Sports and Social Change

After a very busy summer with several large scale events here in the Western US, we are full speed ahead on a big idea. Very big. Something that will provide every nonprofit sports organization out there with support for fundraising, capacity building, programming, marketing and much more.

In order to make this big idea work, we need your insights on how your organization makes its mark on the Sport For Development / Nonprofit Sports community. Please take 2 minutes to fill out this quick 6 question survey: The survey results will be a huge help in getting our plans together to offer you the right tools and key partners to succeed.

And just as a reminder, throughout September I'm offering Open Office Hours, free one-on-one Marketing & PR consulting. Bring me your toughest questions about marketing, public relations, social media, events, cause campaigns, finding corporate partners, or we can simply brainstorm on current challenges or a new idea. And yes, this is completely free.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I'll get you all of the details. An idea from an Open Office Hours call I had earlier this year with a Nonprofit Sports Org led to an instant bump in donations for them. While I can't promise results like that every time, let's dive in and see what we can come up with!


If you're involved with a Sport for Development or Nonprofit Sports Organization please click the survey link below:

Thank you!


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Saturday, 29 August 2015 18:57

Always Be For Something

I've been a long time subscriber to the Daily OM newsletter and this week there was a great post worth sharing. It points out how being "for" someting rather than "against" draws tremendous power and momentum to drive change. Something we should all consider as we continue on the path of using sports as a platform FOR social change...

Always Be for Something
When you support a cause, whether your support is active or passive, you contribute to the optimism that fuels all affirmative change. Optimistic thoughts energize people, giving them hope and inspiring them to work diligently on behalf of what they believe in. Being for something creates a positive shift in the universe, which means that neither you nor those who share your vision will have any trouble believing that transformation on a grand scale is indeed possible. To be against something is typically easy, as you need only speak out in opposition to it. Standing up for something is often more challenging, because you may be introducing an idea to people that may scare them on a soul level.

Read the full post at

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Our friends at All Sports United and UCLA Anderson School of Business are producing a dynamic full day conference June 17th at UCLA titled “Sports With A Purpose” featuring well known athletes and sports personalities as well as experts in philanthropy and technology.

They've put together a GREAT line-up of panels, amazing speakers, a strong list of attendees, and a day full of networking with peers. Conference details and list of speakers can be found at

Learn, share and get connected to an amazing community of people who are united by the power of sports and philanthropy!

And check out the finalists for the All Sports United Humanitarian Award, which will be presented in LA following the workshop.

Hope to see you there!


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A big thanks to LaFern Cusack and ESPN LA 710 for having me on the radio this past weekend to talk about using sports as a platform for social good. LaFern is the long time host and producer of ESPN LA’s public affairs show "The Experience” where she dives into a wide range of topics at the intersection of sports and society, locally as well as a nationally.

Check out my full interview on the ESPN 710 website or listen via their Podcast or iTunes

And follow LaFern on Twitter @LaFernCusack

LaFern Cusack ESPN LA 710 LaFern Cusack ESPN LA 710

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Our friends at Sports Doing Good are hosting an event in the Washington DC area this week, highlighting the Sports and Social Responsibility community. Full details below...

Georgetown HoyasGeorgetown Sports Doing Good Panel Discussion and Reception
April 22, 2015 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies
640 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001 

I know that most of you are not in Washington, DC but I would like to make you aware of an event I am organizing this Wednesday evening in DC called "Georgetown Sports Doing Good" - a chance to learn about and celebrate some of the great work being done in the area of sports and social responsibility, including that being done by those from Georgetown. There will also be a reception before and after the panel discussion.

Panelists include:
Paul Caccamo, Up2Us
Ryan Pettengill, The Grassroot Project
Christy Keswick, Good Sports
Sead Dizdarevic, Basketball Diplomacy Project

Please note that this is not a GU-exclusive event so if you know of any non-Hoyas who may be interested, please share the following link with them. Thank you.

Register at

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Artemis Women in Action Film Festival

History is being made in a few weeks by quite a few women who are anything but well behaved as the Artemis "Women in Action" Film Festival makes its debut in Los Angeles this month, highlighting action films with female lead roles.

Think about it for a second - how many action movies have you seen with women in the lead role? Aliens, Kill Bill 1 & 2, Terminator 2 & 3, The Hunger Games movies, Salt, Avatar, Lucy, Divergent. Should I continue? Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Wanted, the Underworld films, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. Ok, you get the point. These are all dynamite action films AND solid box office draws - female led action films generated over $5 billion since 2010.

The inaugural Artemis Women in Action Film Festival will open Friday April 24, 2015 at the Laemmle Playhouse 7 in Pasadena, CA. The 3-day film fest (April 24-26) will feature 50 narrative, documentary, animated and short films that highlight women in action roles.

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For those of you in the LA area, please join me on Wed 9/16 for a great event exploring the intricacies of creating Sports and Nonprofit Partnerships. PIRATES (Print, Interactive, Radio And Television Society) has put together a great panel of experts who will speak about how Nonprofits can work with pro and college teams, athletes and sports media to develop strong partnerships that support awareness and fundraising initiatives.

PIRATES"Stepping Up The Game" - Sports Brands, Talent and Nonprofit Partnerships
Wednesday, 9.16.15 8:30am - 11:00am

"Stepping Up The Game" features leaders who will share their experiences, insights and recommendations to help nonprofits build their sports initiatives and partnerships.


  • Steve Van Wormer - Sr. Writer/Producer, Fox Sports and Activist, Pulmonary Hypertension Assoc
  • Howard Brodwin - Founder, Sports and Social Change
  • LaFern Cusack - Producer and Host, "The Experience," ESPN 710 AM Los Angeles
  • Amy Millstone - Associate Athletic Director/Strategic Communications, California State University Northridge
  • Steven Yamin - President, Conscience Entertainment Group

8:30am-9:00am: Check-in. Light breakfast, networking.
9:00am-10:30am: Moderated panel discussion and Q&A dialogue.
10:30am-11:30am: Wrap-up and networking.

National Council for Jewish Women
543 N. Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036

$40 PIRATES Members  
$50 Non Members

To register please visit


RSVP by Noon, Monday, September 14, 2015 at the above link, by calling 1-800-PLANK15 or via e-mail to Joyce Harris at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. " target="_blank">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

PIRATES, the Print Interactive Radio and Television Educational Society, is dedicated to help build non-profit community connections to help get their message out about their organizations. Monthly programs feature topics on media opportunities, public relations and marketing, development, and partnerships to help build networking opportunities and resources.



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Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation Blue Diamond GalaWhile the Los Angeles Dodgers opened their 2015 season with big W thanks to some new faces, the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation will open their 2015 in a few weeks with a new event - the inaugural Blue Diamond Gala on Thursday April 16th.

The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation has undergone a complete transformation in recent years. New ownership of the franchise brought with it a chance to retool the much maligned Dodgers Dream Foundation into a new entity, with a clear focus and strong dedication to support community based programs in LA for children and families in need around 3 key pillars: Sports & Recreation, Education & Literacy, Health & Wellness. The Foundation's efforts include building new baseball fields across the southland and support for a wide array of education and health programs with the LA Fund for Public Education, Vision to Learn, Union Rescue Mission and others.

To support all of these efforts, the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation is hosting their first annual Blue Diamond Gala, a fundraising event honoring local programs including the Jackie Robinson Foundation and LA84 Foundation, and featuring a performance by soul sensation Aloe Blacc. And your host for the evening? This is LA and these are the Dodgers, so who better than sports legend and Dodgers owner Earvin "Magic" Johnson. And no LA Dodgers event would be complete with Tommy Lasorda and Vin Scully, so count them in as well.

For tickets and information on Blue Diamond Gala sponsorships please visit And stay tuned for a big year from the LA Dodgers Foundation as they look poised for a major comeback in city that loves a winner and certainly loves its Dodgers.


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I'm thrilled to share news about a research project I recently kicked off at UCLA Anderson to get a complete profile of the "who/what/where" in Adaptive Sports. This is such an important category in the nonprofit sports sector and it's been a challenge for all involved to know just how big this community is and who these athletes are.

Working with a team of MBA students from the UCLA Anderson chapter of Net Impact - a global professional organization in the social impact space - we're designing an "Adaptive Sports Athlete Index" which will help define the national scope and reach of the Adaptive Sports community for potential funders. Adaptive Sports is a highly fragmented community and there's often overlap between multiple programs and their participants, which makes it hard to gather comprehensive data on the size of this category. We believe having an accurate profile of the entire adaptive sports landscape will support everyone's efforts to engage with potential sponsors and corporate partners so these nonprofit programs can secure the necessary financial, in-kind, volunteer and capacity building support needed to grow. The Adaptive Sports Athlete Index will be conducted over the next 12 months, with a final report distributed in early 2016 that accurately identifies the “who/what/where?” of the participants, and “how much?” in regards to economic impact this community controls.


Net Impact UCLA Anderson

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In the sports world, the first part of January is jam packed with big news and lots of excitement. From football playoffs in the NCAA and the NFL, to the heart of competitive ski & snowboard season, to the start of the tennis circuit with the Australian Open, there's plenty to get fired up about. And it's no different for us at Sports and Social Change, as we have some great news to share...

I am big proponent of the "Social Enterprise" movement and have spent much of the past several years studying, learning and sharing ideas with colleagues in the sports, business, nonprofit and academic community about using business practices to address social issues. For the past few years I've been very involved with the Los Angeles chapter of the Social Enterprise Alliance, a national professional organization dedicated to driving the Social Enterprise movement at all levels. And this year, I'm honored to have been asked to serve on the board of the LA chapter, where I'll help guide the educational programs and resources we share in our community. LA has a thriving Social Enterprise culture, with dozens of business and nonprofit orgs who are taking innovative approaches to solving critical local, national and global issues. My goal is to take a lot of what's being accomplished here and share it with the sports community at large.


Social Enterprise Alliance

I've found some fantastic sports social enterprise brands throughout our industry, each of which has identified their own niche, a cause that drives them and a business model that fits. Some of my favorites include:

Through each purchase of Janji’s distinctive running apparel, a portion of proceeds funds organizations that are alleviating the worst problems related to food and water. By funding solutions and raising awareness through running apparel, Janji wants to create a nation of runners that run for another and eliminate the global food and water crisis.

Kourage Athletics
Kourage Athletics creates running apparel that is designed, manufactured, and managed in Kenya by Kenyans. Kourage garments are exported and sold in the developed countries with revenues reinvested into the Kenyan economy. Production for Kourage Athletics is sourced to a Kenyan owned and operated factory in Rift Valley, which is home to the greatest Kenyan runners.

Apparel brand 4Point4 sells uniforms for soccer, lacrosse and basketball, with 4.4 percent going back to a nonprofit org the user chooses. They're working with several orgs in our networking include, America Scores, US Soccer Foundation, Doc Wayne and Courts for Kids.

Hendrick Boards
Hendrick Boards manufactures and sells a line of eco-friendly, handcrafted maple and bamboo skateboard decks and apparel. But these skateboards are more than just good for the planet - they’re good for its furry inhabitants as well. Hendrick Boards gives 20 to 40 percent of the purchase price of each item to animal shelters and rescue programs.

Senda Athletics
Senda manufactures and sells Fair Trade certified soccer balls, uniforms and apparel that operates to “respect the people who make the products and the environment, and promote soccer as a tool to improve lives.” The company is committed to providing good working conditions and fair wages to the people making their products, and they work directly with nonprofit programs that are using soccer as a tool for development in their communities.

Pass It Forward
Pass It Forward sells soccer balls and accessories, and works through a "buy one/give one model" to provide equipment for nonprofit soccer programs around the world.

On the nonprofit side, there are a few orgs that have found ways to turn their assets and resources to revenue. The standout in my mind is definitely the soccer program Kick4Life, who opened a soccer facility in Lesotho in 2011 that they rent out to local teams. They've recently opened an attached restaurant, conference center and small hotel, so they can host events and also provide job skills training for their program participants. And all of the proceeds go back into running Kick4Life's health and education programs. Absolutely awesome!

Sports and Social Change is itself a Social Enterprise as well, as the revenue we generate through our marketing and public relations consulting go to providing free tools, resources and educational programs for nonprofit sports orgs in our network. We have big plans for this year, including a full site rebuild (yay!), great partner offers for marketing and social media support, and several marquee events.

And I look forward to learning more from my colleagues here in LA and throughout the Social Enterprise Alliance network so I can share everything with business execs, entrepreneurs, and nonprofit leaders in the sports community. While January is the kickoff, it's a long season and we want to make sure everyone in our circle has a game plan, good coaching and a fired up team who's ready to tackle the year ahead.

Game on!


Senda and Pass It Forward

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