Category Archives: Causes

On Saturday, I had the fortune of attending and being back stage at the Bridge School Benefit Concert in Mountain View, CA. Before jumping into the concert, I want to share a bit more about the Bridge School and the impact that this benefit has on the students.

The annual concert, now in it’s 23rd year, is the primary source of funding for the Bridge School. The school was founded in 1986 and opened to students in 1987 and my brother, Peter Schlegel, was a member of the inaugural class. Founded by Pegi Young and Jim Forderer, the school was created to meet the needs of kids with severe speech and physical impairments. A group that is marginalized more often than not, the focus on these kids prepares them to lead fulfilling lives.

IMG_0613The concert itself was an amazing musical experience. This year, the show featured Neil Young, No Doubt, Chris Martin (of Coldplay), Jimmy Buffet, Sheryl Crow, Monsters of Folk, Fleet Foxes, Wolfmother and Gavin Rossdale. Adam Sandler is scheduled to perform in place of Jimmy Buffet during the Sunday show. What’s unique about this benefit is that the artists all perform acoustic sets.

No Doubt was by far my favorite performer of the day. Students from the school are seated on the stage behind the artists, which presents a challenge for the musicians, performing for both the kids and the audience at Shoreline Amphitheater. Gwen Stefani and her band were the most successful with that by singing to both the kids and the audience throughout the set. Chris Martin was also amazing. As a solo performer, singing Coldplay songs, he had the unique challenge of using just his voice and a piano to woo the 20,000 or so people in the audience. He did it beautifully and was joined by a violin-playing friend of his after the first song. He was funny, making jokes about his bad choice in hat (which had a “where’s Waldo?” feel) and sharing an incredible musical performance.

Earlier in the evening, Jimmy Buffet took the stage with his happy island music and all had a good time dancing to songs like “Margaritaville”. Sheryl Crow shared an emotional set featuring a lullaby she composed for her son. Monsters of Folk and Fleet Foxes were new bands to me but both impressed the crowd, making the most of the acoustic sets. I was a little late so I missed Wolfmother and Gavin Rossdale but I heard good reviews from the people around me.

This is the one show I look forward to every year. The tickets seem a little pricey but you always get your money worth and it’s all for a good cause. I realize that this post has absolutely nothing to do with social media but is an event that I want to share with the community, especially bay area based people who may be interested in attending next year.

To learn more about the Bridge School, please visit:

To check out the videos I recorded at the concert head over to my YouTube page:

By Miiko Mentz @miikomentz

Today at the BlogWorld New Media Expo in Las Vegas, CNN Anchor Don Lemon (@donlemoncnn) talked about an idea he and BeEverywhere Co-founder Tamara Knechtel (@tamaraknechtel) came up with a week ago when they were out to dinner discussing the power of social media. Together they came up with the idea to use social media for social good and set a record using social media while raising money for cancer research.

Tamara contacted Guinness World Records and a few companies and got them to sign on and participate in this contest to set a record for the most tweets using the hashtag #beatcancer in a 24-hour period and raise money at the same time.

The #beatcancer contest is a great demonstration of how social media is changing the way people receive information, raise money, and give to charity; so whether you are at BlogWorld New Media Expo or not, take a second and add the hashtag #beatcancer to all your tweets, Facebook status updates or blog posts.

Check out this video of Don talking about the #beatcancer contest, and check back later to watch our interview with him.

#beatcancer  #bwe09

A new book was just released by Bob Gilbreath called The Next Evolution of Marketing: Connect with Your Customers by Marketing with Meaning. With full disclosure here, I can tell you that the author lives here in Cincinnati and that my husband works with him at Bridge Worldwide, an interactive marketing firm.

pink_ribbonI bring it up because you can currently download a free sample chapter of the book. In itself, that’s nothing special. However, if you download that chapter in the next few hours, Bridge Worldwide will donate to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation$1 for every 10 downloads.

Seeing as how it’s Breast Cancer Awareness month, and considering that a lot of you are interested in marketing, it’s pretty much a win-win.


Tweet Michelle @writetechnology, send her technology news at michelle[at]writetech[dot]net, visit her wine blog when you’re thirsty, and drop by her day job.

3Banana has selected five charities to share in $10,000 in its Share to Win contest. Over 50 non-profits were nominated to the challenge.
Each cause created a note on 3banana describing why people should care about their mission and then shared a link to their note through Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and email. 3banana selected the winners based on the number of unique users who wrote an online comment endorsing the cause.

The winning charities are

  • The SENS Foundation Grand prize: $5,000 – Develops and promotes widespread access to regenerative medicine solutions to the disabilities and diseases of aging.
  • Los Angeles Habilitation House Second Prize: $2,000 – Helps create and maintain jobs for persons with disabilities and veterans with PTSD or traumatic brain injury.
  • Disaster Accountability Project Third Prize, Environment: $1,000 – Improves disaster management systems through public accountability, citizen oversight and empowerment, whistle-blower engagement, and policy research and advocacy.
  • Art in All of Us Third Prize, Education: $1,000 – Promotes tolerance and cultural exchanges by creative and art activities in schools around the world.
  • Institute of HeartMath Third Prize, Health: $1,000 – Researches stress, emotional physiology, and the heart-brain interaction to improve health, well being and quality of life.

“We are very honored to accept this prize. This contest has really opened our eyes to the possibilities of furthering our cause using social networks,” said Dr. Aubrey de Grey, Chief Science Officer for the SENS Foundation. “Thousands of our supporters shared their words of encouragement for our mission, and this effort has created more dialog between our organization and our supporters.”

As someone who teaches social media to non-profits on a regular basis, I’m pretty happy that 3 Banana so easily taught non-profits about new ways to distribute their message and increase awareness. More detailed information on all of the participating non-profits can be found at on the 3 Banana Results page.


Tweet Michelle @writetechnology, send her technology news at michelle[at]writetech[dot]net, visit her wine blog when you’re thirsty, and drop by her day job.

By Miiko Mentz

If you don’t have plans tonight and want to mingle with a few friendly folks who are active in Silicon Valley’s social media scene, then head on over to Cielo Lounge atop Hotel Valencia at Santana Row in San Jose. It starts at 5:30 and if it’s anything like last month’s tweetup it will go well into the night.

At last month’s Silicon Valley Tweetup, which was the second one to take place, we met up with Michael Brito of Intel. Brito started the monthly Silicon Valley Tweetups in July and it’s been quite a success. In our video interview with him, he shares with us why he started it and how it’s a great way to bring people together and at the same time support a good cause — the Anissa Lopez Foundation and George Mark Children’s House.

Tonight’s Silicon Valley Tweetup is sponsored by Lithium Technologies. Also, our very own Brian Solis will be on hand tonight for a book signing of his latest book “Putting the Public Back in Public Relations,” which was co-authored with Deirdre Breakenridge. Copies of the book will be on sale and the profits will be donated to the Anissa Lopez Foundation and George Mark Children’s House.

hashtag: #svtweetup

Follow me on Twitter: @MiikoMentz

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