When most people think of crowdfunding, they tend to think about websites like Kickstarter, Indiegogo and GoFundMe. These platforms typically work like this: They ask the public for donations (large or small) with a goal of raising funds for events, businesses, musicians, artists—just about anything, really. It’s a great idea, people helping other people—many times perfect strangers—via the Internet. According to a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2016, 68% of crowdfunding users have contributed to a campaign that has benefited someone who faced some kind of hardship.
But a more exciting and fulfilling way to help your fellow neighbor through crowdfunding has arrived. It’s called Likes4:Good.
An initiative of Unite4:Good, Likes4:Good is a bold new crowdfunding platform that, rather than ask for support through monetary contributions, asks people to perform acts of kindness. These good deeds then help assist non-profit organizations in need. Literally and financially.
Here’s how it works:
A non-profit submits a specific Need to Likes4:Good, which then vets the organization. People then post Deeds, acts of kindness that support the Need and which they have carried out in the real world, on the Likes4:Good website. These Deeds could be anything from donating clothing to Goodwill or taking out your neighbor’s trash. People can like or comment on the deed. But most importantly, they serve as inspiration for the kind things other people can do. Once any of these Deeds reach a certain amount of engagement on the website, Unite4:Good then moves to fund that specific non-profit’s Need with the help of sponsors.
“Our sponsors range anywhere from small local businesses to large brands funding international charity projects,” explains Dmitriy Fridlyand, COO of Unite4:Good. “Regardless of the size of the company, we bring a unique value proposition to businesses who care about social responsibility. Its importance is increasing every single year.”
There is a growing body of evidence that businesses who invest in social responsibility are more successful compared to their competitors who don’t.
It’s an innovative model that works to promote social good, and everyone involved wins big time. Think of it as the pay it forward of crowdfunding. Fridlyand explains, “We want to make it easier for people to help others. Our goal is to motivate people to always be kind to one another.”
Sponsors benefit in several ways by funding needs. First, their name is associated with the non-profit they’re supporting, and with every unique positive Deed created by users to support the Need, they get exposure and publicity. Second, as the sponsored Need gets funded, Likes4:Good automatically builds the sponsor’s social responsibility profile. Their profile tracks, accumulates and displays information about company’s non-profit funding activity and good deeds that sponsor has inspired while funding non-profit causes. It’s almost like a LinkedIn for kindness. Anyone can go and check a sponsor’s social responsibility activity and see the proof of it.
According to Fridlyand, crowdfunding with kindness is a unique and effective tool for non-profits. “From a charity’s perspective,” he says, “Since Needs are funded by users interacting within the website and creating good deeds, we are probably the only platform where non-profits can control their own funding process. Once the organization’s Need is approved, they’re able to engage with their followers and supporters to facilitate the funding process and meet their funding goal faster.”
One of the earliest success stories for Likes4:Good is La Rabida Children’s Hospital, a pediatric hospital that cares for children with chronic illnesses and disabilities. La Rabida submitted a Need to fund neurocognitive testing for five patients suffering from sickle cell anemia. Most of the hospital’s patients are insured under Medicaid, which doesn’t cover the highly effective but costly treatment. So the hospital turned to Likes4:Good for help and submitted a Need.
“La Rabida Children’s Hospital supporters submitted 18 good Deeds to help this Need,” Fridlyand explains. “These Deeds ranged from someone who picked up trash at a local park to a grandmother joining her daughter and granddaughter on a charity walk aimed at helping defeat ALS. One Deed even involved a woman who simply bought a cup of coffee for a co-worker who was having a bad day.”
Over 100 people participated in voting and funding La Rabida’s Need. As a result, United4:Good is now in the process of getting these neurocognitive tests covered for those patients; tests they otherwise couldn’t afford. And just by funding a single non-profit Need for the hospital, which is a great impact by itself, the sponsor’s logo was seen on 19 pieces of unique content throughout the Likes4:Good website and shared by users widely across social media. This all condenses into a powerful report that sponsors can share with their customers. Through Likes4:Good, kindness and philanthropy is having measurable benefits for businesses involved.
“These simple Deeds go a long way,” says Fridlyand. “They support non-profits and their important causes, but they also generate a wave of kind behavior in the community.”
Likes4:Good stands out from other crowdfunding website because it aims to make a difference. It’s a place where people can come together to help combat homelessness, help collect supplies for animal shelters and even inspire young people to help a friend suffering from cancer meet Taylor Swift.
This is what crowdfunding with kindness is all about.
Get involved at Likes4Good.com.