All posts tagged: giving


PluggedIn : Teen Bands Creating Change Through Music

PluggedIn is a non-profit organization that teaches teenagers how to be in a rock band. And at the same time, use their music to make a positive change within society. Performing in a band allows teenage musicians to be creative, make friends, grow musically and have fun. The bands perform concerts to raise money for charity. PluggedIn started in Needham Massachusetts, as a resource place for teenagers to come together as a band. Starting with 5 students in 1 band in 2002, PluggedIn now consists of 90 students in 25 bands, and has helped raise thousands of dollars for charities all over the world. Music for a Cause At the beginning of each program, PluggedIn students get together at an event called “Charity Night” and present to each other charitable organizations and causes that are important to them. Students explain how they learned about the cause, what needs are met by the charity and why they feel it is important to support them. At the end of the evening, students vote to choose the charity …


DealGooder : Discover Cool Deals and Help Local Charities.

How do you like the idea of getting discounts on products and services you like, while supporting causes at the same time? DealGooder, an innovative company based out of California, lets you to do exactly that. The DealGooder model is simple. The company negotiates great deals from socially conscious businesses and promotes them online. Deals include such things as meal discounts at restaurants, deals on wine tours, or discounts at a local spa. Deals are purchased via the DealGooder website. A generous 50% of all profits are donated by DealGooder to a local charity. Each day, DealGooder promotes a new deal on their website. Also, each week, a new non-profit is chosen as a beneficiary. DealGooder pairs deals with local non-profits. This means that dollars spent on buying goodies go towards helping the local community. Win. Win. Win! Ethan Austin, co-founder of DealGooder was looking for “an easier way to help non-profits raise funds” as corporate giving dramatically reduced during the global financial crisis. He hit upon the idea of combining discounts with charity. With …


Top 3 Disruptive Social Innovations for 2011

The year 2010 saw the coming of age for investment and technology within the social sector. Socially oriented Venture Capital funds are making investment in companies that adopt a market based approach to solving problems of hunger and poverty. In this article, we examine ‘disruptive’ innovations likely to power social causes in 2011 and beyond. 1. Micro Investments gain traction over Charitable Giving and Micro-finance Our previous articles on Philanthropy 2.0 and problems with Micro-finance highlighted issues with micro-credit and trust factors with traditional giving. In this article Dr. Yunus, Managing Director of Grameen, insists on the creation of a micro-credit regulatory authority to prevent loan-sharks from profiting off the suffering of the poor. These developments mean that micro-investments (interest free loans against equity within micro-enterprises) have potential to take off in 2011. We are likely to see corporations make a shift from philanthropic giving to impact investing. 2. More technology startups focus on social issues Worldwide, more people now care about global welfare and social and environmental issues than perhaps ever before. Technology and …


Jumo : Do We Need Another Social Network for Causes?

Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes recently launched his new initiative Jumo, a social network for the social sector. Jumo is designed to help individuals find, follow and support causes they care about. His motivation to start Jumo sprung from the need to connect non-profits with individuals who would like to help them. Non-profits are often in need of resources and individuals who would like to help but unable to create enough publicity and reach out to a wide enough interested audience.

Thanksgiving cornucopia

Happy Thanksgiving!

Since its Thanksgiving, we would like to say thank you, to the founders of all the Social businesses and non-profits we have spoken to over the last few months. The world would not be the same without the vision, passion and commitment of the talented individuals behind these organizations. And we would like to thank all of you, our readers, who have been sharing our stories out to your friends. In doing so, you help raise awareness towards causes that you care about. And this in turn directly helps the cause. Here are some examples from last month; Many people emailed us asking how they could donate to Narayanan Krishnan’s cause An event management company in Mumbai read the story about Mirakle Couriers and decided to give business to them. We received emails asking for more information on fair trade companies such as Himjoli. A ‘Sharing Economy’ is on the rise I had a chance to read this article earlier this week. The article is a very good summary of the book “Whats mine is …


CNN Hero: An Interview with Narayanan Krishnan

Narayanan Krishnan – This year marks CNN’s fourth annual global search for everyday individuals whose efforts are changing the world. The finalists for the CNN Heroes 2010 were announced on September 23rd 2010. reporter Usha Bhende caught up with CNN Hero finalist Narayanan Krishnan. The transcript of the interview is below. Krishnan’s story is quite amazing. Usha: Krishnan, when did the idea of feeding the homeless and hungry occur to you? Krishnan: It was in 2002 when I was visiting my parents in Madurai, India. This was just before leaving for Switzerland for a job as chef in a Five Star restaurant. Usha: Why did you opt to quit your job and feed homeless people? Krishnan: On my visit home, I saw a very old man eating his own human waste for food. This really hurt me. I was literally shocked for a second. After that, I started feeding that man and decided this was my calling and what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Usha: How did you start? Krishnan: I …


Top 5 Free Tech Resources for Non-profits

This post lists some of our favorite FREE technology resources available on the web, that non-profits can leverage. These resources are – Free for non-profits, Easy to use and available over the internet. The Internet has changed the world. More people now spend more time online than ever before. Non-profits need to reach out to an ever-increasing online audience using the internet and for this they need great tools. 1. Organization Email and Collaboration: Google Apps Google Apps for non-profits allows organizations to retain their existing domain names (for example and at the same time, use Google Mail for work, Talk, Calendar and Docs for collaboration, along with other Google resources. This means you no longer need to pay for email hosting, or ‘maintenance’ or ‘upgrade’ charges. You don’t have to use personal Gmail and Yahoo accounts for work, AND you can have email addresses under your own domain name when communicating with customers and donors. Sign up here Google Apps for Non-Profits. 2. Email marketing: Mailchimp Although Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and social media …


Philanthropy 2.0 : Micro Venture Capital v/s Donations

As a regular donor to causes, I have often wondered whether my donations made a difference. I have read annual reports and useful statistics telling me they have, but reports and scorecards haven’t been able to make me stay connected to the cause. Micro investment is about to change all that. How is Micro Investing different from Donating? Micro investments are investments of small sums of money (say 50 dollars) made by individuals, but more commonly, by a group of like minded people (friends, colleagues etc) in a micro venture fund such as Inventure Fund. The fund shortlists a set of entrepreneurs (individuals or communities) who are trained and mentored by its local reps. Businesses are chosen based on their track record as well as commitment to invest a part of their profits back into improving their communities. When an investment is made, the business has no pressure to make weekly or monthly interest payments as is usually the case with micro financed loans. Rather, the business is allowed to grow organically. The risk of …