BCBSNC Foundation Launches www.inspirednc.org

Published:
January 26, 2012

BCBSNC Foundation Challenges North Carolinians to Get Inspired, Inspire Others

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Contact: BCBSNC Media Line: 919-765-3005


For Immediate Release
January 26, 2012

BCBSNC Foundation Challenges North Carolinians to Get Inspired, Inspire Others with Launch of New Website

• Effort focuses on the individuals and organizations committed to finding solutions to some of today’s most pressing health issues, including access to dental care, childhood obesity and the uninsured, among others.
• Through the sharing of stories, North Carolinians can help raise up to $100,000 to support the work of these organizations.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Stepping up to make a difference in light of daunting realities is the theme for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) Foundation’s launch of an exciting new digital storytelling initiative –Inspired (www.inspirednc.org). In an effort to showcase the contributions of local leaders and groups who sometimes go unnoticed, Inspired spotlights the philanthropic works of North Carolina nonprofit organizations and community leaders who are changing their communities for the better. The effort captures the passion and dedication of some of the state’s unsung heroes who are working diligently to improve the lives of their neighbors.

“We recognize that every day in towns and cities across the state, North Carolinians are rolling up their sleeves and making a difference in their communities and the state as a whole,” says Kathy Higgins, president of the BCBSNC Foundation. “We are in awe of the feats many of these organizations have accomplished – they’re committed to a bigger solution and are working tirelessly to succeed. They’ve inspired those closest to them, they’ve inspired us, and now we hope they will inspire others across our state.”

One of the most exciting elements of Inspired is the opportunity for visitors to the site to support the work of those BCBSNC Foundation grantees featured in the stories. Each time an online user shares a story through Facebook, Twitter or email, the BCBSNC Foundation will contribute $1 to a fund that will be divided among the nonprofits highlighted on the site. The goal of the campaign is to have stories shared 100,000 times, resulting in $100,000 for these worthy organizations. The nonprofits included as part of Inspired are:

• Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project
• Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation
• Charlotte Community Health Clinic (North Carolina Association of Free Clinics)
• Greene County Health, Inc.
• North Carolina Academy of Family Physicians
• North Carolina Council of Churches
• North Carolina Dental Health Fund
• North Carolina Parent Teacher Association
• Southside United Health Center
• Sparkplugs for a Healthy North Carolina (The Rensselaerville Institute)

“It is a real honor to have our work showcased in such a way,” said Carolyn Ward, CEO of the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. “Our goal through Kids in Parks is to get children and families outside. The message we want to share is get unplugged and get outdoors. Ironically, we hope sharing this message online is an “aha” moment for parents to disconnect and go outside with their families. That’s a message we feel is worth forwarding on to your family and friends.”

“It’s no small task to mobilize a whole generation to get more active, or to take dental care where it is most needed, but that’s what these nonprofits are doing. They are the lifeline for communities in need,” added Higgins. “The challenges being faced are enormous in size, but the stories of people helping people should inspire us all to pass the message along – because the more people we reach the healthier our communities can become.”

The overriding message according to Ward is that big change can start small. “I hope this initiative helps people realize they can make a difference in their own community – it only takes one person with a passion to make an impact.”


About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation is a separate, independent, nonprofit Foundation dedicated to improving the health and well-being of North Carolinians. The Foundation's focus areas include: Health of Vulnerable Populations - improving health outcomes of populations served by safety net organizations; Healthy Active Communities - increasing physical activity and encouraging healthy eating habits; and Community Impact through Nonprofit Excellence - increasing the effectiveness of nonprofit organizations.  BCBSNC Foundation invests programs and services in response to grant requests and proactively creates initiatives or partners with organizations to address specific needs. It also coordinates several Signature Programs, among them, the Be Active Kids® and Healthy Community Institute for Nonprofit Excellence.  More information is available at www.bcbsncfoundation.org.


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