Sacred Earth Radio - Joan Ochi - Marketing Director for Global Giving

Joan Ochi - Marketing Director for Global Giving
Today's Expert: Joan Ochi

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ANNOUNCER: This program is brought to you by www.whitebuffalolodges.com. White Buffalo Lodges authentic Native American Teepees/Tipis and traditional Native designs. Welcome to Sacred Earth Radio where the people on the planet come together and here is your host, Damien Allen.

DAMIEN: Good afternoon and welcome to Sacred Earth Radio. I am Damien Allen, and today with us in the studio via phone we have Mrs. Joan Ochi, Marketing Director for www.globalgiving.com. Good afternoon, Joan, and welcome to the program.

JOAN: Thanks for having me.

DAMIEN: What is Global Giving and what do you do?

JOAN: Global Giving is what we like to think of as an online marketplace for philanthropy. So what that means is sort of the way that EBay connects buyers and sellers, Global Giving connects donors and that is anybody with as little $10 to give to grass roots community projects going on all over the world.

DAMIEN: So this is becoming basically an online clearing house to get people or monies to any one of many different projects that would be going on such as animal rescue or inoculations or stuff like that?

JOAN: Right. We have today over 500 projects and a variety of themes that range from education and health care to the environment and technology. The projects are located in about 60 some odd countries around the world. And again they are primarily grass roots development projects providing clean water to a village in Ethiopia or sending a girl to Afghanistan in school. All of them are doing great things.

DAMIEN: And Global Givings is a registered non-profit, if I remember correctly, youíre a 501C organization?

JOAN: Yes thatís correct.

DAMIEN: Do you have corporate partners that you use, or is this all done by donations from the common man.

JOAN: Most of the people that give to our website are pretty much the common men and women and children. We do have a number of corporate partners that we work with who support projects through Global Giving. Often times we will help them identify and find projects. Maybe a company is opening a factory in a particular location, and they want to find a project that employees in that location can give to and support, and so we help them do that. But some of our corporate partners include Ford Motor Company, Hewlett Packard, The Gap, Nike so we work with their customers, their employees, their partners, etc., but through our website primarily itís anybody who is interested in making a difference in the world.

DAMIEN: With all these projects going on and over 500 projects in over 60 countries, how does Global Giving choose which projects to become involved with?

JOAN: A lot of the projects are referred to us by some of our partners. We work with larger, established NGOís who recommend the work of project leaders that are known to them, and then we do due diligence around each of these projects so ensuring that we look at their financial information, we look at who is involved with the projects. We also run them through the U.S. Treasury Department databases to make sure there are no terrorism related issues which has become a greater issue for non-profits in the post-911 world. Often times we will outsource projects as I mentioned for companies and we work through this network to identify the projects and then once or twice a year we have what we call An Open Access Event and thatís basically we just are in the process of wrapping up one of those now. But any project thatís interested in posting on Global Giving can submit their due diligence information and then we go through sort of a challenge, and if they can raise a certain amount of money and generate a certain number of donations within a prescribed time period, they earn a permanent spot on Global Giving.

DAMIEN: How did Global Giving come into existence?

JOAN: Global Giving was founded about 6 years ago by two people who had worked at the World Bank for a number of years, and while they were at the World Bank had done very large scale development projects. Working on country to country loans in the multi-million dollar range, and they ultimately felt like whereís the money going and how is it making a difference to the people on the ground who need it. And from that the idea for Global Giving was born and through using the online forum itís really a way that people all over the world can support the work of these extraordinary individuals who have innovative solutions for social problems.

DAMIEN: Well we need to take a short break here real quick, Joan, but before we do could you give the website and contact information for Global Giving please.

JOAN: Sure itís www.globalgiving.com. The number is (202) 232-5784, and we are located in Washington D.C.

DAMIEN: We are in the studio today with Joan Ochi of Globalgiving.com. You are listening to Sacred Earth Radio. I am Damien Allen we will be right back after these brief messages.

ANNOUNCER: White Buffalo Lodges is proud to offer hand made authentic Native American Teepees/Tipis made with the highest quality materials and adhering to the original craftsmanship and traditional designs of the Sioux, Cheyenne, Crowe, and Blackfeet tribes. White Buffalo Lodges also offers a variety of canvas work and accessories. For a full list of products and services, please visit them on the web at www.whitebuffalolodges.com or call toll free (866) 358-8547. White Buffalo Lodges of Livingston, Montana, is the proud sponsor of Sacred Earth Radio. Welcome back to Sacred Earth Radio, I am Damien Allen in the studio today with Joan Ochi of Globalgiving.com. Welcome back to the program, Joan.

JOAN: Thank you.

DAMIEN: Well weíve been talking about Globalgiving.com which is an internet clearing house for grass roots projects to assist and better the planet and the people who reside upon it. We were talking about some of the projects that were going on. You have over 500 projects in 60 countries. Project types include animal and childrenís issues, climate change, democracy development, disaster recovery and relief, economic development, education, environment, HIV and Aids, health, human rights. I see links for malaria on there, sports technology, women and girls issues. So many things to go on. Weíve discussed how you pick the projects in the first half, but what can people do to get involved to help out?

JOAN: Well like I said, thereís over 500 projects on our site today so we think thereís really something for everyone. The best thing to do is to go to our website www.globalgiving.com and you can browse all the great projects out there. So if you have a connection to a particular country or interest in a particular seam then you can search by categories. Another great way to get involved and something thatís especially popular around the holidays is through Global Giving gift cards, and this is something we launched a couple of years ago and it works just like any other retail gift card. Like one you might buy at Target or Star Bucks and itís a little corn based making it bio-degradable, you can give the little card as a holiday gift and what the recipient does is they use that card to redeem it instead of for a retail item, they can go on the website and they can find a project that they like and use the donation that you made and allocate that donation to a specific project that interests them. So we found that weíve got employers and corporations who have use them as gifts for their employees or for their clients or people that theyíve worked with through the year instead of giving them some corporate chochkey that this is something that is a little bit more meaningful and goes a little bit further. Weíve also had parents and grandparents who have given the gift cards to their children or grandchildren and sat down in front of the computer with them and used the gift card and used it as an opportunity to teach their children about philanthropy and about giving and about whatís going on in lives of people in other parts of the world and really using it as a learning opportunity.

DAMIEN: What a great idea to be able to give a gift of giving.

JOAN: Exactly.

DAMIEN: In deed. An bio-degradable as well. Always thinking green. Now you have a variable mountain of information and then I see blogs on there as well. What goes on in the blogging section?

JOAN: In the blog we talk about things that are new going on in Global Giving or just related to our space in general. So itís a way to sort of stay up on whatís going on in the philanthropy world.

DAMIEN: Well I would like to thank you very much for joining us today, Joan. This is an absolutely mountain of information and a very, very, very well-designed website. If you are looking to get into philanthropy; if youíre looking to help make a change in your part of the world or in any other part of the world that you feel attached to, this is the place to go. Joan would you like to give that website and contact information for the listeners one more time please.

JOAN: Sure itís www.globalgiving.com and the phone number is (202) 232-5784, and we hope that listeners will come and check us out. A lot of times people think that philanthropy is limited to people who are very wealthy, but the idea behind Global Giving is even if you have a tiny amount of money to give, it can make a difference.

DAMIEN: In deed. Thank you very much for joining us today, Joan.

JOAN: Thank you for having me.

DAMIEN: You have been listening to Sacred Earth Radio. I am Damien Allen. Everybody have a great afternoon.

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