During the pandemic, many of us who were used to volunteering may have had to pause these charitable activities, due to increased childcare needs, social distancing, shutdowns or other quarantine regulations. Volunteering not only benefits the organizations or people who are being served, but also the volunteers—studies show it can even help fight depression.
A new digital charitable tool, Giving Digitized, aims to bring charitable giving online into an easy to use platform—a simple solution for the times! In 2020 alone, they helped 17 charities in 4 cities, and are just getting started. “We make it easier for you and charities to help the community by taking the stress out of organizing and tracking toward your promise to help,” explains Giving Digitized’s NYC-based founder and CEO Shazia Peeran. We chatted with Shazia, whose background is in finance, about her new company, including her inspiration as well as future plans.
Why did you decide to start this and when did you launch?
I decided to start this at the beginning of the pandemic when it was apparent that in-person help would be limited with charities, when the need for work in charities and nonprofit organizations was increasing.
There was a need for a product that helped charities thrive in a virtual world. So, I decided to create a product where it was most needed. Using the desire of the community to give back, our platform was used in multiple states to pitch in and help thousands in the community in a short period of time.
In this current state, where we are juggling work and life and the want to give back to our community…this takes the stress out of giving back and finding where there is a need for help, how to help, and being able to quickly help is a few quick steps.
What separates it from other digital giving tools or donation options?
There are other options out there that help volunteers, but is really painful and disorganized for groups and charities to track and distribute to those in the community. This helps you contribute supplies that you are able to comfortably do so, and send it directly to charities from any store of your choice, and let the charity know.
Can you please walk us through the process?
Absolutely! There are pre-set drives through the year and will change once a quarter.
If anyone wants to give, then they sign up now. At the time of the event they will get an invitation to participate in the virtual drive. At which time, they’d login, see what’s there to give and send it directly to the nonprofits, and make a note that they’ve sent it with the anticipated delivery date. Once you register and login, select the supply drive. You are now 3 steps away from making your impact to the community.
- Step 1:Select – pick a basket to donate.
• Step 2:Buy – send to the address listed.
• Step 3: Update – let the non-profit know that you have purchased the gifts and when to expect the basket.
Here are the types of virtual drives you can participate in:
• Evergreen programs held quarterly, starting 2021: Food Drives, Groceries. The next one is in July.
• March: Health and Hygiene Basket.
• April – October: Natural Disaster Relief.
• August: School Supply Drive.
• November – December: Holiday Toy baskets to help parents and children in need celebrate the holidays by granting wishes.
• November – January: Winter gear baskets for community centers, shelters and other charities including public schools.
Sounds like you have a lot of worthwhile drives planned! If someone wants to host their own drive, what is the process for that?
Schedule a call with us and we’ll get you set up. You can invite your group to participate and know how you are doing toward the success of your drive at any point.
Why is this such a smart tool for moms?
Moms have a million things to do; to name a few, take care of the family, manage work and home schedules, set a charitable example, and balance their budgets in this unexpected time. But they don’t have a lot of time to do all of that. While getting a cup of coffee, they can send out supplies to those who need it in in community. They can even get the kids involved in the process! It can also be used for school supply fundraisers too! Reach out to us.
Why is it so important to show kids giving back, in your opinion?
Giving back help kids become part of the community they live in and learn crucial skills that help them grow, be well adjusted adults, be successful and be kind with themselves and others.
Where do you hope to take it in the next year? And ultimately?
We want to continue to enable those the community to give back easily throughout the year, and help a million of our neighbors across the country. At this point we were honored to enable hundreds of volunteers across 9 states, help charities in 4 states across the country namely New York, New Jersey, California and Illinois. Ultimately, we’d be honored to enable the community help those in need not just with supplies but with training and getting them placed in careers.
Anything else you’d like to add?
I’d invite each one of your readers to continue to make a change in their communities and join the virtual drives today by heading over to givingbackeasily.com and keeping updated with the virtual drives on Instagram @GivingDigitized
This story is sponsored by Giving Digitized.