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Uniting with the Clinton Global Initiative

Clinton Global Initiative logo

Keystone Human Services is honored to be a member of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) since 2007.

Unlike other charitable endeavors, CGI does not give grants or collect donations to carry out programs. Instead, it serves as a dynamic marketplace of ideas and innovation, matching people and institutions with diverse competencies and resources to produce high-impact results.

Bill Clinton at podium while Tony Blair looks on

The CGI Annual Meeting

At the center of CGI is its Annual Meeting, held in New York City each September concurrently with the UN General Assembly. Designed to produce insights into global problems, followed by innovative and effective action, the CGI Annual Meeting is a forum where collaborations and partnerships between the government, business and the non-profit sectors are forged, creating the capacity and potential for change that can only be achieved within integrated, multi-sector solutions.

The Clinton Global Initiative identifies "a select and diverse group of heads of state, CEOs, media voices, philanthropists, foundation heads, religious leaders, original thinkers and those who run highly effective non-governmental and non-profit organizations" [] to participate in the Annual Meeting, in order to unite "people who possess resources with those who have the most innovative ideas and capabilities for successful implementation." []

The Annual Meeting is focused on exploring global challenges, identifying systemic long-term solutions, and detailing successful action plans. Once developed, these action plans seek new solutions, forge new partnerships and, most importantly, inspire specific Commitments to Action from CGI members. Since the first CGI in 2005, over 400 leaders from more than 50 countries have been speakers at the Annual Meeting, and members have made more than 600 global commitments towards initiatives in poverty, education, climate, and health. These commitments have involved more than 1,000 organizations working in 100 countries.

Bill Clinton at addresses the audience

Transforming Ideas into Action

CGI Commitments to Action are directed efforts by individuals, organizations, corporations and governments whose goals are to increase the benefits and reduce the burdens of global interdependence, make a world of more partners and fewer enemies, and give more people the tools they need to build a better future. Commitments to Action can be either monetary or non-monetary in nature, embodying investments, grants, in-kind donations, expertise, services, technical assistance, volunteer time or other essential support. CGI staff work with members to define, develop, and track the progress of commitments.

CGI commitments are expected to be new, specific and measurable:

A CGI commitment pursues innovation and scale. Many members are already engaged in ongoing efforts to address global challenges; they are encouraged to make a new commitment or tangibly develop activities beyond their current scope.
A CGI commitment defines clear and feasible objectives, operates within a discrete period, and targets a particular location, population or constituency.
A CGI commitment shows continued progress against benchmarks within an established timeframe and produces quantifiable outcomes. CGI takes pride in catalyzing commitments whose impact can be measured beyond monetary terms.

President Clinton's book, Giving, chronicles many of the CGI commitments that have been made in the past, highlighting the amazing potential of individuals at the grassroots level to enact global change.

Identifying Mission

CGI has identified four areas of focus:

CGI is a non-partisan catalyst for action, bringing together a community of global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world's most pressing challenges.

I. Education
The Clinton Global Initiative acknowledges that education, for girls in particular, has proven to be one of the most powerful tools available to break the cycle of poverty, increase economic opportunity, and reduce the spread of disease in developing nations. Education Working Group sessions address the need for education in developing nations by identifying and working towards multiple objectives: expanding enrollment rapidly without compromising quality, providing education for children of conflict – including those in Darfur, strategizing to get more African girls into secondary school, supplying education for the most vulnerable – including the growing population of orphans, and discovering ways to improve learning outcomes and community accountability.
II. Energy & Climate Change
In recent years, world temperatures have reached record highs, oil prices have climbed to new peaks, and the market for clean energy technologies has increased dramatically. This year, CGI will explore specific steps towards cutting emissions of heat-trapping gases and shaping a clean energy future. Visionary leaders are finding exciting new ways to confront the challenges involved in this endeavor, which the Energy and Climate Change Working Group sessions will explore: clean energy markets in the developing world, new approaches for the protection of tropical forests, innovative state and local solutions to climate change, green buildings, and national policies and international cooperation to combat global warming.
III. Global Health
Through effective partnerships and innovative ideas, CGI strives to reduce the scale of preventable catastrophes. Global Health Working Group sessions will examine high-impact opportunities for governments, international organizations, the private sector, and civilians to collaborate on critical global health issues: fighting under-nutrition, over-nutrition and micro-nutrition deficiency, developing new vaccines and expanding the use of existing vaccines, and strengthening health systems, including low-cost IT solutions.
IV. Poverty Alleviation
Through the development and implementation of better tools, people everywhere are taking great strides in the global fight against poverty. The Poverty Alleviation Working Group at CGI asks how, in an increasingly complex and uncertain global trade environment, trade can benefit the world's poorest producers, and then seeks viable solutions. The group also identifies concrete steps that people can take to begin the process of restoration: creating jobs to generate domestic savings and reduce dependence on aid, linking businesses and NGOs in new collaborative initiatives, and equipping young leaders to organize communities, fight poverty and create wealth.
President Clinton - 2007 CGI Annual Meeting

The Next Generation of Service & Leadership

To help further cultivate a new generation of philanthropists and citizen-servants, President Clinton announced at the 2007 Meeting the launch of CGI-U, an effort to expand CGI to college campuses.

"I believe the world has never needed a community of givers more than it does today. CGI-U will serve as a catalyst for commitments of action by young people around the country to make a difference in their world," [] Clinton said.

More Resources

Information courtesy of CGI website

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