App recommends opportunities based on news you read Volunteer Rosheka Robinson serves plates of food to guests at Sister Jean's Kitchen in Atlantic City, New Jersey. At left, Kamanda, founder of Ideal Impact (Noah Addis/Corbis, Ideal Impact/YouTube)
App recommends opportunities based on news you read
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Do you ever read about a problem and wish you could help? An app can help you. It was invented by Olivier Kamanda.

Kamanda was the former speechwriter and senior advisor to Hillary Clinton. He read a news story about Dasani, a 12-year-old Brooklyn girl. She and her family were homeless. The story went on social media. It made many people want to help homeless families.

Kamanda was volunteering at Miriam's Kitchen near the White House. It gives meals and social services to the homeless. The organization was about to launch "The Way Home Campaign." They would lobby the DC Council for more housing.

"I realized that if everyone who was moved by the New York Times piece knew about the Way Home Campaign, we'd be able to direct some of that energy towards tackling chronic homelessness in our city," says Kamanda.

He raised nearly $20,000. He used it to build a mobile app called Ideal Impact. The app determines the key issues in any news story. Then it suggests organizations that try to help. Suppose you read a powerful story. You think, "How can I help?" Ideal Impact tells you where to volunteer, work and donate.

In the following interview, Kamada provides some background and inspiration:

What problem are you trying to fix?

People may wish to help when they read about a problem. News stories about issues such as homelessness or climate change prompt us to get involved. But we dont often know how.

Meanwhile, 1.6 million non-profits are looking for volunteers, donors and supporters. Nearly 73 percent of charitable giving comes from individual donors. And on average, it takes non-profits 23 hours to recruit each volunteer.

Suppose we don't connect people who want to help with organizations that need support. We lose 90 million possible volunteers, donors or supporters.

So, what exactly is Ideal Impact?

Readers often care about news stories. Ideal Impact connects them with places to volunteer, donate, advocate and find jobs. Our mobile, web and digital media tools recommend ways to address the problems in an article.

How will the app work exactly?

You install the Ideal Impact app on your mobile or desktop. You can read news from any source. Suppose a story moves you. Click the Ideal Impact button. It will appear in the main menu of the app or your browser. This will load the app. The app will tell you about non-profits and action groups you can support. They have been approved by third-parties such as Charity Navigator and GuideStar. They've been reviewed by community members. In fewer than three clicks, youve gone from inspiration to a meaningful opportunity.

As you see it, what is the potential impact the app could have on volunteerism and financial giving?

We are re-imagining civic engagement. Our app connects people who want to make a difference with organizations that need support. As a result, we help lower the cost to non-profits of finding supporters. We also make it easier for people to contribute their time, talent and energy.

More important, the app can potentially show the true value of service. Ideal Impact helps you be part of a community, find purpose-driven work and feel satisfaction from helping others. These experiences define who we are. They show what matters to us. We hope to expand opportunities for people whose personal values include community service.

What's next?

Were working to launch our pilot in Washington, D.C. It will feature a test group of organizations our supporters recommended. Well use the data we gather from the pilot to refine our app. We'll build additional features. Then we'll offer the app to more non-profit organizations and action groups.

After that, we'll offer the app to media companies. It can help their readers act on their news. We can give them an Ideal Impact badge. It will integrate our matching formula into their websites. This should help news and media companies measure the emotional impact of their articles. It'll help build stronger relationships with their readers.

Critical thinking challenge: What non-profit and issue-oriented organizations would you recommend that we feature on our platform?

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COMMENTS (11)
  • VanessaC-3
    4/03/2015 - 06:58 p.m.

    New apps that industrators make now in these days than the old days now they are making opportunities happen. They are making lives much more easier by learning more in the news whether its at home or its on the go. We the people can wacth or web the app anywhere and anytime for the last few times for 24/7 if we want too. As it being much more easier and faster instead it in my opinion not being so complicated and difficult.

  • KnightA-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 07:23 p.m.

    I would like to see other non-profit groups featured on the App platform. I like the idea that they are trying to help homeless people. I would also like to see the App work on finding homes for homeless animals, food for kids that need food, and orphaned kids. I do not like to see sad or sick animals that need a good home. I know there are kids that need food. And, orphaned kids need good homes so they can have parents. Maybe this new App would put people that can help with these groups that need help.

  • ManiegoC-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 08:07 p.m.

    The non-profit and issue -oriented organizations I would recommend that we feature on our platform is Green Peace. I Picked Green Peace because it has 312k likes. Also I picked it because it has 8 Google PR. Another reason I picked it because it has a rank of 13,381. Last, I picked it because of 1.1m followers.

  • MayerS-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 09:18 p.m.

    What I would recommend for this app is to talk about Toys for Tots. Why Toys for Tots are important because people donate toys to kids that do not have any toys for Christmas. What I also would recommend for this app is to talk about The Red Cross. Why Red Cross is important because Red Cross come's to place's that need help, like when there is a flood or earthquake, they will bring supplies. That was some of the things that I would recommend for this app.

  • StoneM-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 09:21 p.m.

    The non-profit and issue-oriented organizations that I would recommend are these three. First, have a place were you look up toy organizations for the kids so they have toys to play with. Next, is have more clothing organizations for the teens so they have nice clothes to were. Last, have more baby organizations for a mom that has a baby. So those are the three organizations that I think they should add.

  • HocogJ-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 10:41 p.m.

    The non profit organization that I recommend is the Breast Cancer Fund. I recommended this organization so we can help reduce breast cancer for ladies. This organization's goal is to prevent breast cancer. I really like this organization because they don't give up on what their goal is. These are the reasons this organization should be on the app.

  • LiCausiM-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 10:51 p.m.

    Something you could do to non - profit and not have an issue is to give them 1 hour breaks. Something else you can do to prevent issue is to let the people that are going to work on non - profit is to let them call their family's when you work. Another thing you should do is give them a relax station. One more thing that you can do to avoid issue is to let them know what they are doing for people. Theses are some ways to avoid issue.

  • SinningK-Sua
    4/22/2015 - 11:22 p.m.

    Question of the Day: What non profit and issue oriented organizations would you recommend that we feature on our platform?

    My Answer: What I would recommend to this group that they feature is have like a feature where if someone is not doing well around the world have this scroll bar at the side and put out their name and where they are and have a button that you could press to see how to get there. I think that is a feature that I can recommend to them because I didn't want to have something that everyone can think in general like for instance, have an alert alarm who isn't doing so well, something like that. I also think that is a good feature to recommend to them because I wanted to come up with somethings helpful and not have a bunch of alarms that could come all the time and just has a silent buzz and choose your own ring tone in a settings feature. My final reason why I think that is a good feature to have is because it would help a lot faster and it would bring them to a more safe place then being somewhere dangerous. That is what I think about a feature I would recommend.

  • CirilloP-Sua
    4/23/2015 - 12:17 a.m.

    I would recommend organizations for the feature. I recommend this because it makes people neater. I also recommend this because it will make people happy. I also recommend this because it would make us people more responsible. That is why I recommend organisations in the feature.

  • KerrF-Sua
    4/23/2015 - 10:50 a.m.

    A non-profit and issue-oriented organization I would recommend is something called "For the world". It would show people that need help nearby and you can go help them. It would be a free app on apple and android. You will need IOS 8.1 to download it because it will have new features. that would be my idea to help the world.

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