Women’s Empowerment Organization Dress for Success Becomes Official Nonprofit Partner for First-Ever National Business Traveler Day on April 24, 2018

It has been a long time since business travel was just a man’s world. Today, there’s almost a 50 percent chance that the person across the desk negotiating an important business deal is a woman. To further its mission of empowering all women to achieve economic independence, Dress for Success announced today that it is the official nonprofit partner of National Business Traveler Day (“NBTD”), set for April 24th, 2018.

According to a study by TNS Global, women account for approximately 47 percent of all business travel. “More and more women are increasingly serving as the ‘face’ of companies in critical business dealings around the country,” said Dress for Success CEO, Joi Gordon. “Dress for Success’ participation in National Business Traveler Day will reinforce recognition of the equal and significant role women play in moving our economy forward, especially through business travel. In addition to building awareness, National Business Traveler Day will play an important role in supporting our mission of providing women with the tools they need to build their confidence and succeed in the workplace. Many women we serve may well become future business travelers for their companies.” Since its inception in 1997, Dress for Success has led the way in developing and training more than 1 million women for return to the workforce.

As part of the Upside Business Travel and NBTD partnership with Dress for Success, leading apparel brand UNTUCKit will be donating button down blouses from their women’s line to Dress for Success participants. “UNTUCKit is pleased to be supporting the upcoming National Business Traveler Day and its non-profit partner, Dress for Success. We are proud to be helping empower the women of Dress for Success to look professional and be confident and comfortable in the workplace, ” said UNTUCKit Founder and Executive Chairman Chris Riccobono.

Dress for Success is proud to join NBTD’s founder Upside Business Travel and NBTD’s media partner The Wall Street Journal in this important day of recognition. More than 20 well-known brands, led by United Airlines, XpresSpa, Hertz, Mastercard, and Uber for Business, will participate in the celebration with sweepstakes prizes, promotions, and special events. NBTD is also being supported by 1-800-Flowers.com; 24 Hour Fitness; Audible; BARK, the makers of BarkBox; Blue Bottle Coffee; Global Business Travel Association; Hudson Group, operators of Hudson and Hudson News; iHeartMedia; iPass; JetBlue; Journy; LATAM Airlines; LoungeBuddy; The Points Guy; THNKS; and UNTUCKit.

Created to recognize and reward business travelers across the country, National Business Traveler Day will offer thousands of prizes, giveaways, and live activations at select airports. NBTD also encourages business travelers to support Dress for Success through individual donations on the Dress for Success’ dedicated NBTD landing page. The six-week celebration kicked off on March 14th with the launch of The Business Traveler Dream Sweepstakes and The Greatest Business Trips in Historytournament bracket.

About Dress for Success

Dress for Success is an international not-for-profit organization that empowers women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life.  Since starting operations in 1997, Dress for Success has expanded to more than 160 cities in 30 countries and has helped more than one million women work towards self-sufficiency.

About National Business Traveler Day
National Business Traveler Day (NBTD) is an annual event held on April 24th that celebrates, honors, and recognizes the under-appreciated business traveler. More than 20 leading companies support the inaugural NBTD and will shower business travelers with prizes, giveaways, and upgrades, and participate in live events.

About UNTUCKit

One of the fastest-growing men’s retail brands in the country, UNTUCKit was the first to create a signature shirt with perfectly-contoured hemlines and a tailored fit specifically designed to be worn untucked, creating a way for men to look smart and polished while still being casual and comfortable. Since launching in 2011, UNTUCKit has evolved to outfit the whole family with the addition of lines for women and children. Dedicated to creating an unmatched shopping experience, UNTUCKit is one of the most active e-commerce store expansions stories of 2017, with 25 retail locations across the country. To learn more, visit www.untuckit.com.

SOURCE Dress for Success Worldwide

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Americans are Facing a Hope Crisis

 

Hopeologist® Rosalind Tompkins seeks to inspire more than 10,000 ‘hope connections’ in 2018, beginning in April, National Month of Hope

Research studies have found that people who are hopeful excel in life, live longer and live well. But sometimes hope needs a little assist, notes Rosalind Tompkins, creator of the first National Month of Hope, in April.
Through her organization Mothers In Crisis, Tompkins is issuing a Hope Challenge to ordinary people to reach out to folks they know at work or in their community who are feeling hopeless perhaps due to job loss, marital troubles or struggles with addiction.

Calling herself a Hopeologist®, a person who changes the world through hope, Tompkins has set an impressive goal—fostering at least 10,000 “hope chats” this year. She says, “We are challenging people to ‘think hope’ and ‘make hope connections.’ We are planning ‘hope chats’ in our local community where our team will go out to local parks and spread hope every Saturday. We encourage other organizations to do the same in their local communities.”

Tompkins says hope chats can be highly impactful. For example, one member of her team had such a chat with an unemployed father of four whose marriage was floundering. The man thanked her for taking the time to connect with him and two weeks later, let her know that his life was already much better. He had found a job and he and his wife were doing better. The team member was happy too. “She said that she felt good about it because before the Hope Challenge she would have handled the situation totally differently and probably felt hopeless herself,” Tompkins says.

The team member followed the challenge’s seven steps: identify, prepare, go, listen, encourage, empower and wrap up. Among the things she said to him were: “I care about you and wanted to check in with you to see how things are going” and “Just know that I am here for you and I believe that things are going to get better because remember, as long as there is breath in your body, there is hope.”

“We believe that people will come away with the knowledge that things are going to get better and it starts with us,” Tompkins says. “We can have hope and give hope. We can change the world through hope one person at a time.”

About Rosalind Tompkins
Rosalind Tompkins is the founder of Mothers in Crisis, a nonprofit comprised of women and men in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. Her humanitarian work has taken her to East, Central, and South Africa, Jamaica and Turkey, to help widows, orphans, and refugees. She also founded Turning Point International Church and its school of ministry. She has written four books including As Long As There Is Breath In Your Body, There Is Hope.

Contact: Rosalind Tompkins, (850) 933-2412; 192620@email4pr.com
SOURCE Rosalind Tompkins

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Maria Sharapova Establishes Program to Help Women Entrepreneurs and Business Owners

The Maria Sharapova Women’s Entrepreneur Program with the National Association of Women Business Owners will mentor female entrepreneurs starting in the Spring 2018

Five-time Grand Slam tennis champion, Maria Sharapova, has experienced some monumental moments in her career: Among them are in 2004, with the life-changing win at Wimbledon, and in 2012, with the launch of her own successful candy company, Sugarpova.

Today, in the spirit of philanthropy and women’s empowerment, Sharapova is proud to announce that she is partnering with the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) along with her team to mentor female entrepreneurs through the Sharapova Women’s Entrepreneur Program kicking off in Spring 2018 with a nationwide call for applicants from which up to six business women will be selected.  Sharapova naturally turned to NAWBO as a partner for finding and identifying potential participants, and as a resource to help develop a robust curriculum for the 12-month-long mentorship program.
“I only wish when I was starting out with my own company, Sugarpova that I had a group of mentors and the team I have now to help guide and support me. I recognize that supporting women – owned businesses by sharing expertise and valuable business resources can have a dramatic impact of growth of a business and can be a real catalyst for advancing the success of a business. Simply put, this partnership is about Women helping Women.”

Over the past six years, Sharapova has learned the many business dimensions of starting a company with all the challenges and hurdles of the real-world experience along the way. Being a young startup, Sharapova wore many hats in growing Sugarpova, her off-the-court business. With Sugarpova reaching global sales penetration with double-digit revenue growth the last several years, Sharapova decided the time is right to pay forward her well-honed business skills – joining with the hefty rolodex and strong relationships of her business team — and set aside time from her busy competitive tennis schedule to help other women entrepreneurs, via mentoring support and networking opportunities and allocating her team’s resources to help grow these women’s businesses.

ABOUT THE PROGRAM:
The Sharapova Women’s Entrepreneur Program will consist of 6 Women Business Owners that are selected from a nationwide call for applicants by Sharapova, in partnership with NAWBO and the NAWBO Institute.  The program will run for 12 months, and is a cohort-based virtual/in-person hybrid program that will include mentorship, peer-to-peer support, mastermind and educational components to be delivered on a monthly basis by NAWBO and the Sharapova Business Resource Team led by Traub Consumer.
Through the Sharapova Women’s Entrepreneur Program and NAWBO partnership, female businesswomen will be selected to receive support and resources from Sharapova’s longtime marketing and business development teams as well as the NAWBO Institute. Each of the women selected will receive support from a range of both NAWBO and Sharapova’s personal business resources in growing their business and in reaching their business goals. Click here to apply.

SHARAPOVA, THE BUSINESSWOMAN:
Off the Court, Sharapova serves as an ambassador to many of the world’s top luxury brands and a number of Fortune 500 companies including Porsche, Nike, Evian and HEAD. Her business interests also include serving as an equity partner in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the fastest growing sports organization in the world; Supergoop!, a skincare company dedicated to SPF protection; and as an investor in charly, a Toronto-based social experience platform.
“The NAWBO Institute is excited about partnering with Maria Sharapova in order to propel women to the next level of their business, said Loreen Gilbert, Chair-elect of the National NAWBO Institute, Executive Board and president of WealthWise Financial Services www.wealthwisefinancial.com. “She is an inspiration, who has graciously agreed to share her expertise, business savvy and tenacity to help other women excel.”

About Sugarpova: Sugarpova continues to have double-digit growth year after year since its launch. Currently, the brand has retail penetration in 22 countries all over the world and is sold in a variety of retail partners and online. The founder is international tennis champion, Maria Sharapova, whose sweet tooth and love for little indulgences motivated her to create a candy company specializing in premium chocolates collection and products, giftables and in gummies and chocolate sweets of quality and craftsmanship. For more information, visit http://www.sugarpova.com
About NAWBO
Founded in 1975, the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) is the unified voice for nearly 11.6 million women-owned businesses in the United States representing the fastest growing segment of the economy. NAWBO is the only dues-based organization representing the interests of all women entrepreneurs across all industries; and with chapters across the country.  NAWBO is a one-stop resource to propelling women business owners into greater economic, social and political spheres of power worldwide.

Elizabeth Arden & Reese Witherspoon ‘March On’ For Women

Iconic Beauty Brand Introduces New Women’s Empowerment Philanthropic Campaign

Today, Elizabeth Arden announces the launch of the March On campaign, featuring a limited edition lipstick, in the brand’s signature Red Door Red shade and signed by Reese Witherspoon, which will be sold globally with 100% of the proceeds donated to UN Women.

An early advocate of women’s rights, Elizabeth Arden famously provided red lipsticks to the suffragettes marching on Fifth Avenue in 1912. Wearing red lipstick, which wasn’t a socially acceptable practice at the time, became a symbol of the women’s movement and has remained an icon of female power to this day.  As the women’s movement remains in force over 100 years later, Elizabeth Arden continues its fearless female founder’s legacy of advocating for women and honoring their ability to be forces of change in the world with the introduction of the March On campaign.
The program, in partnership with the brand’s Storyteller-in-Chief and female advocate Reese Witherspoon, is designed to celebrate women’s achievements, encourage women to support other women and includes a pledge to donate $1 million to UN Women in support of their work to advance women’s issues worldwide.  The limited edition March On red lipstick serves as a powerful symbol of unity and advocacy and invites women around the world to signal their support for one another.
“Founded by a woman dedicated to helping women, we are inspired by our history to help change the future. March On honors this legacy not only with a philanthropic donation, but also with a campaign that asks women to unite to help each other achieve their full potential,” explains Kara Langan, Senior Vice President, Global Marketing, Elizabeth Arden. “Whether by creating female-centric support systems or propelling each other in their professional lives, when women stand together they can enact great change in the world.”
“There is real strength and camaraderie in March On and the feeling that we are in this together. By bringing UN Women, Elizabeth Arden and women everywhere together we can help change women’s lives around the world for the better,” explains Reese Witherspoon. “I have the unique privilege to not only tell these women’s stories through my production company as well as my relationship with Elizabeth Arden, but I also get to encourage them to share their own stories through March On.”
“A prominent entrepreneur and supporter of women’s rights, Elizabeth Arden herself is an inspirational example of the impact women can make on the world. We are pleased to embark upon a multi-year, worldwide partnership with the iconic brand to help advocate for women and girls and make their equal participation a reality,” says Tunay Firat, OIC Head of Strategic Private Sector Partnerships, UN Women. “The funds raised by Elizabeth Arden through the March On program will help strengthen UN Women’s global programming, which will lead directly to the increased responsiveness and sustainability of field-level activities.”
The ongoing integrated marketing campaign will include social content, public relations, in-store activations and advertising featuring Reese Witherspoon, in addition to the limited edition lipstick.  The March On Beautiful Color Lipstick in Red Door Red will be available beginning March 2018 for $26.50 on ElizabethArden.com and in department stores globally.
#TogetherWeMarchOn

About UN Women
UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. It works globally to make the vision of the Sustainable Development Goals a reality for women and girls and stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life. UN Women supports UN Member States as they set global standards for achieving gender equality, and works with governments and civil society to design laws, policies, programs and services needed to ensure that the standards are effectively implemented and truly benefit women and girls worldwide.
SOURCE Elizabeth Arden
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Lung Cancer Alliance Praises Bipartisan, Bicameral Congressional Leadership On Women’s Health Imperative

Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Representatives Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ), Rick Nolan (D-MN), Barbara Comstock (R-VA) and Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) Bring Priority Focus to Accelerated Research and Screening Services for Women Impacted by Lung Cancer

Screen Shot 2018-02-11 at 10.41.08 PMThe Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) hailed the reintroduction of the Women and Lung Cancer Research and Preventive Services Act, which brings priority focus to a women’s health imperative. The legislation was introduced with bipartisan support in both the Senate and House of Representatives.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death of women in both the U.S. and around the world. It takes the lives of more women than breast, ovarian, cervical, and uterine cancers – combined.  An average of 193 women die each day from lung cancer, one every 7 minutes, and two-thirds of never smokers diagnosed with lung cancer are women.

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“There is no stronger signal of a commitment to improving the health of women and transforming their medical care than the legislative actions taken today by these bipartisan, Congressional leaders,” said Laurie Fenton Ambrose, President and CEO of Lung Cancer Alliance. “Lung cancer is a women’s health imperative. It behaves differently in women than men, particularly those who have never smoked. This legislation will help unlock answers to research questions and bring a coordinated federal plan of action to promote access to life-saving preventive services, improve quality of life and increase survival for women and the entire lung cancer community.”

The legislation requires an interagency team, led by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in consultation with the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs, conduct a thorough study and report to Congress in 180 days on the status of and recommendations for:

  • Increased research on women and lung cancer;
  • Improved access to lung cancer preventive services; and,
  • National public awareness and education campaigns on lung cancer.
“Lung cancer disproportionately affects women and is the leading cause of cancer deaths among women. Despite the dramatic impact this has on the women of Florida and across the country, there is a lack of research into why there is this disparate, particularly amongst women non-smokers,” said Senator Rubio. “This bill is a positive step in the battle against lung cancer. It will encourage more research into why lung cancer disproportionately impacts women so we can develop better prevention and treatment tools and have a better understanding of the disease as a whole.”

“Lung cancer kills more women each year than any other cancer. This year, 70,500 women will lose their lives to this disease. While we know the key risk factors, many questions remain,” said Senator Feinstein. “For example, lung cancer has been found in far more women who don’t smoke than in men who don’t smoke, and we have no idea why. This bill will strengthen our efforts to reduce lung cancer and improve patient outcomes.”

“Countless individuals across the country have been devastated by lung cancer. This is a very personal issue for my family, responsible for the death of both of my wife Tina’s parents. This is a disease that knows no boundaries in who it affects thus we must double our efforts to raise awareness and reduce mortality,” Rep. LoBiondo said. “I remain committed to working with Reps. Nolan, Comstock, Bonamici and other colleagues and groups who want to help make real strides against lung cancer.”

“When it comes to supporting lung cancer research, we can and must do better. The study directed by our bill will begin to help us understand why there is a greater prevalence of lung cancer amongst women and, in particular, amongst women who have never smoked. Though the passage of this bipartisan, bicameral legislation would mark but one small step in the fight against lung cancer, it would make an enormous difference to those who are battling lung cancer and their loved ones. I am proud to join my Congressional Lung Cancer Caucus Co-Chair Frank LoBiondo as an original cosponsor of this measure,” said Rep. Nolan.

“The Women and Lung Cancer Research and Preventive Services Act will provide critical resources in combating the largest cause of cancer death in women, lung cancer.  We all know someone who has been devastated by lung cancer. I lost a best friend this past year and I join as an original cosponsor on this important bipartisan legislation in honor of Kate O’Beirne, who we lost last April. This legislation will allow us to make greater progress in battling lung cancer and providing increased access to preventive services that can save lives,” Rep. Comstock said. 

“My mother is a lung cancer survivor, so I know we can and must do more to prevent this devastating disease and support women who are battling it,” Rep. Bonamici said. “I’m proud to join this important bipartisan effort that will improve lung cancer research and result in better outcomes for women.”

In March, LCA will collaborate with the Congressional Lung Cancer Caucus to hold a briefing on women and lung cancer to educate members of Congress about the need for and impact of this legislation. For more details about this or other advocacy efforts, please contact policy@lungcanceralliance.org.

About Lung Cancer Alliance:
Lung Cancer Alliance serves and listens to those living with and at risk for lung cancer to reduce stigma, improve quality of life and increase survival. We empower our community by helping people navigate the paths of early detection, diagnosis and treatment. Insights allow us to improve care, amplify awareness, drive advocacy and lead research with the vision of tripling the number of survivors in the next decade. For more information, please visit www.lungcanceralliance.org. Follow Lung Cancer Alliance on Facebook: www.facebook.com/lungcanceralliance  and on Twitter @LCAorg using the hashtag #LCpolicy.

Source:Lung Cancer Alliance
Chris Davis 
cdavis@lungcanceralliance.org 202-742-1895

Sexual Harassment Expert Susan Goudy Offers 10 Steps for Healing from Sexual Harassment or Assault

In a society where sexual harassment and assault have become expected and almost accepted, empowerment coach Susan Goudy offers tips to enable people to heal from the trauma associated with sexual harassment and assault.
A recent survey reports that one in three women aged 18-34 has been sexually harassed at work. Sexual harassment in the workplace is defined by the American Association of University Women as any, “unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.”
“With such an ambiguous definition, you may have been sexually harassed or even assaulted and you didn’t recognize it because sexual harassment has become ‘part of doing business’,” said Goudy, author of “The Journey from Fear to Love is Shorter than You Think.” She earned a master’s degree in social work from Arizona State University.
If you are that one in three and you are having trouble moving forward, these 10 steps can help.

  1. Acknowledge the Harassment or Assault Happened – Sit with it for a bit. Feel how you feel about it, let yourself cry, scream or whatever it is you need to do.
  2. Let It All Out – Tell someone. Find someone you trust to tell what happened to you… a friend, a family member or counselor.
  3. Take a Closer Look – Look at the situation and see how It has affected your life, both in bad and good ways. Has it made you stronger? Has it held you back?
  4. Throw Out Your Baggage – Seek help. Find a counselor or healing professional who can assist you in throwing out the baggage once and for all.
  5. Change Your Perception – You can choose how this situation affects you going forward. Perhaps you will create a new career path because of this, one that is more fulfilling.
  6. Step into Your Power – Take your control back by saying no to things you that aren’t in alignment with your wants.
  7. Embrace Your Value – Match your thoughts and feelings to your expectations and life goals. You will realize you are worthy and deserving of the best in your life.
  8. Accept Change – Stay in the moment and move forward; don’t look back.
  9. Love Yourself – Take care of yourself first. Exercise and then go to work or pick up the kids.
  10. Serve Others – Helping others can be very positive as it increases your feelings of self-worth. Volunteer at a local animal shelter or help clean up your local park.
“While progressing through the 10 steps for healing from sexual harassment or assault you may find the reactions of those who know about your situation are more harmful than helpful,” she said. “The intention behind these responses may be goodhearted however, you may feel as if chaos has crept into your life in an already sensitive time.”
Screen Shot 2017-12-04 at 8.31.25 AM10 Ways to Eliminate Drama from Your Life is an excellent guide to help you keep drama from draining your time, energy and making it difficult to go about your day. Get your free copy at http://susangoudy.com/index.php/books/10-ways-eliminate-drama-life-e-book/
About Susan Goudy
Two months shy of her third birthday Susan was sexually abused by a teenage neighbor so she knows firsthand that living in the shadow of your past can cause you to forget that you have the power to take charge of your life. Susan enables others to get present and focused and to take an honest look at what they are or are not doing to create the lives they currently live. “No matter what may or may not lie in your own past, you can become more awake, aware, clear and empowered. It’s time to stop being a victim and to leave excuses behind,” she says. With a strong background in psychology, counseling, and social work, as well as certifications in neuro-physical reprogramming, bio-energetic synchronization technique, and psychological kinesiology (Psych-K), Susan works to heal physical as well as deep-rooted emotional issues. To learn more, please visit www.susangoudy.com/ You can also follow her on Twitter (@SusanGoudy1) and Facebook at Author Susan Goudy.
SOURCE Susan Goudy

 

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Cancer

Most people associate Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) with soldiers returning from war who struggle with adjustment to civilian life back home. While that is the population that led to the creation of this diagnosis, it has expanded to include survivors of other traumas, including natural disasters and cancer. Most people who go through a cancer journey, in themselves or someone they love, are able to adjust to life after cancer without experiencing PTSD. But they may feel similar symptoms and emotional issues that can impair their ability to fully enjoy life. The Gathering Place (TGP) exists so that anyone, with any type of cancer experience can find relief and comfort through a range of programs and services, all at no charge.

In November, Joel Marcus, PsyD, Taussig Cancer Center and Isabel Schuermeyer, MD, Department of Psychiatry and Psychology, both at the Cleveland Clinic, will be speaking at TGP on PTSD. Dr. Marcus and Dr. Schuermeyer work with patients who are trying to cope with the impact of a cancer diagnosis. Dr. Schuermeyer states, “One of the most important things to do is acknowledge your fears and anxiety. There is no need to hide or ‘protect’ your loved ones when help is out there.” Like hospitals all over the country, the Cleveland Clinic is working to reduce the stigma of asking for help by housing psychologists and psychiatrists in the cancer center. Dr. Schuermeyer noted that fear might cause a patient to delay seeking help for signs and symptoms that could possibly indicate the cancer has returned. She indicated that many of the chemotherapies being used today can cross the blood-brain barrier and cause changes to our biochemistry. People who have always been able to cope in the past, may find themselves feeling depressed or worried after cancer and not know that the treatment itself may be causing some of their struggles.

Another local expert on PTSD, Belleruth Naparstek, is also coming to speak at TGP this quarter. Her topic is Guided Imagery: Latest Updates and Techniques, but she has published a book and a CD to help those suffering from PTSD. In her book, she tells the story of a woman who received a “surprise blessing” through surviving a trauma like cancer. The woman “was no longer worried about the everyday concerns and irritations that used to occupy her mind. She was instead flooded by the joy of being alive.”

There are many activities that can help reduce the normal fears and expected anxieties of cancer treatment and its long term side effects. Whether it is yoga or tai chi, massage or reiki, art therapy or support groups, choosing to take care of yourself is important in a world where we feel we have so little control.

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New Grief Recovery Book, “What I Wish I’d Known,” Helps Readers Overcome Their Grief

Screen Shot 2017-10-15 at 8.01.11 PMWhat I Wish I’d Known: Finding Your Way Through the Tunnel of Grief by Kristi Hugstad, helps people who are experiencing grief to find joy and peace. It was written primarily to help adults who have experienced a tragic event, such as the loss of a loved one, to properly deal with their grief and find a way to move forward in their lives.

In What I Wish I’d Known, Hugstad shares her own personal experiences with grief and explains how she overcame those difficult times in her life. After her husband’s sudden suicide, Kristi Hugstad had to not only deal with her grief in a healthy way, but also find a way to move on and live a happy life once again. She knows firsthand the emotional turmoil that a tragic life event can bring, and desires to help others who are currently experiencing the same thing that she has.

In What I Wish I’d Known, Hugstad also discusses the healthy solutions she has found for dealing with tragic situations. She hopes to inspire others to change their negative way of thinking and experience a permanent restoration of peace. What I Wish I’d Known encourages readers who are going through tragic or life-changing events that this is not the end for them- there is a way out of the “tunnel of grief” and hope for them on the other side.

If you would like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview with Kristi Hugstad, please call Nickcole Watkins at 516.900.5674.

About the Author:
After her own husband’s suicide, Kristi Hugstad gained a strong desire to help people who are suffering with grief. This led her to become a certified Grief Recovery Specialist, and her work has helped countless people through the most difficult times in their lives. Through her work, she hopes to help people who have experienced tragic events to gain a new perspective and renew their lives.
Hugstad is now a speaker and author that shares her personal experience and professional expertise in grief recovery in many ways. Aside from writing books, she also writes blogs for the Huffington Post, and is the host of a radio show and podcast called The Grief Girl. She now lives in Dana Point, California.
SOURCE Morgan James Publishing

Harmful tests on our closest relatives must end

Screen Shot 2017-09-01 at 9.11.58 AMFor International Primate Day on September 1st 2017, Animal Defenders International is calling for action to end the use of primates in research. Worldwide an estimated 200,000 primates are experimented on each year, with over 70,000 animals used in research across the US, one of the world’s largest users of primates.Animal Defenders International President Jan Creamer said: “The continued use of primates in research is unethical and unnecessary. Harmful to both our closest relatives and to science, governments must end primate tests and facilitate the adoption of modern alternatives without delay.”
Some primates are forcibly removed from the wild and used as breeding machines to supply the industry, or used themselves in tests. In addition to the trauma caused to individuals during the capture process, subsequent confinement, and during procedures until their deaths, this brutal practice harms local populations threatening their survival.
In Latin America, ADI has exposed the capture of owl monkeys for use in malaria experiments in Colombia. Taken from the trees, these nocturnal primates go from the forest to a barren cage. Our evidence led to a tribunal revoking the experimenter’s permits; although this groundbreaking decision has been overturned. Elsewhere, in Africa and Asia, ADI has revealed dire conditions inside the monkey breeders, who take primates from the wild to maintain their breeding stocks. At the monkey farms, individuals are confined to cages and routinely manhandled. In Florida, already home to a number of monkey breeders, ADI is opposing plans for a facility which seeks to import thousands of primates from outside the US.
Primates are frequently used in brain experiments because of their apparent similarity to humans. However, despite being our closest relatives, non-human primates differ from us in a number of ways, including the immune system. Their use in research therefore can never reliably predict potential human effects. Aspirin for example causes birth defects in monkeys, but is widely used by pregnant women without the same effect.
Such species differences are the fundamental flaw of using animals in research. Each species respondsdifferently to substances, with an animal’s age, diet, sex, even bedding material, also affecting results. As a result animal tests can delay scientific progress and lead to human tragedy.
Just days after being given trial drug BIA 10-2474, the six male volunteers in the highest dose group were hospitalized. Four volunteers displayed neurological symptoms, with at least one losing all his fingers and toes; one of the six volunteers died a week after receiving the dose.  No comparable effect had been seen in monkeys or other animals given high doses of the drug over long periods. Some monkeys were estimated to have received around 75 times the dose given to the volunteers.In another drug trial tragedy, TGN1412 was given to volunteers who then suffered multiple organ failure as the drug triggered an uncontrollable immune response. One volunteer was hospitalized for three months, another had their fingers and toes amputated, and all are likely to suffer permanent damage to their immune systems and live with the danger of developing cancer and lupus.  The drug had been tested extensively in laboratory animals including in doses 500 times greater in monkeys with no drug-related adverse events.Investment in animal research, predominantly with primates, has been wasteful and unsuccessful. A review has shown that not one of the 85+ candidate AIDS vaccines successfully tested in primates have been effective in human patients.ADI has documented the suffering of primates for product safety tests at the notorious contract testing facility Huntingdon Life Science (now known as Envigo). Monkeys were strapped down to restrain them while substances were pumped directly into their stomachs, and they suffered a range of debilitating symptoms.

Researchers claim that the use of primates in brain research is ‘necessary’ but sophisticated neuroimaging techniques are available to study human behavior and brain function. Comparing data from human electrical brain activity with data obtained by experimenters using electrodes in restrained monkeys, Professor Furlong and his team at Aston University in the UK have shown the same level of data can be obtained, directly relevant to human patients.

International Primate Day was established by Animal Defenders International in 2005 to highlight the threats to and abuses of our closest relatives in the animal kingdom – apes and monkeys – from their use in research and entertainment, for meat and the pet trade.

Around 20,000 primates are imported into the US every year, from countries such as China, Vietnam and Mauritius. ADI USA revealed the hidden suffering of primates bred for research on the tropical Indian Ocean island of Mauritius. Biodia, one of the biggest suppliers of laboratory monkeys in the world, sends thousands to miserable deaths in the USA and worldwide. At this facility we filmed baby monkeys torn from their screaming mothers to be tattooed, pregnant monkeys manhandled and pinned down in terrifying routine procedures and screaming monkeys being swung by their tails. http://www.ad-international.org/animal_experiments/go.php?id=3503

Over 2,000 primates were imported into the UK from Asia and Africa last year. ADI infiltrated Nafovanny in Vietnam filming the macaque monkeys in small, filthy, broken cages – images the huge dealer of monkeys to the USA and UK denied were on their premises – until we proved otherwise. They once roamed free only to be torn from the trees and forced to live for years in these dismal prisons. http://www.ad-international.org/publications/go.php?id=1577 Monkeys filmed Huntingdon Life Sciences were supplied by Nafovanny. http://www.ad-international.org/publications/go.php?id=1576

Non-animal methods

  • There are many alternatives to the use of animals which are more reliable and are based on better science such as, human cell, tissue and organ culture, including 3D models containing different tissues providing a better representation of the actual situation in a living human; databases of known information, and sophisticated analytical techniques.
  • Advanced non-animal methods include the lung-on-a-chip, which mimics the movements of the breathing lung, providing provide low-cost alternatives for drug screening and toxicology tests
  • Accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) is an analytical tool of unprecedented sensitivity. It can be used to study samples from human volunteers given ultra-low, harmless, doses of new drugs (called micro-dosing). Obtaining early data from humans can avoid the unnecessary exposure of volunteers in clinical trials to potentially toxic drugs.  Safe, relevant to the correct species. Emerging technologies like AMS have many advantages, including speeding the development process and improving safety.
  • Other cutting edge methods available to develop and test drugs include computer simulations and modelling, high throughput screening for rapid analysis of compounds for drug discovery, epidemiological studies of human disease, transmission, genetics and environmental factors; fMRI and other imaging techniques.

Species differences

The fundamental flaw of using animals for safety testing, and other forms of research, is species differences. With each species responding differently to substances, primate and other animal tests can never reliably predict potential human effects.
  • Macaque monkeys are frequently used in toxicology testing, but they have specific genes which are vital for drug metabolism (when a drug works through the body). These genes are not found in humans and this is just one of the reasons for differences in drug metabolism between monkeys and humans.
  • The action of drugs also varies; for example Aspirin causes birth defects in monkeys, but is widely used by pregnant women without the same effect.
  • A review showed that none of the 85+ candidate AIDS vaccines successfully tested in primates have been effective in human patients Horses, rats and mice cannot vomit.
  • Morphine drugs are a depressant in rats, dogs, hamsters and other species, but produce tremors and convulsions at comparable doses in mice and cats.
  • The breast cancer drug tamoxifen was designed as an oral contraceptive. It is in rats, but in women it has the opposite effect. It is now used in the treatment of breast cancer, despite causing cancer in rats in some studies.
Animal Defenders International (ADI):  Los Angeles – London – Bogota
Ending the suffering of animals in captivity and protecting wild animals and their environments.Active worldwide to end the suffering of animals: animals in entertainment – film, television, advertising, circuses and sport or leisure; animals used for food or fur; protection of wildlife and the environment; trade in animals; zoos, pets, entertainment and laboratories. Funding and promotion of advanced scientific methods to replace the use of animals in research. ADI investigates, produces evidence and reports on the scientific, legal and economic issues for each case study, recommending solutions. Education and awareness to public, media and officials. Where ADI’s evidence has been a catalyst for change, we collaborate with governments to conduct large-scale seizures of wild animals in captivity and relocate them to forever homes – back to their natural habitat wherever possible.
Source: www.ad-international.org
ADI Media Desk, mediadesk@ad-international.org at Animal Defenders International.
United States, 6100 Wilshire Blvd Suite #1150, Los Angeles, CA, 90048

A look into the March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center Labs: Washington University/St. Louis

Circadian rhythms have a profound effect on metabolism, the immune system – and in the latest reserach from Drs. Herzog and Jungheim, maybe even preterm birth.

Screen Shot 2017-06-02 at 11.49.03 AMWe’ve long known that our circadian rhythms have profound effects on how — and especially when — we go about our daily lives. These cycles are influenced by the various intervals of light and darkness we experience over a 24-hour period, but also can be triggered by biological factors, our genetics and even our environment. The range of circadian impacts runs from relatively unnoticed, like our moods and ability to cope with stressors, to the most obvious, like when we are hungry or sleepy.

Circadian rhythms also have a profound effect on the onset of labor, with approximately 80% of women going into spontaneous labor between late night and early morning. And some studies have even shown that altering a pregnant woman’s circadian rhythms can disrupt the fetus’ growth and development. But could these rhythms also be a key factor in preterm birth? That’s exactly what a team of researchers at the March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center at Washington University in St. Louis are working on.

“The hypothesis we’re testing is that circadian rhythms in the mother, the fetus, or both, regulate birth timing, and when disrupted, may lead to preterm birth,” Dr. Herzog explained. “This chronodisruption, as it’s called, can be brought on by a number of factors, including shift work, exposure to artificial light, even irregular meals and sleep times. Our goal is to see how these disruptions influence preterm birth.”

The study has two parts. The first is to determine whether genetic or environmental disruptions of circadian rhythms lead to increased preterm birth risk in mice. The second part of the study is a pilot that will monitor and test 100 women pre- and post-conception to determine when disruption of the circadian rhythms of women with certain chronotypes, (e.g., larks vs. owls) increases their risk for preterm birth. The study will then be extended to 1000 women.

Also working on Theme Three at Washington University at St. Louis are Dr. Justin Fay, Ph.D., an associate professor of genetics, and Dr. Sarah K. England, a professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Dr. Jeff Gill, a professor of Political Science.

“By correlating the data we receive with genetic variations, we’ll also be able to trace any outcomes back to a woman’s specific biology,” said Dr. Fay, “to determine what role genetics plays in affecting circadian rhythm.”

Another leader working on this theme is Dr. Emily Jungheim. She sees the potential for the results of this research to positively affect the women in her practice.

“When I talk to young reproductive age women who are trying to have a child, the things that really speak to them are those they can do themselves to improve their outcomes,” she said. “They’re so motivated to do whatever they can to ensure they’re going to have a healthy start for their baby.”

And modifying those outcomes could be as simple as having a regularly scheduled bedtime.

For more information on prematurity research breakthroughs, we invite you to sign up for the Campaign to End Premature Birth newsletter.

Screen Shot 2017-06-02 at 11.52.17 AMwww.prematurityresearch.org
For more information on how you can be part of this effort, contact
philanthropy@marchofdimes.org

Source: March of Dimes 1275 Mamaroneck Avenue White Plains, NY 10605