Phylanthropy

Six years ago, Lovern Gordon, a lady social entrepreneur, decided to give hope to many women victims of domestic abuse. Instigated by her own personal and family story, she set up Love Life Now Foundation in the US, an organization which, throughout the years, has helped collect thousands of dollars for shelters and raise awareness about domestic violence worldwide. In this interview for the Horyou blog, Lovern shares her thoughts on feminism and social media as an awareness tool, as well as her hopes for the future.

Lovern Gordon in a  Teen Domestic Violence Workshop
Lovern Gordon in a Teen Domestic Violence Workshop

Briefly, tell us a little about the beginning of Love Life Foundation and its main advances.

Love Life Now Foundation, Inc. was established in November, 2011.

I worked tirelessly to promote Awareness Against Domestic Violence as a platform after winning 2 beauty pageants (locally in Boston and nationally in Los Angeles in 2010), but did not want to stop there with advocacy, so Love Life Now was formed.

I am a survivor of abuse from a 2 year relationship, and was also a child witness to it…my mother was abused at the hands of our father throughout their marriage. My mother and I were unaware at the time of the tremendous and valuable resources available to victims and survivors that help save lives daily, and is the reason I seek to spread awareness on a daily basis today through the Foundation’s work.

Through the formation of the Love Life Now and its initiatives, we have been able to donate thousands of dollars to shelters statewide, raise awareness about resources available nationwide and assist victims and survivors in finding the necessary help as it relates to this issue.

Volunteers give brown bag lunches and toiletry filled care packages to homeless affected by domestic violence and beyond.
Volunteers give brown bag lunches and toiletry filled care packages to homeless affected by domestic violence and beyond.

What are the main inspirations for your work?

My mother. For all that she has endured, never letting it break her spirit and still coming out on top…she’s my hero.

What kind of impact does the organization want to make in the world?

When Love Life Now was formed, all I sought to do was help anyone that needed it. Over the years I have observed that our initiatives leave folks with a desire to do more as bystanders when it comes to this issue. If we can continue to help change the narrative while continuing to inspire, that will be more than I could have ever asked for.

Lovern Gordon
Lovern Gordon

Horyou is the social network for social good. How do social networks and technology influence the day-to-day running of the foundation?

I’d say it’s literally the bread and butter of Love Life Now. Our reach via social networks and technology has proven to be limitless. For instance, our newly launched digital domestic violence awareness magazine Love Life Magazine (www.lovelifemag.org), reaches folks in as far as Spain, Africa and the Caribbean. The same goes for our almost daily posts about what we’re doing to foster change…which in turn enables others to let them know they can do the same in their corner of the world.

Feminism is a movement that has gained momentum and has helped people to be aware openly about domestic violence. Do you see the change in women empowerment throughout the years?

Absolutely! Across the world, no matter where you lived…domestic violence was looked upon as a taboo subject, accepted by some cultures, or shameful all around. Though we still have a long, long way to go, I believe it’s no longer business as usual when it comes to women being abused. More women are standing in solidarity with those affected by it. One in every four women will be touched by this issue and in the age of social media where you can show support to other women who no longer want to be silent about it, the empowerment level has been raised up significantly.

White Ribbon Night Gala, where men are invited to speak out against domestic violence
White Ribbon Night Gala, where men are invited to speak out against domestic violence

We live in an age of constant transformation. What are the positive changes you want for women’s lives and for future generations?

A big hope is that the laws surrounding domestic violence and sexual assault are continuously tightened and enforced.

Horyouis the Social Network for Social Good, which connect, support and promote social initiatives, entrepreneurs, and citizens that thrive helping the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals to build a more harmonious and inclusive world. We invite you to Be the Change, Be Horyou!

Horyou shares the social network for social good experience during the Global Donors Forum, in Istanbul

Global Donors Forum, a side event of the World Humanitarian Forum in Istambul
Global Donors Forum, a side event of the World Humanitarian Forum in Istanbul

Impact and social investors, experts and leaders from all over the world will be working together in Istanbul on May 24th and 25th towards the same goals: to innovate and to create solutions for philanthropy. The biennial Global Donors Forum is an event which enhances new ideas and partnerships, besides being a platform to discuss global and regional challenges. As a side event of the World Humanitarian Summit, it is focused on human rights and social development.

Important names of the corporate, political and philanthropic worlds will be present during the 2-day conference, which will cover such subjects as Sustainable Development Goals, Islamic Business and Finance, Countering Extremism and Women Leadership. The opening ceremony will be led by Dr Sheikha Aisha bint Faleh Al-Thani, Chair of World Congress of Muslim Philanthropists, Shaarik H. Zafar, Special Representative to Muslim Communities, Mohammad AbdulAziz Al Naimi, CEO of Silatech, and the former prime minister of Romania Victor-Viorel Ponta.

Yonathan Parienti, the CEO and founder of Horyou, will participate as a speaker on the Perspective of Philanthropy panel where he will be presenting for the first time to the Turkish audience Spotlight, the first global social currency for economic inclusion. Speaking on how to leverage social media for social change, Parienti will be surrounded by other experts of the humanitarian field as Amy Singer, from Tel Aviv University, Farhan Latif, president of El-Hibri Foundation and Iqbal Noor Alim from the Aga Khan Development Network.

Launching of Spotlight in Dakar, Senegal
Launching of Spotlight in Dakar, Senegal

“Horyou is in a global campaign to introduce Spotlight, an impactful currency which aims to enhance a fairer capital circulation to all publics from different cultures and regions”, says Yonathan. “The world is increasingly connected and, by bringing economic inclusion, Spotlight will make the best use of the power of social networking”.

In the last few weeks, Spotlight was presented to media, organizations, experts and public from Morocco, Brazil, Senegal, China and now Turkey. By creating a global network of Spotlight users and supporters, Horyou will benefit and redistribute capital to more than 300 million people by 2018.

Click here to see the agenda of the Global Donors Forum.

More Stories

A two-day event will discuss challenges faced by children in urban areas; they will include a Hackathon and roundtables on innovation. The United Nations Children’s...