Girl, 13, Begged Father For Money To Treat Cancer. Video Viral After Death

Girl, 13, Begged Father For Money To Treat Cancer. Video Viral After Death

Sai Shri’s parents had been separated for eight years and she had been living with her mother

“Daddy…please do something and save me” – says a 13-year-old girl in an incredibly tragic WhatsApp video to her father, begging him for money for her cancer treatment. Young Sai Shri died on Sunday in Andhra Pradesh’s Vijayawada, but her tearful voice is being heard by thousands through the video that has been widely shared online.

Sai Shri’s parents had been separated for eight years and she had been living with her mother. In the video, she pleads with her father, Shetty Shivakumar, to sell her home – which was in her name – to raise money for her treatment. Her mother had reportedly tried to sell the house but was stopped by her father, who allegedly got help from a politician to try and throw his estranged family out.

Sai was diagnosed with cancer in August, and doctors reportedly told her mother that a bone marrow transplant was the only option.

Speaking in Telugu in the excruciating video, she shows swellings and lesions on her arms and legs and shares that she is in great pain.

“Daddy, you say that you don’t have money. At least we have this house. Please sell this house and pay for my treatment daddy. Or else, they (doctors) say that I won’t survive for long,” she weeps.

“I haven’t gone to school in months. I want to play with my friends…I want to go to school…take my exam…I want to become a doctor…”

Based on a complaint by an activist, the Andhra Pradesh State Human Rights Commission has asked the police to investigate whether Mr Shivakumar, who lives in the same city, was guilty of neglecting his daughter.

Activists allege that Mr Shivakumar refused to spend money for his daughter’s treatment even though he could afford it.

Sai’s mother Sumashri had reportedly spent Rs. 30 lakh but the treatment was not good enough for the type of cancer that she was suffering from.

[“source-ndtv”]

13 pieces of money advice you can’t afford to ignore

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There’s so much financial advice out there that it’s near impossible to follow all of it.

But missing the most important — and often most basic — words of wisdom could end up costing you big time.

To help out, we combed through our archives to round up the best money advice from financial planners, bestselling authors, and the second-richest man on earth, that will help you save and earn the most money.

Below, check out the 13 pieces of money advice you simply can’t afford to ignore:

1. Pay yourself first

“People still don’t grasp the fact that they need to save a dime out of every dollar,” author and self-made millionaire David Bach told Business Insider in a Facebook Live interview. He said the average American who’s saving money is saving just 15 minutes a day of their income, when they should be saving an hour.

Bach noted troubling research from the Federal Reserve that revealed nearly half of Americans wouldn’t have enough money on hand to cover a $400 emergency. Yet, he continued, millions of those people will buy a coffee at Starbucks today and expect to buy the new $800 iPhone next year. Americans have money, he says, but we aren’t saving it.

So get on the “pay-yourself-first plan,” as Bach calls it, and automatically save an hour a day of your income. “When that money is moved before you can touch it, that’s how real wealth is built,” he said.

Sebastiaan ter Burg/Flickr

2. Beware of lifestyle creep

There’s a lot of pressure in your 20s and 30s to keep up with your friends. Maybe they’re buying a nicer car or a house, but if you’re not in the financial position to keep up, don’t try.

“I always refer to it as ‘lifestyle creep’ because one of the big things that people can do — that’s an advantage to them — is keep their fixed expenses somewhat stable and reasonable for what they make,” Katie Brewer, a Dallas-based certified financial planner who founded Your Richest Life, told Business Insider.

Planning for your recurring costs — like mortgage, rent, a car payment, and insurance — ensures that expenses won’t creep up on you and derail your financial future. Of course, Brewer said, if you’re making good money you should have the freedom to spend it how you wish, as long as your lifestyle doesn’t overtake your income.

In short: Live below your means.

3. Take advantage of an employer-sponsored 401(k)

Putting money into a retirement plan as early as you can, no matter the amount, is a smart and easy way to pay yourself first.

If your company offers a 401(k) plan, take advantage of it. In some cases, employers will offer a contribution match. “That means the company contributes a set amount — say, 50 cents for a dollar — for every dollar you contribute up to a specified percentage of your salary,” Beth Kobliner writes in her book “Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties.”

“That’s free money, equivalent to a 50% or 100% return. There’s nowhere you can beat this!” she writes.

Plus, 401(k)s allow you to contribute your pre-tax money, meaning the more you contribute now, the greater the growth (thanks, compound interest) and the more money you’ll have down the road, though you will be taxed when you withdraw the money for retirement. For 2017, the maximum contribution to a 401(k) is $18,000.

Andy Kiersz/Business Insider

4. Invest in the stock market, just don’t try to time it

“No one can time the market, so know that if there is a decline, it’s going to bounce back. Over time, being in the market pays off more so than staying out of it,” Michael Solari, a certified financial planner with Solari Financial Planning, told Business Insider.

A smart play, according to Solari, is to put your money in a low-cost target date retirement fund.

Sometimes known as “set it and forget it” investments, these diversified funds automatically adjust their asset allocation and risk exposure based on your age and retirement horizon. Early on, when the need for that money is still a couple decades away, the fund will adopt a more growth-focused strategy. As you ripen toward retirement, it dials back the risk.

You may not get the average annual return of 11% in your target date fund — given you’ll be invested in a blend of stocks, bonds, and alternative assets — but if you get even 6% per year, an original $10,000 investment will be worth more than $32,000 in 20 years without you having to do a single thing. Compare that with $12,200 in your high-yield savings account or $10,020.20 in your traditional savings account.

5. Build an emergency fund

Let’s face it: It’s really not a matter of if you’ll need to fork over cash for a car or home repair, child expense, or medical emergency, but a matter of when.

“No matter how well you plan or how positively you think, there are always things out of your control that can go wrong,” Bach writes in his bestseller “The Automatic Millionaire.”

“People lose their jobs, their health, their spouses. The economy can go sour, the stock market can drop, businesses can go bankrupt. Circumstances change. If there’s anything you can count on, it’s that life is filled with unexpected changes,” he wrote.

Most financial planners suggest stockpiling anywhere from three to nine months worth of expenses in an emergency fund that you can turn to when in need. If you don’t have savings at the ready, you run the risk of having to rely on family or friends for help, or worse, falling into debt.

Kate Hiscock/Flickr

6. Pay off your credit card balance in full every month

Sometimes a credit card can feel like free money, until you’re slapped with the bill. Even then, most credit cards only require you to pay 1% to 3% of your balance each month, which can be an alluring prospect if your budget is tight. But consistently paying the minimum could cost you a fortune in the long run, damage your credit score, and affect your ability to qualify for a mortgage.

Farnoosh Torabi, a financial expert, author, and host of the “So Money” podcast learned this lesson the hard way.

Not only did she swipe her credit card with no reservations and adopt the bad habit of paying just the minimum amount — Torabi said she once forgot to pay the bill all together.

She remembered incurring a late fee that showed up on her credit report and gave her a true “wake-up call.” The incident happened before she “realized the power of automating” her bills, a practice that can save you money on late fees and relinquish you from remembering due dates and the embarrassment of missing a payment.

7. Don’t sit on too much savings

Saving money is important — and could be easier than it sounds — but if you’re saving too much, you may be keeping yourself from building wealth.

Though you’re “never going to kill your financial future” by accumulating money, Brewer says, “you’re losing out on opportunity costs by having money sitting around … especially if it’s sitting in an account making barely anything in interest.”

If you’re risk-averse, one way to manage savings overflow is to move your money into a high-yield savings account, where you could be earning 1% interest on your money, rather than the 0.01% earned in a traditional savings account. Or, as previously mentioned, stick it in a low-cost target date fund and see your returns balloon over time, with little to no work required.

John Lambert Pearson/Flickr

8. Have more than one credit card

It may seem financially reckless to have a wallet full of credit cards, but it’s actually smart. According to John Ulzheimer, credit expert at CreditSesame.com, having a single credit card can damage your credit score, thanks to something called your credit utilization ratio — that is, how much of your available credit you’re actually using.

“That percentage is very, very influential in your credit score,” explains Ulzheimer. “People say that you’re in good shape if you keep your utilization within 50% of your available credit, or 30%, but really, it should be below 10%.”

Available credit counts all the cards you have: If you have one card with an $8,000 limit and one with a $6,000 limit, your total available credit is $14,000, even if you only spend $1,000 a month. With a single card, you have no unused credit cushioning the impact of your spending. The closer you get to your limit, the harder the hit on your credit score.

9. Pay off high-interest debt first

Sallie Krawcheck, a former Wall Street executive and the founder and CEO of Ellevest, says paying down high-interest debt should always be prioritized, even above building an emergency fund.

She explained the math in an article on Ellevest:

“Say you have $5,000 of credit card debt at an 18% interest rate. Say you happen upon $5,000 of money. If you take some of the advice out there, and split the use of that $5,000 (half to establish an emergency fund, half to pay down credit card debt), you still have $2,500 of credit card debt and $2,500 of money sitting in cash.

“The $2,500 of credit card debt at an 18% interest rate costs you $450 a year. The emergency fund earns almost nothing in interest. So you’re out $450.”

Bottom line: You’ll save more paying off the debt than you’d earn if you invested it, whether in a high-yield savings account or the stock market.

10. Always be insured

Every American citizen is required to have health insurance, or be fined hundreds of dollars by the IRS each year. Kobliner advises signing up for insurance should be “your No. 1 financial priority” because it’ll protect you from unforeseen accidents or illness, and prevent yourself or your family from going bankrupt in the case of an emergency.

If your employer offers health insurance, take it, Kobliner says. It’s almost always cheaper than buying a policy on your own (but keep in mind that you can be covered by your parent’s insurance until age 26). Before signing up, though, make sure you understand the cost and extent of the plan, including your deductible, or how much you’ll be paying out-of-pocket before insurance takes over.

If you do end up needing to purchase a policy on your own, head over to healthcare.gov to compare plans and pricing.

Business Insider

11. Track your spending

Business Insider’s Libby Kane has written, edited, and read hundreds, maybe thousands, of stories about money during her career, and says she’s learned that “the best, most critical first step you can take to improve your finances is to track your spending.”

Keeping tabs on where your money is going, whether fixed expenses like rent or mortgage payments and transportation costs or discretionary spending like dining out and travel, is a crucial part of mastering your money.

Setting up a spreadsheet or using a service like LearnVest or Mint can help you make cuts where necessary and even set you on a path to early retirement, if that’s what you’re after.

12. Pay your taxes — and be smart about it

“Whether you owe money to the tax man at the end of the year or not, it’s always a smart move to file your taxes,” Kobliner advises.

And be aware that you can save money on taxes by taking advantage of deductions, or the specific expenses you’re allowed to take out of your income before calculating your owed taxes. The standard deduction — $6,300 for singles and $12,600 for couples — is a good place to start, Kobliner says.

You can also itemize deductions to maximize your savings by listing specific deductions, including expenses for housing costs like mortgage interest or property taxes, and charitable donations, or making use of tax credits.

And if you don’t file your taxes? You could pay a penalty fee of at least $135, plus interest on the money you owe, and lose ground on your credit report, among a host of other financial consequences.

Chip Somodevilla / Getty

13. Be patient

When bestselling author and motivational speaker Tony Robbins asked billionaire Warren Buffett a few years ago, “What made you the wealthiest man in the world?” Buffett replied, “Three things: Living in America for the great opportunities, having good genes so I lived a long time, and compound interest.”

“The biggest thing about making money is time,” the investor, who’s now worth more than $76 billion, said in a recent HBO documentary about his life. “You don’t have to be particularly smart, you just have to be patient.”

In his latest letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders, Buffett announced that he was on his way to winning a $1 million bet he made in 2007 that his investment in an S&P 500 index fund would outperform five hedge funds over a decade.

[“Source-businessinsider”]

 

Mashable Raises $13 Million, Its First Ever Outside Investment

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We’ve all heard of huge investments and acquisitions in the world of tech startups.

Last year alone saw Yahoo’s $1 billion acquisition of publishing platform Tumblr. And there was also news of accounting software company Xero raising $150 million in capital for further expansion.

In fact, we even saw some failed attempts like Facebook’s two unsuccessful attempts to acquire photo sharing app Snapchat. (Perhaps they wouldn’t have been so eager had they known something like this was brewing.)

Anyway, many small business owners online don’t happen to be developing the next great iPhone app. Instead, a blog or other website with unique niche news or other content is more likely to be their product.

And though big investments and acquisitions in the world of independent news brands may be somewhat unsung, it turns out they are no less prevalent.

Business Insider, Huff Po Show News Brand Value

In fact, big investments and acquisitions in the world of independent news brands is kind of old news. Remember when Amazon CEO Jeff Brazos’ personal investment firm Brazos Explorations led a $5 million round of funding for Business Insider last year?

It turns out as recently as late 2013, AOL had offered to pay between $100 and $150 million for the business news site. But talks eventually broke down over price, Fox News reports.

And, of course, most memorable of all might be AOL’s other big news acquisition. In 2011, the online media giant acquired the Huffington Post for what then seemed a hefty $315 million.

Though AOL’s other investments, most notably its group of local news sites known collectively as Patch, have not fared nearly as well.

Lessons to Take From Mashable Success

So it should be no surprise to learn that Mashable has raised $13 million in private equity funding — even if its the first funding the news site has received in its near decade of existence.

CNN News says investors include Updata Partners, New Markets Venture Partners, Social Starts, Buddy Media Co-Founders Michael and Kass Lazerow, Iglo Group Chief Executive Elio Leoni Sceti, and Havas global CEO David Jones.

There are some simple lessons other independent news brands can take from Mashable’s success:

News Sites Can Wait Longer for Investment

Mashable CEO Pete Cashmore founded the company at age 19 as a blog he ran from his home in Aberdeen, Scotland. From there it has survived and thrived into a news site that now claims to receive 30 million unique visitors per month.

With the digital publishing tools available now, independent news publishers need little more than unique content to start them out. So money for expansion can wait until later.

Growth Comes From Broadening and Deepening Coverage

Mashable started as a blog about technology and matured into a news site dedicated to the social media space. But since then, its coverage has expanded to include business, entertainment and other subjects. While early coverage was largely regurgitation of material already on the Web, the company continues to do more original reporting.

Hiring additional editorial talent like Jim Roberts, a veteran of both The New York Times and Reuters, shows a commitment to more of the same.

Technology is Used to Improve Experience

Certainly most online publishers can start today with very little investment using available tools. But that doesn’t mean independent news sites should ignore investing in new tech solutions.

At a social media summit, Cashmore observed that the greatest challenge faced by online publishers was lack of control over reader experience. (Is your reader coming to your site using an iPad or Kindle tablet? What difference does this make in his or her experience?) To address the issue, Mashable has built products like its Google Glass app. The company also has a special products division aimed at creating technology to help readers consume its content in a variety of ways.

See the video of Cashmore and Mashable CEO, Robyn Peterson, at Internet Week New York 2013:

Bottom line: Mashable shows independent news brands may require a more gradual, long-term growth plan than some other tech businesses, but investments are low to start and rewards can be significant.

Image: Mashable

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

For 13 years, Texas has been secretly, illegally denying kids special education

In 2004, under then-governor Rick Perry, the Texas Education Agency secretly instituted a plan to cap the number of students receiving special education support at 8.5% — far less than the national average.

In order to achieve this goal, the state forced teachers to illegally, systematically deny care to children, including speech therapy, psychological counseling, physical therapy, and access to therapeutic tools (for example, at least one student who was born without functional hands was denied the laptop he needed to do his schoolwork).

Many of those kids went on to drop out, but Texas also leads the country in its pipeline for kids sent to mental institutions, and the Houston Chronicle’s six-part series on the policy also documents suicides and attempted suicides.

All along — and even now — the state and the local school districts deny that the policy exists, despite the testimonies of parents, students, and long-serving principals and teachers who quit rather than go along with orders. The state and local education authorities have also illegally refused to respond to public records requests.

Despite this stonewalling and lying, the Houston Chronicle has pieced together a damning, thorough documentation of the Rick Perry legacy: tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of children who were denied the education they were entitled to, who ended up uneducated, institutionalized, overmedicated, or dead — all to save the state more than a billion dollars it was required, by law, to spend on its children. As you might expect: this policy landed disproportionately on racialized brown and black children.

Rick Perry is no longer governor of Texas: now he’s America’s problem, as Trump’s pick for Secretary of Energy.

Soon, Alston’s grades plunged. In January 2014, when he was in eighth grade, the school told his parents he was failing and at risk of being held back.

His behavior worsened, too, records show. At the beginning of ninth grade, he got suspended for shoving another student, and at the end of the year, he was suspended for threatening to bring a gun to school.

His parents were worried, but they didn’t know what to do. His mother, a correctional officer, and his stepfather, a maintenance worker, could not afford a private psychiatrist. They had to trust the school to help their son.

Then, in October 2015, Alston’s girlfriend broke up with him.

That night, he tried to overdose on his ADHD medication.

His mom caught him and took him to a hospital, where he was stabilized and eventually released.

He begged his parents to let him go to school the next day so he could attend basketball practice. They agreed, thinking a return to normalcy would be good for him.

Despite the suicide attempt, the school still did not test him for special ed.

[“source-smallbiztrends”]