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Inspired by her elementary teacher who was a mathematician and passionate about science, Dr. Luiza Nogaj, a young girl growing up in Poland, knew that she wanted to study Biology and Chemistry. Although science is not a subject readily associated with women, Dr. Nogaj was an exception. In 2005, she earned her PhD in Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, and Biochemistry from Brown University.

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Theo Marescaux, Will Moffat, and Pieter Palmers are three dads that love technology but felt that true imagination has taken a back seat and created Jooki.

In a recent advances in the study of the brain have revealed that listening to music may influence other activities for kids. The cerebral cortex self organises as we engage with different musical activities, skills in these areas may then transfer to other activities if the processes involved are similar. Some skills transfer automatically without our conscious awareness, others require reflection on how they might be utilised in a new situation.

 If you are a busy mom and looking for ways  to engage your kids with music. Tired of playing the same song for your child over and over on your smartphone? As digital platforms become commonplace to listen to music, it can be difficult for kids to listen to music without mom and dad’s help.

Co-Founder and CEO Theodore Marescaux’s inspiration for Jooki came from his three-year-old daughter. She’d asked him to play a song on his smartphone, and came back again and again to hear the same song. Marescaux, along with co-founders Will Moffat and Pieter Palmers created MuuseLabs in October 2014 to work on a product that would give children the autonomy to listen to music on their own.

“As fathers ourselves, we understand the need for a safe, hassle-free product,” Marescaux said. “Our goal has been to give the best to our children and we think that all kids should be able to enjoy the freedom and joy of music.”

Jooki with Jooki stars and tokens

Jooki with Jooki stars and tokens

Jooki is a stand alone jukebox for children to listen to music, audiobooks or stories with Jooki Stars. For parents who worry about handing a tablet or smartphone to their child to listen to music, Jooki is screenless device encouraging kids to use their imagination to listen to music rather than look at a screen. Jooki is kid friendly and easy to use. To play music, children place a Jooki Star on top of Jooki to hear the playlist assigned to that Jooki Star.

Jooki can be connected to surrounding devices via Bluetooth to stream music from an internet or Spotify radio station. To create a specific playlist ie, traveling, dancing or bedtime, place a Jooki star on top of Jooki, use a laptop or the companion Jooki app to drag and drop files from an Itunes library or Spotify and assign a playlist to the Jooki star.

To save parents from listening to Disney’s “Let it Go” for hours on end, Jooki sports a headphone jack and has expandable storage to hold 1000+ songs for offline play. Take Jooki anywhere and listen to music from high quality speakers at a sleepover party, on the way to school, Grandma and Grandpa’s house or even outside in the park. Jooki has 8 hours of battery time for those hours away from home and designed to withstand daily wear and tear. Jooki is sturdy and spill proof for active kids.

Suzanne Munson, Manager, Global Partnerships and Alliances Heifer International

 

Since 1944, nonprofit Heifer International has equipped and empowered families and communities around the world to build self-reliance that lifts people out of hunger and poverty. In her eight-year tenure, Manager of Global Partnerships & Alliances Suzanne Munson has witnessed these inclusive, sustainable methods transform numerous lives.

“Our holistic approach to ending hunger and poverty is what makes our work effective,” Munson says. Since dire straits have no single culprit, the solution must address all causes. Values-based holistic community development (VBHCD) is the multi-pronged approach Heifer uses. “It means we work directly with small-scale farmers and their families to identify what they need to thrive,” Munson explains. Project participants — many of them women — receive training and assets: gifts of livestock, seeds and trees, access to clean water and improved sanitation and hygiene. In this way, Heifer ensures those with little opportunity get the tools to lift themselves out of poverty.

Fanny

Fanny

Heifer employs in-country teams who speak the language and understand the culture and issues that contribute to hunger, poverty and marginalization. This accelerates the process of inclusion, which is inherent in Heifer’s holistic approach. These teams work throughout the life of a project to train leaders to continue the work after Heifer is gone. “This is the true sustainability of Heifer’s model,” Munson says. “Communities learns to be self-reliant, independent.” This thread is continued with Passing on the Gift®, a promise each recipient makes to pass on gifts of training and livestock to other members in the community. With a typical “pass on” rate of seven to nine generations, the offspring of each original animal benefits seven to nine more families. “We have seen this incredible model build social capital and foster inclusion in an amazing way,” Munson says.

Countless incredible women have emerged from Heifer’s fold. “I’ve met so many strong, brilliant women during my time at Heifer,” Munson says, including Fanny in the mangroves of Ecuador. Fanny is an activist and fierce advocate for families whose livelihoods on the coast have been threatened by the invasion of large shrimping companies. “They buy up all the land,” Munson explains, “and clear cut the precious mangrove forests, ruining the natural ecosystem by setting up artificial shrimp ponds that leak chemicals and toxins into the communities’ water supply.” These people used to have an abundance of crab, shrimp, mussels and clams. Now they have barely enough to feed their families. Fanny’s work to defend the rights of the community and protect the mangroves is dangerous. She’s been shot at, threatened, and witnessed a number of atrocities,” Munson says. “She’s seen defiant community members killed and entire hamlets of houses burned down as warnings to stop interfering.” Nevertheless, Fanny continues to persist to address food insecurity, and for the mangroves, hoping to one day regain all that’s been lost.

Hear more from Suzanne Munson as she represents Heifer International on a panel at this year’s World Woman Summit, October 11-12 in Little Rock.

CHANGE THEIR WORLD. CHANGE YOURS. THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING.