Tnooz has considered for some time how to create a corporate social responsibility policy.
We didn't pay consultant fees, hire film stars as spokespersons or over-engineer a strategy... we just kicked around some common sense ideas about what we stand for and how to help those who need helping.
As a first step, we've decided to support two projects that started small and have big visions: Footprints and Passports with Purpose.
Footprints was dreamed up by the founders of WorldNomads, the Australia-based online travel insurance company. Footprints is the not-for-profit organization that grew out of the crushing needs of AsiaPacific communities after the 2004 tsunami.
Its mission is based on the simple idea that lots of small donations add up to a big difference.
Footprints is building a global network of online transaction companies that promote small add-on donations by their customers. All of the money goes to on-the-ground projects. We like the network effect Footprints is seeking. Businesses presenting customers from the Facebook generation affordable, high-impact choices to help the communities they visit in their travels is a great model.
Recently, Footprints passed 500,000 donors who have given nearly AU$1.3 million to 71 projects ... including programs providing education, health care and drinking water.
Passports with Purpose was founded in 2008 by Debbie Dubrow, Pam Mandel, Beth Whitman and Michelle Duffy "as a way to build community among travel bloggers and to give back to the places we, as travelers, visit." Each year Passports with Purpose picks a project and drives support among travel writers and their followers.
In December, Passports with Purpose is raising money for libraries in Zambia in partnership with Room To Read, a US-registered non-profit organization.
We like the idea of travel writers helping children read.
Our initial contribution to Footprints and Passports with Purpose will be promotional advertising on Tnooz's web site and in our daily newsletter. Please take a look at both organizations' websites and tell your friends and family how they can help.