Social media campaigns have helped dozens of New Zealand charities secure $1million in funding in less than two weeks through an online community initiative.
Hundreds of thousands of votes have been cast by Kiwis from around the country, to determine the allocation of $1million amongst more than 30 charities, schools and other organisations.
The community groups profiled on the online voting platform took to social media to spread the word about their cause, asking fans to cast a free vote once a day, each day, with $5 provided by the fund for every vote.
‘The Trusts’ West Auckland CEO Simon Wickham, the group behind the charitable initiative, says the votes were cast more than twice as fast as the previous year.
“Thanks to the support of thousands of Kiwis, some charities were able to reach their funding targets within just four days of the voting platform launching.”
Wickham says social media provided the causes with a low cost method of encouraging support and raising awareness.
“We were thrilled to see how these groups were able to bring their supporters together to vote for their cause in such a short space of time.”
“We understand it can be hard for charities to meet their objectives each year and we were pleased to be able to offer a way to reach their goals quickly and without them having to invest a huge amount of resources to drive support,” he says.
Wickham says the community groups on the established platform also received a significant boost to their public profile.
“Over the last fortnight, the Million Dollar Mission site has received up to 15,000 visitors a day, which helps raise awareness for these groups well beyond this initiative,” he says.
The charity that received the largest allocation was the Well Foundation which will receive $100,000 towards a new infant incubator to provide a reliable method of safely transporting premature and unwell babies between hospitals for potentially lifesaving tests.
Wickham says the Foundation raised around $9000 per day by leveraging social media to encourage engagement and voting among the New Zealand public.
The 32 charities, schools, and community groups will receive their funds at a special giving back ceremony held in May in West Auckland.
The charities which received donations include: Well Foundation, Royal Road School, 1st Mt Albert - St Jude's Scout Group, Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust, Auckland Land Search and Rescue, Western Quilters Circle Inc, Gecko NZ Trust, Waitakere Hindi Language and Cultural School, Zeal Education Trust - West Auckland, Piha Surf Life Saving Club, Victim Support Waitakere, Henderson High School, Child Cancer Foundation Incorporated, Fair Food Trust,YMCA of Auckland, The Order of St John Northern Region Trust Board, Ranui Primary School, Kelston Primary School Board of Trustees, StarJam Charitable Trust, Lupesina o Samoa, Family Action, VisionWest Community Trust, Sport Waitakere, Generation Ignite Trust, Te Kura Kaupapa Maori O Hoani Waititi Marae, Ranui 135 Leadership Team, Kelston Boys High School, The Whau River Catchment Trust, New Lynn Rugby League Football Club Inc, Kids Safe With Dogs Charitable Trust, Waitakere Arts & Cultural Development Trust, and Life Education Trust Auckland West.