Virgin Unites Four Questions – IEC’s Answers
Perhaps some may have thought that getting in to the Top 10 was all that was needed for a project or idea to be considered for the opportunity of winning the Grand Prize in the Richard Branson and Virgin Unite Challenge to “Screw Business As Usual”. That was not the case. The morning after getting into the Top 10 IEC received an email, with a Final Summary form attached.
If you have read my blogs before – then you will be aware that one skill I need to learn – is how to summarise and not just waffle on!!! I tend to get carried away with my passion for IEC! This form had four questions and one very clear instruction – the answer for each must be 250 words or less! Ha! Pure terror! Me keep to 250 words or less! Help! Add to that the fact that there were just 7 days to do this and I was due to be away at a family event for four of those!
My thinking head went on, who did I know that had the skills I lacked, who did I know who understood my passion for IEC, who did I know who may be prepared to drop everything to help? A light bulb moment – an email sent and under 30 minutes later a positive answer and an expression of gratitude for having been asked to be part such an important aspect of IEC’s entry. That amazing person is Sue Haswell from Big Results, PR and Marketing. (for more info on Sue and why she was so willing to help please see our Gratitude Page)
During the next few days messages went back and forth and phone conversations were had ~ The exercise of answering these questions was at times a joy, at times frustrating, at times enlightening and definitely positive. Below is the response that we sent to Virgin Unite.
1. Describe your idea and how it screws business as usual.
The biggest problem of “business as usual” is waste. Wasted time, wasted resources, wasted effort.
If Everyone Cares (IEC) aims to eliminate waste in the Charity* and not-for-profit sector, by encouraging and promoting strategic collaboration.
Collaboration means: eliminating waste – so more resource gets to where it does most good. In short – IEC means More People get More Help.
IEC will create collaboration through a central hub – an Interactive Global Community Map of all Community Projects, Not-For-Profits and Charities – offering people *easy access* to projects, help, donating and volunteering opportunities.
IEC will not depend on big marketing budgets. It will address the balance, so large charities won’t get everything while small grass-root charities languish for lack of funds and interest.
Surprisingly, it’s currently difficult to find this information. Google and other search engines list websites optimised for them – normally large organisations with big marketing budgets. Missing the little community charities – ones that need most help, those easiest to work with. In short, the ones that don’t have vast marketing budgets.
People worldwide will see at a click which projects require volunteers and/or fundraising support. Which projects are best for them – NOT just ones that market themselves best.
IEC will provide a central hub. Meaning ALL, Community Organisations, Not-For-Profits and Charities have a level playing field. They will easily get to find out about each other creating greater collaboration. Helping people and businesses to identify charities they need most – for support, or to support. (250)
2. Is your idea innovative?
Some have said our idea is ‘too big’… but would the same have been said about Google Earth 10 years ago?
It also seems a simple idea – but to date it hasn’t been done! We believe that’s because any previous attempts would be profit-focused.
IEC will succeed by operating differently, putting COLLABORATION FIRST. We believe that by utilising a simple framework we could be self-funding within 3 years.
Through IEC (Wiki) Interactive Global Map, organisations can participate, create marker points showing summary information and link to their website, social media etc. If they currently have no web presence, IEC will enable them to build one free.
Opportunities to thank volunteers and “hero’s” of causes, spotlight on case-studies, and generate a greater understanding of each charity/organisation, will open up global learning, acceptance and celebration of diversity, as each of us understand everyone’s needs in greater depth.
“Localness” of the IEC hub means humanities’ problems cannot be distanced, encouraging greater feeling of community spirit, inescapably knowing what the needs of the neighbourhood truly are. (Our online lives are distancing us from the true needs of our community, and the “forgotten charities” are the fall-out.)
IEC will be universally beneficial – helping projects to connect, share strategies, tools, resources etc. Raise awareness of their work, encourage volunteers, encourage local businesses to sponsor them, put the people who need help in contact with them … … the ripple effect is huge and will touch every sector of the community. (247)
3. How will your idea make a difference?
By creating greater collaboration! Collaboration means charity £££’s and efforts go further – less wasted resources, and more resource getting to where it does most good.
More People Get More Help
- People who need help – access it by clicking on their area to see active projects/organisations. Finding support they need – when they need it.
- Projects previously without web presence will be supported – helping them raise their profile, gain volunteers, generate funding and reach those they are there to help.
Our Resources & £££’s Go Further
- People who want to help – will be able to easily search IEC to find projects, in their area, that match with their skills or passions.
- Potential donors – charities, individuals or companies – can easily research recipients and discover how their donation/time will be used.
Less Duplication, Less Waste
- Projects will easily find similar projects – leading to collaboration, sharing of tools, resources and learning. Enabling greater efficacy in reaching their target and saving running costs.
- Larger charities will easily identify appropriate organisations to benefit from funding. Easier collaboration, reaching grassroots, fulfilling KPI’s by identifying and engaging quickly and more appropriately with smaller organisations.
- ALL charities promote and explain themselves easily – gaining greater corporate support, volunteers and more collaborative work.
If Everyone Cares is not connected by religion, race, politics, gender or any other voice that could cause discrimination.
The bottom line with IEC is to encourage and support collaboration throughout. (248)
4. What impact can you see your idea having over the next 5 years?
- Pin-pointing over 75% of Charities, Non-Profits and community projects on the IEC Global Map:
- Link thousands of people with the projects who can help them
- Boost levels and awareness of volunteering
- Greater efficiency. Facilitating sharing and learning cultures; larger charities can support the smaller organisations with learning… and smaller organisations can provide the grassroots direct involvement, “lessons learned”.
- Launch first International If Everyone Cares ‘Grat-Fest’ Day – (community gratitude)
- Encouraging volunteering, mentoring etc. Raising community awareness and helping to foster the benefits of communities.
- Helped hundreds of projects and organisations to save both running costs and time through the ability to share resources etc.
- Become self-sustaining through advertising.
- Recognised globally as the place to go for – Help – Support – Volunteering – Community Collaboration …
This is just the tip of the iceberg for a wonderful future … … The Aim is to collaborate, bring everything together in one place and work as one. By working together we can achieve so much more!
‘If Everyone Cares’ can become a New Universal language of Community ~ Contribution ~ Communication ~ Co-operation. A hub for sharing the wonderful projects that great people are setting up all around the world to support those in need. (211)
* NOTE: Where we have used the word “Charity”, this is intended to refer to all charitable, social enterprise, community interest companies and informal groups that are not-for-profit, whether they have a formal Charitable Status or not.
If Everyone Cares is incredibly grateful to Sue Haswell for helping us to answer these questions, for helping to get me to focus! and for being there to support us at such short notice :)
and the Team at IEC