Bell-ringing Salvation Army volunteers are always a telltale sign of the holiday season, and although they certainly still have their place, this year holiday giving has turned to a new outlet: social media.
From The Baltimore Sun:
Facebook fans of the Salvation Army can create virtual kettles on their pages and ask their friends to make donations without ever visiting a real storefront kettle. The United Way and Red Cross are tweeting their latest news of families helped and fund drives launched.
No one can yet say whether the new social media are effective ways to raise money, but that’s the goal, charities say. “We’re hoping to get this new audience, and we hope in the end there is a fundraising component with it,” said Amrit Dhillon, communications director for the United Way of Central Maryland.
But for organizations that seek out donations online via social media channels, there are plenty of success stories. Take Passports With Purpose, a campaign to raise funds to build a school in Cambodia. Having already reached their goal of $13,000 thanks to many efforts on blogs, Facebook and in the Twitter-verse, the initiative’s co-founders upped the stakes and doubled the donation goal to $26,000, which will help to cover costs like providing a school nurse and building a garden.