#BlogActionDay 2012: The Power of We – Crowd-Sourced Funding

When you think about organizations receiving funding from a large number of people, some of whom donate very small amounts, you typically think of two scenarios – political parties and large charities.

 

And certainly, those two types of organizations have greatly benefited from the advent of social media, where they can solicit donations from targeted groups of individuals where they congregate online. Individual donation pages set up by everyone from walkers in support of breast cancer research to triathletes training to compete on behalf of blood cancer prevention, detection and treatment.

 

Donations

Donations (Photo credit: Matthew Burpee)

 

. My daughter Kate, a public school teacher in inner-city Philadelphia twice leveraged DonorsChoose.org to fund first basic equipment (and when I say basic I mean bats, gloves and even the bases) for a girl’s softball team she had volunteered to coach at her school which lacked its own means to support, and again to take her students to see the documentary ‘The Bully Project – 1 Million Kids’ in hopes of bettering their lives today and building better citizens for tomorrow  Social Media now has Kickstarter.com, a way to invest in new start-up companies. I even helped fund getting clean water in Africa via CharityWater.org and co-funded the recent Broadway revival of ‘Godspell’.

 

So the ‘”Power of We” is strong, wide-ranging, and helps bring things to life for philanthropy and for-profit projects alike.

 

Give a little to the project of your choice — you know you should.

 

International Volunteer Day – Give Thanks

Today, December 5, is International Volunteer Day, created by the United Nations in 1985 to give thanks to those who volunteer in one way or another “for their efforts and increase public awareness on their contribution to society.” Thank you all, for without your efforts hundreds of thousands of people, many of them children, would perish — and that is not an exaggeration.

And what better time of year, when thoughts turn to celebrating holidays and exchanging gifts with our families from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day to be thankful for what we have and to help others less fortunate.

A week ago, I joined others volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House in New York – the first and biggest of the havens allowing families to stay together to support their child or sibling s/he undergoes treatment for cancer and other diseases to unpack holiday decorations stored away last year and start to bring some holiday cheer to the house. I tell you it was an extremely fulfilling experience as we brought a little bit of cheer to the 85 families who call RMH home.

Ronald McDonald House
There were three times I almost lost composure, touched by what the staff and guests deal with every day. Read more of this post

Blog Action Day 2011 – Food, For Thought

Refugees in EthiopiaToday, October 16, 2011, is global Blog Action Day where bloggers from all over the world blog about a singular topic and this year, falling on World Food Day, it’s food (or lack thereof). (Ed. note: 2011 participation: 2,710 bloggers located in  109 countries).

As I write this entry, one of my daughters, Adriane, is flying to Ethiopia as part of a United Nations Foundation global health observation team. Situated between the Sudan to the west and Somalia to the east, I hope she has a safe, informational and inspirational journey.

Ethiopia has the dual distinction of being both besieged by famine, poverty, health crises (TB, Malaria; HIV/AIDS), the worst drought in 60 years as well as the added burden of refugees arriving daily from its neighbors.

The United Nations defines famine as a region or country where:
• At least 20 percent of households face extreme food shortages
• Acute malnutrition affects more than 30 percent of the population
Malnutrition leads to at least two deaths per 10,000 people every day

Ethiopia easily qualifies. There, as elsewhere in the famine-torn  Horn of Africa, foreign aid is essential to bringing relief to this humanitarian crisis.

What YOU can do to help
Contribute to a reputable disaster relief organization. The American Institute of Philanthropy rates a list of charities that best help East Africans. So, the next time you push yourself away from the dinner table, complaining that you “ate too much,”pick one, donate and think of those who suffer hunger everyday.

Until then, chew on this for a while

Click here for more Global Blog Day 2011 entries. On Twitter search #bad2011

Updated: Quitting Twitter for Charity Doesn’t Make Cent$

Updated Dec. 7, 2010 (See end of entry)

Want to raise $1 million? Just ask.

Alicia Keys has convinced other celebrities, including Lady Gaga; Justin Timberlake; Kim Kardashian and Ryan Seacrest, to quit Twitter and Facebook in order to raise $1 million for a worthy charity, Keep  a Child Alive — vowing not to return until they reach that goal.

To me, quitting two of the most effective platforms for raising funds, in order to raise funds, is wrong-headed. This chart shows why:

keys, gaga, timberlake, kardashian, seacrest twitter and facebook

Twitter and Facebook followers @ 11/30/2010

The numbers say it all… Read more of this post

Twitter founder @Biz Explains Why Activism Works on Twitter

Twitter founder @Biz’s great #Atlantic reply to the #NewYorker article that trashed #Twitter activism http://ow.ly/2VQ1d

Blog Action Day 2010 – Drink Up!

From charitywater.org

Life happens, and occasionally when it does your attention gets divided and some things, like blogging, fall by the wayside in favor of other things like micro-blogging (Twitter to you and me) and before you know it the earth has circled the sun once again (and then some).

So, what can spur one to resume the art of the blog? A good reason, for a good cause. Today, October 15, 2010, is global Blog Action Day where bloggers from all over the world blog about a singular topic and this year it’s water (or lack thereof). (Ed. note: 2010 participation: 5,716 bloggers located in 143 countries)

Read more of this post

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