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Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, Chief of the Golden Eagles Mardi Gras Indian tribe, was named a recipient of a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship. Boudreaux will be among nine artists receiving the honor at a ceremony and concert in Washington, D.C. in September along with a $25,000 award.

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John and Dathel Georges,owners of The Advocate newspapers, donated $1 million to the United Way of Southeast Louisiana to help fund its Blueprint for Prosperity program to eradicate poverty. United Way will track the progress of program participants, from learning job skills to employment, and release its findings next year.

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NOLA Beats for Orlando raised more than $2,000 for the OneOrlando Fund to benefit victims and families of last month's Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida. Ochsner Health System donated an additional $340 to the fund.

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Cheron Brylski, widow of the late New Orleans photographer Harold Baquet, arranged for the donation of Baquet's impressive body of work to The Historic New Orleans Collection. Baquet died June 18, 2015.

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Green Light New Orleans and the Urban Conservancy were awarded a total of $250,000 in grants from the Allianz Katrina Fund to promote sustainability efforts in New Orleans and Jefferson Parish. Philips also matched the grant with a donation of 3,500 LED light bulbs for Jefferson Parish.

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The Hertz Investment Groupis awarding $80,000 to the New Orleans Recreation Development Foundation for summer swimming activities at city pools. The donation supports classes, lifeguards and maintenance.

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The Emeril Lagasse Foundation distributed more than $150,000 to several Gulf Coast organizations: Second Harvest Food Bank and its Summer Feeding, Kids Cafe and School Pantry programs; Liberty's Kitchen's Youth Leadership Center; the Louisiana Restaurant Association's Education Fund; the Ingram Lee Foundation; Broad Community Connections' ReFresh Kids' Camp; and Florida's Emerald Coast Children's Advocacy Center. Design Management Group awarded the Metropolitan Center for Women and Children a $55,000 building upgrade through its 2016 "Building Better Renovation" initiative.

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New Orleans Artists Against Hunger and Homelessness (NOAAHH) awarded $50,000 in grants to Bridge House/Grace House, Ciara Independent Living, CrescentCare, Eden House, Food for Families, Hope House, Jewish Family Service, Just the Right Attitude, Lantern Light, Lindy's Place, Luke's House, Ozanam Inn, Project Lazarus, Raintree Children & Family Services, St. Jude Community Center and Southeast Louisiana Legal Services. NOAAHH has awarded more than $2 million since 1985.

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Sweet Home New Orleans awarded $15,000 to the Roots of Music and $57,000 to the Music and Culture Coalition of New Orleans. Sweet Home was founded in 2006 to help resettle New Orleans musicians after Hurricane Katrina and shuttered in 2013.

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The Junior League of New Orleansawarded five grants totaling $39,916 to New Orleans area nonprofit organizations through its Community Assistance Fund (CAF) program. Recipients include the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music, Luke's House, New Orleans Council on Aging, the Ochsner Clinic Foundation and YMCA.

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Benjamin Franklin High Schoolwas named a Green Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education for its efforts to reduce its environmental impact and utility costs, promote health and the environment and other "green" efforts. The school is among 47 campuses nationwide receiving the honor in 2016, including three other schools in Louisiana.

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The Citypak Project distributed backpacks to homeless people in New Orleans last month at Unity of Greater New Orleans, Ozanam Inn and Covenant House. The backpacks are specifically designed by High Sierra for people who currently are homeless.

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