Innovation That Matters

Matching nonprofits' projects with professionals who can help

Nonprofit & Social Cause

Nonprofits can always use extra manpower, but it’s often professional skills that they need most. Catchafire is a site that aims to improve the quality of the matches between professionals and the nonprofits that need their help. Now in beta, New York City-based Catchafire is similar in some ways to The Extraordinaries, which we covered this summer. The certified B-corporation begins by matching professionals who want to volunteer with nonprofits and social enterprises that need their skills. Matching is done on a variety of characteristics including skills, cause interests and time availability. By design, Catchafire projects each require 50 hours or less of flexible volunteer time to complete over less than three months; they are discrete, each with a clearly defined deliverable; and they are individual, or designed to be completed by one skilled professional rather than a team. Tasks involved typically include marketing, PR, design, social media, strategy and finance. The matching service is free for volunteers; nonprofits and social enterprises, meanwhile, are charged less than 5 percent of the cost that they would normally pay for the professional skills they gain, Catchafire says. The organization also helps corporations offer skills-based volunteer opportunities to their employees. Since the soft launch of Catchafire in May, it has matched more than 70 organizations with professionals who have volunteered more than 3,000 hours to provide over USD 500,000 in services. Currently, however, the company serves only organizations in the Greater New York City area. One to partner with or emulate to boost volunteership in your part of the world…? Spotted by: Margarita Barry



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