We're closely monitoring the severe storms and tornadoes in Oklahoma and surrounding states. Companies have asked us how they can support relief efforts. Here are our recommendations:
Donate to one of the charities aiding Midwest disaster relief efforts. These include:
- The American Red Cross Central and Western Oklahoma Region Chapters within the region dispatched team members, opened three shelters, provided Mass Care, conducted bulk distribution and staffed local and state Emergency Operation Centers.
- Feeding America will deliver truckloads of food, water and supplies to impacted areas through its network of more than 200 food banks and 61,000 agencies. The organization's food banks will also set up additional dropoff sites.
- The Salvation Army of Arkansas and Oklahoma is becoming active in disaster response to several areas as a result of weather related events. The Salvation Army is providing mobile feeding units for first responders and survivors.
We are completely heartbroken over the tragic bombings at the Boston Marathon this Monday. Like you, our thoughts are with the victims and families.
If you're looking for ways to help, we’ve created the following action list:
• Support Boston Marathon runners and their charities. You can learn more about the John Hancock nonprofit program and donate to runners’ fundraisers here.
• Make an appointment to donate blood. While the Red Cross is not currently soliciting funds or blood for the Boston area, the organization asks anyone interested in donating blood to make an appointment to give in the coming months. You can learn more here.
• Follow #BostonHelp on Twitter to learn about additional ways to volunteer.
Additional information on the giving response:
• Massachusetts and Boston officials have announced the formation of The One Fund Boston to raise money to help those families most affected by the tragic events. The fund is currently awaiting 501c3 status and Network for Good will be able to process donations once their status is confirmed. Boston Marathon sponsor John Hancock has pledged $1M to the fund. You can learn more at One Fund Boston.
• The Association of Grant Makers in Boston will meet via webinar on Thursday to discuss a larger philanthropic response. More information about the event is available here.
Image via CNN : Students from the Clifden Academy hold an American flag and candles during a vigil on April 16 in Dorcester, Massachusetts, in honor of 8-year-old Martin Richard, who was killed in the bombings.
As many of you know, Google Reader is closing down. If you're using Google Reader for this blog, you won't get our cause marketing and employee engagement posts anymore.
While we're all very sad the RSS service will be gone, we'd like to extend an official invitation for you to get this blog in your inbox. We'd miss you as a member of our community (and we're sure you'd miss us too) so connect with us here:
By Kate Olsen
To communities involved in disaster, it’s a long road to recovery. The transitional and recovery/rebuilding phases can take years. For example, Haiti is still recuperating from the earthquake that struck in January 2010 with many people still living in tents.
Product donations can be key to assisting those who are struggling from natural or man-made disasters—both early on and years later as affected communities and areas rebuild.
By Kate Olsen
In 2008, Capital One partnered with Network for Good to create the No Hassle Giving Site, a giving portal available to all Capital One credit and debit card customers. Through the site, customers can donate cash, rewards or miles to any of 1.2 million U.S.-based nonprofits. Capital One generously covers all donation processing fees, so 100% of a customer’s donation gets disbursed to the nonprofit of choice.
In the wake of a disaster, Capital One features a handful of trusted nonprofits providing relief. Through customer email communications, website banner ads, and retail bank outreach, Capital One invites customers to support relief efforts through the Giving Site, making it convenient for customers to help. Additionally, Capital One often provides matching funds to amplify the impact.
By Kate Olsen
Yahoo! is an important media partner during times of humanitarian disaster: the company focuses attention on the call to action via the Yahoo! homepage and mobilizes users through a curated list of ways people can help.
In preparation for disaster response, Yahoo! has developed an internal checklist and designated the key contact(s) for each step.
By Kate Olsen
Many companies are hesitant to communicate about their CSR and philanthropic initiatives, except through press releases and annual reports, for fear of looking like braggarts.
Telling your company’s impact story is a vital component of your overall CSR program – as long as the impetus is not for self-aggrandizement. You deserve to earn a halo effect for your brand and improve public perception about your company if you are a good corporate citizen, but those are not the motivating factors for sharing disaster response news.
Telling your story across both formal and informal channels accomplishes three important goals:
Yesterday, Network for Good released the following 2012 Digital Giving Index Infographic. We're proud to share our findings on $163 million in donations to over 40,000 charities via the Network for Good giving platform. Donations are categorized via three channels: portal giving (like CrowdRise), charity websites, and peer-to-peer social giving.
Check out the infographic below and share with your social networks!
This infographic is created by Network for Good
In the heat of natural disasters, things can get…well…disastrous. Confusion and chaos reign, emotions flare, resources are stretched, and everyone tries to make sense of something that is utterly incomprehensible. People desperately try to connect with loved ones—determining whether they’re safe or in need—which can be emotionally taxing and confusing.
Those consuming media coverage of the disaster want to help. Individuals and companies donate products, pro bono services, and philanthropy dollars. For example, in response to last year’s Superstorm Sandy, $5 million in donations were processed through Network for Good's giving portal, individuals came far and wide to volunteer their time, and companies utilized assets to help those in need.
We’re thrilled to spotlight our partner Microsoft’s incredible new app: HelpBridge. This app gives anyone with a smartphone the ability to get or give help in the midst or aftermath of a disaster. Users have the power to share whether they’re safe or in danger and the ability to aid those in need—donating dollars, goods, and/or volunteer time.
By Kate Olsen
Once your company’s disaster team has completed steps 1-3 of effective disaster giving campaigns, it’s time to communicate your call to action to the right audiences.
How you choose to engage different stakeholder groups will depend on the unique ecosystem in which you conduct business, and the communications approach will differ by audience. Your disaster response, however, should look and feel coordinated across audiences, even if the specific calls to action (donate, volunteer, etc.) are different.
No matter the call to action, your company’s invitation to join the response should be clear, tangible and time-bound. Vague appeals with no emotional connection to the individual reading the message and no concrete deadline for action will do little to drive impact.
Your appeal must spell out any special requirements for participation. Define matching grant thresholds and eligibility. Declare what portion of proceeds will support which nonprofits. State how much will be donated for each status update on social media.
Be specific and transparent – and willing to address feedback in real time.
In the information turmoil following a disaster, it’s important to communicate through channels that are familiar and proven effective. If your employees are conditioned to check the company Intranet for important news, then a posting on the homepage will result in higher employee participation in a giving campaign. If your customers like to follow you on Facebook, then posts about how they can help will spread further and faster on social media than via an email. If your customers primarily engage with you offline, then supplement online communications with physical announcements in retail stores.
When a disaster strikes, your customers and employees are likely confused about how they can help and what action would matter the most to those affected. Your company is in a unique position to clear up that confusion and focus attention on relevant calls to action and organizations to support. It’s up to you to communicate that message effectively to customers and employees and facilitate their support.
Learn all 5 Steps! Download our FREE eGuide: How to Help: 5 Steps to Effective Corporate Disaster Giving Campaigns.