Give Up Little Luxuries and Make Micro-Donations to Charity with Instead

May 20, 2012

10:00 am

If charity is all about sacrificing for others, Instead makes that sacrifice visible. Its cute interface lets you select what you’re giving up – like coffee, beer, or a movie – then make a micro-donation.

You can choose from around 200 charities, including the American Cancer Society, Habitat for Humanity, Kiva, a variety of churches, and Instead itself. Instead is a pending 501(c)(3) nonprofit, supported by volunteers who don’t take a salary. Its operating costs are covered by the 5% fee deducted from donations (after credit/debit card fees).

Instead isn’t revolutionary technology, but it’s designed well to motivate you to donate to charity in everyday life – when you’re about to grab some Starbucks, just make a $3 donation and bust out the coffee maker at home.

This simple interface is based on founder Micah Davis’s experience at previous startups, where he learned to design for mobile (Instead is available on iPhone and Android), then adapt an app to the web.

“This forced us to adopt ‘feature diet’ and focus on the core functionality,” he explains.

Instead is based in Dallas – check them out today, and get donating!

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Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact [email protected]

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