In 1998 in the aftermath of the deadly Hurricane Mitch, Richard and Dee Lawrence traveled to Honduras to see how they could help. They soon noticed a clear connection between the poor ventilation inside homes and high rates of respiratory illness. As a result, they developed Proyecto Mirador, a template for building clean cookstoves that would benefit the health and environment of individuals and families in rural Honduras. This was the inspiration behind their current organization, Cool Effect, a Greenbrae-based nonprofit dedicated to carbon emissions reduction.
“We were inspired to found Cool Effect after almost 10 years experience with Proyecto Mirador,” write the founders. “We’ve seen firsthand that supporting technologies that reduce CO2 is a powerful way to reduce personal emissions, but that process isn’t easy for everyone to trust, access, or understand.”
In essence, Cool Effect “finds the best carbon-busting projects from around the globe, so together we can create a cumulative effect to cool the planet.” Those interested in aiding the cause, can choose to donate any of many projects that appeal to them, from Wind Power to the People, which works to help Costa Rica reach carbon neutrality by 2021; Waste Not Want Not, which works throughout Vietnam to redirect methane into clean energy; or A Breath of Fresh Air, which helps protect nearly 450,000 acres from deforestation in San Martin, Peru, among others.
Since launching in August 2016, Cool Effect has already retired over 10,000 tons of carbon. With Cool Effect, the message is clear; any individual has the power to make a difference in the fight against climate change.
In November 2016, Napa Valley Vintners donated $6 million to help fund a new OLE Health medical facility, slated to open in south Napa by 2018.
“We want our investment to inspire others in the community to give generously to the new OLE Health South Napa Campus,” commented Emma Swain, CEO of St. Supery Estate Vineyards & Winery and chair of the NVV board of directors. “Its services are critical to tens of thousands of Napa County residents. We challenge local residents to add their own contributions to help raise the remaining $3.6 million needed to build the facility. We hope our confidence in OLE Health is the endorsement others in Napa County need to support this important project.”
Also in November, OLE Health received a donation of $500,000 from the Beckstoffer family of North Coast winegrape growers toward the planned $30 million clinic.
The South Napa Campus is expected to service more than 15,000 patients annually with a range of offerings that will include primary care, behavioral health, dental, optometry, pediatrics and full-scope women’s health services, among others.
The facility will include 22 patient exam rooms, 10 consultation rooms, nine dental chairs, an in-house pharmacy and triage space, as well as a vision center, a laboratory for onsite tests, a teaching kitchen and a community garden.
Donations in any amount can be made on the OLE Health Building Better Napa website.
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