December 2, 2014
Did you know that the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving is #GivingTuesday? This global day dedicated to charitable giving started with New York’s 92nd Street Y, in partnership with the UN Foundation in 2012, so today marks the third annual observance of this unique holiday. Every individual can support this holiday and make #GivingTuesday a success, whether it is through efforts on social media to raise awareness of causes, donating time at local community service agencies, organizing a campaign, or contributing to other philanthropic efforts. One extremely easy way to get involved in charitable giving is through Givelocity, a shared giving platform.
Pool Your Dollars
“With Givelocity, you can pool your dollars with other people that care about the same things you do and vote on which causes receive your collective support.” Susan Cooney, Givelocity’s CEO, says that she would love to see Givelocity be as big as Facebook, and to become an actual social network for giving, because “every member [of Facebook] has a dollar to give.”
But charities can’t always accept a dollar. Most organizations are simply not equipped to handle a one dollar donation. And this causes many people to believe that a dollar won’t make a difference. But just as classrooms collect pennies for a disaster relief and end up being able to donate a few thousand dollars to help others in need, Givelocity allows all members to donate just a dollar and pool it with other like-minded givers, so that one large check can be cut to the desired organization.
Tech-Enabled Social Good
Givelocity finds a perfectly timed market fit due to both the success of crowdfunding platforms and the research that says millennials want to be more empowered to create social change. Still in its early stages, the platform has already created an impact of over $30,000 for the charities that the members specifically have chosen to benefit, from their own “neighborhoods”. A “neighborhood” on Givelocity is a collection of members who join together in a particular giving vertical, such as Animals, Environment, Health, Human Services, and more.
Through the power of the social network, members can jump right in with other giving groups, or even create their own private or public group. Democratically, that group will vote each month on exactly where in their vertical the dollars collected will go. Givelocity puts these funds into a trust account, collects a 6% platform fee, and then sends one check to the charitable organization. This means that as a donor, your only obligation is to choose a charity each month. Or not – if you don’t vote, your dollars will still go to the community-chosen organization. But mercifully, you will not receive phone calls from the organization asking you for more. Your donation is now made anonymous through communal giving (but your receipts can still be managed within the platform.)
A Sense of Purpose for Employees
Businesses can engage their customers and their employees alike to bond together with a corporation on a united sense of purpose by joining an employer-created private neighborhood on Givelocity. Millennials especially wish to feel a sense of purpose and transparency in corporate decisions where outward-facing policies are made. Joining together to vote on social causes creates a bond and a feeling of accomplishment for employees. 90% of recent graduates say that they seek employers whose social responsibility priorities reflect their own, according to this Price Waterhouse Coopers survey.
“These decisions are being made behind closed doors,” Cooney said. “Givelocity provides businesses with the ability to offer matching options and give control to employees on where those charitable dollars will be spent.” Any organization can create a neighborhood; this option is not limited to employers. “Any organization can create a virtual neighborhood and let employees, customers, members or students/alumni vote on where pooled donations are sent.”
Today is the perfect day to move into a neighborhood in Givelocity and vote on a charity. You can send a tweet out right from the platform that shows you participated in #GivingTuesday. Check them out on Facebook and Twitter, too.
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