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Practically Idealistic blog
 
The title for this blog originated with use of the term “practical idealist” in this 1996 opinion piece, which asked: “To what kind of work should a practical idealist aspire?” A century and a half earlier, Emerson, in his 1841 essay Circles, wrote: “There are degrees in idealism.  We learn first to play with it academically. . . .  Then we see in the heyday of youth and poetry that it may be true, that it is true in gleams and fragments.  Then, its countenance waxes stern and grand, and we see that it must be true.  It now shows itself ethical and practical.”  John Dewey and Mahatma Gandhi embraced practical idealism in the 20th century, as did UN Secretary General U Thant.  Al Gore invoked it in a 1998 speech. In the context of this blog, the term is meant to convey idealism tempered but not overwhelmed by realism: a search for the ideal on a path guided by common sense.

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

More Media, YouTube Channel

 ...

Connecticut CASA held a July 14 Benefit that combined a panel discussion and musical performance with support from donors and sponsors.  Details are in a New Haven Register preview article and subsequent New Haven Independent coverage, as well as on our YouTube channel.

The YouTube channel features an increasing array of videos, from TV news interviews and CASA volunteer testimonials to musical performances by Brandon Sherrod, an ambassador for Connecticut CASA.  We invite you to subscribe to the channel.

6:40 am edt 

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Connecticut CASA Diversifying Funding as It Grows

 

Through a competitive process, including an extensive application and data demands, Connecticut CASA has secured some $142,000 in new government funding for 2022-23. The contract award, through the State Judicial Branch, relies on federal Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) and American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars, as described in the Hartford Courant, New Haven Register, other Hearst CT  outlets, and social media.

 

In addition, Connecticut CASA was recently featured on three TV news segments, when we received a TEGNA Foundation grant and CASA volunteer Dwayne Jackson joined me to discuss his CASA role and how other volunteers might get involved.

 

Our CASA work depends on a blend of public, foundation, and generous individual funding sources. 

5:07 pm edt 

Monday, July 4, 2022

July 14 Benefit Previewed

As previewed in the New Haven Register among other outlets, Connecticut CASA will hold a July 14 Benefit event, with the Center for the Study of Popular Music at the University of Connecticut.

The panelists will be Jeffrey Ogbar, Professor of History and founding Director of the Center at UConn (moderator); Lisa Dent, Executive Director of Artspace; Brandon Sherrod, a Connecticut CASA ambassador; and Bradford Watson, CEO of Spinach Records.  Brandon, a musical artist, will also perform.

Sponsors include Yale University, Claire's Corner Copia, NewAlliance Foundation, and Russell Hall Co., with Claire's also donating catering, and the Wine Thief wine.

9:44 am edt 

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Family Reunification Month, Petit Family Foundation

During this Family Reunification Month of June, Connecticut CASA recently received a grant from the Petit Family Foundation.  We learned, too, of a grant from the TEGNA Foundation.

Diversifying Connecticut CASA's financial base in this way is important as the organization continues to grow, depending on sources including public dollars, foundation grants, and individual donations.  Many thanks to all!

9:30 am edt 

Monday, May 30, 2022

Reflections of a Reunion Panel

With mass-shooting atrocities in Buffalo and Uvalde--not to mention the Ukraine war and much else--on our minds, my undergraduate class just held a reunion.  It was good to see old friends and to get better acquainted with other classmates from years ago.

Recognizing the scale of challenges--from racism, inequality, gun violence and democratic truth in the U.S., to war and climate change beyond--it was inspiring to be on a reunion panel with Makunda Abdul-MbackeMarco A. DavisLillian Diaz Gray, and Julie Horowitz.

An accomplished audience participated--seeking new ways to connect generations and to engage for the better with their communities and the world, whether through the private sector, nonprofits, or government.

11:37 pm edt 

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