You mean like the band?" or "One of my favorite animes is The Slayers too!" 

I got so irritated with that... until one day in high school I decided to change my online name. During my high school years I was big into Role Playing online with friends. So much so that I even created a couple characters with well thought out back stories. At that time I looked at my name, Slayer, and wanted something more original to me. I played around with some letters and BOOM! Zyaldar was created! Since then I have been Zyaldar ever since on everything! 

What games do you play?
I like to consider myself a variety gamer/streamer. I don't just play a specific game or even lean towards a specific platform. I am a console gamer as well as a PC gamer. I play anything from RPGs (My favorite), platformers, FPS, puzzle, adventure, etc... There's barely anything that I will not be willing to give a chance.

What is the #100DaysOfGaming Challenge?
The 100 Days Of Gaming challenge was created by a fellow Extra Life member, HeroByClicking. In this challenge you play games for 100 days and if possible play a different game every day. Typically pick games that you have never tried before or played in several years. The point of this challenge is to help promote and bring about curiosity about Extra Life. The challenge typically starts 100 days before the big game day but other Extra Lifers have started sooner then that. The important thing is to bring about awareness to Extra Life. 

Is this rewarding for you?

The biggest rewarding experience to me is being able to do what I love, playing games, and showing the world that it can be used as a positive influence. A lot of people still think gaming is a waste of time but I want to show them that there are so many benefits from gaming. Not only can we use them to help raise money for our children’s hospitals but they help develop skills and ways of thinking that other means cannot provide.

Don't just watch, join in

Watch Zyaldar's twitchtv live by tapping the logo above.

What is twitch you may ask?

Twitch is a community where millions of people and thousands of interests collide in a beautiful explosion of video games, pop culture, and conversation. With chat built into every stream, you don’t just watch on Twitch, you’re a part of the show. From classic tv show marathons to esports tournaments, if you can imagine it, it’s probably live on Twitch right now.

He is also very active on Twitter, and commands a large following and influnces many people to do good!  Follow him here: Zyaldar's Twitter

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Want to be part of the swarm family?

It's free and sign up takes 30 seconds!

Click below

Watch his interview below

Thanks everyone

~Logan

Bee The Swarm Spotlight

Logan Duginske
College tuition, you have alternatives...
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Well, Kinda!

So is crowdfunding for college a thing?

crowd·fund·ing

ˈkroudˌfəndiNG/

noun

  1. the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet.

    "musicians, filmmakers, and artists have successfully raised funds and fostered awareness through crowdfunding"

Why not!?

I think back to the point of my life when I was so lucky to have an opportunity to be pushed to proceed to college.   Free Application for Federal Student Aid or (FAFSA).. Faffsaa? was a word thrown around in my household. Loans? Unsubsidized vs subsidizedTrust? Education? College? Money? Savings

This week a new campaign was started and it's objective is to raise money for college tuition.

I feel lucky to be able to write this article and to have gone to college.  I am appreciative of this and there isn't a day that goes by that I am not intrinsically reminded of this.  Genuine connection, tolerance, respect, love, and human connection are the covenants/morals that I strive to bind myself to. 

As I write this I double up in my current career, during the day I am a Speech-Language Pathologist, and at night I am everything Bee The Swarm.  During my daily interactions with patients as a clinician I am grateful to be able to problem solve and work with patients to help construct their live's back to what they previously were like.

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This picture brings me to my roots of when I was an early clinician.

Naive, learning, exploring, open, and ultimately having and building potential... Potential to help change lives. From that picture, to-now, I think about how much I didn't know then and know I am very lucky to have the ability to directly work with patients to improve their lives. 

What sparked me to discuss this is that recently we had a new campaign start on the swarm feed.  Brad, is asking to have some Bee's donated to help out with his college funding.  This is a first of it's kind on the swarm feed.  The amazing thing about the swarm/bee economy is that it is a free market and the users are the ones who determine what gets funded and what doesn't.

I played the other night and ended up donating a significant amount of bee's to his campaign, and as I look at his campaign this morning, he has reached the first milestone of 50 dollars!

 

Brad,  I hope the goal of funding college is met.  Go out and thrive! 

Not a member yet?

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Why not!? 

Join the swarm by clicking below.

Bee The Swarm Spotlight

 

 

Logan DuginskeComment
Chris Noiles aka kurisu007 - twitchtv

 

What Happens when you combine compentive gamers and helping kids?

The short answer is, people doing a bunch of crazy stuff to help in anyway they can to make a difference.  Read more to see how Chris is helping the Children's Miracle Network.
 

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Chris Noiles is an active member of the BeeTheSwarm community and has an interesting way he likes to share his gaming experiences.  This year he reached his milestone of 500 dollars, and when he did, he committed to play games in costume for 24 hours.  Some of those games during that time where games on the Bee The Swarm network.

During his time playing games, he live streamed the entire event on his twitchtv channel.  Haven't heard of it? It's pretty cool.

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twitchtv is a community where you don't just watch, you join in.

Twitch is a place where millions of people and thousands of interests collide in a beautiful explosion of video games, pop culture, and conversation. With chat built into every stream, you don’t just watch on Twitch, you’re a part of the show. From classic tv show marathons to esports tournaments, if you can imagine it, it’s probably live on Twitch right now.  Chris on one of these twitch streamers and you can watch his stream live here: https://www.twitch.tv/kurisu007

So how is Chris doing on the swarm feed?

As of today, he currently has raised 180 dollars on his swarm campaign. 

That's cold hard cash that is going directly to children who need it the most.  Below is one of the videos that inspired me to join the swarm.  

"The ancestor of every action is a thought"

Not a member yet?

Sign up takes 30 seconds and it is always free. 

Why not!? 

Join the swarm by clicking below.

Thank for reading, 

Have a great day!  

~ Logan

 

 

 

 

 

Logan Duginske
Relief for Kabul
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"Brothers and sisters this is a picture taken today by my cousin not google. A lot of you may not believe the reason behind this fund raising. I will upload videos shortly for you to see for yourself. Please be selfless and think of the people in this month of giving back."

- Posted by Maftuna Mohammad on her https://www.facebook.com/relief4Kabul/

This week I am covering a campaign that recently popped up on the swarm feed, it's Relief for Kabul, being spearheaded by an amazingly ambitious member of the swarm, Maftuna.

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Maftuna will be traveling to Afghanistan in 2 weeks to help make even more of an impact.  Right now on the swarm feed she has passed the first milestone and is earning more support through bee donations by the hour.  

What is Relief for Kabul about and who's behind it?

I'm a 19-year-old student in City Tech College (NYC). I'm trying to raise money for the victims of war in Kabul, Afghanistan. The money that gets collected determines if a child will be able to eat tomorrow. I'm not saying this to imply that the country consists of hungry people that would like to be fed, I'm saying this because 3-year olds sleep on concrete cold streets mother and fatherless with only the passing people to rely on for survival (Look up "Relief for Kabul" on fb for photos I posted). 

Allhamdullilah the people who are reading this are most likely not in this situation. Brother's and sister's we need to share our wealth. So many people are rich but what is wealth when you are not rich in the heart? Afghanistan is already an extremely economically unstable country and the daily suicide bombings worsen the conditions of people living there. 

Once donations are raised inshallah, I will be withdrawing the funds personally and send the money to a victim (Haseeb Qaderi) that I have contact with who lives in Kabul through money gram and he will distribute the money directly to the people who need it most. He will record the money and food being distributed and I'll post photos and videos of how much this donation brought help through my Facebook page (Relief for Kabul) so stay updated by following my fb page. Please view the Relief for Kabul video which features one of the victims that we are raising the money for. From the video you can see how badly your donations are needed, even one dollar donated can mean that a child doesn't have to sleep hungry. 

Showing sympathy isn't enough to help the poor. This is why I'm doing this. To all my Muslim brothers and sisters, this is your opportunity to give back in this month of Ramadan and practice the teachings of the Quran and Prophet Muhammad SAW. Jazakallahu Khairan.

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During this spotlight, I reached out to Maftuna here is our question and answer exchange.  Below are her responses to some of my questions.

Q & A

Q: It's interesting to know a little bit about the people behind the campaign so my first question would be tell me a little bit about yourself and things that you enjoy doing for hobbies? In a short response what would you say your campaign supports and how much of an impact have you had thus far using beetheswarm but then also outside of the swarm (I know you are very involved and doing many great things, time to brag here :)!)

 

A: Hi. Thank you that’s great and appreciated. 

I’m a 19 year old student in NYC. The crises in Syria, Palestine, Yemen and All parts of the world made me realize how much humanitarian aid is needed. This is when I decided to focus my studies in International affairs and dedicate my career to helping refugees, and war victims over seas. I enjoy writing poetry and watching informative movies as my hobby. My campaign is about me providing the most help I could during my one month stay in Kabul, Afghanistan. My campaign supports the welfare of orphans and war victims of Kabul and provides essential supplies like food and clothing for the children to get through the winter. Beetheswarm has been helpful in terms of engaging my friends to support my campaign but also do it in a fun way. I’ve reached 71% of the 100% goal through inviting friends and playing the addictive  bugs crush game.

 

Q: How many times a day do you pick up your phone?

 

A: Aside from the game, I try to raise money by promoting my campaign in my social networks and get it to reach as many people as possible to encourage donating.  My biggest pet peeve is chewing loudly and inconsiderately 🤨. I pick up my phone roughly 848375 times a day. I use it to check Instagram posts, messenger, text messsages, Snapchat.. and soo on!  I play bee the swarm game because I love the concept of it and how it allows you to have fun while putting your time into good use.

 

A: Describe what a "day in your shoes" would look like.

 

Q: A day in my shoes consists of sleeping at 4 a.m, waking up at 12, checking my phone, responding to messages, and then figuring out how to not waste a day and do something productive. This varies depending on if during college semester or my break.

Check out her campaign here (https://campaign.beetheswarm.com/campaign/343) to start donating bees right now.  

Not  a member?

Sign up takes 30 seconds, it's always free, and you can get started right now! 

Click Below

Bee The Swarm Spotlight

 

 

 

 

 

Logan Duginske
Jamie Sherman & Children's Hospital Colorado - Extra Life Team Up

Using Bee The Swarm's strategic gaming platform... he is raising cash for his Extra Life team!

What is extra life you might ask? 

Extra Life unites thousands of gamers around the world to play games in support of their local Children's Miracle Network Hospital. Since its inception in 2008, Extra Life has raised more than $40 million for sick and injured kids. 
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Jamie has been representing Children's Hospital Colorado two years in a row at the national gaming conference that unites thousands of players around the world in a 24-hour fundraising and gaming marathon to support Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.  

Jamie Sherman is the Extra life Denver Guild president

This is his VLOG from Extra Life United 2017 - If you like this video, be sure to subscribe to his Youtube channel.

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1 of Many

Teams from all over North America in 2018 are planning on raising even more money...

Extra Life players are starting to use Bee The Swarm's free mobile games to #gameforgood and do it #ForTheKids

Jamie has decided to continue to raise even more money for his campiagn and diversify his fundraising strategy and use Bee The Swarm's social network to help earn money for his Extra-Life campaign.

He has raised over 50 dollars very quickly without having to ask anyone to pull out a credit card, and he has done this by just using mobile games that are free to play and earning bees while playing to earn cold hard ca$h. 

His BTS campaign is located here: https://campaign.beetheswarm.com/campaign/260


Not  a member?

Sign up takes 30 seconds, it's always free, and you can get started right now! 

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Interested in Extra Life?

Learn more here: www.Extra-Life.org

Logan Duginske
Morgan at 16 years old is making an impact.

Venezuela a place with the largest oil reserves in the world...

You would think issues like hunger would be a thing of the past...

They are now seeing more starving children and infants than ever.
 

Upon review this week of the swarm feed, I came across Morgan Skye's campaign...

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Pictures of Kleiver’s coffin begin carried to her funeral procession.

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Morgan

is deciding to make a difference

Her new campaign was posted up on Thursday and has already passed the first landmark of $50 and on it's way to hitting the second.  

Here is her first post.

* From BTS social network My name is Morgan, I am 16. I have started the Saving the Starving campaign to raise money and bring awareness to the devastating hunger, and starvation killing children in Venezuela. The crisis has been going on the last few years due to the economy collapsing, but the government has ignored, and even tried to cover up the deaths of thousand of children due to malnutrition. It is time for people to know the truth, and for these families to receive the help they need! So please join me in my campaign and help stop hunger in Venezuela.

* From BTS social network

My name is Morgan, I am 16. I have started the Saving the Starving campaign to raise money and bring awareness to the devastating hunger, and starvation killing children in Venezuela. The crisis has been going on the last few years due to the economy collapsing, but the government has ignored, and even tried to cover up the deaths of thousand of children due to malnutrition. It is time for people to know the truth, and for these families to receive the help they need! So please join me in my campaign and help stop hunger in Venezuela.

So gaming for good is a real thing. We are beginning to understand that as group we have can make a difference to positively can change the world. This is being done by just picking up your phone and playing games.

A recent study looks at phone usage. Those between the ages of 18 and 24 look at their phones most often, with an average of 74 checks per day. Americans in the 25-34 age bracket look at their devices 50 times per day, and those between 35 and 44 do so 35 times each day. If you look at your phone this much, and if you spent just 10 minutes of that time playing games how much of a difference could you make? 

Answer this... if you could be using your phone to do something that can positively change lives? Would you start today?

Mobile games to crowdfund campaigns and raise money is the wave of the future, or at least we think it is.  Join us in our fight.  

We at www.BeeTheSwarm.com provide you with the first step to helping real people, making a difference, one bee at a time.  Play games, do good, and have fun while doing it.  Morgan's campaign is up and earning bees by the second.  Be part of the swarm.

Thanks Morgan!

 

 

Logan Duginske
Food For Orphans, a crowdfunding campaign using mobile games to feed starving children.
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Making A Difference One Meal at a Time

 

Crowdfunding using

mobile games

 

Elizabeth Grant - Creator of Food For Orphans campaign on the BeeTheSwarm social network

Elizabeth Grant - Creator of Food For Orphans campaign on the BeeTheSwarm social network

This week I'm going to be covering the Food for Orphans campaign that's running on the Bee The Swarm social network. It is truly rewarding to come across a campaign that is being run by someone with intense passion and motivation to positively impact lives when reaching out to campaign creators. I think amongst all the negativity in the modern world it is interesting that there are still positive people out there trying to make a difference. Elizabeth Grant is one of those people. I had the opportunity to discuss her current campaign!

Foodfororphans.org serves  Haiti, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Peru, Ethiopia and are contining to expand day to day. They provide a meal that matters, each meal brings hope and life to orphans in need. It helps ensure a brighter tomorrow for millions. We work year-round.

Hunger doesn't take a break and neither do we. 

Spotlight - Q & A With Elizabeth

Q: It's interesting to know a little bit about the people behind the campaign so my first question would be tell me a little bit about yourself and things that you enjoy doing for hobbies?

A: Helping people is my desire, my calling and my hobby. I have 1 child, a son, and I am very happily married. We struggle financially ourselves but we always manage to have what we need. To walk a day in my shoes is: I am always am trying to find a way to earn money for my family as well as help these children. My campaign supports over 700 orphans in Uganda. Bee The Swarm has made it possible to help a lot more than I would be able to.

Q: If you could do one thing right now what would you do.

A: Get more people to get involved with donating money.

 

A personalized message and picture sent from the children directly benefited from her hard work.

A personalized message and picture sent from the children directly benefited from her hard work.

How is her campaign doing?

Currently Elizabeth has reached the third milestone, and is on the way to the forth which is $180.  All from just playing games on your phone!

It is one of the fastest earning campaigns currently on our social network.

Want to help?

If you want to help go to BeeTheSwarm.com and download for free right now to start helping/gathering bees today!

December 20th 2017

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About the Author

Logan Duginske is the outreach coordinator and user of the Bee The Swarm social network. He is passionate about working with people that want to make a difference in mobile gaming. He also is interested in Extra life, outreach coordinator and and avid user on the Bee The Swarm social network. He is passionate about working with people that want to make a difference in the world by using crowdfunding and mobile gaming.

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Malawiki
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There are thousands of new game apps out there. But how many also help support meaningful change? Bee the Swarm is a special case: by using this app, you can help get the word out about another new app dedicated to helping the people of Malawi, one of the poorest nations in Africa. This new app, Malawiki, will provide Malawians with local information they need to improve their health and education services. They will be able to use their smart phones for positive social change.

In Malawi, nearly ¾ of the population lives on $1.25 a day. Both children and adults suffer from frequent bouts of malaria. Teachers in Malawi can have classes of over 200 students and most students do not finish high school. It is hard for Malawians to act to change things. They do not have the information to know whether things in their community are getting better or worse. They don’t know what’s working in other parts of Malawi that might improve health and education in their communities. Over 98% of Malawians do not have computer access. Even if they do, health and education data for Malawi is difficult to find . However, many Malawians have smart phones to access the internet, which is why Malawiki is so important. We at the Youth Policy Institute (YPI) have developed this app so that anyone in Malawi with a phone can start making plans for real change. For the first time, Malawians will be able to take hold of their future and start charting a course for better schools and improved health services.

Malawiki will provide easy, free access to hundreds of local-level data points relevant to Malawians. On their smart-phones, Malawian will be able to easily find data of critical importance to their community, such as the percent of children in their area with malaria who get appropriate treatment promptly, the percent of pregnant women receiving necessary antenatal services, local vaccination, literacy, graduation rates, and so on. Users will be able to see trends in their community and will also be able to compare them to trends in other areas. Data specialists at YPI will work to ensure that all information posted is valid, reliable, and as timely as possible. As data are added to Malawiki over time, Malawi citizens will be able to see if they are achieving their goals.

Malawiki will also help bring program evaluation to Malawians. Although there are thousands of programs in the country trying to improve health and education services, practically none of them are evaluated to see how effective they really are. Malawiki will let communities see whether available services are working for the first time. It will provide free tailored data collection tools and support for rigorous analysis of evaluation data. It will also help better target foreign investment, which constitutes 37% of Malawi’s national budget, by identifying programs that work.

A woman poses for a photo while waiting for a call on her mobile phone in Yola, Nigeria on March 9 2015. In many parts of sub-Saharan Africa people are more likely to own a cell phone than any other electronic device. This could be the key to economic development in the next five years. Photo: Kathleen Caudlerwood

A woman poses for a photo while waiting for a call on her mobile phone in Yola, Nigeria on March 9 2015. In many parts of sub-Saharan Africa people are more likely to own a cell phone than any other electronic device. This could be the key to economic development in the next five years. Photo: Kathleen Caudlerwood

Malawiki is a tool to encourage Malawians to plan for positive change, to engage their communities and their government, and to work toward improved health and education outcomes. We know from research that local concerns can motivate people to act together for better social outcomes. Everyone wants better schools and health care for their families and communities. Malawiki is designed to provide Malawians the information they need to be engaged effectively. We hope that you will get engaged by using Bee the Swarm, helping us at YPI to roll out this first-of-its-kind mobile app. By using an app for change, you can help make another app for change a reality for Malawians.

Watch the Bee the Swarm Blog for more blog posts about this exciting program! Follow us on the Malawiki Facebook page, or on Twitter (@YPIMalawiki) for updates and information. Feel free to send us a message with any questions, ideas, or concerns - after all, this is a wiki!

Download ZomBees FREE:

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/zombees-bee-the-swarm/id1041708050?mt=8

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.BeeTheSwarm.ZomBees&hl=en

Download 2048 – Bee The Swarm FREE:

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/2048-bee-the-swarm/id1089506962?mt=8

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.beetheswarm.the2048game&hl=en

Canadian Feed the Children

Major factors in breaking the cycle of poverty include having a secure source of food, access to quality education and acquiring the skills and opportunity to earn an income. Canadian Feed The Children (CFTC), works to address the barriers that children and families living in poverty face every day. They work with local partners in First Nation communities across Canada, as well as internationally in Bolivia, Ethiopia, Ghana and Uganda to provide necessary supports and help individuals and communities achieve long-lasting solutions, with a focus on food security and education.

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In Canada, CFTC supports school and community programs in First Nation communities through school meal programs, nutrition education as well as school and community gardens. They provide healthy food to children who otherwise would not receive it, integrate lessons about healthy eating into the school day, as well as improve access to nutritious food by working with children and community members to develop sustainable solutions.

Canada Kids

Internationally, CFTC works with local partners to improve food security and education for children, their families and communities. Children attend safe schools with latrines, trained teachers and school food programs; parents are given opportunities through agricultural and alternative incomes to lift their families out of poverty; and communities become stronger, equitable and more food secure.

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From providing necessary meals to keep children healthy and attending school, to supporting parents to become more resilient, CFTC is working to create a world where children can thrive free from poverty.

Your contributions playing Zombees or 2048 - Bee The Swarm April 13th and 14th will go to helping children, families and communities to find a way out of poverty and into a healthier, happier, brighter future.

You can learn more about Canadian Feed The Children at www.CanadianFeedTheChildren.ca

Download ZomBees FREE:

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/zombees-bee-the-swarm/id1041708050?mt=8

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.BeeTheSwarm.ZomBees&hl=en

Download 2048 - Bee The Swarm FREE:

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/2048-bee-the-swarm/id1089506962?mt=8

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.beetheswarm.the2048game&hl=en

Two Rivers Child Advocacy Center

The mission of Two Rivers Child Advocacy Center (CAC) is to provide a timely, coordinated, multi-disciplinary response to child sexual and physical abuse. Two Rivers has been providing services for abused children in Southern Illinois since 2001, reducing the trauma that child victims endure after they disclose. Two Rivers is accredited through the National Children’s Alliance and uses the Child Advocacy Center (CAC) Model to provide a safe, child-friendly environment or children to talk about what appened, begin to deal with their abuse and ultimately heal from their emotional wounds.

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The CAC Model s designed to coordinate a multi-disciplinary pproach o the investigation and prosecution of child abuse, while eeping the child victim the priorit. The multi-disciplinary team is comprised of members from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, law enforcement, State’s Attorney’s Offices, medical personnel, mental health counselors, and CAC staff. A neutral, child-focused setting for Forensic Interviews is provided at the CAC to allow children to tell their story. Specially trained professionals conduct these investigative interviews using a child evelopmentally informed, research based model. Forensic Interviews are observed live by multi-disciplinary team members and digitally recorded at the CAC. An advocate is assigned to each child to act on behalf of their best interests. This includes helping them to understand and navigate the court process and connecting the child and non-offending family members with other community services such as specialized medical exams, counseling, social services, and Crime Victim’s Compensation. Multi-disciplinary team case review meetings are held regularly in each of the seven counties the CAC serves to share information, follow-up on child victims’ progress and monitor case status.

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Two Rivers CAC also seeks to educate the communities of Southern Illinois on the topic of child abuse through the Green Bear Prevention Program. CAC staff provides child abuse prevention education programs to school aged children, parents, professionals, community and civic organizations, PTA’s, churches, and businesses. The presentations for school aged children are age appropriate, fun, engaging, and based on child development theories as related to child learning that teach children ways to stay safe from abuse. The methods of presentation include a puppet show, storybook, “Fun Books” (workbooks), and mock game shows with pencil and sticker rewards and candy prizes. The Green Bear Program includes the following educational trainings/presentations for children:

  • The Green Bear Club (for pre-kindergarten through 5th grade)
  • Hugging, Kissing, Touching…and All That Other Stuff (for 6th through 8th grades)
  • Surviving the Dating Game (for 9th through 12th grades)

To educate professionals, parents and community members on ways to keep children safe, The Green Bear Program includes the following educational trainings/presentations:

  • A Guide for Mandated Reporters: Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse
  • Raising Healthy Children in Your Community

Two Rivers Child Advocacy Center is funded in part by grants but also depends on private donations to continue services. For the purpose of Two Rivers’ partnership with Bee The Swarm, funds are being raised for the Green Bear Prevention Program, which is funded only partially by a grant from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.

Funds raised during this campaign will go towards the printing of the Fun Book workbooks the children use during the program and the purchase of other supplies essential to carrying out the program and ensuring that children and adults in southern Illinois receive these important safety messages.

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Children's Choice

At Children’s Choice we value experiences. Experiences are the sparks that make life-long memories, passions, and create excitement for learning. As an after school provider, we provide a safe place for students to go once the bell rings. We’re lucky, because after school is one of the best times to create amazing experiences for students of all ages, interests, and ability levels. At the very least, student’s get to broaden their horizons by experiencing something fun. At best, students make life-long friends, find a passion they never knew they had, and learn a skill that will serve them the rest of their life.

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That’s why we work hard to provide some remarkable after school classes at no-cost to students. Cost should never be a barrier to unforgettable childhood experiences.

Our goal is to raise $4,500 which will provide 160 students an entire year’s worth of after school classes in communities where families don’t have access to care once school gets out.

Check out what goes on at Children’s Choice and the great things our students are doing:

  1. Lion Dance

You know those giant dragon costumes you see in every Chinese New Year’s celebration pictures? Aren’t those things cool!? Beautiful costume/puppets, performers dancing around the streets doing cool tricks to impress the audience, and everyone going cheering and going crazy because a dragon is dancing right in front of them!

I mean, come on! A giant dragon that’s also an amazing dancer!? If you don’t think that’s cool you may not have a pulse. What would you give to be a performer in one of those amazing get-ups? Wouldn’t it feel pretty cool to be a dancing dragon?

Well, that’s exactly what students in the Lion Dance after school class get to do. We partner with the New Mexico Asian Family Center and Manzano Mesa Elementary to bring in trained performers to teach students this ancient art form. Students learn all about the culture and a little bit of the language. They also get to wear the costume and perform in front of their families and friends.

Remember back to when you were in elementary school. What would you have given to be a dragon, who does amazing physical feats, in front of your entire school? Is that a moment you would have ever forget? Probably not. Neither will the lucky students who get to have that experience.

  1. Flash Mob

You’ve seen them. Heck, maybe you’ve been part of one! Seemingly spontaneous dances erupt when they are least expected to the delight of everyone that sees it! Imagine the creativity and confidence it takes to do that. You choreograph your own dance, you pick a random spot to do it, and you hope that the people who happen to be there enjoy what you do.

Now imagine doing that as a 3rd grader. That’s just what students in our many Flash Mob classes learn how to do. Classes have performed at school lunches and recess, open spaces, large public events, and district-wide principal meetings. Every time they catch their spectators by surprise and every time they end to roaring applause.

After performing in front of hundreds at one event, a child said “I’m so excited! I feel like I could do anything!” When children are more confident- they are less likely to become defensive (leading to less arguments and behavior issues) and more likely to participate in class (leading to better grades). When more kids get good grades and have less behavior issues, it pays off big time for everyone- students, teachers, parents, society in general.

But, I know what you’re thinking: “Sure those classes are cool, but come on, how hard is it to get kids excited about dancing and jumping around? What about the stuff like math or science? ”

Well…

  1. Zoo Science

Biology. There’s a subject that can very easily be one of two things: boring or…gross. Either you learn all about animals and how their bodies work from a book or you learn it…hands on.

Luckily, hands-on doesn’t always mean dissection and bodily functions. This class takes students behind the scenes at the Albuquerque Zoo. Every month they take a field trip where they work with zookeepers who teach them all about one of the animals.

Then they get to see the animals in action from the zookeeper’s perspective. They even get to touch, feed, and interact with the animals.

Think back to seven- how much did you want to play with some of the animals at the zoo? Sure, you were seven and may have wanted to jump in with the tiger so you could ride it. Because, come on, how cool would you be if you were the kid who rode a tiger? But no- you’re teacher said “no, for the 5th time, you can’t jump in with the tiger, it will surely eat you.” And then you were sad because you thought for sure this great feat would have propelled you to such great heights of coolness.

The point is- playing with zoo animals would have been pretty cool.*

When you get to see and feel your science lesson, it helps you grasp how cool it really is. We’ve had students who, in the beginning, were saying “I hate science and I’m terrible at it” and by the end were saying “I’m going to college and learning biology.” Now, we’re not saying this class is churning out a ton of biologists. They’re 7, 8, and 9 years old, they’re likely to change their mind before college. But this class does make a lasting impression that science is cool. And that is a pretty neat impression for a child to have.

*Just to clarify- no, we do not let our students ride around on tigers.

Play ZomBees on your iOS or Android device on March 27th and 28th and all revenue raised from the game will be donated directly to Children's Choice.

ZomBees on IOS: http://apple.co/1QdfFUn ZomBees on Android: http://bit.ly/20Vnkf3

Littlest Heroes: The Corniuk Family

  A father’s words….

Four and half years ago, I had a normal life. Two children in school and two ready to start. We get up in the morning, get the older ones ready and off to school and focus on finding ways to get the younger two to stop fighting. I laugh now knowing that I would ever miss that sound.

That was four years ago….then suddenly everything changed. That was when my family’s life changed forever. Our youngest was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). What many people see are the physical changes that the child displays. They rarely think of what this type of diagnosis does to a parent, family, and a home.

No longer do we take for granted that we will see his first day of school, first kiss, or walk across the stage at graduation. While we hope, dream, and wish for these things, they will always be special miracles. Today, I can tell you, with all my heart, I miss the sound of Siberius and his sister fighting.

It is organizations such as The Littlest Heroes that help relieve some of the stress that we, as a family, go through. They allow us to worry less about the gasoline to get to appointments that we have to be at. They help us to make sure that a child that has not been able to eat in three days due to medical issues has the food they want when they finally feel hungry. They help the kids, and the parents, believe in Santa at Christmas time. They give us the ability to get our car out of the parking lot at the hospital where there is no nearby free parking, even though that check from work won’t arrive for another couple of days.

The Littlest Heroes help us buy paper goods. This might sound odd to some people but when you can’t wipe counters off with sponges because of the chance of possibly spreading germs then you realize what a huge burden The Littlest Heroes helps to alleviate. They allow us, as parents, to have gifts for our children to open Christmas morning.

This journey has been difficult, wiping us out financially, making retaining work difficult, and even getting work done when we do have a job with the constant stress, appointments, hospital stays, and so on. In many ways, The Littlest Heroes helps us to focus on our Littlest Hero when he needs us the most. On behalf of my family and myself, I would like to thank everyone involved and let them know that they help more than they will ever know…

Siberius passed in August of 2014.

The Littlest Heroes was there for this family when they needed support the most. Bee The Swarm is currently running a campaign with The Littlest Heroes. To help families like this, all you have to do is download and play ZomBees, for free. It is available on iOS and Android devices, and can be found here:

Download ZomBees on IOS: http://apple.co/1QdfFUn

Download ZomBees on Android: http://bit.ly/20Vnkf3