Want to Make a Difference? Make One Simple Change


It’s been six months since the tragic shootings at the elementary school in Newton, Conn. that left 26 people dead, including 20 children.

In April, Health, along with Time Inc.'s All You, Essence, and Real Simple magazines partnered to launch the Make 1 Simple Change campaign, which called for people across the nation to submit their ideas on how to prevent another tragedy like the one that happened in Newtown in December, 2012.

This week we honored the six women who were chosen for their winning ideas on how to better protect children in the United States. Their ideas ranged from better mental health care to gun control to reexamined societal values. (You can go on the site to read the ideas that were submitted.)

The Make 1 Simple Change event on Thursday here in New York City, included five panelists:

  • Colin Goddard, Survivor of the Virginia Tech shooting and Campaign Manager at the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
  • Cleopatra Cowley-Pendleton, Mother of Hadiya Pendletona nd Cofounder of Hadiya's Foundation
  • Gail Saltz, MD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College
  • Kelly Wallace, CNN Digital Correspondent and Editor-at-Large
  • Christine Todd Whitma, President of The Whitman Strategy Group and the 50th Governor of New Jersey

"It's not a matter of if this will happen. It's a matter of when," said Goddard, noting that some, but not all, states and facilities require backgrounds checks for gun purchases.

"We always ask if there is a gate around a pool. That's instinctive. Not so much with guns," said Whitman, who owns guns herself and recommends that parents talk to children about gun safety.

Donate or learn more about becoming involved in projects to rebuild the Newtown school stystem by visiting DonorsChoose.org, an online charity organization to help students in need.

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