Weekly Highlights: An iphone app for for advocacy, hacking for change, and the question of private donors in the nonprofit world.

Posted by ServeNext Staff on July 10, 2011

Here are some interesting highlights from across the social change spectrum this summer…

1. The Chronicle of Philanthropy blog shares with us a new App created for iphones, ipads, and some ipods that enables users to contact congressional representatives, connect with other advocates and organizers, and sign petitions anytime and anywhere! and sign petitions anytime and anywhere! If only everyone took all the hours they spend playing games and refreshing their facebook pages and talked to their congressional representatives about the importance of service in their communities instead!

2. In her blog on technology and social media in the nonprofit world, Amy Sample Ward gives us an insightful post about the principles of community organizing.

3. Hacking for a cause?  That is precisely what 50 pre-selected participants did in the event Hack for Change, organized by Founder Ben Rattray and covered by Mashable.  From the article:

“The smartest people in the world are focused on problems that don’t really matter,” says Ben Rattray, founder of “What we want to do is dedicate the time, effort and energy of those people to important issues.”

4. The Chronicle of Philanthropy blog included an article that focused on the subject of getting the wealthy to share their money to help those who need it more.

5. The Stanford Social Innovation Fund blog posted an article making the case for large private donors to contribute their funds to intermediaries, or organizations that receive government funds and then redirect these funds to direct service nonprofits.  The idea of this system is that these intermediaries are able to direct government funds to where they are most needed and where they will be used most efficiently and effectively, but private donors have not yet utilized these intermediaries in their non-profit investments.


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