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Kids lose their future to poverty

Reposted from The Huffington Post 

marc huff poNow that one school year is over and we are preparing for the next, June is a month of reflection for educators and parents on how to do better next school year. It is hard enough for students to learn at school in today’s world. You throw in overcrowding, teacher to student ratios, poverty affecting too many students and lack of funding for supplies, and it becomes almost impossible for the average student to get ahead.

The New York Daily News reported that in New York City, 6,313 classes ( 200 more than last year) were overcrowded, based on the teacher’s union contract which sets 34 kids as the limit in high schools and 25 in kindergarten. In these classrooms, kids were sitting on the floors or standing, the whole period. It is tough to imagine how children can function in these overcrowded situations, let alone how can teachers concentrate and keep the kids interested? How can these kids learn when they are sitting on top of each other?

Add, on top of this, 16 million children in the USA (22% of all children) live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level of $23,550 a year (which is $65 a day) for a family of four, according to the National Center of Children in Poverty. These children are far more likely to have limited access to sufficient food (known as food insecurity). And with Congress cutting out $8.6 billion from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (known as SNAP) earlier this year, these kids just got a little bit hungrier. The states where the most kids go hungry include New Mexico at 29.2%, Mississippi at 28.7%, Arizona at 28.2% and Georgia and Nevada both at 28.1%. How can these kids learn when they go to school hungry?

Now look at the 1.2 million children in the USA who are homeless. Forty-one states saw a rise in homelessness among school-aged children. According to the  American Institutes for Research, homeless children have four times as many respiratory infections, twice as many ear infections, five times more gastrointestinal problems and four times more likely to have asthma. And when at school, they have three times the rate of emotional and behavioral problems compared to non-homeless children. How can these kids learn when they have so many personal problems?

Poverty and poor performance go hand in hand in school. DoSomething.org reports that children living in poverty have a higher number of absenteeism or leave school all together because they are more likely to have to work or care for family members. Dropout rates of 16-24 year old students from low income families are seven times more likely than those from families with higher income. By the end of the fourth grade, low income students are already two years behind, and by the twelfth grade, they are four years behind. How can these kids perform when they are adults, when they fall so far behind in school?

The USA educational system is ranked as the fourteenth best in the world. South Korea is number one, followed by Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Finland, UK, Canada, The Netherlands, Ireland, Poland, Denmark, Germany and Russia. Why is the most powerful nation in the world ranked in the middle of the pack in educating its children? Last year $1.15 trillion was spent on education in the US, of which 10.8% came from federal funds and the rest from state and local contributions. You would think that is enough to educate every student, rich or poor, but obviously it was not sufficient.

The US sure has a lot of things to fix to break into the top ten countries in educating its kids. Since the vast majority of funding for education falls back to the states and local communities, local help is where it has got to begin. It has to fix the children who go hungry and the children of the poor. There are great organizations to contribute to for this—like Save the Children and the Children’s Defense League to help these less fortunate kids. We have to fix the homeless children situation where organizations like Stand Up for Kids and NationalHomeless.org focus on these suffering children. And somehow we have to get the right equipment into the hands of these poor kids, like the right books, pencils, paper and calculators so they can keep up with everyone else in their classrooms. At DollarDays on our Facebook page, we are giving away backpacks stuffed with school supplies to four different classrooms (25 of the stuffed backpacks to each classroom), so make sure you nominate your favorite teacher or school or town to win these backpacks.

I wish we could just flip a switch and poverty and hunger and homelessness would disappear for our kids, but we all know that won’t happen. Who chooses what kids are born into wealth and those who are born to live on the streets? Who chooses the kids who suffer in overcrowded schools or those who go to schools with sophisticated arts, music and computer programs? Back in 1918, the US House of Representatives passed the American Creed, which states “The United States of America is a government of the people, by the people and for the people, established on the principles of freedom, equality, justice and humanity for all.” It is up to all of us to bring these poor, hungry and homeless children up to the standards our forefathers envisioned for all of us, and we need to start today.

May 31, 2014   No Comments

Winners from our May $5,000 Merchandise Giveaway!

may14contest_160x300During May 2014, DollarDays had a $5,000 merchandise giveaway for military families that were nominated by our Facebook fans. In anticipation of the Memorial Day celebration in the United States, and in honor of those who have served our country, DollarDays committed $5,000 in merchandise to these heroes who keep us safe every day of the year. DollarDays would like to thank all of those who have served.

The military families who won in the giveaway are:
Lee Shearer Family    $2,000 shopping spree
Troy Ellis  $1,000 shopping spree
Morneo Family  $500 shopping spree
Each of the following military families received a $100 shopping spree:
Carl and Ashley Coker, William Mcassie, Lt. Tetyana Muirhead, Boots on the Ground, Williams Family, Peter Mason, Mitch & Hillary Braswell, Valles Family, Matthew and Mikai Roberson, Vitali Shatkouski, Macedo Family, Holland Family, Chad and Shelby Erickson, Robert and Allison Frain.
Congratulations to everyone. You will each receive an email with instructions on how to proceed with your shopping spree! We pay shipping too! Check your spam folders in case you don’t get your email. If you see someone on this list who YOU nominated, let them know!

June’s Facebook giveaways is 100 pre-filled backpacks for teachers, classrooms, schools or any organizations that care for kids. The backpacks have all the essentials kids need for school! Four nominees will each receive 25 pre-filled backpacks. Be sure to nominate a school, a teacher or an organization that could use the help.FB Click On Like

 

May 31, 2014   No Comments

Sneak preview of the new DollarDays website!

You may or may not know that DollarDays has been working on creating a new website since last year. We are getting incredibly close to launching a beautiful new site that is visually appealing, easier to navigate, has a personality and is fun! Resound Agency in Tempe, Ariz has been the harbinger of our success and we could have never done this enormous feat without their amazing creative direction.

Below are a few snippets of the site so you can get an idea of what the new DollarDays site will look like. Our color theme throughout the site is orange, blue and green—with a lot of white space!! The navigation has been improved to help you find what you’re looking for must faster and easier. The products are displayed so that you can see more of them on one page and you can get a quick view of any product. Once you are logged in, depending on whether you are a consumer, business or non-profit, you can click on the correlating box and see the hottest products related to your customer type.

Pretty cool, right? We’re so excited about it. We expect to launch it to the public in early July. Meanwhile, our coders are working night and day to make it as user friendly and full of personality as they possibly can!

Feel free to leave a comment or suggestion! Pass it on!

new site

 

May 23, 2014   No Comments

Do You Really Save Money By Buying Online?

Trying to save money shopping online can be exhausting. Entire industries have grown up online to help you save money, but you can spend so much time trying to figure out what to do that in the long run, it’s not even worth it to save a couple of dollars.


(Photo credit: StormKatt via photopin cc)

So Many Options!

For instance, there are several coupon sites you can go to that aggregate coupon codes from online merchants so you have one place to look. Sites like RetailMeNot.com, CouponCabin.com and BradsDeals.com pull together this information so you can take the codes to sites to help save money.

There are rebate sites like Ebates.com and FatWallet.com that give you cash back on all the purchases you make on their deal sites. There are daily deal sites like Groupon.com, LivingSocial.com, NoMoreRack.com and 1SaleDay.com that will inundate your email box with great deals every single day.

You start to add all this up with coupons, rebates, deal of the day sites, etc., and a serious shopper could be spending their entire morning bouncing back and forth trying to figure out where to save that extra dollar.

Now comparison shopping sites like PriceGrabber.com, Google Shopping, Shopping.com and Shopzilla.com have begun to streamline the exercise of shopping by letting you compare the same item on one page with prices from several different selling sites. This is progress for the hurried shopper.

Money-Saving Secret

But the hidden secret of the Internet is the emergence of warehouse club sites that take away all the fluff, and if you are willing to buy in a little bit larger quantities, they truly save you money.


Sure, it may look intimidating, but warehouse clubs can save you some serious money. (Photo credit: kenteegardin via photopin cc)

Go to Costco.com; they have thousands of items on their site that can not only be found in the warehouse club stores and bought online, but many new additional items can be bought just online from them. Look at their brand Kirkland baby wipes and baby diapers. What new family does not need a case of those to survive the week? Their pricing on this high-demand commodity item beats all the coupon sites, rebate sites and even the deal sites.

Go to BJ’s Wholesale Club Site and find supplies for your home office from recognized brand names like Hammermill Paper, which verifies the better pricing of this newer group of sites that actually do save you money.

DollarDays.com supplies over 300,000 general merchandise products at wholesale and closeout pricing that falls right in line with these wholesale club sites. Here, the consumer can find all the back-to-school products, health and beauty products and all the snacks they need to fill their pantries or the clothing needed to fill their closets.

Internet entrepreneurs try to figure out the most efficient way to get you the best deal. That is why lots of ideas are thrown against the wall and over time, with a few developing into winners. And this will be how Internet shopping sorts itself out to become the most efficient way save money on the products that you really need and want. Will the coupon sites be the winners, will the rebate sites prevail, or is it the deal sites that rise above the rest? Maybe all three will win; it just depends on what you are looking to buy.

Marc Joseph is the founder of DollarDays.com, the premier online wholesaler that helps small businesses compete against larger enterprises and nonprofit organizations find the products they need to support their causes.

Reprinted from Mint.com.

May 15, 2014   No Comments

April’s Facebook Small Business Award Winners!

apr14contest_160x300 (1)Thank you to the thousands of people who nominated businesses in their home towns to receive an award in our $5,000 merchandise giveaway during April.  There were entries from Alaska to Maine.

As you know, DollarDays is a HUGE fan of small businesses and supports them throughout the year.  We believe small businesses are the backbone of our country and we’d like to say thanks to all of you for working hard, especially the winners of April’s $5,000 merchandise giveaway!

First place winner receives a $2,000 shopping spree, second place, a $1000 shopping spree and third place, a $500 shopping spree. Fifteen each won $100 shopping spree. And we pay shipping too! All they have to do is shop! And the winners are:

Award Name of Business Nominated City & State  
1st PLACE $2,000 Wicked Blue Box Chicago, IL
2nd PLACE $1,000 Changing Hands Tempe, AZ
3rd PLACE $500 River Market Community Co-op Stillwater, MN
$100 Evolution Studio Harrison, OH
$100 Beaded Couture Conyers, GA
$100 Joe & Bj’s Trading Post Georgetown, KY
$100 Arresting Desgins Texarkana, AR
$100 Lisa’s Crochet & More Atkins, AR
$100 Southern Gypsy Bishop, TX
$100 Creative Options Delaware, OH
$100 Mail and More of Redmond Redmond, OR
$100 Chippy’s Popcorn Creations Beaver Dam, WI
$100 Wigglebutt Inn Naples, FL
$100 Goodbyes Consignment Sarasota, Florida
$100 Just Adorable Gifts Woodland Hills, CA
$100 Say Computer Owosso, MI
$100 Cesar’s Mexican and Greek Restaurant Albuquerque, NM
$100 Steve’s Locksmith Highland, MI

Winners will be notified by email with instructions on how to redeem their awards! Congratulations everyone! Please post your win on your Facebook page and let your friends know how much we honor small businesses!

Be sure to nominate a military family you know for our May $5,000 Merchandise Giveaway on Facebook.

 

April 30, 2014   No Comments

Teacher Julie Ahern from Waukegan wins Hero Award

Mrs. Ahern's students are so gracious!

Mrs. Ahern’s students are so gracious!

Below is an email we received from a very special friend of DollarDays, second grade teacher Julie Ahern from Waukegan, IL, who we met through one of our Facebook merchandise giveaways where she was a winner, and we’ve stayed in touched ever since. We asked our fans to vote for her to win this award. We posted it on Facebook, Twitter and even our blog. We’re not sure how much of an impact we had, but were are so happy that she won this award AND her first trip to California!

It’s very rewarding to us that our fans took the time to help Julie win this award. A little kindness goes a long, long way!

Dear DollarDays,
I am very happy to share with you that, thanks to people like you and the Dollar Days’ fans, I did receive enough votes to become the American Federation of Teachers Everyday Hero Teacher winner.Smile  
 
This afternoon our school secretary called down to my classroom on the intercom to say that I had a telephone call. I shared that I had my students with me. She said, “It’s from AFT.” My students and I all looked at each other and I said, “Right, line up, we’re headed to the office!” I brought the phone out to the hallway and my students got to hear first hand the good news. Their loud cheers really warmed my heart. This summer I am invited to the AFT convention in Los Angeles —my first trip to California. Pinch me!
 
My Sincere Gratitude, 
Mrs. Julie Ahern
2nd Grade Teacher
Andrew Cooke Magnet Elementary School
Waukegan, IL  60085

April 28, 2014   No Comments

Meet our new VP of Merchandising

steve walkerWe have some exciting news to share with you!

We have a new VP of Merchandising, Steve Walker, who comes from a successful background in merchandising, with the majority of his tenure at Safeway and SuperValu stores.

Steve has just completed his first week at DollarDays with flying colors! He is excited about his new position and is already making plans to “move the needle” in our merchandising department. Steve’s commitment is the value he places on relationships.  He believes that “moving the needle” includes the entire team, which is why he values all relationships.

Steve’s plans for the next few weeks include calling all of our vendors to introduce himself and learn how he can best serve them as a DollarDays vendor. For those of you who would like to call Steve, feel free to phone him at 480.922.8155 ext 109 or email at swalker@dollardays.com.

This is a big change for all of us—you, DollarDays and Steve. It’s an opportunity for you to voice ideas you believe will enhance the relationship, and ultimately help you sell more products. And it’s an opportunity for DollarDays to create the environment that is a catalyst for sales growth, which is great news for all of us.

A little about Steve (in case you were wondering)—he is a progressive and broadly experienced leader with a solid track record of success in merchandising. His experience in dealing with suppliers and in every facet of the retail and wholesale industry helps ensure that the DollarDays site continues to have a robust assortment of products to offer its customers. Steve is collaborative, resourceful, and innovative in driving positive impact with our vendors. Walker graduated summa cum laude with a BS in Accounting from the University of Tulsa and an MS in Management from University of St. Thomas, summa cum laude as well. Want to know more, visit his LinkedIn profile.

 

 

April 23, 2014   No Comments

THIS is How To Pay for College

pickuoguitarclubBy Guest Blogger Jack Ross
Co-Founder, PickupGuitarClub.com
Like many, Jack Ross, a high school student from Washington D.C., falls in financial aid no man’s land. With most colleges topping $45,000 a year, his chance of leaving school in four years without a crippling amount of debt is bleak. Despite his near perfect test scores and GPA, scholarships are few and far between. So, he decided to fund his own schooling by teaching others.

Jack and his best friend, Brian Abod, recently launched a Kickstarter crowdfunding effort for their music education website PickupGuitarClub.com.

Jack is a self-taught software developer who built his first tablet computer at age 12, and Brian is a self-taught multi-instrumentalist. Together they developed a learning environment that is the first of its kind.

Centered on gamification and popular songs, their website turns learning guitar into an enjoyable experience. Jack developed polyphonic note-recognition software that listens to the guitar as it is played, rewarding players’ improvement and demonstrating how to improve where needed. The intuitive user interface breaks down every part of guitar from notes and rhythm to technique and chord shapes, making it easier than ever to follow along.

Brian taught himself guitar through songs and designed the curriculum in the same way. Songs like Sweet Home Alabama, Wagon Wheel, and Hey There Delilah teach all the skills needed to play guitar – picking, fretting, scales, chords, and more.

It is like Guitar Hero for real guitar.

With the funding from Kickstarter, they will finish the development and launch their company. Profits from the company will go towards funding their college education.

Here is their video describing their project:
Embed: <iframe width=”480″ height=”360″ src=”https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/pickupguitarclub/pickup-guitar-club-finally-a-fun-way-to-learn-guit/widget/video.html” frameborder=”0″ scrolling=”no”> </iframe>
If you want to support these young men and their endeavors, visit their Kickstarter campaign page – bit.ly/PickupGuitarClub

A few words from DollarDays:
Jack Ross contacted Marc Joseph, CEO of DollarDays.com about an article Marc wrote last October for the Huffington Post, titled “It’s Too Expensive to go to College Anymore.” Jack asked us to take a look at his story to see if we would publish it, since Marc and Jack are basically coming from the same place about getting an education today: it’s hard to get money to pay for college.

DollarDays hopes you’ll take a look at their project and possibly donate a buck or two. We think these two young men are rising stars to watch!

 

April 14, 2014   No Comments

Dropshipping helps you make money online!

Your OWN business!If you’re an online reseller who sells on Amazon, eBay, etc., or you have an e-commerce site of your own, DollarDays’ wholesale product feed can help boost your sales with over 300,000 wholesale or closeout products! You can pick and choose which products you’d like to put on your site. Plus, we’ll ship the products for you!

We call this DollarDays’ Dropship Program—t’s such a simple way to earn money! With a DollarDays Dropship account, you’ll receive:

  • Access to over 300,000 wholesale products shipped directly to your customers
  • Easy to use administration site for managing and placing your dropship orders
  • Order history details tracked for your convenience
  • Packing slips that reflect your business
  • $9.95 shipping per dropship order in the continental US
  • 5% discount off every order!
  • Dedicated Dropship Specialist to help you

It’s easy to get started. Once you have selected which products you’ll carry, we take over from there! Your customer places an order with you. You order the products from our site and we ship the order to your customers with your logo and address on the packing slip. Pretty easy, right? If you are interested in learning more, click here.

April 10, 2014   No Comments

Distributorships Make it Easy to Start your own Online Store!

something newMaybe you’ve already thought about having your own online store, but realized you’re not tech savvy, nor do you want to put in the countless hours of managing all the functions from inventory to shipping and returns to customer service. It’s just too much time to devote to a part-time income.

You’re looking for a turnkey solution that requires no technical skills and virtually no management. DollarDays’ distributorship is the answer for an easy, extra revenue stream that only requires you to spread the word about your new website.

Here is how a Dollardays’ Distributorship works:
DollarDays will set up a personalized website with your name, company or logo at the top of every page. DollarDays is responsible for adding new products to your site and removing discontinued items as well as the overall maintenance of the site. Promoting your site to the businesses in your town and your neighbors will be the key to your success. Your volume and income will come with satisfied customers who look to you for reorders to keep their shelves full of hot selling merchandise.

Here is what DollarDays handles for you (the time consuming part of the business that most people hate!):

• Full Service Sales Force
• The same personal attention that has earned us an A+ rating with the BBB
• Complete customer service including handling returns
• All customer order tracking and email notification
• Order processing and shipping
• Payment Processing (Mastercard, Visa, American Express, PayPal)
• Responsibility for collections on unpaid or delinquent orders
• Website hosting and daily maintenance of product database
• Manage and warehouse all inventory.

Yep, we handle it all, so you can spend your time promoting your website! Go ahead and compare programs. We guarantee you won’t find any that offers so much for so little. Learn more and get started with a brand new business and revenue stream!

April 10, 2014   No Comments