Using Social Media for Social Good: Other Side's contribution to charity

by Kate Brodock on 15 December 2008

Posted in: Outreach

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[Update: We have ended our charity run! Thank you for everyone who participated.  To see which charity will receive a donation, please go here]

WE NEED YOUR HELP!

1 Thoughtful Comment from You = 1 Other Side Dollar to Charity

Kiva Microfunds
Image via WikipediaWe

As I mentioned last week, we’re going to be doing our own social contribution for the holiday season, and we need your help!  This requires no monetary commitment, only participation.

The Play:

  1. Add a comment below with what organization or cause you’d want us to donate to.  If you’d like to offer your reason for doing so, that would be great.
  2. Next week, we will tally up the number of comments we receive.  Each comment is then worth $1.
  3. This total will be divided in two equal parts, representing two equal donations.
  4. We will choose, at random, one of the commenters causes and donate one portion to that cause.  We’ll also ask that commenter if they’d like to describe their personal reason for donating to the cause (you can choose not to if you’d like).
  5. The other portion of the total will go towards Kiva, and organization that I donate to every year.
  6. If you’d like to donate more than a comment (a dollar amount to one or both chosen charities), by all means, feel free to either use the TipJoy button below or contact me here. (The comment will still be chosen randomly for the charity!).

Why Kiva?

I’ve always been drawn to microfinancing and it’s various forms for many reasons.

  • It offers an opportunity to people who have external barriers placed on them that prohibit their ability to make a living for themselves and their family.
  • It works for the little guys.
  • Most importantly, to me, is that the process works to instill a sense of independence in the recipients that comes from owning small businesses, being responsible and accountable for their actions.  This ultimately builds stronger, more motivated individuals, stronger families and communities, and more stable environments in a way that is much more permanent and long-term.

My mom, who is incredibly thoughtful and compassionate  in terms of giving back to the community in any way that she can, gave me a “Kiva gift” for Christmas two years ago.  I thank her for bringing it to my attention.

Disclaimer 1: Kiva’s model is a loan model, which means that eventually this donation will be paid back.  I assure you that it will be continually reinvested into the organization for various entrepreneurs around the world.  I will not personally profit from this.

Disclaimer 2: There will be a limit to the amount of money that we can donate, so, if by chance we get thousands of comments, we’ll need to bring down the donation amount :-) Hopefully everyone will still participate for the cause… and we’ll still need plenty of comments!

Additionally, please feel free to pass this along or Tweet about it!

So then, what’s your cause of choice??

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  • Rebecca Jasperson

    A simple act of kindness can affect the lives of so many….Kate, this is really touching, thanks for putting this out there. (As for my cause of choice, I'll suggest the salvation army. They do such a great job at bringing people together to help others.)

  • mike coughlin

    kbb! hook it up to st. jude's. down with baby cancer.

    or on a similar note, the ronald mcdonald house. they put my degenerate family while they were down at st. judes.

  • Rebecca Jasperson

    A simple act of kindness can affect the lives of so many….Kate, this is really touching, thanks for putting this out there. (As for my cause of choice, I'll suggest the salvation army. They do such a great job at bringing people together to help others.)

  • http://www.awwininc2.org Sarahlyn U. Argrow

    Hello, my name is Sarahlyn U. Argrow and I am the founder of an organization entitled AWWIN, Inc, a non profit 501(c)(3) organization designed to assist single working women and their children. Our organization has assisted more than four hundred families with the services AWWIN offers. The organization is a direct testament of the founder, Ms Argrow. We were able to assist a larger number of families with our Christmas After Christmas, a new and exciting entity of AWWIN. Christmas After Christmas will continue through the upcoming year as AWWIN will assist these families in 2009 to help them with their plight of moving out of poverty.
    We will do a follow- up every two months of the nine families to assist with the educating of their children, assisting the parents with finding better employment, seeking higher education, assistance with their day-to-day needs, etc.
    Please visit http://www.awwininc2.org for more information about AWWIN and the services we offer or to donate. No donation is too small.
    AWWIN is the presenter of the AWWIN, Inc Top Ten Working Women of The Year Awards and we are looking for assistance to expand to the Dallas and Houston areas in the upcoming year. We expanded to Atlanta in 2008. The annual gala will be held May 15, 2009 in Beautiful Savannah Georgia. We are in need of corporate sponsors for this event and donors for our silent auction items.
    Thank You and I hope You have A Very Happy and Prosperous New Year!!!

  • http://www.figmentations.com Helen Hoefele

    I don't have a favorite charity. There are so many people and causes that are worthy and need help. I'd love to help them all. I'll leave it up to you to made the difficult decision. Best wishes to All!

  • http://www.awwininc2.org Sarahlyn U. Argrow

    Hello, my name is Sarahlyn U. Argrow and I am the founder of an organization entitled AWWIN, Inc, a non profit 501(c)(3) organization designed to assist single working women and their children. Our organization has assisted more than four hundred families with the services AWWIN offers. The organization is a direct testament of the founder, Ms Argrow. We were able to assist a larger number of families with our Christmas After Christmas, a new and exciting entity of AWWIN. Christmas After Christmas will continue through the upcoming year as AWWIN will assist these families in 2009 to help them with their plight of moving out of poverty.
    We will do a follow- up every two months of the nine families to assist with the educating of their children, assisting the parents with finding better employment, seeking higher education, assistance with their day-to-day needs, etc.
    Please visit http://www.awwininc2.org for more information about AWWIN and the services we offer or to donate. No donation is too small.
    AWWIN is the presenter of the AWWIN, Inc Top Ten Working Women of The Year Awards and we are looking for assistance to expand to the Dallas and Houston areas in the upcoming year. We expanded to Atlanta in 2008. The annual gala will be held May 15, 2009 in Beautiful Savannah Georgia. We are in need of corporate sponsors for this event and donors for our silent auction items.
    Thank You and I hope You have A Very Happy and Prosperous New Year!!!

  • http://www.figmentations.com Helen Hoefele

    I don't have a favorite charity. There are so many people and causes that are worthy and need help. I'd love to help them all. I'll leave it up to you to made the difficult decision. Best wishes to All!

  • Nancy

    This is an excellent effort and Kiva is a great choice. In 2009 we can all strive to do more to help others. I also support Heifer International (http://www.heifer.org) as I see it as a sustainable way to help people improve their own lives. Good luck Kate with all of Other Side's endeavors!

  • http://adamcohen.typepad.com adamcohen

    Hey Kate – Fantastic idea, well done. Ever since Blog Action Day I've been very impressed with the work of the Greater Boston Food Bank http://www.gbfb.org/ As always you continue to push the envelope with your blog and challenge us to do more…keep up the great work and Happy New Year!

  • Nancy

    This is an excellent effort and Kiva is a great choice. In 2009 we can all strive to do more to help others. I also support Heifer International (http://www.heifer.org) as I see it as a sustainable way to help people improve their own lives. Good luck Kate with all of Other Side's endeavors!

  • http://adamhcohen.com adamcohen

    Hey Kate – Fantastic idea, well done. Ever since Blog Action Day I've been very impressed with the work of the Greater Boston Food Bank http://www.gbfb.org/ As always you continue to push the envelope with your blog and challenge us to do more…keep up the great work and Happy New Year!

  • Kevin B. Gilnack

    This is a great way to enable the community to get involved in helping raise money for some great causes.

    My vote will go to The Home for Little Wanderers in Boston, MA. The Home celebrated its 144th Birthday today and has been helping children and families in Mass all that time. I don't have a personal connection besides knowing of their great work and hearing many success stories come from some very difficult circumstances.

    I do believe that what happens in childhood can set the path for that individual, their family, and the community for years to come, so the work that nonprofits like The Home do are essential to creating a positive future for our world.

    To borrow from their website, here's a bit more about The Home: The Home today plays a leadership role in delivering services to thousands of children and families each year through a system of residential, community-based and prevention programs, direct care services, and advocacy. You can read more at http://www.thehome.org.

  • http://www.pistachioconsulting.com Laura "@Pistachio" Fitton

    Wonderful idea Kate. Kiva is terrific. I also love Heifer.org and CharityWater.org (obviously :-) ).

    Happy New Year and thank you for doing this!

    Warmly,
    Laura

  • mmcgovern

    kate:

    love this!

    my vote: green light fund

    i have been supporting this organization for the past two years and think their approach is brilliant! http://www.greenlightfund.org/html/approach.html

    this year's organization is youth villages; helping individuals transition from the foster care system to adulthood. more here: http://www.greenlightfund.org/html/org/YVTL.html

    thanks again and best of luck!

  • http://twitter.com/makavanagh Melissa Kavanagh

    This is a great idea! So many great causes already listed. My vote is for the Humane Society of North Myrtle Beach (http://www.humanesocietynmb.org/).

    My husband and I have adopted 2 4-legged, furry kids from there, and they bring so much joy to us. The volunteers at this shelter are awesome.

  • http://www.pistachioconsulting.com Laura "@Pistachio" Fitton

    Wonderful idea Kate. Kiva is terrific. I also love Heifer.org and CharityWater.org (obviously :-) ).

    Happy New Year and thank you for doing this!

    Warmly,
    Laura

  • http://texturism.tumblr.com texturism (maura)

    kate:

    love this!

    my vote: green light fund

    i have been supporting this organization for the past two years and think their approach is brilliant! http://www.greenlightfund.org/html/approach.html

    this year's organization is youth villages; helping individuals transition from the foster care system to adulthood. more here: http://www.greenlightfund.org/html/org/YVTL.html

    thanks again and best of luck!

  • http://twitter.com/makavanagh Melissa Kavanagh

    This is a great idea! So many great causes already listed. My vote is for the Humane Society of North Myrtle Beach (http://www.humanesocietynmb.org/).

    My husband and I have adopted 2 4-legged, furry kids from there, and they bring so much joy to us. The volunteers at this shelter are awesome.

  • http://metrolacrosse.com/ Kimberly Hampton

    What an interesting idea. I'd like to nominate MetroLacrosse as a worthy charity. I've worked with them before as a volunteer coach for youth lacrosse leagues across the Boston metro area.
    http://metrolacrosse.com/

    It's amazing how much influence you can make by introducing kids to organized sports, especially in areas where there's so much opportunity to get into trouble.

  • http://www.communicationsconversations.blogspot.com Arik Hanson

    Kate–great idea. The cause I support is http://www.aces4kids.org/. Great model for mentoring and supporting inner-city youth.

  • http://metrolacrosse.com/ Kimberly Hampton

    What an interesting idea. I'd like to nominate MetroLacrosse as a worthy charity. I've worked with them before as a volunteer coach for youth lacrosse leagues across the Boston metro area.
    http://metrolacrosse.com/

    It's amazing how much influence you can make by introducing kids to organized sports, especially in areas where there's so much opportunity to get into trouble.

  • http://www.communicationsconversations.blogspot.com Arik Hanson

    Kate–great idea. The cause I support is http://www.aces4kids.org/. Great model for mentoring and supporting inner-city youth.

  • http://www.chucklasker.com Chuck Lasker

    I'll say Midwest Food Bank because they are creating efficiencies in the distribution of food to the needy by seeking large food donations, then distributing through hundreds of local agencies as well as to disaster sites. This kind of business-thinking is essential in these hard times to organize and centralize and create efficient processes.

    http://www.midwestfoodbank.org/

    Kiva is an excellent cause, too, so I'm glad to see that some money will go there. Thanks for doing this.

  • http://www.chucklasker.com Chuck Lasker

    I'll say Midwest Food Bank because they are creating efficiencies in the distribution of food to the needy by seeking large food donations, then distributing through hundreds of local agencies as well as to disaster sites. This kind of business-thinking is essential in these hard times to organize and centralize and create efficient processes.

    http://www.midwestfoodbank.org/

    Kiva is an excellent cause, too, so I'm glad to see that some money will go there. Thanks for doing this.

  • http://www.stjude.org Brendan Andersen

    Hi Kate, Kiva is a great organization. A good friend of mine from college works for Kiva and has traveled all over the world for them. I appreciate your support of there special cause.

    Since having children, Gina and I are especially supportive of any Pediatic Cancer organization; such as The Jimmy Fund http://www.jimmyfund.org or St Jude's http://www.stjude.org.

  • Brad Dousevicz

    Hi Kate-
    Great idea, and it comes a great time considering many of these organizations are in need of donations more than ever this year. My organization is Camp Ta-Kum-Ta in Vermont. This is a camp for terminal and/or kids with cancer in Vermont. Emily and I became a volunteer sometime ago, and fell in love with the cause. It is a week long camp in the Summer for kids with cancer to just be kids. The staff is amazing, and every day is a different theme. They are hoping to purchase a new property on Lake Champlain, but need additional funds to make the grounds suitable for 60+ children! check out their website for more info- http://www.takumta.org.

    Happy New Year to all.

  • http://www.nami.org Aaron Gates

    Kate, this is the first I have heard of Kiva & I'm glad your blog has brought it to my attention! My organization most definitely is NAMI. (http://www.nami.org) 1 in 5 families in America are affected by Mental Illness. We have come a long way in the past 20 years to better understand, accept, and treat MI. However, there remains a strong stigma, lack of understanding, and serious shortage of quallity staffing/ funding at facilities across the country. Please at least take a moment to look at the “inform yourself” link on the NAMI website…I'm sure there is a NAMI walk in your local community to show your support for free. Breaking down the stereotype is half the battle.

  • http://www.stjude.org Brendan Andersen

    Hi Kate, Kiva is a great organization. A good friend of mine from college works for Kiva and has traveled all over the world for them. I appreciate your support of there special cause.

    Since having children, Gina and I are especially supportive of any Pediatic Cancer organization; such as The Jimmy Fund http://www.jimmyfund.org or St Jude's http://www.stjude.org.

  • Brad Dousevicz

    Hi Kate-
    Great idea, and it comes a great time considering many of these organizations are in need of donations more than ever this year. My organization is Camp Ta-Kum-Ta in Vermont. This is a camp for terminal and/or kids with cancer in Vermont. Emily and I became a volunteer sometime ago, and fell in love with the cause. It is a week long camp in the Summer for kids with cancer to just be kids. The staff is amazing, and every day is a different theme. They are hoping to purchase a new property on Lake Champlain, but need additional funds to make the grounds suitable for 60+ children! check out their website for more info- http://www.takumta.org.

    Happy New Year to all.

  • http://www.nami.org Aaron Gates

    Kate, this is the first I have heard of Kiva & I'm glad your blog has brought it to my attention! My organization most definitely is NAMI. (http://www.nami.org) 1 in 5 families in America are affected by Mental Illness. We have come a long way in the past 20 years to better understand, accept, and treat MI. However, there remains a strong stigma, lack of understanding, and serious shortage of quallity staffing/ funding at facilities across the country. Please at least take a moment to look at the “inform yourself” link on the NAMI website…I'm sure there is a NAMI walk in your local community to show your support for free. Breaking down the stereotype is half the battle.

  • Matt Stratford

    Any of the charities mentioned works for me. Good Luck.

    Matt

  • Matt Stratford

    Any of the charities mentioned works for me. Good Luck.

    Matt

  • sumit

    Awesome idea! Best of luck.

  • Anjuli

    gift to any of kiva's grantees brings to life the concept of a gift that keeps on giving, not only in the sense of seeding a small business, but also building a better life for a whole family – warmer and fuzzier than slippers or a sweater!

  • Ian

    World Wildlife Fund. Animals need our help more than people do!

  • sumit

    Awesome idea! Best of luck.

  • Anjuli

    gift to any of kiva's grantees brings to life the concept of a gift that keeps on giving, not only in the sense of seeding a small business, but also building a better life for a whole family – warmer and fuzzier than slippers or a sweater!

  • Ian

    World Wildlife Fund. Animals need our help more than people do!

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