A positive Ripple effect from a few Aussies

Ripple (verb) – to cause small waves.

A ripple effect is often used to describe a situation where an effect from an initial state can be followed outwards incrementally. These effects can be either negative or positive and occur quite frequently in society and yes, the Internet. But let’s switch it up for a few seconds – We use search engines (like Google) to look for things on the web (news, entertainment, products, information, etc.).

Alright, so imagine combining the two and creating a search engine that creates a positive and socially conscious ripple effect.

Well on May 4th 2007, 4 friends from Australia (Jehan Ratnatunga, Simon Griffiths, Matt Tilleard and Mack Nevill) did just that.

Together they decided to use Google’s built in search engine (Google Co-op) to build a non-profit website that harnesses the power of the Internet, leverages affiliate advertising to generate revenue, and use that money to help people, instead of Read more…

Geeks Without Frontiers and A Human Right – Helping People Help Themselves by Securing Internet Access for Everyone

Imagine a normal day-in-life.

You probably wake up, get ready for work or school, you come home and do some chores around the house. Maybe you’ll hang out with friends in the evening or enjoy a night at home watching TV. As you reflect on your day, consider this—how much of your daily life somehow involves using the Internet?

Not Connected

You probably use the Internet throughout the day at work. For many it’s the first thing you do when you wake up. Now imagine your life without the Internet. Sound crazy? Well for many people—76% of the world’s population in fact—having no Internet access is a reality.

Two noteworthy organizations are hoping to change this fact. After all, the Internet has become indispensable not just in terms of making our lives easier, but for many developing countries, having Internet access can make the difference between a life of poverty and a life Read more…

Start Some Good!

Social entrepreneurs – What if you could capture the power of a crowd to fund your next big project?

Donors – What if you could connect with the organization that you help in a more personal way?

StartSomeGood provides a community platform where social entrepreneurs and enthusiastic supporters can connect.  It uses a hybrid crowdfunding model (think Kickstarter but with a tipping point and a social entrepreneurship twist) to help organizations fundraise various projects.

How does it work?

Each venture has a profile on StartSomeGood where it can write about its story, a social problem, and its proposed solution to the problem.  The venture also has a campaign page where it can lobby for support for a current project that it is working on.  It defines a tipping point goal and an overall fundraising goal.  The tipping point is the minimum amount the venture needs to truly start its project—without that amount of money Read more…

Global Giving: Funding the underdog

Transparency…

When deciding which do-good organization is deserving of my hard-earned cash, I am continuously faced with the same problem: How can I ensure my money finds its way to the cause that needs it the most while not falling prey to a scam in the process? It’s no surprise that the most well known organizations are also the most well-funded.

And it is because of transparency.

Whether or not it’s a legitimate concern, people feel more comfortable donating money to an organization that is publicly renowned. GlobalGiving is seeking to change that.

In the beginning

GlobalGiving was born of the desire of Mari Kuraishi and Dennis Whittle, World Bank executives, to find a new strategy to alleviate poverty. As explained on Whittle’s personal blog, while the pair acknowledged the merits of the top-down approach to tackling worldwide poverty taken by the Bank, they also saw a need for a bottom-up methodology which could provide financial Read more…

The Girl Store: Buying Back the Power of Education

The day I completed my undergraduate studies was a joyous day for me.

This milestone that I’d passed has been something I have dreamed about since I was 10 years old. At that age, never did I think my gender could have prevented me from accessing this dream in the very way it does for many girls around the world today, especially in India.

A cycle persists in many parts of India where girls are subject to being married at young ages or sold into sex slavery. In order to end this tumultuous cycle, The Girl Store was created.

Not Your Typical Kiosk

It’s not your typical online store; instead it is a place where you can “purchase” a young girl her life back so that she may have the opportunity to obtain an education by supporting her with the items that she needs to go to school.

Sponsored by the K.C. Mahindra Education Trust Read more…

33 Needs: Helping Socially Conscious Start-ups Off The Ground

First, check out these 3 socially conscious upstarts

Half United: a clothing company fighting global hunger. Every time you purchase a HALF product, you feed a child in need.

More than Me, Inc. funds the education of girls in Liberia by selling laptop covers, which are made by local Liberian women.

Sweet Notions: Up-cycle’s and sells fashion accessories, channeling the profits into organizing design camps for vulnerable women.

Now, what do all three of these organizations have in common?

If you answered, “They’re all business ideas that are trying to make the world a better place, need some help (money) starting up, and are using 33Needs to do so”, then you are absolutely right.

What exactly is 33Needs?

By definition, 33needs is a web application that connects the entrepreneurs solving our world’s biggest needs to micro-investments.

Sounds like an ambitious mantra, and a crowd-sourcing concept that we might have heard before Read more…

Why Wikipedia Deserves Our Money

I confess, I’m a junkie.

An information junkie. Should I have a conversation or debate with someone where God-forbid I don’t know something, I’ll slowly find a wifi spot, pull out my phone and “wiki” that info. Sneak back into the conversation (like Bond), drop some heavy insight into the argument, and yes…almost certainly, walk away with the win!

Yeah, I said I’ll ‘Wiki’ that information!

But who here hasn’t ‘Wiki’d’ something in order to broaden their knowledge of a certain subject, only to click on the next link and the next. Before we know it, we’ve been on Wikipedia for an hour, learning stuff.

But did you know that the term Wiki isn’t theoretically correct since a “Wiki” is just any website which allows the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser using a simplified markup language or a WYSIWYG text editor. (*sourced from Wikipedia)

I lose you there? Read more…