September 2022 Newslettter

Matthew McConaughey Surprised With $50,000 Donation to JKL

We want to give a huge thank you to Andy Slavitt and Lemonada Media listeners for making a generous $50,000 donation to support our work empowering students at inner-city high schools.

As Matthew said on the “In the Bubble” podcast on which the donation was revealed, this donation will help fund teachers’ stipends, buses for community service and field trips, equipment and more. To listen to the rest of this inspiring interview that touches on fatherhood, values, new directions and catching those Greenlights, check out the podcast here.


JKL Students Run for a Cause

Even during their summer break, JKL students are still motivated to push themselves and try new things, all for a great cause!

On Saturday, August 13th, students from our Huntington Park and Animo South Los Angeles High School JKL programs had a blast participating in the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation Sunset Run!

The annual event supports the LADF’s mission to improve education, health care, homelessness and social justice for all Angelenos. Our students eagerly tackled their goals – some running the 5K and some trying their hand at a 10K – while enjoying breathtaking views of downtown LA at sunset and supporting our longtime partners at LADF.

This awesome community event was a big hit with both students and staff and a great way to close out the summer!


Camila’s Tips: Ginger Garlic Shrimp

This is a quick and easy meal that is perfect for any day of the week! It comes together in about 20 minutes and is very budget-friendly too, tallying in at around $20!

Additional sides you could include are baby spinach or steamed snow peas.

Ingredients

• 1 tbsp peeled, chopped fresh ginger
• 1 tbsp water
• 1 tsp ground cumin
• 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
• 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
• 4 cloves of garlic, minced
• 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
• 2 tsp olive oil
• 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
• 14 oz can of low sodium chicken broth
• 3/4 cup light coconut milk
• 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
• 1 lb frozen shelled medium shrimp – deveined and tails off
• 1/2 tsp salt
• 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
For serving:
• 2 cup cooked Basmati or brown rice
Garnish:
• 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
• additional red pepper flakes

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, combine first 6 ingredients. Add ¼ tsp black pepper, stir until well blended. Set the seasoning mixture aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, cook 3 minutes stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the seasoning mixture that was set aside, cook 1 minute stirring frequently.
  4. Add broth, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes.
  5. Add coconut milk and lemon juice, simmer 2 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle shrimp with 1/4 teaspoon black pepper and salt.
  7. Add shrimp to the pan cooking 4-5 minutes stirring a few times, until no longer translucent, do not overcook.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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August 2022 Newsletter

Teacher Training 2022

We were thrilled to be back in person in Los Angeles to host our annual Teacher Training!

Our jkl instructors from our forty-two programs gathered at the Marina Del Rey Hotel for meaningful conversations, shared best practices, discussed areas of need, and made renewed commitments of action! Our mindset has a powerful impact on how successful our programs can be and our amazing instructors are ready and excited to make the greatest impact on the lives of the students we serve.


Dodgers Summer College & Career Accelerator

The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation held a Summer College and Career Accelerator event with the USC College Advising Corps.

Our Hunting Park just keep livin program brought some students out for a fun day in the sun at Dodger stadium. The students heard from first-generation college students and learned about their diverse college experiences.

The USC College Advising Corps team did a great job of answering questions, motivating students to get ready to apply for college, and provided fun breakout groups. The event ended with the students getting a chance to watch the afternoon Dodgers game against the Washington Nationals. Thank you, Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, for an awesome summer day event!


Camila’s Tips: Honey Ginger Glazed Chicken and Carrots

This is one of those recipes that is great as an easy weekday meal, or can impress guests at a dinner party.

The flavor combinations in this Honey Ginger Glazed Chicken and Carrots bring together savory and sweet! A great tip for this recipe, if you have a cast iron skillet or the equivalent, you could easily make this a one pot / pan meal (who doesn’t love less clean up?!)

Ingredients

• 6-8 chicken thighs with bone in and skin on
• 2 tsp sea salt
• 2 tsp cumin
• 2 tsp chili powder
• 2 tsp smoked paprika
• 2 tsp garlic powder
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
• 1/4 cup honey
• 2 tbsp cider vinegar
• 3 tbsp fresh minced ginger
• 6-8 whole carrots, peeled and cut into sticks (we used multicolor)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the salt, cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder and cayenne pepper (optional). Stir to combine well and season the chicken with the rub on both sides.
  4. Place chicken in an ovenproof baking dish or in an ovenproof skillet (making this a one pot). Roast chicken in oven for 40 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F.
  5. Boil carrot sticks in salted water for about 10 minutes or until fork tender. Drain and set aside.
  6. In a small bowl, combine the honey, cider vinegar, and fresh minced ginger.
  7. After the 40 minutes, remove the chicken from the oven and brush with half of the honey ginger mixture and return to oven.
  8. Turn the temperature up to 475 degrees F and roast until the skin begins to crisp, about 5 minutes. Watch the chicken as it could brown quicker or take a little longer depending on your oven.
  9. Remove the chicken from the pan, place in serving dish and cover. If using an ovenproof skillet, place the skillet on top of your cooktop. Otherwise, transfer all the pan juices from the roasting pan to a skillet to finish off the carrots.
  10. Add the cooked carrots to the pan and add the remaining honey ginger glaze. Stir to combine over medium heat until carrots are glazed.
  11. Serve the chicken with the glazed carrots and brush any juices from the chicken on top.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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July 2022 Newslettter

American Gun Responsibility- Uvalde

For the first time in 28 years, a meaningful piece of legislation has passed that can usher in a new era of building an American Culture of Gun Responsibility.

The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act Bill is a reasonable and holistic step towards addressing America’s gun violence epidemic.

This bill invests in mental health and protects responsible, law-abiding Americans’ Second Amendment rights, due process, and the rule of law.

For responsible gun owners, this bill does not take your guns away or restrict access to firearms.

This bill will save innocent lives by keeping guns out of the law-breaking and irresponsible hands that are trying to hijack the Second Amendment.

This bill is a responsible investment in the future of our country and in America’s greatest asset, our children.

This bill makes those whose lives have been needlessly cut short by gun violence matter.

This bill is about more responsible gun ownership in America.

The Uvalde tragedy ignited bipartisan conversations that created responsible actions by members from both parties. Members made the right and difficult choice — action — over the easy choice — inaction.

By coming together and finding a sensible balance, a bipartisan group of lawmakers passed a bill that will help solve a problem we all agree is unbearable.

While this bill isn’t perfect, it is a shining example of a great American potential and political virtue: the act of compromise and validating an opposing viewpoint.

This is a quintessential virtue of America, where two seemingly contradictory approaches to the same problem can be true at the same time, AND, when combined, actually reveal a more useful and powerful solution than either on its own.

America, the Land of And.

Where we have Freedom AND Responsibility, Rights AND Duties, Opportunity, AND Obligations.

Yes, we have a mental health issue in our country that we need to address, AND we need to create guardrails to keep guns out of irresponsible hands.

Both are true. Neither are mutually exclusive. The success of one even relies on our responsibility to the other.

This bill is an example of the bipartisan meeting of the minds and hearts that can lead us to reclaim true Democracy in America.

This bill is a representation and reminder that no single party is Democracy itself. No single party is America itself, AND no single party in American politics has the claim to independently own the values by which they define themselves.

Republicans and Democrats don’t have a license on the “values” they often posture themselves as owning. Values are free trade, there to share and bring to bear for all of us.

To heal and save our Democracy, we need to apply these same bipartisan efforts to countless other issues. Only then can we become the America we’re capable of becoming.

Now that the president has signed this bill into law, I want to remind all of us Americans that we cannot become complacent and wait on a piece of legislation to solve our problems.

We each have a call to action as well. This legislation gives us guardrails, but we cannot solely rely on it to be responsible for US. We have to be responsible for IT.

We each have a duty to protect our freedom AND our rights. We also each have an opportunity to make more responsible choices as we move forward. Ones that serve others AND ourselves. Let’s each and all have a look in the mirror and make those choices that are on us, and only us.

The choice to be the best parent or mentor possible.
The choice to get involved in the lives of others in our community.

The choice, as business leaders, to change policies in our workspaces to make them safer.

The choice, as gun owners, gun show organizers, and firearms manufacturers to bear, show, and sell arms responsibly. Now is the time to build our American Culture of Gun Responsibility – AND build a healthier nation by being more personally responsible families, neighbors, and business leaders.

We are each in a position to lead in this great country we call America: Where I have the freedom to be me, you have the freedom to be you, AND we all have a responsibility to be us.

Our government took a step in the right direction. Now it’s time for us to remind them AND ourselves what the best of our country is AND can be.

America, the Land of And.
Let’s go.

A native of Uvalde who now lives in Austin, McConaughey is founder of the just keep livin Foundation, and a father of three.

This article originally appeared on Austin American-Statesman


The community will need ongoing grief counseling and support on the long road ahead of them. Please just us to help the people of Uvalde, TX. 100% of your donations to the just keep livin Foundation’s Uvalde Relief Fund will support grief counseling, costs associated with burial services and other immediate and long-term needs of the community.


Los Angeles Field Day

We hosted our annual LA Field Day on June 1st where we hosted 100 students and staff! Field Day is an annual event for us to provide the opportunity for all of our jkl sites to come together to build community and participate together through physical activity and friendly competition. The day allows all of our students to be active and the event provides a roadmap for communication and team building!


Beach Day Has Returned

After a two-year Covid break, our annual Beach Day event with the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation was one to remember.

On Saturday, June 4, we brought over sixty Los Angeles just keep livin students to enjoy a day of fun in the sun at the world-famous El Porto surfer beach in Manhattan Beach, CA. Students had a chance to receive surf lessons to conquer the waves, boogie board with big smiles, and relax with some beach yoga.

We want to give a huge shout-out to the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation for being a great partner and for always getting volunteers for our event. Another shout-out to Rachel Miriam for creating and supplying custom beach towels and bags for all of the participants. Beach day is truly a magical experience, from seeing some students taking to the ocean for the first time and others with the biggest smiles and appreciation for the outdoors! 


Camila’s Tips: Red, White & Blue-berry Popsicles

Nothing says summer like popsicles, right? This recipe is a little different from your average popsicles…

First, it is coconut milk based, making the popsicles creamy and delicious. Second, it is gluten free, refined sugar free, nut free and vegan, making it almost allergy foolproof for anyone! These popsicles are a better-for-you way to enjoy a summer favorite.

Ingredients

· 1/4 c chopped organic strawberries
· 1/4 c organic blueberries
· 1 can light coconut milk
· 1 tsp agave nectar
· 1/8 tsp butterfly pea tea powder
· 6 unit popsicle mold

Directions

  1. Place avocado pieces in a large mixing bowl and gently mash
  2. Combine all the remaining ingredients in the bowl and gently stir to combine.
  3. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips and enjoy!

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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June 2022 Newsletter

Uvalde Tragedy – How to Help

just keep livin Foundation Founders Matthew and Camila McConaughey have been on the ground in Matthew’s hometown of Uvalde since the devastating mass shooting took place.

The loss is tragic. While the spirit of the community is in pain, the unanimous support of families to families and strangers to locals is beautiful. After the initial shock, the town has now begun the funerals and the grieving process, which will continue for the surviving children, families, and the entire community.

The community will need ongoing grief counseling and support on the long road ahead of them. Please just us to help the people of Uvalde, TX. 100% of your donations to the just keep livin Foundation’s Uvalde Relief Fund will support grief counseling, costs associated with burial services and other immediate and long-term needs of the community.


Spring Break Event hosted by City Year

Students from our Animo Inglewood JKL program were able to attend the 15th Annual Spring Break event hosted by City Year thanks to the wonderful donation of tickets by Palmer Murray. City Year celebrated 15 years of service to the students of Los Angeles at this annual fundraiser at the Sony Studios.


Seeds+Soil=Roots

A huge thank you to our partners at Roots Food Foundation and the Kevin Love Fund for donating garden kits to all of our jkl programs on Earth Day! We are grateful to be embarking on this garden journey collectively and watch our students enjoy their success with their harvests!


Camila’s Tips: Vegetable Frittata

If you haven’t made a frittata before then this is your chance to make a great one….

If you’re looking for something different, and haven’t tried a frittata before, then take a look at this beauty. If you are familiar with this dish and have made one before then you will absolutely love this Vegetable Frittata.

Ingredients

• 1 lb new potatoes, thinly sliced approximately 4 cups
• 8 oz fresh broccoli spears, 4” in length, approx. 2-1/2 cups
• 1 cup fresh or frozen peas, thawed
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 8 eggs
• 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
• 1/2 tsp dried thyme
• 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Place avocado pieces in a large mixing bowl and gently mash
  2. Combine all the remaining ingredients in the bowl and gently stir to combine.
  3. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips and enjoy!

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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May 2022 Newsletter

Mack, Jack & McConaughey 2022

Our team is still on a high from the BEST Mack, Jack & McConaughey (MJ&M) yet!

It was so much fun coming together with old and new friends to celebrate 10 years and to benefit our 5 wonderful MJM charities that empower kids: jklivin, Dell Children’s, Cure Duchenne, Heart Gift, and the Rise School of Austin. We kicked things off with the incredible Kenny Chesney headlining our Gala night (+ a WILD Live Auction!), then had a great Friday with a golf tournament and a beautiful Stella McCartney fashion show and luncheon presented by Neiman Marcus at the Q2 soccer stadium!

Friday night we wrapped things up with our special “Jack & Friends” Singer-Songwriter Concert featuring the amazing talents of Jack Ingram, Morgan Wade, Rodney Crowell, Lori McKenna, Jessi Alexander, Jon Randall and the Warren Brothers!  What a way to close out MJ&M 2022! Until next year, Austin!


JKL Camping Trip!

In partnership with the Harold Robinson Foundation, we took 90 of our Los Angeles JKL students on a 3 day camping!

The just keep livin Foundation understands the importance of providing a diverse set of recreational programs, including arts, enrichment and athletics, character-building, leadership development, and healthy living. There is no better place than out in nature to help build stronger relationships between students, parents and the community.

For many of our students, this is their first time out of the city and there could not be a more gorgeous and scenic place for them to enjoy than on the grounds of Camp Ubuntu. The vast acres of trees and the backdrop of the mountains is the perfect setting for our students to escape the daily stresses in their lives and find a peaceful retreat!

For many of our students, this is their first time out of the city and there could not be a more gorgeous and scenic place for them to enjoy than on the grounds of Camp Ubuntu. The vast acres of trees and the backdrop of the mountains is the perfect setting for our students to escape the daily stresses in their lives and find a peaceful retreat!


Volunteer Day with Baby2Baby

Our Fairfax JKL program had a rewarding experience volunteering at Baby2Baby in Culver City!

We are grateful that we had the opportunity to continue year after year to work with them. Baby2Baby is a nonprofit organization which provides diapers, clothes and other necessities for children in poverty in the Los Angeles area and in disaster areas across the country.


Camila’s Tips: Mango Avocado Guacamole

We’ve never met a guacamole recipe we didn’t love, and this one is no exception!

It also doesn’t get any easier than this recipe… Just combine all the prepped ingredients below and give it a good stir! This guacamole recipe is both sweet and savory, making it beyond flavorful.

Ingredients

• 1 avocado, peeled and diced
• 1 ripe mango, peeled and diced
• 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced (optional)
• 1 lime, juiced
• 1/4 cup red bell pepper finely diced If you like extra heat, you could use 1 red fresno pepper
• 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
• 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced sea salt to taste

Directions

  1. Place avocado pieces in a large mixing bowl and gently mash
  2. Combine all the remaining ingredients in the bowl and gently stir to combine.
  3. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips and enjoy!

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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April 2022 Newsletter

JKL Co-Founder Camila Alves McConaughey’s Children’s Book is Available Now!

The healthy eating advocate and founder of Women of Today just released her first book, Just Try One Bite, with co-author Adam Mansbach.

The book – already a New York Times Best Seller! – features a funny role reversal in which picky-eater parents are confronted by their children. Camila writes from experience, as a mom herself to Levi (13), Vida (12), and Livingston (9). “When you get older, it gets harder to kick bad habits,” adds Alves McConaughey. “Just Try One Bite is a fun way to teach those healthy habits early on.” Check out Just Try One Bite, on sale now!


JKL Partners with Roku On An Inspiring Career Panel

We had an amazing career panel for our just keep livin students from ROKU!

The panelists were diverse in their backgrounds as well as their job titles. In attendance for the panel we had Joel Teklu (Sr. Counsel, Business & Legal Affairs), Sonia Ben Hedia Twomey (Sr. Computational Linguist), Gretel Perera (Director, communication LATAM) and Kevin Kelly (Sr. Hardware Program Manager). Each Panelist shared great content on how they fell in love with the tech world and the appreciation they have for the environment ROKU is fostering.

We also had a little fun and talked about everyone’s favorite shows to stream and even took a step deeper by discussing what mental health looks like for people who work in the tech industry. Students asked great questions ranging from “Are tech boot camps worth it?” to “Why do you like to work for ROKU?” to “What does a normal day look like in the various roles?” It also displayed to our students that if you have a passion for something, you can make a career out of it and thrive even if your path isn’t linear or as obvious as the world might make it seem. There are many avenues and none of them are wrong, just different! We look forward to our continued partnership with ROKU.


Cleveland JKL Students Enjoy an Array of Guest Speakers

Congresswoman and John Adams alum Shontell Brown was a returning guest speaker for our JKL program at John Adams High School in Cleveland.

She graduated from John Adams with our former instructor Ms. Rembert. While at John Adams, she received the Mayors support in her congressional re-election bid. JKL student Linell Mills read her bio for the event! They both talked about rebuilding the community and making it better for those after them. It is never too late to learn and we can help build a great community regardless of your age. 

Kat Frey, Founder and President of Oxygen Coaching Group was another wonderful guest speaker for our JKL program at John Adams High School! Kat spoke about “making the table bigger,” which she explained is about networking and bringing people into your life that can help you on many levels. She also encouraged the students to find three things to be grateful for everyday and not to let anyone take away from those things.

Kat also shared eight things to focus on every day; family support, positive friends, mentors, healthy activities, generosity, spirituality, physical health, and mental health. At the conclusion, the students discussed from those eight themes, what meant the most to them and what makes each of them the happiest.


just keep livin Students Give Back in Los Angeles

Students from our Huntington Park just keep livin program partnered with National League of Young Men to host a community service day benefitting Uplift Family Services at Hollygrove.

Uplift Family Services is one of the largest, most comprehensive behavioral health treatment providers in California. Each year, they do whatever it takes to help more than 35,000 children and family members manage and recover from challenges stemming from prior trauma—such as severe neglect and abuse—and learn the essential life skills they need to be successful at home, at school, and in their community. 

Students helped clean out sheds, organize donations, clean the dining hall, pool area and much more so they can welcome their students and families back for summer camp.


Camila’s Tips: Better For You French Onion Soup

This Better For You French Onion Soup is savory, slightly sweet, and extremely satisfying.

Most of these ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen or maybe you’ll just need to go pick up one or two things to pull it together.

Ingredients

• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 2 tbsp butter
• 2 red onions, sliced thin
• 2 yellow onions, sliced thin
• 1 tsp sea salt
• 1/2 cup sherry or white wine
• 1.5 quarts beef or chicken stock
• 2 bay leaves
• French bread slices
• Clove of garlic, peeled
• Gruyere or Munster cheese, shredded.

GARNISH SUGGESTIONS
• Sliced green onions
• Chopped parsley

Directions

  1. Over medium heat, combine olive oil and butter and heat until butter is melted.
  2. Add all the sliced onion and stir well. Season with sea salt, cover, and cook until onions are reduced, soft and translucent. This is an important step because you do not want firm onions when you serve your soup.
  3. Add the sherry or wine to the cooked onions and simmer for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the stock and the bay leaves and simmer for 25 minutes.
  5. Toast the sliced French bread, then rub the raw clove of garlic a few times across the French bread.
  6. Place each slice of French bread on a baking sheet, add the desired amount of shredded cheese on top of French bread and broil until the cheese is melted. About 1-2 minutes.
  7. Ladle the soup into serving bowls and top each bowl with a slice or two of toasted melted cheese bread.
  8. Garnish with chopped parsley or green onion tops.

Serve with sour cream on the side if desired.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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March 2022 Newsletter

Black History Month

This year, for Black History Month, we hosted two guest speakers who are trailblazers in the field of poetry and academics!

Our first guest speaker was David “Judah 1” Oliver, who is the first poet laureate of the city of Pomona in Los Angeles. Judah took us on a journey of passionate poetry reading to break down the makings of his poetry career and community contribution.

Next we had Dr. D.D. Clayborne, who opened our eyes to a few notable black historical sports figures that came before Jackie Robinson. Our students learned about the life of Fritz Pollard, the first African American coach and player in the NFL, Major Taylor, a record-setting professional cyclist, and the first African American heavyweight boxer, Jack Johnson. It is always great to bring new resources and information to our just keep livin students!


Austin Marathon 2022

We wanted to give a shout out to all of our Austin JKL programs for participating in the Austin Marathon on Sunday, February 20th!

Whether you helped pass out water at the Aid Station or completed the 5k or half marathon, we are so proud of our staff and students for representing!

Thank you also to Kyle Buckley and Cynthia Bernard who fundraised for us and ran (Kyle, the full Marathon, and Cynthia, the 5K) in honor of JKL!


Thank You Gilly Hicks

We’re so grateful to Gilly Hicks, an Abercrombie & Fitch brand, for generously donating over 200 sports bras for us to distribute to our just keep livin afterschool programs!

It’s so important for our students to have proper attire when working out and these sports bras are such high quality! These smiling faces tell you everything you need to know about how much we appreciate them!


Camila’s Tips: Easy Grilled Potatoes

It’s super simple to make, and you probably have all the ingredients in your refrigerator!

You can boil the potatoes in advance, so they are ready to go when you’re ready to grill — Making them a wonderful addition to your weeknight meals. This side dish is also very budget-friendly!

Ingredients

• 6 small Russet or baking potatos, scrubbed well
• 1/2 cup sea salt
• 3 tbsp butter, melted
• 3 green onions, finely sliced sour cream for serving (optional

Directions

  1. In a 6-quart pot over medium heat, add the olive oil, chopped jalapeno peppers, diced red onion, cumin, chili In a large pot that will comfortably fit the potatoes, add enough water to cover the potatoes and add ½ cup of sea salt.
  2. Boil the potatoes until just fork tender.
  3. Remove potatoes from water and set aside. (They can be cooled and refrigerated for later grilling at this point). Some of the salt will dry onto the skin of the potato and you might notice it has a white cast. This will add extra flavor to the skin.
  4. Let potatoes cool enough to handle and then slice in half, lengthwise.
  5. Just before grilling, brush the flesh side of the potato with melted butter and place on the grill flesh side down. Depending on the heat of your grill, grill long enough to get grill marks and then flip over to grill the skin side. Approximately 2-3 minutes on each side.
  6. Remove from grill, plate, and sprinkle the sliced green onions over all the potatoes.

Serve with sour cream on the side if desired.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


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February 2022 Newsletter

Thank You Acteev by Ascend Materials for Our New Favorite Masks

We were thrilled when Acteev by Ascend Materials reached out wanting to provide our students with effective, comfortable, anti-microbial masks to help them stay safe while staying fit!

Acteev, a Houston-based materials technology company, is donating over 1,000 quality, workout-friendly masks to our programs all across the country to help us stay active despite the ongoing mask mandates.

They recently visited our JKL program at Cesar Chavez High School in Houston to personally hand out masks to our students there, which also gave us the chance to properly thank them for their generosity. Acteev wants to help students like ours reach their health and fitness goals this year and having access to masks like these is crucial in keeping programs like ours going.


The Ving Project

The Ving Project in conjunction with the just keep livin foundation gives high school teens the opportunity to be a blessing to a community member in need.

Hanna Collins, a 10th grade student at Pinkston High School was selected and she surprised her nominee, Mrs. Esparaza Garcia with a check for $1000.00. Through VING, teens have an opportunity to give an individual in need an encouraging boost by surprising them with $1,000.


Backpacks, Hoodies and Sneakers Event in Dallas

We are so grateful to Dak Prescott’s Faith Fight Finish Foundation for including our JKL Dallas students in the “Backpack, Hoodies and Sneakers” event!

Faith Fight Finish Foundation and NEX Metropolitan, alongside Blackout Training Group hosted an event bringing youth, community leaders and law enforcement together. Discussions were had to empower and educate young men about the influences of backpacks, hoodies and sneakers in our community from a mentoring and law enforcement perspective. Huge thanks to the Jordan Brand for generously donating some awesome shoes, backpacks and hoodies to all youth at the event!


On a Quest

Thank you so much to our friends at Quest Nutrition for donating over 400 of their delicious snack bars to our JKL students at Sunset HS in Dallas!

Quest’s mission is to make the foods you crave work for you, not against you – we love that! They have been a generous supporter of ours for several years now, and these bars help give our students energy to get through their workouts. We’re so grateful!


Camila’s Tips: Easy Turkey Chili

Looking for a super easy, healthy, and tasty side dish for your dinner table?

We tried this in the WOT Test Kitchen a couple of months ago and have been making this dish on our regular rotation ever since. Give it a try and we promise this one will become a regular in your kitchen too.

Ingredients

• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 2 jalapeno peppers, chopped
• 1 small red onion, diced
• 1 tsp cumin
• 2 tbsp chili powder
• 1 tbsp smoked paprika
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
• 1 pound ground turkey (93% lean, 7% fat)
• 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
• 1 28oz can of diced tomatoes with juice
• 1/2 tsp sea salt

GARNISH OPTIONS:
• avocado slices
• jalapeno slices
• cilantro, chopped
• shredded cheese
• sour cream
• green onion
• lime wedges

Directions


  1. In a 6-quart pot over medium heat, add the olive oil, chopped jalapeno peppers, diced red onion, cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika and cayenne (optional). Simmer for approximately 10 minutes until the onions and peppers soften.
  2. Add the ground turkey and cook through and broken apart into small pieces.
  3. Add the drained black beans, diced tomatoes, and salt. Stir and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and ass more salt or pepper if needed.
  4. Ladle into bowls and top with any of your favorite garnishes and serve.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


Swag of The Month

NEW Alright Beanie

You will look more than “ALRIGHT” in this 100% acrylic made in the USA knit beanie. On the front you have the iconic phrase embroidered on the cuff in red, white and blue along with knit-in white stars and red stipes. The back is plain navy.


Get Yours Today!  

January 2022 Newsletter

JKL students are LOVING Sing 2! Los Angeles members scored an invite to the film’s premiere, where they got to watch it under the stars outside at the famed Greek Theater.

The kids enjoyed a plethora of fun treats like corn dogs and churros, as well as glimpses of stars, including our Founder Matthew McConaughey, reprising his role as the eternally optimistic koala, Buster Moon. 50 JKL students and staff in Nashville were also treated to a special screening thanks to another one of the film’s stars, Reese Witherspoon and her husband, JKL Board Member Jim Toth. They got to safely gather in their very own theater and view the film before it was released. Thank you Reese and Jim! Check out Sing 2 in a theater near you!


TikTok Hosts Career Panel with JKL Students

We are beyond grateful to the amazing team at TikTok for hosting a career panel for our just keep livin student and teachers.

This opportunity allowed for our students to interact with professionals in different areas from TikTok to learn about what it takes to prepare for the fundamentals of working at their organization as well as what it takes to be successful in the world of work in general. Some of the skills touched upon were “Good Partnership Tips,” resume building and an overview of the beyond the scenes at their organization! Our students thoroughly enjoyed this interactive and informative session!


Carver JKL Program Partners with the Houston Texans

Even on the weekends, the JKL program at Carver High School is working!

On Sunday, December 5th, the program volunteered to pass out game day gate giveaways to all the Texan fans attending the Houston Texans/Indianapolis Colts game. The students were thrilled to be at NRG Stadium and be a part of all the excitement!


Carter Students Speak Up

Students at Carter High School in Dallas had the opportunity to attend a Town Hall Meeting hosted by Dak Prescott’s Faith Fight Finish Foundation.

The town hall consisted of local law enforcement, high school students and parents, mental health professionals and community leaders. Participants engaged in a great dialogue and shared ideas to help bring unity between law enforcement and the communities they serve.


Camila’s Tips: Easiest Roasted Zucchini Ever

Looking for a super easy, healthy, and tasty side dish for your dinner table?

We tried this in the WOT Test Kitchen a couple of months ago and have been making this dish on our regular rotation ever since. Give it a try and we promise this one will become a regular in your kitchen too.

Ingredients
• 2 lbs frozen brussels sprouts
• 4 zucchini
• 1 tsp Italian or Herbs de Provence seasonings
• Extra virgin olive oil
• Salt and pepper
• 1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Trim ends of zucchini and slice in half. Slice each half in half and the remaining strips in half one more time. One zucchini will give you 8 strips or a total of 32 strips using all the zucchini for this recipe.
3. Place all the zucchini strips in a roasting pan. Season with salt, pepper, and Italian or Herbs de Provence seasonings.
4. Drizzle the extra virgin olive oil over the zucchini strips and with clean hands, gently toss and rotate the zucchini to get an even distribution of seasonings.
5. Place roasting pan in oven and cook for 20 minutes.
6. Remove pan from oven and using a spatula gently, move the zucchini strips in the pan to expose zucchini that hasn’t browned. Return roasting pan to the oven and cook for another 20 minutes until nicely browned.
7. Using two spatulas or large spoons, remove the zucchini strips from the pan and plate on a serving dish.
8. Sprinkle the finely shredded Parmesan cheese on top, the heat from the zucchini will melt the cheese.
9. Serve immediately.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


Swag of The Month

The Shackett

Is it a shirt?  Is it a jacket?  However you decide to wear it, it’s a great layering piece to add to your JKL gear.  Navy canvas  with tan and gray plaid flannel lining embroidered with just keep livin and Pops. 


Get Yours Today!  

December 2021 Newsletter

Matthew McConaughey Named Philanthropist of the Year

We’d like to congratulate our just keep livin Foundation Founder Matthew McConaughey for being named Philanthropist of the Year by The Hollywood Reporter!

It’s a privilege to help bring Matthew’s passion and vision to life through our afterschool fitness and wellness programs. Whether Matthew is hopping on a plane to come comfort our students as they grieve the loss of their beloved teacher, or jumping into action after a natural disaster to help your fellow Texans in their time of need, he’s an inspiration to us all.

Thank you to The Hollywood Reporter for your support of our foundation.

Check Out the Full Article


JKL Students Give Back for the Holidays

We’re proud of our #jklivin students from East Austin College Prep for getting into the holiday spirit early this year. Just in time for Thanksgiving, they passed out free turkeys to their fellow students and their families!

Thank you Meta (formerly Facebook) for donating 300 turkeys to help make our Austin community’s “turkey day” a little happier. To make things even more special (and delicious), we added recipe cards to the turkeys that featured our very own Camila McConaughey’s recipe for Sweet Potatoes with Brussel Sprouts and Craisins. Check out the recipe below to try it for yourself!

Full recipe by Women of Today »


A Beautiful Day at the MJ&M Fashion Show

MJ&M 2021 Fashion Committee with Featured Designer Andrea Lieberman/A.L.C.

Friday, November 12th was an incredible day in Austin, TX filled with fun, fashion, and giving back.

The Mack, Jack & McConaughey (MJ&M) 2021 Fashion Show and Luncheon was presented in partnership with Neiman Marcus featuring designer Andrea Lieberman of A.L.C. It was a stellar runway show with A.L.C.’s stunning Fall and Holiday Collection looks coming down the runway followed by an outdoor luncheon and silent auction.

There was even a Neiman Marcus-presented A.L.C. pop up shop set up so guests could shop for a cause, with 10% of sales being donated to MJ&M. Kendra Scott, Sprinkles Cupcakes and Tito’s Handmade Vodka offered special touches at the event, and Clarins shared the glam with our guests. MJ&M is the joint fundraising effort of Matthew McConaughey, recording artist Jack Ingram, and coaching legend Mack Brown.

Thank you to everyone who attended and supported the event for helping MJ&M #EmpowerKids!


BSSJ GETS CREATIVE WITH PAINTS

Our JKL students at The Brooklyn School for Social Justice in New York created beautiful masterpieces during JKL programming during November.

They tied in our November quote of the month of just finish- the students finished and created a painting that showed no matter where your road may take you, always continue on your path.


JKL Co-Founder Camila Alves McConaughey Wants Kids to “Just Try One Bite”

The healthy eating advocate and founder of Women of Today will release her first book, Just Try One Bite, with co-author Adam Mansbach.

The book features a funny role reversal in which picky-eater parents are confronted by their children. Camila writes from experience, as a mom herself to Levi (13), Vida (11), and Livingston (8). “When you get older, it gets harder to kick bad habits,” adds Alves McConaughey.

“Just Try One Bite is a fun way to teach those healthy habits early on.” Just Try One Bite will hit shelves on March 22, and is available for pre-order now.


Camila’s Tips: Sweet Potatoes with Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Craisins

Looking for a yummy holiday side dish that will impress guests and isn’t too hard to make?

Then you must try our recipe for these Sweet Potatoes with Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Craisins … It combines two of our all-time favorite holiday veggie sides: sweet potatoes + Brussels sprouts. It’s a really easy dish to make and takes only about 10 minutes to prep the entire thing (giving you more time to cook everything else!).

Ingredients
• 2 lbs frozen Brussels sprouts
• 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• 1 tsp sea salt
• 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
• 2 large sweet potatoes (peeled and cubed)
• 1.5 tbsp real maple syrup
• 1/8 tsp cinnamon
• 1/3 cup craisins

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

FOR THE BRUSSELS SPROUTS:
In one dark cookie sheet or baking pan combine the Brussel sprouts, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper. Toss to coat and place on one side of the oven, turning every 10 minutes or as needed. Roast for 45-60 minutes until browned and tender.

FOR THE SWEET POTATOES:
In a ceramic baking combine the cubed sweet potatoes, maple syrup, and cinnamon. Toss to coat and place on the other side of the oven, turning every 10 minutes or as needed. Roast until tender and golden brown, 45-50 minutes.

Assemble
In a serving dish, combine the cooked Brussel sprouts, sweet potatoes, and add the craisins. This can be served immediately or made a head and reheated.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


JKL Swag of the Month:

Black Tee Shirt

Whether they are on the naughty or nice list, our black short sleeve t-shirt is the perfect stocking stuffer or gift this holiday season.


Get Yours Today!  

November 2021 Newsletter

Happy Birthday Matthew McConaughey

We’d like to wish our just keep livin Foundation founder, Matthew McConaughey, a very happy birthday today.

Like a nice bottle of Wild Turkey Longbranch bourbon, you are only getting better with age! As you embark on another year around the sun, may you continue to find joy in your family, your career, and your philanthropy. We are so lucky that your vision and values lead our foundation. Wishing you nothing but GREENLIGHTS!


JKL Students in Austin Enjoy a Fun Night Out

We are so grateful to two of our generous donors for hosting such a beautiful evening to honor and celebrate all of the Mack, Jack & McConaughey beneficiaries!

We’re so happy that some of our JKL students and teachers we able to attend and see a very special performance by Jack Ingram! It has been an honor to be partnered with CureDuchenne, Dell Children’s Medical Center, HeartGift Foundation and the Rise School of Austin throughout the years through MJ&M. We are so blessed to get to impact so many lives together.


Hiking at Malibu State Park

On Thursday, October 28th, our JKL program at Russell Westbrook Why Not? Academy took their students to enjoy a day of adventure, hiking, and exploration at Malibu State Park!

The students enjoyed hiking, swimming in the creek, a picnic, and being in the great outdoors!


Camila’s Tips: Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats

What happens when you cross this seasons’ most in-demand coffee, a pumpkin spice latte, with pumpkin pie?

You get a creamy and delicious breakfast treat that’s packed with rich pumpkin spice flavors and will keep satisfied all morning long.

Our friend Carmen over at Every Last Bite has created this recipe for Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats that we know you will love …. All you need is 5 minutes and 6 simple ingredients to make these overnight oats which are great as an on the go breakfast you can enjoy anywhere.  These oats will last up to 4 days in the fridge, so make a double batch and you have breakfast for the week sorted, so easy!

Ingredients
• 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
• 2/3 cup almond milk
• 3/4 cup oats
• 2 tbsp chopped pecans
• 1 1/2 tbsp organic honey
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Directions
1. In a bowl combine all of the ingredients and stir until well combined.
2. Divide the mixture between two jars or cups that are each at least 250ml in size.
Cover and place in the fridge for minimum of 4 hours but ideally overnight. These oats can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »


JKL Swag of the Month: New Pigment Dyed Long Sleeve Tee!

This pigment dyed long sleeve T-shirt will be your new go-to for the cooler weather! Pair it with jeans or under a vest. Don’t forget to email the store with you sportin’ any of your JKL gear.

Get Yours Today!

October 2021 Newsletter

Join Us in the All Out Mile Challenge

We have an opportunity to win $25,000 for JKL while simultaneously strengthening our programs – AND WE NEED YOUR HELP!

RAW Running, a local running group in Austin, TX and The Austin Marathon are a part of a challenge that Under Armour is putting on called the All Out Mile.

The gist of the challenge is simple: between October 1st and October 11th we need you to run an all-out mile and push yourself to your limit! The ‘team’ with the most runners to complete the challenge will win $15,000 from Under Armour and the Austin Marathon’s Austin Gives Miles program is generously adding $10,000 to the mix for a total of $25,000 prize money!

Just last year RAW and the Austin Marathon won us $20,000 – and they are currently in the lead. This year we want to get our volunteers, parents, and students involved with just one simple ask – run ONE mile. It doesn’t matter if you break 5 minutes, 15 minutes, or if this is your first ever mile! If you’re able, please get outside and enjoy the perfect fall weather wherever you are and help us, help JKL!

To sign up, follow the following steps (it only takes 5 minutes!):

1. Head to www.uaalloutmile.com
2. Join the ‘RAW + Austin Marathon’ team
3. When you sign up on FitRankings, you need to connect your ‘MapMyRun’ app. If you don’t have one, download or sign up at www.mapmyrun.com
4. Run 1 mile, to the best of your ability, between October 1st – October 11th.

That’s it! Thank you so much for your help and support!

If you need any assistance, please contact [email protected]

JKL Board Comes Together to Discuss Recalibration

We enjoyed getting together (virtually) with our just keep livin Foundation Board of Directors and Advisory Board to recap our 2021 programming and brainstorm for how to impact even more students in 2022.

Our theme for this year’s meeting was “Recalibration,” as we are excited to finally get back to in-person programming after 18 months of remote sessions. We have expanded our reach more than ever – 40 programs in 14 cities – and this kind of growth wouldn’t be possible without the support of our Board.

It takes a village to have the kind of impact our programs are having and we are so grateful for the support of Matthew and Camila and all of these generous and passionate individuals who have the biggest hearts and love to give back. We also want to thank Mrs. Christy Saldivar (pictured above), who runs the JKL program at Cesar Chavez High School in Houston, for the heartfelt speech she gave at the meeting.

She is adored by her students and we love how, under her leadership, the Chavez program has kept finding new ways to innovative during the pandemic. It was a productive annual meeting, and our staff left reinvigorated to help our students learn vital life skills and live healthier lives!

JKL Co-Founders Camila and Matthew McConaughey Give Back on 9/11

It was an honor for our Co-Founders, Camila and Matthew McConaughey, to participate in the Cantor Fitzgerald/BGC Partners 9/11 Charity Day for the fourth consecutive year.

Every year, Cantor Fitzgerald and their affiliates, BGC Partners and GFI Group, commemorate their 658 friends and colleagues and 61 Eurobrokers employees who perished on September 11, 2001 by distributing 100% of their global revenues on Charity Day to nonprofit organizations through their Cantor Fitzgerald Relief Fund.

Matthew and Camila love supporting this worth cause and they enjoyed the opportunity to visit virtually with CF clients and staff. We’re grateful to Cantor Fitzgerald for their ongoing support not only of family members of the victims of 9/11, but to dozens of charities all around the world including ours. Their generosity will allow us to serve even more young people throughout the country through our afterschool fitness and wellness programs.

Volunteer Day at Nissan Stadium:

On Sunday, September 26th, our Maplewood JKL program volunteered for the Tennessee Titans organization by passing out the Game Day Giveaway flags to the first 30,000 attendees!

Our students were met with lots of smiles and felt electrified by the enthusiasm of the fans! The Titans came away with a win that Sunday and thanks to our JKL volunteers, fans now are waving their Titans flags proudly. Our students love the opportunity to give back to their surrounding communities.

Program Spotlight: Animo South Los Angeles

Fall semester has officially started and we’re so excited that our just keep livin programs are back in action.

There’s nothing like seeing the smiles and sweat on our student’s faces in person. Our South Los Angeles JKL Program is kicking off their sixth year and are already off to a great start! Our instructors, Justine and Joanne, put together a safe and creative program plan each week that keeps the students coming back. “This year we can’t wait to start getting our field trips and community service going, especially since that was a component of JKL that was hard to execute online.

The students have already been so excited to work out, cook and talk about what they are grateful for” –ASLA JKL Instructors. The excitement and dedication we are already witnessing with our programs across the country is a sign that this will be a great year!

Camila’s Tips: Camila’s Quick Asian Coleslaw

We’ve all been there: You need to make a quick and healthy lunch but have no time.

Today, Camila is showing us her go-to easy Quick Asian Coleslaw — All using easy ingredients and pre-made items you can pick up at your local H-E-B store.

Ingredients
• 1 package of H-E-B Power Slaw
• 1 package H-E-B Organic Basil
• H-E-B Rotisserie Chicken Salad (prepared foods)
• H-E-B Meal Simple Kale Cranberry Salad (prepared foods)

DRESSING INGREDIENTS
• 4 tbsp olive oil
• 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
• 2 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
• 1 lime, juiced
• small pinch of salt (optional)
• fresh ground pepper to taste

Directions
FOR THE DRESSING:
1. Combine all ingredients and whisk or put in a jar and shake.

FOR THE COLESLAW:
1. Combine all salad ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Add the H-E-B Power Slaw to the bowl and combine well. Let mixture sit in dressing for 10-15 minutes to help break down the slaw.
2. Begin making your individual bowls by adding a layer of the slaw, then add Meal Simple Kale Cranberry Salad on top of the slaw and top with a dollop of the H-E-B Rotisserie Chicken Salad.

Enjoy! Beijos Camila

Full recipe by Women of Today »

JKL Swag of the Month:

Alright Americana

Check out the Alright Americana T-shit and try sportin’ this stylish, light blue tee shirt with the iconic alright alright alright!


Get Yours Today!  

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UVALDE RELIEF FUND

Matthew, Camila, and the just keep livin team are working hard to support relief efforts in Matthew's home town.
Click here to donate and help support our relief efforts.

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