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Revolutionizing Fundraising and Donations Online
These days, we seem to manage almost every aspect of our lives online, so it makes perfect sense to add charitable giving to the mix. That’s the thinking behind Network for Good, a not-for-profit organization that was launched by AOL, Yahoo!, and Cisco right after the 9-11 terrorist attacks. “So many people wanted to act and be philanthropic that those organizations came together and said “let’s make giving online as easy as shopping online,” says Rebecca Higman of Network for Good, which is based in Bethesda, MD.
The organization’s mission is twofold. It offers donors a searchable database of over 1.5 million charities, allows them to make donations right on the site, and keeps detailed records of their giving for tax purposes. Network for Good is a donor-advised fund; it re-grants donation funds to the charities, retaining 4.75% for training and supporting nonprofits in their fundraising efforts. Donors can opt to add a tax-deductible 4.75% grant to Network for Good during the donation process so that 100% of the donation amount will be granted to the charities. The organization also matches potential volunteers with not-for-profits through a partnership with VolunteerMatch.
The second part of the organization’s mission is to help small- to medium-sized nonprofits raise money online by creating and hosting customized online donations pages with a product called Custom DonateNow. There’s a $199 set-up fee, a charge of $29.95 a month, and a 3% per-donation fee. Higman says the organization also offers nonprofits a highly discounted email service called EmailNow powered by Emma. “We’re up to 4-5,000 nonprofits that use one or both of our services,” she says. Last year, Network for Good distributed $71 million to 31,450 charities.
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