Monday, August 15, 2011

Nonprofit Uses Social Media to Make an Impact

One of the most powerful ways a nonprofit can win over donors is to ensure transparency and accountability. This is at the core of the mission of SeeYourImpact.org, a new non-profit that uses social media to report back to donors where their money went. Founded by former Microsoft executives Scott Oki and Digvijay Chauhan, it’s a revolutionary model for how nonprofits can use technology in the twenty-first century.

When we give a donation, each of us says, with justification: “How is my money being spent?” You want to know that your money is being spent wisely. The SeeYourImpact model directly addresses this. One hundred percent of your donation goes to the cause or gift that you select. And in 2 weeks, you receive and email detailing how your money was spent and who benefited.

A well for a family in Cambodia. Job training for a single mother in the United States. $18 School uniforms for school children in Guatemala. A $10 malaria bed net for a child in Sierra Leone. SeeYourImpact has close to 200 gifts to help you make a difference in 18 countries and on 4 continents.

It is about bringing excitement to the giving process, and empowering the small donor. $5, $10, $20. Anyone, anywhere in the world can change lives. And when they do, they can share it on Facebook, Twitter, hey, why not Circle it? Because for the first time, people can actually see the real people their gifts are helping.


Mama Magisha and Family in their Sustainble Garden

Apolo Ohno calls it "the Future of Philanthropy." Celebrity health consultant Kimberly Snyder is leading a fundraiser for sustainable gardens in Rwanda.

Another way people are helping is by using their birthday, wedding, school reunion, office gathering or any special occasion to fundraise. When done this way, the impact is that much greater. In fact, the model is so respected that New York Times writer Nick Kristof tweeted: “Here's a nifty Kiva-like website that lets donors see the impact of their dollars.”

Social media has been the most effective way SeeYourImpact has connected do-gooders and the causes they’re passionate about. It’s also been a way to have its message resonate with the community that’s been thirsty for a new way of approaching philanthropy and global giving.

Note: The writer is the SeeYourImpact community manager. This is also cross-posted on the Smedio blog.

To see how you can make a difference, connect with SeeYourImpact through its Facebook page. and follow them on Twitter.

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