non profit

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…)

One Degree of Community Transformation: A RallyPad Profile

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REY FAUSTINO (FAR LEFT) WITH ONE DEGREE PARTICIPANTS AND TEAM.

You might not think of it this way, but boot-strapping your way to the American Dream can cause unintended anxiety and self-doubt, along with other complications.

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Rally in the Community, GLIDE, and the San Francisco Giants

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Several weeks ago, the Rally.org family lent a helping hand at GLIDE, a San Francisco-based church and non-profit committed to uplifting marginalized communities at risk of remaining in poverty. About 20 Rally staffers spent a Sunday afternoon volunteering with GLIDE’s Feed the Hungry meal program, bussing tables, filling up water jugs, ferrying dishes back and forth, and plating meals.

GLIDE continues to have a busy year celebrating its 50th anniversary relaunch, an influx of activism and outreach spearheaded by longtime advocates Rev. Cecil Williams and Janice Mirikitani. The San Francisco Giants will host a CELEBRATE50 tribute to the couple on Friday the 24th at AT&T Park. For more information about attending the tribute night, check out the San Francisco Giants’ special-events page.

Click this link to learn about GLIDE’s volunteer programs and community development. You can contribute to GLIDE at the organization’s Rally page here.

On Keystone XL Pipeline, Bold Nebraska Speaks Out

 

PHOTO COURTESY OF BOLD NEBRASKA ON FLICKR

PHOTO COURTESY OF BOLD NEBRASKA ON FLICKR

The political advocacy group Bold Nebraska had already set the TransCanada Keystone XL pipeline in its sights months before March 29. On that day an ExxonMobil pipeline ruptured in Arkansas, spilling thousands of gallons of crude oil into a residential area in the town of Mayflower.

Bold Nebraska continues to watch updates from Arkansas ahead of an environmental-review hearing on April 18, just over a week away.

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Hangin’ with Rally at Netroots Nation was worth missing my senior prom!

Max Kamin-Cross is one of the ten Raise the Future contest winners and an outspoken Rally Ambassador. Max is a self-proclaimed political junky, working with organizations and political campaigns to ensure that their new media strategies are up to par. He will be a freshman at American University this fall and can be found on Twitter at @MaxKaminCross.

The first sign that what I was doing was a little odd, would probably have been when I had to tell my friends I couldn’t go to our senior prom because I was going to be in Rhode Island with Rally.org. Ok, well, maybe that wasn’t the first sign, but it was one of the first signs. The actual first sign might have been when I was 11 years old and informed my parents that I wanted to skip school to go see our new congressional candidate speak, but that’s a story for another day.

Anyways, let’s talk about how I skipped prom to go to Netroots Nation.

First off, if you don’t know Rally.org you should go check them out right now. Rally is totally awesome and run by a bunch of really cool people but besides that, Rally.org will help you raise more money than a “donate here”button ever could. The website’s fan fundraising mechanism allows your supporters to individually raise money for your organization/charity/politicalcampaign/lemonade stand, allowing you to reach a wider spectrum of potential donors– plus their backend tools make life 1000x easier for your accountant to record donations. It’s really a winning situation for everyone; you raise more money while making less work for your (probably already overworked) staff and volunteers. Everyone’s happy!

You might be wondering why you haven’t heard about Rally.org before, wellthat’s because they’re fairly new. In the short time the site has been open to the public though, it’s gathered a large and dedicated following that includes everyone from politicians like Elizabeth Warren and Christopher Shays to charities like NARAL and the National Wildlife Federation. One of my favorite organizations, which should also become one of your favorite organizations in this election year too, uses Rally: Washington United for Marriage (WUM). It was through WUM that I first became involved with Rally.

Rally was holding a fundraising contest to see who could recruit the most donors to help donate to their favorite cause via Rally.org, and the winners would receive free tickets to go to this years Netroots Nation. How awesome is that, right? Not only did I get to help raise money for an organization that will be vital in ensuring equal marriage laws pass in Washington State this November, but I also had a chance to win a trip to Netroots. Needless to say, I raised over $500 and was one of the winners. So. That’s the story of how I ended up spending the night of my senior prom taking pictures with Elizabeth Warren and eating h’orderves with Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. In the end, it really was all worth it. Not only did I help raise money to help ensure that gay marriage stays legal in Washington State, but I was learned so many new skills and made connections at Netroots Nations that I am confident will last me a lifetime.

Seattle Nativity School Takes a Leap of Faith with Rally

The Seattle Nativity School has raised over $5000 so far, for a fund to bring the nationally recognized Nativity Miguel Schools to Seattle. The Nativity schools give economically disadvantaged students a chance to do well from middle school through college. We were inspired by their efforts and recently spoke with Brian Kelly, a former Kiva Fellow, and one of the people responsible for making the Seattle Nativity School a reality.

What is a Nativity Miguel School?

A Nativity School is a faith-based, tuition-free, middle school providing education and counseling to those in greatest need – low income families and families living below poverty line. The 11-month school year includes 10-hour schoolwork days and a committed graduate support director that guides the student from middle school through college. Students of the Nativity Schools have a twenty percent higher rate of graduation than their peers at other schools.

How is Seattle fundraising to build a Seattle Nativity School?

Their key fundraising strategy, Brian explained, was to motivate people to become involved in the start of this school through micro donations. Even though there are larger funds involved in this process, creating a community of supporters is just as important—no matter what your wallet size is, you can be a part of this movement. Every donor receives a photo of the first student whose tuition is crowdfunded. Donors have the chance to form a personal connection to the student and seeing a concrete result of their donation.

Brian told us how his research led him to using Rally -he found it the perfect tool to keep supporters informed about the campaign progress and collect donations online. They started by reaching out to their network of friends and family and colleagues, asking for support. They were surprised with the number of folks that came forward and showed their support with contributions and volunteering their time. Brian and others have been posting regular updates on their Rally Page and continue to send personal emails as well.

“Time is equal to treasure” says Brian. Leveraging volunteer hours to rally the community and boost their fundraising was just as important in their fundraising strategy.

We asked Brian if he had any fundraising advice for other causes. He shared the following:

  1. Writing emails that are genuine and heartfelt is key. If you’re passionate about it, you can’t hide it, and people will realize that!
  2. Get people involved beyond donations -volunteer time is equal to treasure
  3. Constantly keep people engaged. It takes effort but is worth it
  4. You can always find something to share with your supporters. Dig deep. Stay fresh.
  5. Make what you share concrete

 

At Rally we love passionate people and applaud Seattle Nativity for their efforts and fundraising. You can visit their Rally Page here. Well done guys!