Kids and Kickstarter: The Rise of PhilanthroKids and Kid Crowdfunding!

(A guest post by Beth Kantor, you can read her original post here).

Crowdfunding in general has raised more than 5.1 billion in 2013 and nonprofit fundraisers using crowdfunding platforms and techniques continue to explode (according to this infographic from Craig Newmark). As nonprofits hone and refine peer-to-peer fundraising best practices, we are also seeing more people make philanthropy a part of their everyday personal expression – whether on social networks or in the real world. There is a growing recognition, that personal success is not solely about making a lot of money, but also giving it to charity as Arianna Huffington points out in Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder.

But giving isn’t just about making a donation or volunteering your time. It’s about engaging, participating, and being part of something bigger than you. Perhaps that explains the appeal of community Giving Days or participating in global giving days like GivingTuesday. We are starting to see a rise of crowdfunding projects done by and for kids, perhaps as part of the trend of “PhilanthroTeens” or “PhilanthroKids.” These are teens (and pre-teens) with a passion for social change and who grew up not knowing what it was like to not have a cell phone or be connected to Facebook, known as Generation Z. The media has dubbed this generation – “Qwerty Monsters” who send hundreds of text messages a day and don’t even like to use their phone for calls (and with two teens in my house, I can attest this is true). But it is more than the technology; it is also their passion to do good in the world. Continue reading “Kids and Kickstarter: The Rise of PhilanthroKids and Kid Crowdfunding!”

Could the Americorps Be the Answer to Escaping College Loans?

Today’s post is from guest blogger Maria Rainier. This is the story of how one of my best friends found a way to make college more affordable by enrolling in the Americorps. I’m taking this opportunity to say I have no affiliation with the Americorps whatsoever; I’m solely sharing his story to demonstrate how volunteering can be the gateway to earning a higher education. To learn how you can pursue your diploma with help from the Americorps or another nationally recognized volunteering organization such as the PeaceCorps, continue reading below. As early as 6-years-old, Matthew Daniels knew that earning a … Continue reading Could the Americorps Be the Answer to Escaping College Loans?

Innovative and Exciting Alternatives to Traditional Volunteering

This is a guest post from Nadia Jones. A recent article in The New York Times chronicles an exciting trend in youth volunteering: young people are finding out ways to give back to their community in a meaningful way. The article explains how young people in Manhattan have re-thought how they want to volunteer their time with older generations. Instead of going the traditional route of visiting the elderly simply to keep them company, the youths at Baruch College Campus High School decided to impart knowledge of the web that comes naturally to the younger generation but still eludes older … Continue reading Innovative and Exciting Alternatives to Traditional Volunteering

“The Power of Giving”

by Charles McWilliams “In order to get something, you first need to give” –Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Many successful businessmen and entrepreneurs practice this basic property of reciprocity. Those who we consider ‘rich’ are often capable of giving much more than those we may consider ‘poor’ and I’m not referring to monetary assets by any means. Those who are ‘rich’ are capable of giving value to others, and this is precisely why they tend to receive so much. Yet, one more important principle works imperatively with the basic properties of reciprocation, especially when applied to human interaction: one must give … Continue reading “The Power of Giving”

Bridging the World Together

By Andrea Xu, Marketing Intern and Executive Assistant to the CEO During my senior year in high school, I experienced my first identity crisis. Since I was 10 years old, I had been set on becoming a pediatric oncologist, outlining my future and mapping it out perfectly. It was when I was applying to colleges that I realized that medicine was not for me, initiating Operation Freak-Out. While I was fortunate enough to figure out where my true passions lied upon my first year in college, I know that some are not so lucky, bouncing around from major to major … Continue reading Bridging the World Together

Let’s Make College Education a Chance for All

By Andrea Xu With the California education system experiencing another devastating blow to its budget, it is becoming increasingly crucial to find methods to maintain the state’s education standards. Higher education is seeing a shift from traditional state-funded colleges and universities towards for-profit and online colleges, like those found on websites offering accredited college degrees online and in technical colleges like ITT Tech. As a student attending the University of California, Berkeley, I understand the value of receiving a proper education, and have been personally affected by the budget cuts. SMASH is a great organization that promotes academic values and … Continue reading Let’s Make College Education a Chance for All

UniversalGiving’s™ interview with Charyit!

By Jeremy Kenton, Marilyn Lin, and Ranjani Shanker

Recently, Ranjani Shanker of UniversalGiving™ was privileged to interview co-founders of Charyit, Jeremy Kenton and Marilyn Lin. Charyit is an early-stage, pre-seed company with the intention of allowing consumers to interact with corporations through recent content aggregated from media sites across the web.

Q: Story of Charyit – How and who made it happen?

LIN:  The idea started when corporations began to focus on corporate social responsibility (CSR) and place more emphasis on the importance of social media to their brands.  We asked ourselves, “How likely are we to support a company’s brand in the future based on their recent actions?”  And, “If a large population of consumers are also aware of these actions, would the masses be able to influence the plans of or affect a corporation’s “triple bottom line” (people, planet and profit)?”

KENTON: We recognized the significant momentum building around CSR, with companies and consumers using social media to discuss their initiatives. People within our networks post articles about how companies are interacting with society, both positively and negatively. Because posting an article on Facebook lacks permanence, we created Charyit to change that.

LIN:  We want to provide a linkage between the public’s comments on corporate actions back to those corporations.  Charyit aggregates stories on the economic, environmental and social fronts.  Leveraging social media and crowd-sourcing, we offer the public the ability to interact with the news content and influence a company’s future actions.

Continue reading “UniversalGiving’s™ interview with Charyit!”