Posted by Evan Mackinder on February 17, 2010
One of the problems with competing in a nonprofit free-for-all like Pepsi Refresh is that you can’t easily pay proper respects to some of the other contestants.
There are 729 individuals and organizations all currently vying for grant money in the Pepsi Refresh Project, and each of those participants represents a potentially positive impact on society. I’m casting six votes a day in the contest to support the Refresh Service Coalition–no more, no less. But there are hundreds of other ideas out there, and it’s frustrating to have to call them competition. On any other given day, I’d gladly throw my support behind them.
And so it is with pent-up philanthropic energy and and one seriously itchy trigger-finger that I’ve turned to “Celebrity Refresh”.
If you haven’t heard, Kevin Bacon and Demi Moore are competing head-to-head all month long in a Pepsi Refresh celebrity sidebet. True to the spirit of the project, the two have come up with their own grant proposals, made videos, tweeted their supporters and opened the whole thing up to a public vote-off on Facebook.
Demi Moore is supporting GEMS–the Girls Educational & Mentoring Services–an organization that works with young women between the ages of 12 and 21, who are victims of sexual exploitation and human trafficking. A grant would help GEMS empower 10 former victims by training them to be outreach workers.
Kevin Bacon is supporting the charity Six Degrees.org–a network that helps individuals connect with and support charities of their choice.
You can vote for your favorite celebrity–I mean, charity—all month long over at www.facebook.com/pepsirefresh. Click on the Celeb Challenge tab on the Pepsi Refresh homepage and install the app for voting.
Meanwhile, back at Standard Pepsi Refresh, keep your eye out for some new trends. Almost every grant category has seen some tumult this week, as some new teams have pushed their way into the leaderboard and other more established teams fight some complacency. The whole coalition is still holding strong, but none of us are taking any chances. ServeNext.org hasn’t moved from the Top 3, but we’re watching the leaderboard every day and keeping our supporters updated. If you haven’t voted today, everyone in the coalition could certainly use your support: