The National Weather Service said today (1/13/11) there is snow on the ground in 49 of the 50 United States – a rare feat of nature. The one exception? Florida. Yes, there’s even snow on the mountain tops of Hawaii. Hard to imagine, but true. Here in Atlanta, we’re on Day Four of “Snowpocalypse” – a snow and ice storm that has had the city virtually shut down since Monday morning. At local grocery stores, bread aisles stand empty and milk and eggs are hard to come by – leading my colleague Michele Egan Sterne to refer to the storm as the “Great French Toast Shortage of 2011.”
But even while temperatures outside hover in the teens and twenties, we at For Momentum, like millions of others, have been fortunate to be able to continue working in the warmth and comfort of our home offices. Several times throughout the last few days though, I’ve found myself thinking about those people who aren’t so lucky – those who can’t afford to heat their homes or buy warm clothing for themselves and their children.
I don’t know about you, but whenever I find myself contemplating a situation where there are people in need, my first inclination is to seek out a charity that works to solve that particular problem and see how I can help.
Luckily, I didn’t have too far to look this time as I received an email yesterday from Sherri Wood, President and Founder of One Warm Coat – a national nonprofit organization that helps individuals, groups, companies, and organizations across the country collect coats and deliver them free to people in need. The organization’s goal is simply to ensure that anyone who needs a coat has one.
The purpose of Sherri’s email was to share the exciting news that One Warm Coat is one of ten finalists in a contest being run by Breakthrough Nonprofit Branding. The prize is invaluable to a nonprofit the size of One Warm Coat – $100,000 worth of FREE advertising in USA Today. If they win, the prize would help the organization educate 3.3 million people about the need for warm coats. I can’t think of an easier way to offer assistance to this organization this winter than to spread the word and VOTE for them in this contest.
Won’t you do the same? Your vote could mean a warm winter for the nearly one in five children who live in poverty in the U.S. Click here to vote for One Warm Coat between now and January 27th. Anyone over the age of 13 can vote, once per day until the deadline. And don’t forget to help spread the word by Tweeting the link or posting it to your Facebook page.
One additional thought: Many corporations have run voting contests in recent years, using social media to drive consumers to their websites, and typically offering a cash donation to the winning nonprofit/s. While large cash gifts are, of course, a boon to any organization, corporations and nonprofits also shouldn’t underestimate the value of a strategic in-kind offering such as the free advertising offered by Breakthrough Nonprofit Branding and USA Today. If you’re a corporation looking to launch a cause marketing platform, be sure to carefully evaluate all of the assets you could allocate to a nonprofit organization. Cash might be king, but you could be surprised at the wealth of valuable benefit your company can offer to the right cause partner.
Note: One Warm Coat is a former client and current friend of For Momentum.