Nonprofit Newswire | And the Oscar Goes To . . .

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March 7, 2010; TakePart | In the new corporate style advertising, American Express is using the Oscars to launch TakePart, its new effort in philanthropy. There will be two ads featuring Geoffrey Canada of the Harlem Children’s Zone and Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia. They will be advertising three ways TakePart and AmEx can help you “make a difference”. One: Vote once a week for your favorite charity. Every three months, the five charities with the most votes will each receive $200,000 donations from American Express. Two: For every hour you volunteer, Members Project will give you 500 Membership Rewards points. And three: Donate anything from $5, to monthly recurring donations to a charity of your choice. It will be interesting to see if this big stage and new platform for giving will indeed make a difference or be cast in a minor supporting role to traditional philanthropy as we know it.—Aaron Lester

  • Maria Sillari

    This new trend towards voting as a means to disburse charitable funds ans as a means to market a corporation disturbs me. It doesn’t necessarily get the funds to the best or most effective project or organization. Rather, it takes the work off the corporation and puts it on the back of already under-resourced nonprofits. If a corporation were truly socially responsible, they’d do their due diligence in vetting funding requests or, in lieu of that channel it through United Way or Community Foundations, to ensure it gets to where it can do the most good.