Shaun Robinson is co-anchor and correspondent for the show Access Hollywood, the daily entertainment newsmagazine show.

From her website:

“Gratitude is a two-fold love – love coming to visit us and love running out to greet a welcome guest. "

I really love this quote from Henry Van Dyke. It reminds me that we must not only be thankful for our blessings but also, should be a blessing to others. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to work with some incredible organizations that do life-changing work in their communities.

My new book, “Exactly As I Am” is about girls and self-esteem – a topic that is very close to my heart. I am honored to be a board member of Girls, Inc. – the national nonprofit youth organization dedicated to inspiring all girls to be strong, smart, and bold. At Girls, Inc., we help girls confront subtle societal messages about their value and potential and prepare them to lead successful, independent, and fulfilling lives.

There is perhaps no greater gift than to give a child a home. I am so proud to have served as the spokesperson for the Los Angeles County “Share Your Heart, Share Your Home” program that works to raise adoption awareness and to pair children in the foster care system with permanent loving families. Most of the children adopted through DCFS have suffered some form of abuse or neglect and adjusting to a new family can be challenging. Our goal is to help make that transition as smoothly as possible.

Many people ask me “Why isn’t there more good news on television?” Well, The Good News Foundation is working towards that goal. I love these ladies! The organization was founded by a group of Los Angeles women in television news who are dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of at-risk people in the community. They fund scholarships and mentoring programs for aspiring journalists, honor community service by those in television news, and grant assistance to individuals and organizations that are making “good news” in the communities they cover on a daily basis.

One of my most rewarding experiences was helping to organize Jumpstart's “Read for the Record” event to help promote childhood literacy. Jumpstart is working towards the day that every child in America enters school prepared to succeed. It’s a truly fantastic organization that is often named as one of the top non-profits in America. They help strengthen parent/child bonds to develop stronger learning in the home, pair college students with low-income children to help build skills crucial to success in school, and help support volunteers who have dedicated their time to Jumpstart’s mission.

When I was first starting out in the news business, I needed mentors who could show me what elements make a good story, how to put together a dynamic resume tape, and how to connect with role models in the business. The National Association of Black Journalists helped me accomplish these goals and I continue to support them to this day. NABJ is the largest organization of journalists of color. Through their workshops, seminars, mentoring and daily support, voices of diversity are strengthened throughout our industry.

I was a big fan “back in the day” and now, I am lucky to call Sheila E. my friend. Sheila still plays the drums as she did on her hit song, “Glamorous Life”, but today she has another mission. She and her business partner, Lynn Mabry, created the Elevate Hope Foundation, which is dedicated to providing abused and abandoned children an alternative method of therapy through music and the arts. Sheila, who was abused herself at the age of five, says music helped her through the healing process. Through monetary funding and in-kind services, Elevate Hope donates musical instruments, art supplies, computers, keyboards, and software to programs that assist in the needs of these abused children.

My Detroit homegirl, Alison Vaughn has built an incredible charity called Jackets For Jobs. They strive to empower economically disadvantaged women who are struggling to find a job by enhancing their employment opportunities. Jackets For Jobs provides professional clothing and training seminars to build self-confidence and prepare them to successfully enter the work force. Women receive a complete business outfit for job interviews, plus two outfits when a job is secured.

These are just a few of the organizations that I have been fortunate enough to work with. If you have a calling to help others, I encourage you to find an organization that is doing work that you believe in and dedicate some time. Even an hour a month could help make a big difference in someone’s life.

Charities & foundations supported 10

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