Using Social Media For Kids’ Causes: Finite Funding & Friendships

bday-51.jpgSocial media maven Beth Kanter turns 51 today, and for her present, she’s asking 51 people in 51 hours to donate ten bucks a piece to the Sharing Foundation’s America’s Giving Challenge over at Global Giving to help seriously disadvantaged kids in Cambodia. (you may have read about the contest in PARADE? Here’s a video ‘bethkast’)

Notice Beth’s NOT asking for $51 or $510…just a realistic, $10 doable difference to route kids out of poverty and provide these children physical, emotional, educational and medical support. Where? How? HERE!

Say Happy Birthday to Beth…$10 is 10 minutes worth of standing in line for a couple of lattes. Hmn…Improve the lives of over 1,500 children in one of the world’s poorest countries, or add chocolate sprinkles…Tough call, eh?

Michele Martin of the Bamboo Project (who matched Beth’s ‘send an orphan to college’ 24-hour challenge and doubled her effort) is hosting Beth’s cause, via the Sharing Foundation, to see who can motivate the MOST people to give at least $10 online by January 31, 2008. The top four charities each win a $50,000 donation for their effort, so let’s make it happen! It’s spine-tingling to witness the ripples of goodness these ladies have created in the world already, sharing information generously in open source style.

In cartoon speak, Beth is the Tweetie bird of Twitter media (as you may recall in my post here) and the Roadrunner of rapid response, capable of igniting media mobilization faster than Wile E. Coyote and an Acme fuse! Beth’s use of Twitter for community building brings a whole new meaning to ‘mobile social.’ AND…her fun, streamlined campaigns zip by behemoth bureaucratic nonprofit organizations faster than Roadrunner’s ‘mmmbeeepbeep!’

beth-daughter.jpgBeth sets goals that are achievable, finite, fun, and translate to a personal level. (Knowing Beth adopted her kids from Cambodia, and seeing them on video makes me want to learn more, more, more about her work!)

In our GWLN Women Leaders for the World training, they called this ‘enrollment’… that moment when you say ‘I’m in!’ Beth inspires this like no other person I’ve ever met, in “let’s make this happen, NOW” action-based style.

beth-son.jpgShe’s built solid community around social media’s personal outreach capabilities so brilliantly that people eagerly want to jump onboard the cause, learn more about the children they’re helping, and meet other like-minded change agents doing great things in the world! (yes, those are her darling kids at left!)

Nonprofit newbies like me RELY on role models like Beth (her Flickr remix bday contest from last year at left!) and Michele to give us a heads up on trailblazing techno tools, best practices, what works and what doesn’t, and how to leverage both human capital and resources to help a cause.

Without them, I’d be light years behind, dinking around with ‘thread the needle’ grant applications for ‘just the right fit’ or shilling for ad rev to get sticky eyeballs. Bleh.

aoc-gavin.jpgThank you to the social media thought leaders working so hard for children throughout the globe…People like Beth and Michele and Britt and our Age of Conversation crew (Drew and Gavin particularly!) who show us how to ‘Have Fun, Do Good’ with innovation and ideation…to make digital dreams turn into dynamic change.

It’s rocket fuel for the soul!

People around the globe are learning THROUGH you and we can’t thank you enough for sharing your visions and showing us HOW to make a difference in the world…with youth particularly!

beth-kanter.jpgBeth Kanter (at left) and her sidekick Michele (guess I’m still in ‘dynamic duo’ cartoon-speak this morning!) are ranked high on the leader board right now, solid contenders for the whole enchilada.

So let’s seal the deal!

Ten bucks says YOU’VE got $10 to donate to this effort!

C’mon. Lose the sprinkles and help the kids. Forego the latte for a day…sheesh. Let’s help make Beth Kanter’s cause #1 so she can snag that big purse of $50K and pay it forward for the kids in Cambodia!

cambodia-kids1.jpgJust think what that $50,000 buys: The annual expenses for the English Language School, attended by over 450 children in Roteang Village and the Khmer Literacy School attended by more than 140 of Roteang village’s poorest children. It also helps support a portion of the operating costs for the Sharing Foundation’s Roteang Orphanage, home to over 70 children; nearly half of whom have serious disabilities.

Let’s give Beth Kanter her Birthday wish & keep her on top of the heap through Jan. 31st!

She’s certainly earned it, leveraging good will around the world in ‘train the trainer’ mentoring style!

roadrunner.jpgMmmbeeepbeep…whoosh! There she goes again.

Watch the America’s Giving Challenge leader board.

My money’s on Beth Kanter…Yours can be too, donate here!

Happy Birthday you road-running goddess of goodness!

Visual credit above:



  1. Wow! That was fast…a few pings in my e-mail asking ‘what more can we do?’ Ok, here it is:

    With a few clicks of your mouse you can spread the word about this fundraiser!

    1. E-mail your friends, family, or social network.
    2. Get a widget for your blog, profile, or website.
    3. Share or save a link to this fundraiser via their main site on the America’s Giving Challenge link we posted above…

    They’ve got widgets, bookmarks, and full blown descriptions of the activities taking place at the school.

    Here’s a snapshot from their site:

    Route Out of Poverty for Cambodian Children

    “Literacy is key to education and jobs for poor children. This project teaches Khmer to 100 children of illiterate farmers, and English to over 500 students seeking to move beyond subsistence farming.

    Project Needs and Beneficiaries

    Thousands of Cambodian children grow up illiterate, with few educational options. The Sharing Foundation’s Khmer literacy school helps farm children learn their native alphabet and numbers well enough to attend elementary school.

    Its English Language Program offers village students, ages 8-18, the opportunity to learn Cambodia’s language of commerce, allowing them to obtain jobs in tourism and word processing.

    These students are so dedicated that some meet on their own to study on weekends.


    The literacy school runs three sessions a day for 120 children of Roteang village’s poorest families. Ten bilingual Cambodian college graduates teach English to 500 students in 19 sections offered daily after school hours at the village school.


    Involve them in your actions. Heck, have THEM donate THEIR ten bucks…so they FEEL the magic of giving and set those life habits early for a broad, global, worldview…

    Again, Happy Birthday, Beth…

    You’re a rockstar in this arena of global giving and I can’t thank you enough for showing us all “how it’s done!”
    Appreciatively, –Amy

  2. I had to get on a plane at the end of day 1/11 to fly across the country with lots of turbelence. Did I ever tell you that I was a white knuckle flyer? Anyway, I arrive at the location where I have to work. Wifi sux. So, now I find decent access and then find this awesome post. How can I say that I so appreciate you?

    If I haven’t answered your emails instantly … it is because I’ve been overwhelmed at the response of the social web to support children in Cambodia that may not have the opportunities that children who are adopted are .. that didn’t make sense, but I suspect you know what I am trying to say


  3. Flying on your birthday? Alas…used to be my collegiate ritual, every Jan. 4 heading back to school from the islands…;-)

    Gosh, Beth…no need to reply at ALL.

    Very gracious, but not necessary, you just keep makin’ waves and surfin’ the seas of social change, busy lady. (and watch the jet lag/exhaustion; we need you on this planet!) Happy 51st. Proud to know ya.

  4. You have a lot of good stuff here.This post is superb. You have a very good knowledge about this matter. Thanks for the tips!! It will be very helpful.

  5. Thanks, Sandip, you’ve made my day knowing someone can ‘pay it forward’ and help others…but my knowledge is zip compared to social media gurus like Beth Kanter who I learn from regularly. Do check out the links to her blog in this post as she is AMAZING on this! Good luck with your work! Come visit soon…
    .-= Amy Jussel´s last blog ..Starbucks Filters In Feedback For Healthier Choices =-.

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