Archive for December, 2007


Nominate GlobalGiving for a Crunchie

Posted by Donna Callejon on December 6th, 2007

The incredibly popular tech blog, TechCrunch, has started a new set of web awards call “The Crunchies.” If you’re a fan of GlobalGiving and would like to help us get some extra press, then we could really use your help to get us nominated.

To nominate GlobalGiving:

We really appreciate the support of our donors and hope that even more people learn about the great opportunities to support grassroot projects around the world.


Thanks, NIKE!

Posted by john hecklinger on December 6th, 2007

Last week we had two great visits from our friends at NIKE. We’ve been helping them cultivate a network of projects around the world using sport to make things better in their communities – from a women’s football association in Rwanda to basketball for youth in one of Nairobi’s toughest slums. NIKE’s Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) employees have been particularly supportive of these projects, and now NIKE is giving all of those employees an opportunity to support them even more. This week, all of NIKE’s EMEA employees can donate $15 to any of these projects, just by plugging in their employee numbers as gift certificate codes. I’m thrilled that NIKE has chosen to give this gift to NIKE employees for the holidays, and the projects will benefit tremendously.

NIKE Let Me Play

We’re seeing a huge amount of interest in our new gift cards as corporate gifts – whether for employees, partners, or customers. I don’t want to ruin the surprise by revealing who’s buying what and for whom, but we’re rapidly going through our stock of biodegradable cards and have already ordered more to keep up with the demand.

At a previous job, I remember getting a call from a business partner who had just received a holiday gift from me. They’d been taking bets on what exactly the gift was, and they wanted me to settle things. I believe the objects they received were meant to be a pencil and sticky note holder, and I was happy that they’d brought some entertainment to the office, but I’m sure those gifts went right in the landfill after the betting was over.

Thanks to NIKE and all of the other GlobalGiving partners who are giving a meaningful holiday gift this year!

NY Times on Gift Cards

Posted by alison on December 5th, 2007

Today, The New York Times published an interesting article about the popularity of philanthropic gift cards this holiday season.

Key quote : “People are realizing that giving somebody another sweater is not as good as giving them the opportunity to give to a charity they support.”


You’re sitting in your warm house sipping on your cider–Cough it up!

Posted by robert on December 4th, 2007

We’ve all grown up with “Don’t waste ___, do you know how many children would love to have it and you’re throwing it away?” or well, something to that effect. As a result I’ve always been respectful of my easy access to resources – a daily, heartbreaking struggle for so many others. What I’ve never really been able to decide upon is whether I like the guilt-creating approach to developing a conscience. And, if indeed it was effective.

It’s Holiday Season, and the retail-advertising gods have launched the “Annual Guilt Trips”. Retails stores want part of the holiday sales pie; heck at this point whether the US economy dips into recession depends on how much the American consumer spends this Christmas season. Non-profits also want to leverage the annual charitable giving season. Just check out the ads running on TV; they all look the same – the dusty background, the gaunt, vacant eyes, the protruding ribs, the despairing music. And they’re telling you that YOU can make a difference this holiday season.

Watching TV, munching on my dinner and enjoying a lazy evening at home I was just addressed by a NGO Anon advertisement. Two African children, brothers (They just say Africa because you know, Africa is one country, really just the size of Connecticut and as diverse) are beginning their day. The elder one, shirtless in raggedy shorts works and takes care of the smaller child. Flies flutter on and off their thin chests and arms. Then there is a close up. There are a few tears rolling down the older child’s face as he contemplates the misfortunate circumstance of his birth. Shift frame to a charming young actress, impeccably dressed telling me how I’m capable of making a difference. Moved by the images, I felt miserable about the full plate on my lap that probably had as many calories as those kids got all day. But I also knew – my philanthropy would never be directed to NGO Anon. I’m not Grinch and I don’t like being made to feel like that. My mother has the sole right to emotionally manipulate me. The list ends with her.

However, I did wonder if this approach works. While I couldn’t find any statistics to show the effectiveness of this approach, I came across a study that showed that 7 in 10 donors (both active and lapsed) did not like to be guilt-tripped. I’m going to go with it’s not the highest impact approach to fundraising. Normative questions, aside.

Disclaimer: I work at GlobalGiving.

Disclaimer 2: I have more than a couple of Starbucks coffees a week. I know how much they cost.

The Amazing Race Goes to Burkina Faso

Posted by Donna Callejon on December 2nd, 2007

CBS’ hit show The Amazing Race took a turn toward the developing world the last couple of weeks, when the contestants flew to Burkina Faso (previously “Upper Volta). This season’s crop of teams includes – among others – a grandfather-grandson pairing, a father-daughter test of wills, the requisite “blondes”(although they are not as strong as last seasons’ “blondes”), an African-American set of siblings and, for the first time, a goth couple.

The teams were a little, shall we say, out of their elements. But, after landing in the capital of Ouagadougou (wah – gah- doo- goo),they raced their little hearts out – milking camels, learning 10 words, doing native dancing, panning for gold, delivering stuff by bicycle at a market, and taking lots of taxis to places they could not pronounce.

This was all very entertaining, and I asked my colleague John – who spent several months in Burkina Faso a few years back, “why Burkina?” His answer was quick – it’s safe, and pretty easy to get to, and the people there are super welcoming.” Welcoming – yes indeed, they must now think we Americans are even nuttier than they ever could have imagined. As these teams ran around, there was really no mention of what Burkina Faso is really like:

  • Its population is about 13 million
  • 50% of its residents are Muslim, 30% Christian, and 20% other African religions
  • It is the 27th poorest nation in the world
  • Girls pretty much are excluded from the educational “system” (which is not free)
  • Burkinabes’ literacy rate is only 12%, ranked lowest in the world by the UNDP

Only a couple of the Amazing Race contestants seemed to notice that they were in a place of extreme poverty and stagnation. Well, if any of you are watching, or if CBS wants to be a good corporate citizen, we have some options. One of the most “popular” projects on GlobalGiving makes sure that girls get to go to school, and that they get decent meals while there. More than 365 members of the GlobalGiving community have supported it, and raised $38k+. We only need another $3650 to fully fund it. Now that’d be a cool conclusion to the race:
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