I discovered the most amazing organization this morning. It's called "See Your Impact." I'm just beginning to explore it, but it seems to be the perfect organization for those of you who have read some of my entries on Compassion or Kiva or other organizations and think "I'd like to help, but I can't afford it."
In a CNN video on the web's home page, 8-time Olympic medalist Apolo Ohno calls the group "the future of philanthropy." This is a place where you can give a one-time gift as little as $5 and change someone's life. You can choose the area where you want your money to go, whether geograhical area or the type of impact you want to make. Do you want your money to go to a girl? Are you interested in bringing fresh water to a family? A mosquito net to a child? a month of food for an orphan? Education for a pregnant woman or a young student? The possibilities are many.
You choose what you are most interested in and are then are shown a list of the possibilities of giving for that area, and the cost. As I said, anything as small as $5 for up to whatever large amount you want to give on a one-time basis.
100% of your donation goes for the gift you select? Really. They ask you to give a small amount extra for organization expenses, but this is optional.
And it says that in about two weeks you will receive a photo of the person that your gift helped and a story about how the gift will help them.
You can start a fund raising group and raise funds for your own pet project, like Sara's "5for5" campaign.
Don't know what to give Mom for Christmas? You can make a donation, get a story and give it to her instead of something she doesn't really need and probably won't really use.
Here are some of the things that your money can provide:
$5 buys a month of computer training to a child.
$12 buys a new mother a month of parenting classes
$20 builds a latrine for a family
When the amount you donate isn't enough, it is combined with gifts by others and when you hear about what your donation has done, you see the other people who have joined with you in making this "thing" happen for a child, a mother, a family.
When you visit the site, you see your basic choices in this box. Once you choose your particular area of interest, you choose which gender/age you wish to help and in what area of the world (including the United States).
And finally, you can use the slider at the bottom to choose the range of donation you are able to give.
I've made my first donation and will report back on how my money was spent. I hope that you'll take the time to check it out. Think of what good you can do if you give up your Starbuck's coffee for just one day. You are making no long-term commitment; you are just helping one person one time...and seeing what good your donation did.