Scenario: Last year, Middletown Animal Rescue joined Classy, enabling them to power individual, peer-to-peer (P2P) fundraising campaigns for the first time.
That holiday giving season, around a dozen of their local community volunteers launched personal, online fundraising campaigns to benefit the animal rescue. Over the next few weeks, they shared their campaigns with their friends and family, ultimately raising an average of $250 per volunteer by year’s end.
But it was Sarah, a high school student, who broke the record.
By sharing her campaign and asking her social network to shop online through Giving Assistant, in addition to making direct donations towards her P2P campaign, this animal-lover raised over $300. That’s an extra $50 over the average amount raised per participant that would go to purchase food, shelter, and loving families for more of Middletown’s displaced pet population.
Sarah’s secret to her big fundraising win? Microdonations: individual donations that average less than $10 each. (If you were thinking her secret was Giving Assistant, you’re still a little bit right!)
The 3 Superpowers of Microdonations
Microdonations are small, good things that “add up” (as is our mantra here) in big, meaningful ways. Not only do they provide nonprofits a viable (often significant) long-term financial boost, but they also empower communities, making it possible for more people to give and inspiring them to give together.
Superpower #1: Accessibility
While not everyone can make big, direct donations, almost anyone can “give small,” which enables, encourages, and empowers more people to give. Leading to…
Superpower #2: Engagement
One of the top reasons people say they don’t donate to nonprofits is because they feel like they can’t give enough for the donation to actually matter. This perspective changes, however, when donors believe that others are making small donations along with them.
Countless Giving Assistant user interviews have shown us that these nonprofit supporters are more inspired to give when they know others are giving along with them, because they’re more confident those small donations they’re able to afford will, in fact, add up to something meaningful.
Superpower #3: Awareness
And what do you get when micro-givers believe that giving collectively is the key ingredient in making microdonations meaningful?
Sharing. Conversations. Communication. Increased awareness of your cause. Nonprofits’ giving communities—and their action communities—grow, as more people feel empowered by their giving, regardless of the size of those gifts.
And when it comes to microdonations, the more the merrier.
Putting it Together: P2P Fundraising, Classy, and Giving Assistant
Giving Assistant is just one tool you have in your arsenal that makes it easier for your P2P campaigners to capture those microdonations and boost their fundraising, engagement, and awareness efforts for you.
Even more importantly, while your nonprofit’s bottom line undoubtedly benefits from the fundraising boost these microdonations provide, it’s also empowering for your campaigners. The more they raise, the more proud and confident they feel. And the more confident they feel, the more they’re inspired to help lead your mission within their communities.
Once set up, your campaigners can invite their friends and family to contribute to their fundraiser by joining Giving Assistant, shopping, and making their cash back microdonations, in addition to continuing to make their direct donations—an incredibly easy ask for your campaigners.
On average, P2P fundraisers see as much as a 20% boost in donations when they invite their communities to use Giving Assistant, in addition to contributing their normal, direct donations.
According to the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association, 1 in 4 teenagers say they’ve endured the painful effects of bullying. The good news: Most acts of bullying can be stopped within 10 seconds when peers take action in a supportive, non-threatening way.
Credit: Brad Rutter Agency, Voice Against Bullying campaign for Generations Against Bullying
That’s the power of an Upstander, a peer who pledges to become a part of the solutions aimed at sinking a nationwide concern that affects millions of children each year. And, at the center of it all, is Generations Against Bullying (GAB), a nonprofit organization on a mission to create healthier, safer, learning environments for everyone.
Victims of bullying rarely see adult intervention come to their rescue, in part because bullies don’t typically victimize their peers in front of teachers, counselors, or administrators. Instead, most bullying takes place in the presence of other students. And while some kids speak out; most just don’t know what to do, or are understandably afraid of retaliation. Furthermore, peer reluctance to intervene creates an environment that allows bullies to thrive by inadvertently communicating, through inaction, that a bully’s behavior is acceptable.
GAB’s Approach to Combating Bullying is Different
Unlike most anti-bullying efforts that focus on the dynamics between bullies and victims, Generations Against Bullying concentrates on building up the confidence and influence of bystanders—those who typically see a peer getting bullied, but oftentimes stay silent or uninvolved. GAB takes a more hands-on approach, offering an all-inclusive, anti-bullying solution that transforms bystanders into Upstander—the designation given to students specifically trained to provide immediate victim-support.
The Upstander Peer Ambassador Program (UPAP)
GAB empowers students to step in and act whenever they see a classmate being victimized. Participants of the Upstander Peer Ambassador Program are equipped with the tools and skills they need to identify bullying, and diffuse uncomfortable situations in a calm, non-threatening manner. Peer Ambassadors also attend workshops where they learn how to provide positive support in various situations, including camps, sports, and the cyber world.
Student Upstander Peer Ambassadors are essentially the backbone of GAB programs, and the organization says that without them, it wouldn’t be possible to create and maintain the kind of environments that discourage bullying.
GAB also works alongside Peer Ambassadors, educators and sponsors to create life-changing experiences for students, schools and entire communities, such as:
Celebrity speaking engagements lead by role models including professional athletes, pageant winners, musicians, actors and authors. These speakers are invited to attend GAB events in order to help foster interest in the program and motivate more students to become Upstanders.
School assemblies that send an uplifting message to students, spread awareness, and also provide a platform for productive discussions about bullying to unfold.
Sponsored community movie night events that highlight the disturbing effects of bullying through a film screening and Anderson Cooper follow-up report.
Puppet shows (featuring unique characters called ‘GABits’) that use realistic scenarios and positive messages to help create an anti-bully culture on the elementary school level.
An “Introduction to Buddy Bear” event (GAB’s official pet ambassador) that helps address the connection between bullying and animal abuse. A program involving Buddy Bear teaches compassion and love, as well as how to respect, care for, and forge healthy relationships with animals.
In addition to the Upstander Peer Ambassador Program, GAB holds the distinction of maintaining one of the “Top 20 Bullying Blogs on The Web,” and effectively uses their website to deliver inspirational video messages, information on community services and events, and a directory of resources to help bullying victims.
GAB relies on sponsors and fundraising programs to continue touching the lives of students across the U.S. with their speaking engagements, open houses, community events and the above-mentioned programs.
Giving Assistant shoppers can also help advance GAB’s goals. Simply select Generations Against Bullying as your nonprofit of choice to donate all or a portion of your cash back savings to a good cause.
These responses were provided by The Salvation Army. Thank you for taking the time to tell us about your organization!
Tell us about The Salvation Army
We’ve been helping people for more than 150 years! We were founded by a man named William Booth who was a bit of a rebel. He challenged tradition for the sake of action and made a huge difference in the lives of people in need. As we look ahead into the next 150 years, we take that tenacity with us.
What is your organization’s overall mission?
Our mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination. It is our faith that motivates the work that we do, sharing the love that we’ve received so generously.
What are a few goals your organization has been focusing on this year?
We’re definitely focused on ways to connect with the community, whether that’s creating new opportunities to meet the specific needs of your hometown or finding new ways for people to volunteer or give online. Otherwise, we’re doing what we’ve always done, which includes helping disaster survivors, addressing food insecurity, overcoming poverty, assisting the unemployed, combating addiction, loving the elderly and above all sharing God’s love for everyone.
Can you discuss some of your major successes?
Success in Salvation Army terms is the smile on the face of a mother who can now feed her child; the elderly man who received sustenance and a shoulder to cry on. Over the past year, we’ve continued to serve and rebuild in communities that were impacted by last year’s disasters. Recovery is a process that lasts long after the news crews leave. We also recently opened several homes and made available incredible resources for human trafficking survivors.
Can you share a few alarming stats that have low awareness?
Human trafficking is a form of modern slavery—a multi-billion-dollar criminal industry that denies freedom to 40.3 million people around the world.
What can we do in our daily lives to help support your cause?
Take a moment to recognize the need around you. There are hurting people in need of your care and kindness and you can start in your own homes and workplaces. A warm smile and a genuine listening ear can go so far to create connection and build hope. Consider an ongoing donation to The Salvation Army as a way of supporting your neighbors in need.
First, we assess the needs of each community in which we serve. We work to understand the obstacles and challenges native to that area. Next, we build local programs designed to offer immediate relief, short-term care, and long-term growth in the areas that will best benefit the community. Then, we offer the local programs to the local community, working to continually optimize their efficacy via spiritual, physical, and emotional service. Without the support of the donor, none of this would be possible.
What has been your experience with Giving Assistant?
We’re excited to be a part of it and I love seeing the flag pop up when I go to new sites. It gives me so much respect for the brands I’m shopping. I’m also pleasantly surprised to see how many brands are participating!
Tis’ the season to be giving…and what better time to catapult into the charitable season than on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving? Giving Tuesday is a global phenomenon, where end-of-the-year giving and holiday donations are at an all-time high. But, here at Giving Assistant, instead of having just one day to collect extra karma points, you get an entire week with our Double Cash Back, Double Giving Event. From November 27 to December 3, spread out your generosity much farther with the help of double cashback from participating stores/brands (like the ones listed below), which means charities of your choice get to enjoy double the donations this holiday season.
Home to Oakley Authentic Prescription lenses; Limited Edition MotoGP shades; the ultra-lightweight Women’s Training Collection; and eyewear offering PRIZM™, the brand’s latest lens technology, Oakley inventory offers much more than their iconic polarized sunglasses and sports-ready eyewear. You’ll find custom options, motocross goggles, and a handful of creative collections, like the winterfied, OneObsession Snow Collection. There’s also an impressive selection of jackets, hoodies, snow helmets, backpacks, and boardshorts that you can earn double cashback on.
Offering double cash back on the hottest brands in clothing, accessories, shoes, bags, electronics and many other gift-giving standouts, QVC has something for everyone on your holiday list. It’s here that you’ll find Vitamixes on sale; blindingly affordable Diamonique jewelry; Amazon deals galore; and so many new arrivals, it’ll make your head spin. Just some of the brands to look forward to on a QVC shopping spree include FitBit, Beats by Dr. Dre, Samsung, Sketchers, Dooney & Bourke, Dyson, Apple, and IT Cosmetics.
The online oasis of MR PORTER is packed with award-winning menswear, accessories and gifts that boast over 450 worldwide fashion statements at any given time. Constantly adding new items three times a week, you’ll find Nike, Polo Ralph Lauren, Gucci, and Tom Ford sold alongside the likes of limited edition Pirelli watches, Luis Morais diamond cuffs, Brunello Cucinelli leather/suede sneakers, and Bottega Veneta cufflinks. Here’s your chance to double your cashback on the ultimate holiday splurge!
Invest in clothing that stylishly stands the test of time, and your smart shopping skills will not only stretch your wardrobe’s reach out a little farther, but also saves money. COS is a wizard at transforming modern designs to create functional pieces oozing with longevity that include solid color, wool wrap cardigans; simply striped pajamas; uncomplicated polos; and cashmere scarfs. The brand caters to both men and women, and there’s even a Baby Collection to browse with many hammydown-worthy gems. A versatile, flexible wardrobe is only fingertips away…just like the double the cashback savings you’ll earn.
Holiday lights won’t be the only thing sparkling this season. A new pair of eyewear not only enhances the look of your eyes, but can also really let your personality shine. With new arrivals at every turn, an inventory stocked with affordably-priced, optical pizzazz offers plenty of options that encourage men, women and kids to embrace the latest eyewear trends. Shop vintage-style stunners, gemstone embellishments, oval lens, studded frames, as well as bold colors and patterns – and that’s just a taste of what to expect from Zenni Optical.
Double the Donation to the Nonprofit of Your Choice
When looking for a good cause to send 1-100% of your doubled, cash back windfall to as an automatic donation, we’d like to introduce you to the following organizations:
Pencils of Promise: The global initiative of Pencils of Promise concentrates on increasing access to quality education through building schools, supporting teachers, and improving literacy rates. As a result, the organization’s efforts have helped reduce poverty, prevent disease, empower women, and advance education goals in Ghana, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Laos. And, 100% of your online donation goes towards PoP programs. That’s because the nonprofit keeps their operation afloat solely through private donors and charity events.
Camp Kesem: Operating free summer camps for children impacted by a parent’s cancer, Camp Kesem is a Stanford University-founded program fueled by the passion of college student leaders. Since 2000, Kesem has increased its ability to serve more kids, expanding to over 100 chapters in 40 states throughout the U.S. In 2017, over 100 week-long sessions were held at Camp Kesem, with more than 7,000 children being able to attend. That’s 10 times the number of children the camp could support ten years ago!
Salvation Army: Investing in and building programs for those touched by poverty, natural disasters, abuse, hunger, homelessness and addiction, the Salvation Army is ‘dedicated to doing the most good’ for communities and individuals in distress. Helping those is need since 1865, their influence impacts the lives of approximately 25 million Americans annually, with a presence felt in 130 countries across the globe.
Environmental Action Committee of West Marin: Protecting an area that boasts a fascinating combination of land, water and biodiversity attracting over 2 million visitors annually, the EAC plays an important role in sustaining the unique natural resources of West Marin. Your donation goes towards the education and environmental advocacy programs of one of the only local organizations of its kind to take on extensive (sometimes decades-long) campaigns that address threats to the environment.
After participating in our Double Cash Back, Double Giving event, don’t forget to keep an eye out for more holiday deals and steals with the help of ourGiving Assistant Button, which you can download now, if you haven’t already.
This post is authored by Drawn from Valor, a partnered nonprofit.
Let us paint a picture for you: Imagine that you have a child or a family member who has been displaying unusual health symptoms. You take them to the doctor and you wait for test results. You are anxious and scared because you just want to help them feel better. Then, you get the diagnosis. It’s Type 1 diabetes. Now, the doctor gives you a lot of information, all of which you apparently have to learn right now. It seems like a whole new language! How can anyone learn all of this? What if you make a mistake?
Enter Drawn from Valor. Drawn from Valor is a nonprofit animation studio that uses the power of animation to educate and empower children and families who are facing life changing physical or mental health issues. It’s our goal to help them live longer, happier, healthier lives by providing them with the resources they need to understand their conditions.
WHAT HAVE WE DONE SO FAR?
Drawn from Valor’s first project,Kara and the (Not So) Dire Beastie was released in July 2018 as part of a new and innovative tool to help kids and their family members learn about Type 1 diabetes. The New Onset Diabetes Educator (NODE) contains an interactive eBook that tells the story of Kara, a young girl who has just been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Through NODE, we follow Kara on an 8-episode animated journey of discovery as she learns to manage her condition.
Her adventures bring her into contact with new friends like Sir Rynge and the RedBlooded Knight who help her care for her pal, the Dire Beastie (a play on words for diabetes). The “Beastie” represents a cell in the body. He needs a special key, which stands in for insulin, to unlock his mouth so he can eat. Normally, he is a happy blue Beastie, roaming the kingdom eating “glueclose” (i.e., glucose). He becomes “Dire” when the keys go missing. At the end of the story, when Kara learns how to manage her diabetes, she realizes the Beastie is not so dire. Our hope is that children following along will feel the same way, will have learned the disease is manageable, and know they can live full, happy lives with Type 1 diabetes. You can learn more about Kara and her adventures here.
WHY ANIMATION AND WHY ARE WE EXCITED ABOUT GIVING ASSISTANT?
Studies have shown that children learn and understand material better and at a more rapid pace when it is presented in animated form. Additionally, because of their visual nature, animations are particularly well-suited for explaining topics and issues that may be hard to understand otherwise. They say a picture is worth a thousand words; one second of animation can literally be up to 30 pictures or more.
Animation is very expensive to create. It costs us approximately $225 per second…or nearly $94,500 for a 7-minute episode. While the cost of producing animated videos is high, they can help countless people, and we offer the animations for free on our website and across social media
The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) estimates that 40,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes annually. If each of those patients used Giving Assistant and raised $2.37 through their purchases, together they could fund an entire series!
WHAT IS NEXT FOR DRAWN FROM VALOR?
While we have several projects planned, we are currently focusing on The Tales of the Golden Acorn, a series of free animated short films being created to help educate and empower young people who are directly or indirectly impacted by trauma. The series focuses on the effects, issues, and strategies for living with trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in a family setting.
While the subject matter is weighty and serious, the tales have been created specifically for young people – and are designed to bring the viewer on a journey of adventure and wonder as they learn.
Ultimately, the goal of Drawn from Valor is to empower families to transform their lives for the better regardless of the health challenges they may face. We hope that you’ll select us as your nonprofit of choice on Giving Assistant’s platform.
Every year, between October 1 and October 31, breast cancer awareness is at an all-time high as people from all walks of life join forces to spread the word about the second most common cancer affecting American women. Statistics cite that about 1 in 8 females in the U.S. will receive a diagnosis for the disease over the course of a lifetime, which is what makes Breast Cancer Awareness Month such a significant campaign. The widespread actions that follow not only call attention to the importance of early detection and prevention, but also raise money for research and education.
Because of this, survival rates continue to soar, and cancer of the breast is now known as one of the most treatable forms of the disease.
In October, fundraising walks, runs and other events are held across the country, which provide much-needed support to charities and non-profit organizations at the forefront of finding a cure, assisting patients and their families, as well as educating the public.
As a shopper, you also have the ability to give to a good cause though the items you buy online. Giving Assistant is a platform that rewards you with a percentage back from the purchases you make when shopping your favorite brands. You can donate 1% to 100% of the cash back you earn towards supporting a breast cancer-focused nonprofit, just like the ones listed below:
Keep A Breast concentrates on helping young people from around the world reach a healthy level of confidence, physical self-awareness, and knowledge related to proactive prevention against breast cancer. The organization’s success has shined through in multiple initiatives and programs that include the “i love boobies!” campaign, the “Check Yourself! app,” and breast cast art exhibitions.
Mothers Supporting Daughters with Breast Cancer has already connected more than 10,000 women to a “mother volunteer” who has already experienced the breast cancer fight with their daughter. The nonprofit makes every effort to ensure women affected by breast cancer have an individual support system, including access to help from those familiar with specific types of treatment, such as bone marrow or stem cell transplants.
The Breast Treatment Task Force fights on behalf of New York City residents that are without health insurance, and in need of diagnostic follow-ups and treatment for breast cancer. They also educate patients and assist them in finding adequate care through a variety of prevention programs, community referrals, and free mammogram screenings.
This Breast Cancer Awareness Month, there’s plenty of ways to make a difference! Get out there and spread the word about mammograms, breast exams and early detection. Encourage friends and family to get checked out. Volunteer at local events. In this fight, all contributions in time, compassion and charitable donations go a long way.