I recently wrote about items you can donate to charity which served both a green purpose and contributed to the nonprofit fundraising goals of various causes. But did you know that engaging in physical exercise and/or booking your next flight can also support your favourite charities? Read on to find out how.
Charity Miles is a free iPhone/Android app that allows you to “Earn money for charity when you walk, run, or bike” by becoming a sponsored athlete. To get started you “Simply turn on the app, choose a charity, and press start. As you exercise, we’ll track your distance and the money earned. When you’re finished, accept your sponsorship, spread the word, and we’ll send you a note confirming your good work.” You can bike, walk or run to help your favourite charity and depending on which activity you choose, you’ll be sponsored accordingly. “Bikers earn 10¢ a mile and walkers and runners earn 25¢ a mile.” Through sponsors they have amassed a pool of $1 million dollars to be able to allocate as needed.
Through social media you can share information about Charity Miles, your workout or your donation. If you’re a Twitter user simply use the hashtag #EVERYMILEMATTERS to contribute to the @CharityMiles conversation.
Another way you can easily donate to charity is by booking a flight. “UNICEF is partnering with travel technology company Amadeus, which provides booking engines to 110 airlines worldwide. The system will collect micro-donations from travelers when they book flights for leisure or business. The idea, UNICEF International Fundraising Director Tim Hunter told Mashable, is to collect millions of micro-donations from travelers who want to give a little bit back to the less-fortunate people in the places they visit.”
This is based on the assumption that most people travelling have discretionary income and will choose to make a small donation to support UNICEF when the option is made available to them as they book their flights. UNICEF has not set any concrete goals for this project; however, Amadeus has put together some potential figures. Based on their 50 million bookings in 2012 and the idea that 5-10% of consumers will donate just one dollar they could raise over $2.5 million dollars each year.
This is a more passive form of fundraising for UNICEF as they are not actively procuring the donations themselves and the amount can be as little as a one-time $1 dollar donation which should be doable for most travellers. “The partnership also recalls the carbon offsets offered by many airlines, giving customers a chance to offset the estimated carbon emissions of their travel.”
Both Charity Miles and Amadeus represent simple ways for donors to get involved and help support causes close to them without extending themselves or their pocketbooks.