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Innovation and Progress in the New Year

SPOTLIGHT ON KARTIS

Kartis, a project launched by residents at the Harvard Innovation Lab, is a crowd-sourced map of nonprofit organizations around the globe. Residents are designing this map to help nonprofits connect with one another to share ideas and resources.

We asked Rally Leader Andrew Cole for some crowdfunding advice to help others along the way. Here’s what he had to say:

Q: What have you found to be the most effective way to spread the word about your cause?

A: Sharing on Facebook is great, and we managed to pull in a lot of money that way.  But I think what’s even more important is reaching out to possible supporters who you think have a personal stake in your cause, and explaining to them on a person to person level what your project means to you, and what you think it means to them.  This could be through an email, or in person. That way, your campaign becomes a part of a larger conversation, and the more personal the better.

Q: What are some strategies you suggest to encourage donations?

A: Networking, networking, networking! I’ve found that the Rally campaign has given me an excuse to reach out to a lot of interesting people I haven’t spoken to in a while, and on a personal level that’s been really great for me.  So use it as an opportunity to reach out to the professor or family friend you haven’t spoken to in a while, but who you know would be interested.

Visit the Rally campaign for Kartis to learn more. For more tips on how to create a stellar Rally campaign, check out our Rally 101 blog posts.

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Comfort and Empower the Leaders of Tomorrow

THIS WEEK’S FEATURED CAUSES

This week, we’re highlighting a few Rally campaigns that are comforting and empowering the leaders of tomorrow by providing professional training, emotional support and a safe place to sleep.

Young Minority Students Learn Valuable Technology Skills

Jason Young’s family was evicted from their home the day after Christmas in 2001. It was a difficult experience for Young. He knew he wanted to do what he could to prevent other low-income kids from facing financial hardships as they grew into adulthood. That’s why Jason co-founded the Hidden Genius Project, a two-year program that trains young black male students in science, technology, engineering and math to unlock their true potential and help position them as leaders of tomorrow. Read NationSwell’s story on this promising program and check out the Rally campaign.

Friends Help Care for a Mother in Pain

Kelly Gray-Sheehan is in pain; constant and severe abdominal pain. Her kids, Ava and Colin, have started to notice the toll that this chronic condition has taken on their mom. Fortunately, Kelly has loved ones who have started a Rally campaign For Kelly to provide a beacon of hope for someone who always goes out of her way to help others.

A Son Remembers His Dad by Giving Toys to Kids

Ryan and Ron Russek started giving toys to hospitalized kids at the City of Hope when Ron was battling cancer in 2004. Ron sadly passed away a year later, but his son has kept up the tradition and grown  the project exponentially. Visit Wish Upon A Toy to see how Ron is spreading joy to the City of Hope.

Group Provides Shelter Beds for Abused and Neglected Children

Need by Need has launched a Rally campaign to give 10 beds to Palmetto Place Children’s Shelter, a safe haven for abused and neglected children in South Carolina. Watch this video to find out more about this initiative to help give kids with little faith in the goodness of others a reason to believe again.

Group Raises Funds to Get Water and Electricity to Community in Nigeria

As Kwanzaa approaches, Yeye is helping a budding community in Lago raise enough money to purchase a generator and water tank. The group is almost halfway to their goal of $2,500, with more than $910 raised so far. Visit the Rally campaign to learn more.

NOTABLE NEWS STORIES

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Give to Causes that Matter on #GivingTuesday

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Forget about those shoes that are half-off and the latest and greatest video game console — #GivingTuesday is a breath of fresh air after your frenetic holiday search for the perfect buy. Now in its second year, #GivingTuesday was created as an antidote to the shopping frenzy that comes with Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Rally.org is partnering with #GivingTuesday to showcase a collection of non-profit organizations that are tirelessly working to improve living conditions, create cures and rebuild lives. (more…)

Rally for Typhoon Relief in the Philippines

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We’ve just posted our latest story in our series of inspiring Rally fundraising campaigns on Yahoo! Shine. This week we highlight a special collection featuring a variety of causes that are raising funds to help people of the Philippines in the aftermath of Haiyan Typhoon.

Global relief operations are doing their best to help the victims of Haiyan Typhoon in the Philippines, but still, many communities are suffering. A recent survey from Pew Research Center found that so far Americans are giving less to Haiyan relief efforts than they did in the aftermath of earlier high-profile natural disasters.

Many of us at home want to help, but we’re faced with this challenge: how can we give the people of the Philippines the support they need? There is no easy answer to the challenges facing the millions of people who are trying to rebuild their lives. But we believe that fundamentally, giving starts when you connect with a story.

Learn more about our special collection at “How You Can Help Victims in the Philippines Right Now.”