Donating in the wake of Sandy gets social with apps
By Natasha Baker
TORONTO (Reuters) - People eager to support relief efforts following Hurricane Sandy can use apps that provide creative ways of donating to charity and nudge friends to do the same.
Budge, an iPhone app released last week, aims to make donating to charity social. Friends can challenge each other in games and activities such as chess or charades and the loser makes $1, $2, or $5 donations to one of the charities supported by the app.
"For us it's really about changing the way people think about donating," said Hillan Klein, co-founder and CEO of New York-based company Budge. "We are driving to change the culture and say you can have fun while you do good."
The challenges are meant to be activities that friends already enjoy doing together. For couples, it could be doing the dishes or taking out the trash.
"It's relative to people and their relationships with their friends, which makes it a personal experience," said Klein.
Although the donations are small, Klein said they add up.
"People are still donating $25, $40, or $50 over the course of the month," he said, adding that smaller donations enable donors to disperse funds across a range of charities, and to get more friends involved.
The app supports 11 charities, including the American Sustainable Business Council which has setup a relief fund for businesses affected by Sandy, Breastcancer.org, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the World Food Programme USA. Continued...