Clinton Global Initiative in Puerto Rico

The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) meeting taking place in San Juan this week has developed 30 more initiatives for the region, in addition to the 18 already in place.

New projects under the Clinton Global Initiative are called “Commitments to Action.” CGI supports and organizes commitments from governments, nonprofits, and private sector companies working together to solve global problems.

One example, spearheaded by Good360, is “Optimizing Corporate Disaster Giving and Engagement.” This initiative will work with leaders of Fortune 500 companies to develop plans for disaster giving ahead of time. The idea is that strategic plans will allow these companies to make the best use of their funds, rather than making giving decisions in the heat of the moment.

Keystone Policy Center made a commitment to help Puerto Rico high school students develop marketable skills. Companies in the States tend to cream off the most employable new graduates, while the educational disruption following the hurricane has left many high school graduates without the skills they need for employment. A community of employers and the Department of Education will be involved in this commitment.

Afya Foundation will partner with local social service agencies to provide supplies for Elder Care centers across the Island. Puerto Rico’s aging population has been short on supplies, and logistics issues have intensified the problem. This commitment will not only provide supplies, but also build warehouse hubs in five locations to improve the supply chain.

Other commitments for Puerto Rico include establishing solar power, studying the feasability of new industries for future economic development, health care, arts, and education plans. Each is a small, practical, creative plan with funders ranging from the Human Society to Walmart, individuals to the United Arab Emirates.

All the current commitments can be seen on the CGI website.

Former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and Senator from New York, led the meeting. “Our work is far from over,” Bill Clinton was quoted as saying in The Guardian. “The work is not for those with short attention spans.”

The governors of both Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands were among hundreds of leaders who participated in the meeting.

Bill and Hillary Clinton attended the final performance of Hamilton and had dinner with Lin-Manuel Maria, his father, George Clooney, and chef José Andrés, whose World Central Kitchen has a model farm among the original 18 projects. One reason to hold the CGI meeting in Puerto Rico was to support the local economy. The Clintons pointed out that the Hamilton performance served the same purpose.

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