Corporate Social Responsibility writer for Justmeans, Antonio Pasolini is a journalist based in Brazil who writes about alternative energy, green living and sustainability. He also edits Energyrefuge.com, a top web destination for news and comment on renewable energy and Elpis.org, a recycled paper bag/magazine distributed from health food stores in London, formerly his hometown for over a decade....
Text Donations Help Colorado Wildfire Assistance
Communities affected by fires across Colorado will get financial aid through a SMS donation system. Verizon Wireless has implemented a mobile giving program for customers to contribute to relief and assistance efforts supporting those communities in areas such as High Park and Waldo Canyon. Verizon Wireless said customers can use their mobile phones to make $10 donations to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund to support evacuees and others impacted by the fires.
"Our neighbors in Colorado have experienced some of the worst fires in our state's history and we are mobilizing assistance for them," said Chris Lewter, regional president for Verizon Wireless. "We're making it easy for our customers wanting to donate funds to the American Red Cross by implementing a simple text-to-donate campaign."
In order to donate, customers can key in the word REDCROSS from their cell phone to the organization's designated 90999 short code.
Verizon Wireless waives text-messaging fees for disaster relief, so text messages are free when used to make donations. This way, 100 percent of each $10 donation goes to the Red Cross. For Verizon Wireless customers who pay monthly bills, the $10 donations will appear on the next regular monthly bill. For those using the company's prepaid services, the $10 donation will be taken from customers' prepaid balances.
Text messaging has become a much used means of raising funds. In the UK, mobile operator Vodafone has set up a dedicated service called JustTextGiving to enable socially responsible organizations of every size to collect donations by SMS using a unique code. The company partners with all types of charities, from local schools to animal sanctuaries that tap the power of text messaging to raise money. Donors don't even need to be a Vodafone customer to give or receive with JustTextGiving.
The latest development in text message donation is that US regulators have allowed political donations to be made via cell phones. The Federal Election Commission approved the move in June, but wireless carriers who would oversee the service have asked the FEC for more guidance on how to implement the system. They want to make sure they will not be held liable for determining donors' eligibility to contribute to a campaign.
Image credit: Verizon Wireless