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Old 03-17-2007, 11:26 AM   #16
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I think a new bikini is in the works...


....details?
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Old 03-17-2007, 07:15 PM   #17
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Jamila, I'm trying to write a little something for you but I'm at work and keep getting interrupted, so I'll put it together and email you when I get home tonight.

Molly, that would be wonderful.


Here is the latest interview with Bobby Shriver regarding (RED):


http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/ma...ut/?city_local


Lending a hand without a handout
By Steve Vockrodt

Sunday, March 4, 2007

(Bobby Shriver, Product (RED) co-founder and John F. Kennedy’s nephew, signs a book for Colleen Pesci Saturday at Gap, 643 Mass. The book is a (RED) Gap product. Product (RED) seeks to raise money for charitable causes by diverting a portion of the price of certain items.)




Bobby Shriver says repeatedly he can’t stand asking people for money.

“Asking your friends for money is such a drag,” Shriver said Saturday morning, seated in The Jayhawker bar at the Eldridge Hotel, 701 Mass.


So Shriver’s not asking people for money. But if people are going to spend money, Shriver hopes they spend it a certain way.

Shriver, who’s John F. Kennedy’s nephew, co-founded Product (RED), a business model linked with several large corporations to send a portion of profits to the Global Fund.

The other co-founder is Bono, the lead singer of U2.



Product (RED) shows up in several places in Lawrence: in the storefront of Gap, on Motorola cell phones, on Apple iPods.

A portion of profits made on merchandise bearing the Product (RED) logo — the word red in parentheses — goes toward helping pay for medication for AIDS patients in Africa.



Product (RED) doesn’t call itself a charity. It operates on the idea that if consumers will buy something they need or want, they should have the choice to buy a product that will send a cut of the total price to a humanitarian cause.

“They’re going to buy a cell phone anyway,” Shriver said. “Why not buy a (RED) cell phone?”



Shriver himself is an embodiment of his own project: On Saturday morning, he talks on his (RED) cell phone, wears a (RED) hooded sweatshirt, a pair of (RED) shoes and a (RED) scarf from Gap around his neck.

However much he paid for that scarf, 50 percent of the profit Gap made from it — and all other Gap merchandise with the Product (RED) logo sold — was set to go to the Global Fund.



Since launching in the United States last year, Product (RED) has sent $11 million to the Global Fund.

Shriver says the Product (RED) model is different because he expects it will continue to make money for the Global Fund, rather than asking for money from corporations on a case-by-case basis.



Seated across from Shriver is Mark Booth, a member of the Booth family whose donation helped build the Kansas University Athletics Hall of Fame.

He’s sold on the Product (RED) idea.

“I have a sense of contribution rather than a sense of consumption,” Booth said.



Booth and Shriver became friends through a mutual involvement in the Special Olympics.

It was Shriver’s involvement in the Special Olympics that got him linked to Bono.

In 1987, Shriver produced the first “A Very Special Christmas” album, a compilation of mainstream bands and artists performing renditions of holiday songs that included U2. Proceeds from sales of those albums went to the Special Olympics.

“We sold a bazillion copies,” Shriver said. “It was unbelievable. That was back when people bought records.”



From there, Shriver and Bono became friends and partners in several projects.

One of those was the Jubilee 2000 Coalition, a movement for the forgiveness of debt for underdeveloped countries.

Once many of those debts were forgiven, Shriver and Bono realized that health care problems in Africa were going to lead countries there back into steep debt.

“With all the money we saved in debt relief, it was going to be eaten up by health care,” Shriver said.



That was one of the early developments of the Product (RED) idea.

But Shriver said he couldn’t rely on governments alone to raise money for health care in Africa.



“We thought, you know, what we’ve got to figure out is a way to get money from the private sector in on this thing,” Shriver said. “And we hate asking people for money.”

They got part of their idea for the Product (RED) model from Robert Rubin, the secretary of the Treasury for Bill Clinton.

“He said, ‘You guys got to be like Nike,’” Shriver said. “You’ve got to market yourselves like Nike.”



Thus, the color red and its simple logo became Product (RED)’s Nike swoosh, a simple and marketable icon that could be tied to merchandise and products offered by major corporations.

Shriver said the first companies he and Bono approached were reluctant about the idea.

“Companies are nervous (that) people are going to think you’re going to make money off AIDS in Africa,” Shriver said.



So far, Product (RED) has gotten a handful of companies to sign on to the business model.

Shriver was in Lawrence Saturday to attend the Kansas University basketball game and then head out to Kansas City to try to sell other corporations on the Product (RED) idea.



He believes if the Product (RED) concept circulates to enough consumers, then other companies will accept the model.

“The big idea is if enough companies come to believe there are a lot of people like that, they’re going to think, ‘Uh-oh, we better market this stuff and make it (RED).’”

----------------------------------------------------------------------


BE PROUD, BE STRONG, BE (RED)!
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Old 03-17-2007, 11:20 PM   #18
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Jamila...check your email.
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Old 03-17-2007, 11:40 PM   #19
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Thanks for the article, Jamila!
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Old 03-18-2007, 08:04 AM   #20
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Thanks for the article, Jamila!

You're very welcomed, Babydoll.


Thank you VERY MUCH, JCOSTER and Val for your responses - they were very honest and eloquent.


What the article will be is a response to the public media WHY WE BUY (RED).

Afterall, it is our money which is going to the Global Fund because of (RED) so why shouldn't the media HEAR FROM US!


Maybe that will temper their criticism of what is a perfectly good business model on how to involve the private sector into social justice issues (i.e., social entrepreneurship).


I'll keep y'all updated and I will still gladly receive your testimomials.
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Old 03-18-2007, 10:00 AM   #21
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This is the best idea to counter all that negative press that (RED) has had recently. I will definitly send you a letter . I'm a huge supporter of Product (RED) . All my friends are too.
The media is so fast to condemn, they always play up the negative. Now they will hear from us, thanks to you!
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Old 03-18-2007, 10:00 AM   #22
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Old 03-18-2007, 12:31 PM   #23
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JC


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Old 03-18-2007, 10:49 PM   #24
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Originally posted by jaynejenjune
This is the best idea to counter all that negative press that (RED) has had recently. I will definitly send you a letter . I'm a huge supporter of Product (RED) . All my friends are too.
The media is so fast to condemn, they always play up the negative. Now they will hear from us, thanks to you!

Thank you jaynejenjune for capturing the EXACT reason WHY the article NEEDS to be written.

I mean, if the people who are supporting (RED) with their purchases don't have problems with the initiative, why should people who don't BUY (RED) worry about it?


What are they losing? Or is this just another veiled personal attack by the media on Bono?

And if that is what is going on, then attack Bono personally so he can defend himself if he chooses but don't take money out of this program by sullying the reputation of (RED) so gullible people may not want to buy it!



The only people that will really end up suffering are the people in Africa who so desparately need their ARV's to continue to life and children who have been orphaned by AIDS who will not receive the care that they need.

That is unconscienable to me and that is why I want us - the consumers - to speak out on this matter.


And thanks so much, my friend, I have received your testimonial for (RED). EXCELLENT!
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Old 03-18-2007, 11:43 PM   #25
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My sons 2nd grade is making a listing of red words for new T shirts and sending them to Bono.
Oh that is so cool!!!
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Old 03-19-2007, 07:51 AM   #26
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Hey Jamila, thanks for posting this interesting article. I've been looking for details about exactly how Product (RED) came to be.
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Old 03-19-2007, 09:39 AM   #27
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You're very welcomed, my friend.
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Old 03-19-2007, 11:43 AM   #28
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For those of you who watch Amazing Race, one of the guys was wearing a HAMME(RED) shirt on the episode last night.
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Old 03-19-2007, 05:20 PM   #29
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(RED) scarf-bacause philly is freezing!!!
bono dress up day--lol
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Old 03-20-2007, 12:59 AM   #30
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^ wow even the shoes!

That's a RED scarf? Cool!
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