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It’s So Easy to Help Make Sure There’s No Kid Hungry! Take the Pledge!

2 May

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Guess what today is?  It’s the day you can change an American child’s life in mere seconds!  Take the pledge to be part of Team No Kid Hungry  — #TeamNoKidHungry and @NoKidHungry on Twitter — and become a hero in seconds.  331,000+ Americans are already making the decision to help our kids get the meals they need to succeed.  Let’s drive the number to untold heights and help as many kids as possible!

Millions of kids don’t get enough to eat, but we’re all helping to change that, one pledge at a time.  There are so many little actions, that together, can change the world. If you can make a donation, of course it is most welcome!  And you pledge to help means the world.  Please share your hope and helpful spirit with friends via social media and any way you like to help them take the pledge and help make sure there’s no kid hungry too.

It’s so easy to exponentially increase your help if you tie an event to helping kids!  You can leverage a marathon, bake sale, car wash, or any other event to help feeds kids too.

It’s super-simple to donate once or monthly!

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Thank you!

Entrepreneurs Giving Back

18 Jan

This is a guest post by Michelle Gregory.

If you had more money than you could ever need, would you swim in it like Scrooge McDuck or give it away? Most of us will never achieve a level of wealth like that, but entrepreneurs who have made a staggering amount of wealth choose to spread that wealth. Some, like Mark Zuckerberg, pledge large donations publicly and encourage philanthropy among their peers. Others, like Bob Parsons, draw less attention with their gifts, but give nonetheless.

Bob Parsons

Bob Parsons, founder of GoDaddy.com (and executive chairman) and his wife started their own charitable foundation aptly named the Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation based out of Scottsdale, Arizona. They plan to give several million dollars a year, according to AZcentral.com. The foundation was created to facilitate charitable gifts to a variety of organizations. The Parsons give to a variety of causes with personal significance. They also like to patronize charities based in and serving Arizona.

“I made my living here, and I feel we have an opportunity to help out where there’s some really critical needs,” Parson said.

Though Parsons frequently provides video blogs for GoDaddy.com and was the driving force between the advertising campaign that made them a household name, he isn’t actively publicizing these charity initiatives. And while previous gifts were given to causes hand-picked by the Parsons, the foundation does accept funding requests from any organization in need through their website. While businessman Parsons isn’t working full time at GoDaddy anymore, he’s still got plenty to keep him busy. He owns several motorcycle dealerships and has an interest in a real-estate investment firm.

Mark Zuckerberg

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Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg

Wildly successful Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has been very vocal about his stance on philanthropy. In 2007, the then-26-year-old donated $100 million to Newark, New Jersey schools, according to Entrepreneur.com. In the same year, he also signed The Giving Pledge. In doing so, he pledged to give most of his wealth to charity either during his lifetime or after his death. The creator of the world’s largest social network even went so far as to reduce his yearly salary to $1. His 28 percent stake in the company is enough to keep Zuckerberg financially stable for several lifetimes.

Bill Gates

The Giving Pledge was created by Bill and Melinda Gates who, according to Forbes, are unrivaled as the greatest givers in human history. As of early November 2012, the Gates had reportedly given upward of $28 billion in philanthropic gifts. Beyond doing good with their own fortune, the Gates have encouraged some of the most wealthy families and entrepreneurs around the globe to commit the majority of their fortunes to helping others. The Gates foundation, for example, has worked to rid the world of polio, cases worldwide are now down 99 percent over the last 20 years, according to the Gates Foundation website.

What local, regional or world problems would you tackle with an unlimited budget? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Let’s All Help Make Sure There’s #NoKidHungry! 12/20 Give-A-Thon!

19 Dec

Happy Holidays!  This is the time of year when we all are even more touched by that giving spirit, and I am honored to be part of an amazing cause and campaign, #NoKidHungry, that’s fun, rewarding, and easy to participate in!

On Thursday, December 20, please join in the effort to help end childhood hunger by helping spread the #NoKidHungry word through tweets, Facebook posts, emails, and/or direct (gentle?) nudging of friends and family. 😉

We will be having a Give-A-Thon all day 12/20, with some amazing surprises and prizes for those generous souls who spread the workd and MAKE A DONATION!

* A generous Share Our Strength donor decided to do something extraordinary this holiday season: personally match all gifts up to $500,000. This means the impact of our Give-A-Thon will be doubled at the end of the day, making twice the difference for kids struggling with hunger!

Team No Kid Hungry Holiday Give-A-Thon

Our Partners

No Kid Hungry Give-A-Thon 12/20/2012 to end childhood hunger

Author note: Join us! Help us spread the word this Thursday! Visit the Team fundraising page.

This Thursday, December 20, we are excited to work with our amazing online community to hold a Team No Kid Hungry Holiday Give-A-Thon. Why now? Why in the middle of the holiday season? There are a number of reasons.

Primarily, hunger doesn’t take a holiday. When EVERY child should be excited for winter breaks, many know exactly how many school meals they will miss over the holidays, and don’t know from where their next meal will come. It is important for us to remember these children and their families during this time.

Fortunately, you can help. A $25 donation can connect a child to up to 250 meals. Are you wondering what to get that family member who has everything? Or are you trying to find something special for a friend? Consider giving the gift of No Kid Hungry this holiday season – a meaningful, and truly life-changing gift.

Through our countless online advocates and our Team No Kid Hungry community, we are making a day of it, and hosting our Holiday Give-A-Thon, complete with incredible prizes throughout the day that will amaze you! If we hit $10,000* in donations, one lucky donor will receive an iPad mini. Drawings will take place all day, so please spend the day with us!

Are you on Facebook? Be sure to like our Facebook page and follow our posts this week. On Twitter? Follow us here, and join in the #nokidhungry conversation. Check back on Facebook as we post our list of giveaway items!

How can you help prior to the Give-A-Thon? Share our Facebook posts, retweet our Give-A-Thon tweets, and spread the word. Plan your holiday shopping list, and do some one-stop, tax-deductible shopping here on Thursday.

The day will be hosted by our No Kid Hungry Social Council. Find out more, and consider getting involved!  Click “Join the Blogger Council” and we will be in touch. Thank you for all you do, for sharing your strengths with us.

Special thanks to friends (and Good Plus Tech client) AnchorFree for donating many annual HotSpot Shield Elite annual subscriptions (valued at $29.95 each!) , to be given to donors around various goals during the day on 12/20!  Stay safe keeping in touch, shopping, and making donations on all those mobile devices!

 

5 Great Holiday Charities

6 Dec

This is a guest post authored by Justin Jones.

The holiday season is here, and you may be looking to pass on some of the good fortune you received in 2012. Even in a tough economy, Americans managed to donate almost $300 billion to charitable causes in 2011, according to Charitynavigator.org. The willingness to give is one thing, but determining which charity to contribute to is the hard part.

With so many causes and organizations, it’s easy to get bogged-down in your effort to help people. Charitynavigator.org is a useful resource in your search, reviewing the claims and and actual efforts of hundreds of charity organizations. As you look to give back this holiday season, consider the following well-rated charities.

Give Word On Balloons Showing Charity Donations And Generous Assistance

City Harvest

This New York charity provides local food support to the city’s 1.7 million people living in poverty, supporting nearly 600 community programs. Charity Navigator rates City Harvest highly for its percentage of donations that goes directly to food provisions. You can donate food at one of City Harvest’s sponsored drives or support the organization financially by mail, phone and online at Cityhavest.org.

While it can be dangerous to donate money online because of scams, .org websites such as City Harvest, typically add a layer of reliability. To protect your financial security, consider a service that monitors your financial activity and raises red flags. Many service providers, such as LifeLock, offer this kind of protection, so do the research to find the best protection for you.

Grameen Foundation

A global operation, the Grameen Foundation empowers the world’s poor, particularly women, through micro-loans for business creation. Instead of providing the fish, these donations act as the rod for impoverished people to sustain themselves. Charity Navigator gives this DC-based organization the highest possible rating for accountability & transparency. http://www.grameenfoundation.org

Stop Hunger Now

It’s tagline clearly states the goal: “Working Together to End World Hunger.” Stop Hunger Now packages low-cost, nutritious meals and distributes them throughout hunger-stricken regions. Along with financial support, volunteers can also make a difference by hosting or participating in a packaging event. So far, Stop Hunger Now has packaged 75,000,000 meals. Donate or get involved at Stophungernow.org.

The Hope Foundation

Currently, one of the fastest growing charities, according to Charity Navigator, The Hope Foundation supports one of the largest cancer-research groups in the United States. Through clinical trials, the foundation aims to find the cure for cancers, including lung, prostate, breast, gynecologic, gastrointestinal and leukemia among others. The foundation received the highest rating, four stars from Charity Navigator, for its financial generosity and transparency.

Globus Relief

Providing health care services throughout the world, Globus relief works with governments, corporations, hospitals, clinics and other charities to administer reliable health care wherever it can. Charity Navigator ranked Globus Relief second in its “10 Top-Notch Charities”. Globus accepts financial donations and volunteers. Visit Globusrelief.org for more information on how to support this highly touted organization.

Social Good Stars: Charity.org CEO Scott Jackson on International Philanthropy Trends

26 Aug

This article originally appears in The Huffington Post.

Amy Neumann

Writer, Speaker; Social Media Consultant

This is the eleventh installment of the Impact series, #SocialGoodStars. The people highlighted here are passionate, dedicated philanthropists, strengths to their communities, and social media masters. They also happily share their vast knowledge with others, making them shine as leaders in the Social Good world. You can read the tenth interview with HopeMob CEO Shaun King here.

“Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for a kindness.” -Seneca

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Global Impact, Charity.org, has been providing innovative ways to give to causes, regions, and crises since 1956, always with an eye toward technology. Photo courtesy of Global Impact

Creating and increasing opportunities for kindness through giving around the globe is the calling card of Global Impact (Charity.org) and CEO Scott Jackson. In more than 20 years of non-governmental organization (NGO) and nonprofit experience, Scott has created enthusiasm and passion around helping at other visionary organizations like PATH and World Vision before joining Global Impact. He has a combination business and philanthropy background, with an MBA from the University of Edinburgh School of International Business, and an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Puget Sound. Scott’s passion is helping to create sustainable living standards for millions around the world, and assuring help for the world’s most vulnerable.

US giving to international affairs has been growing rapidly. Online giving to international causes is growing, as well. Between 2009 and 2011, funding raised online for the international sector has jumped by 122%, according to a 2012 eNonprofits Benchmarks Study. In 2011, US-based giving through Global Impact generated more than $110 million, helping 400 million people receive aid through 11,400 organizations globally.

Mobile devices have had a lot to do with increased giving to international causes.

“Mobile is everywhere,” notes Joseph Mettimano, Director of Marketing and Communications for Global Impact. “Many countries use handheld mobile devices to connect online far more than traditional PCs or laptops. Having this ‘tech in the hand’ creates easy giving opportunities.”

Recently, Scott answered a few questions about how mobile, technology and real-time global connection through the internet and social media has changed giving on a global scale.

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International online giving is up 122% between 2009 and 2011, due in large part to mobile devices making giving fast and easy. Photo courtesy of Charity.org

What are some of the biggest changes Global Impact has seen in giving?

US-based nonprofits have been able to help individuals give to humanitarian causes around the globe through programs like corporate giving at a faster rate, and in easier ways, than any time in the past. Sixty years ago, US giving was about 1% to international causes. Now that the world is easier to see, and we can learn about disasters and crises in real-time, help can get to people faster. US-based giving to international needs is now up to about 10%. Things like video, geo-tagging, photos, and social media let us connect and see and feel events around the globe in a much more visceral way. And mobile devices make news and events real-time.

With the dramatic increase of mobile connectivity around the world in recent years, have you seen big changes in mobile giving?

Absolutely. Awareness of issues and causes has jumped, which has a lot to do with social media, and compassionate supporters sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm with friends. From a giving perspective, mobile technology has opened up opportunities to donate very quickly and easily in seconds, from anywhere, so no opportunities are missed to let someone help at the exact moment they feel inspired to give.

Global Impact uses the GiveNetwork to facilitate matching this passion to give with mobile technology so donations can flow to causes easily and quickly. Powered by Give.Mobi, the GiveNetwork platform combines the use of publicly displayed QR codes and mobile URLs. With a quick scan, users immediately connect to Global Impact’s online donation portal and can donate to the specific cause – in any amount – using a unique PayPal process. And it works from any web enabled smartphone in 190 countries throughout the world. Almost as fast as someone decides they want to help the cause, they can complete a real-time donation, any time, any place.


How have the global footprints of corporations and organizations changed the giving landscape?

The footprint of businesses based in the US in other parts of the world is expanding. Companies want to help the local communities they are in, whether in the US or abroad. We’re seeing big changes in the overall giving landscape in India, China, the Middle East, Africa, and Brazil, as well as many other places. The 25-35 year-old demographic is heavily involved with social causes and is already tech-minded. People are looking for high-tech, high-touch ways to give – feeling a direct connection to their gift. Platforms like Kiva or Sparked create more tactile giving experiences for individuals and employees, and Global Impact helps design programs to let employees feel more connected to their giving through their companies.

US giving in 2011 was about $298 Billion according to Giving USA. Corporations gave approximately $15 Billion, with individuals making up the largest majority of US donations, $217 Billion (about 73%). So the real groundswell continues to be created by individuals. People everywhere are seeing, and feeling, more and more that human beings around the world are all connected.

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Scott Jackson, CEO of Global Impact. Photo courtesy of Global Impact

You can learn more and connect with Global Impact at Charity.org, on Twitter @charitydotorg, and on Facebook.

Amy Neumann is a social entrepreneur, writer, speaker and consultant on social good marketing. Check out her Charity Ideas Blog and follow her on Twitter @CharityIdeas.

Follow Amy Neumann on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CharityIdeas

Together We Can End Bullying | by @2morrowknight @AnnTran_ @CharityIdeas | #endbullying

30 Mar
This article originally appears in The Huffington Post.

Together We Can End Bullying

Posted: 03/29/2012 6:44 pm

“Safety and security don’t just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear.”– Nelson Mandela

Bullying has become a huge issue these days, both online and off. Not just for individuals, but also for families and communities. It’s a mentally, emotionally trying experience. With the release of the movie, Bully in theaters March 30, the spotlight is shining even brighter on the tragic consequences bullying can have.

The good news is, there are ways to find, prevent, and remove bullying from classrooms and computers (and workplaces and life). Many organizations, celebrities, and passionate people are focused on the issue. Lady Gaga recently launched her Born This Way Foundation, Ellen DeGeneres has been an outspoken advocate to #endbullying, supporting organizations like GLSEN, The Trevor Project, and The National Center for Bullying Prevention, and what once seemed like “someone else’s problem” is becoming much more visible to us all. And along with more mainstream visibility comes more compassion, as well as more solutions. Part of solving any problem is education.

Here are some alarming figures from anti-bullying nonprofit Community Matters:

  • 25,000 students are targets of attacks, shakedowns, robberies in secondary schools every day (National School Safety Center)
  • 46% of high school students report seeing a serious fight at least once a month at school (USA Today). Research shows that 1/3 of the brain shuts down for as much as 72 hours after seeing that type of violence
  • 260 teachers are physically assaulted and 6250 teachers are threatened with bodily injury every day (National Education Association)
  • Approximately 75% of students say they have been bullied at school (Centers for Disease Control & Prevention)
  • Every day, 160,000 students stay home from school due to fear of attack or intimidation (National Association of School Psychologists)

Photo by Jose Kevo (Flickr).

Although these statistics seem intimidating, concrete steps can be taken to protect your child. The first step is awareness. CNN has an article, “How to Spot a Bullied Child and What to Do,” that highlights a few signs you may see from a bullied child:

  • Inexplicable fits of rage: Does your child blow up at the least provocation?
  • Overreaction to normal, daily frustrations: Does your child overreact to people and situations that never would have bothered him or her before?
  • Faking illness to avoid going to school, or even making themselves sick.
  • Impaired immune system and frequent illness: The constant stress and sadness associated with severe bullying can weaken your child’s immune system. This, coupled with a child’s wishing he or she were sick to get out of school can be a powerful combination.

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Image courtesy of Eddie-S (Flickr).

Here are a few things The National Bullying Prevention Center suggests you can do to help prevent bullying:

  • Sign a Petition–Unite with others and add your voice to an online petition or hold a petition signing event at your school or in your community.
  • Share Stories–Upload a video, story, poem, artwork, or audio clip expressing how you feel about bullying, how you think it affects students and schools, what you have done to prevent bullying, or what others can do to prevent bullying.
  • National Bullying Prevention Month–Participate in activities, education and awareness building in October.
  • Community Events–Hold a special event to show your school or organization cares about this important issue. The event can include music, giveaways, special speakers, petition signings and more, as people unite to join the movement against bullying.
  • Run, Walk, Roll Against Bullying–Raise awareness of bullying prevention in your community with a live event. Find a location, gather sponsors, invite participants and hold the event. Consider planning activities for after the race, such as speakers, drawings and more.
  • Donate–Donating to the cause is a great way to share you care. Your contribution can mean one less student being bullied, one more student speaking out, or one more student knowing that someone cares.

And don’t forget to share your passion to help with your social networks. With more understanding and awareness of the problem, the chances of creating long-term change greatly increase. Like most things, the more we work together to listen, learn, and help, the faster things will get better. Because everyone deserves to feel and be safe and happy.

Follow Amy Neumann on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CharityIdeas

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