Helping the Residents of Texas through Opinions4Good

The devastation in Texas from the recent floods and tornados is difficult for most of us to imagine. The images and information coming out of this event remind us how often strangers and our neighbors are willing to help in a moment’s notice. Our thoughts and prayers are directed to the families who have lost precious loved ones.

Our members carry a spirit of volunteerism, charity and concern. To help families in Texas cope with the disaster today and in the months and years to come, simply select the America Red Cross as your chosen nonprofit. This gives you the opportunity to apply survey earnings directly to an organization providing boots-on-the-ground service to the affected families.

The Red Cross has opened emergency shelters throughout the Texas Gulf Coast region. They are also helping residents cope with the emotional toll of the disaster. The Red Cross will continue to provide disaster relief and emotional counselling as long as they are needed.

To donate directly Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief or donate by phone at 1-800-RED CROSS.

You can also provide assistance through a donation directly on their website.

March is Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month!

MS Month_02For healthy individuals, the body’s immune system serves to protect against disease. But for those with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), it actually attacks the body’s tissues. Specifically, it destroys myelin – the fatty coating on nerve fibers in the brain and spinal chord (which facilitates the delivery of electrical signals).

As a result, individuals with MS experience a wide range of symptoms. These include weakness or numbness in limbs, vision loss, tingling/pain, slurred speech, and fatigue. Such symptoms, in turn, can lead to paralysis, epilepsy, and depression.

Unfortunately, the National Institute of Health estimates that 250,000 – 300,000 Americans suffer from MS. This translates into approximately 200 new diagnoses each week. People most at risk are white females, aged 15 to 60, who smoke, live in temperate climates, and have a family history of MS.

As March is Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month, take some time to learn about the disease and your risk factors. Contact our partner, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society!

Flickr photo credit: bombtwinz

Op4G’s $500 Winner: Second Harvest Food Bank

second harvestDespite the wealth of the United States, hunger remains a real and growing problem. In fact, as of 2014, approximately 1 in 6 (or 50 million Americans) are food insecure. Thus, Op4G is pleased to announce that our $500 sweepstakes winner for July is Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo counties.

Founded in 1974, Second Harvest provides nutritious food to more than a quarter million low income people every month. In fiscal year 2013, this food totaled more than 52 million pounds! The non-profit provides the food through an innovative direct service program, as well as through 770 food distribution sites. It also encourages healthy food choices by promoting federal nutrition programs.

Second Harvest estimates that the $500 sweepstakes winnings will provide 1,000 meals for families in their community. It also raises Op4G’s total donations to Second Harvest to over $11,280! For such support, Second Harvest thanks Op4G and all the members who complete surveys on their behalf.

Flickr photo credit: Lauren Tucker

Congratulations to our Contest Winners!

Race to summer postSummer is here…so our “Race to Summer” contest has officially ended! The contest offered cash prizes for the 3 non-profits that added the most new members between April 1 and July 1. It also pledged $1 to non-profits for every new member added during the period.

According to our database, the top 3 non-profits were:

1) Big Brothers Big Sisters Lone Star: $1,000 prize
2) Animal House: $500 prize
3) Advocates for Adolescent Mothers: $250 prize

In response to the news, Big Brothers Big Sisters Lone Star says “We were so excited to hear that we won the 2014 Op4G Summer Membership Drive! The $1,000 prize will allow us to take 2 children off of our waiting list! That means 2 more children will benefit from a caring, consistent and positive adult mentor in 2014!”

Animal House was also thrilled. “We plan to use the $500 to help with the cost of Brigg’s surgery. He is having his 2nd ACL surgery on August 18th”.

Finally, Advocates for Adolescent Mothers reported “We will use the third prize winnings to support our Educational Empowerment Program. Through this program, we provide financial and socio-emotional support to young moms who are in college”.

Flickr photo credit: Mohamed Malik

Op4G's Non-Profit of the Month: Advocates for Adolescent Mothers!

AFAMEach year in the US, over 300 000 babies are born to teenage mothers. Often, these mothers struggle to complete their education and are vulnerable to abuse, stress, and social isolation. Thus, Op4G is pleased to reveal that our Non-Profit of the Month is Advocates for Adolescent Mothers.

Founded by Lillian Harris, a former teen mother who experienced homelessness during college, AFAM is committed to providing young parents with the tools, resources, and support needed to escape poverty and prevent child abuse. To this end, the non-profit has distributed over 200 backpacks of school supplies and toiletries to young parents. It has provided over 600 toys and 300 coats to homeless young mothers and their children. Finally, AFAM has established an Educational Empowerment Program that offers mentoring, workshops, and financial support to young mothers in college.

For these efforts, AFAM has earned recognition as a Top-Rated Women’s Nonprofit since 2011. It has also maintained silver status in the GuideStar Exchange Program since 2013. To learn more about AFAM, and how you can help, please click here.

Photo credit: Jamie Solorio
Flickr Creative Commons License

The Race to Summer Contest for Non-Profits!

RTC ThumbNon-Profits, Op4G is at it again with another great contest to support your mission. Come with us as we “Race to Summer” from April 1st to July 1st.  During this period, each and every new member a Non-Profit acquires will result in $1.00 added to your account.  Generate 10 new members, get $10… 1000 new members, get $1000.  It’s that simple.

We also have great prizes of $1000, $500, and $250 for the top three Non-Profits in the contest.  That is in addition to the $1.00 you get for each new member.  So…. what are you waiting for?  Send out word using your newsletter, Facebook page, Twitter page or website.  We will also make available to you our brand new Non-Profit Portal so you can easily track your progress.

To make your Non-Profit eligible for the contest, just send a quick email to Juliann Murphy, our Non-Profit Development Director  (juliannm @ Op4G.com) and she will get you signed up.  Thanks and good luck to all our partners!

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Op4G's Non-Profit of the Month: Girls on the Run of Puget Sound!

Girls RunThey say that “slow and steady wins the race”. Well this month, Girls on the Run of Puget Sound is proof! After a 4 year partnership, the charity is our Non-Profit of the Month!

Girls on the Run of Puget Sound is dedicated to helping girls recognize their potential and achieve their dreams. To this end, the non-profit provides an after-school program to over five hundred 3rd to 5th grade girls at over 50 sites in the Puget Sound region.

Taught by certified Girls on the Run Coaches, the program features 20 sessions. The sessions center around training for a 5 km run. They also integrate lessons to inspire girls to become independent thinkers and make healthy lifestyle choices.

To learn more about Girls on the Run of Puget Sound and how you can help, please click here.  Or, sign up here to volunteer online on their behalf.

Op4G is Attending the 2014 Washington Nonprofit Conference

washington dcDespite the imminent snowstorm, Op4G is on it’s way to Washington DC February 13th and 14th to join hundreds of fundraising and marketing professionals at the Washington Nonprofit Conference. This is a two-day event where we will exchange innovative marketing and fundraising ideas, generate insightful solutions and think creatively to help better serve our Non Profit partners.

We are happy to be a part of a gathering that will be the platform for improving public awareness and receptivity to direct and interactive market driven philanthropy.

We’d also love to meet up with current and prospective partners. Please shoot us an email at support@op4g.com to schedule a time to chat.

Looking forward to seeing everyone there.

 

Flickr Photo Credit

Op4G's Non-Profit of the Month: Okizu!

3After 3 years as an Op4G partner, Okizu is our Non-Profit of the Month!

Based in Northern California, Okizu provides peer support and recreational programs to families affected by childhood cancer. Most notably, the non-profit offers a weeklong camping trip for children with cancer and their siblings (as well as weekend camping trips for families and teens). To date, over 3000 children have participated in Camp Okizu.

In light of the high cost of cancer treatment, all of Okizu’s programs are completely free. A team of 600 volunteers meet staffing needs, while donations, grants, and fundraising proceeds cover remaining expenses. These donations include earnings from Op4G, which totaled $1445.70 as of January 2014!

To support Okizu’s programs please sign up with Op4G, or to volunteer or donate, please visit the Okizu website, Facebook page, or Twitter account.

Flickr photo credit: Audrey

Op4G's $500 Sweepstakes Winner: Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit!

92014 is off to a good start for Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit. The Op4G partner is our $500 Sweepstakes Winner for January!

Founded in honor of comedienne Gilda Radner, Gilda’s Club provides free social and emotional support for individuals living with cancer, as well as their families, friends, and caregivers. Support programs include educational lectures, children and teen activities, art workshops, and support/networking groups.

Since opening its iconic red door in 1998, Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit has welcomed more than 10,000 members. It invites prospective new members to attend a meeting on Monday at 1:00 pm or Wednesday at 5:30 pm, or to request a more convenient time.

To help Gilda’s Club, please join their community of survey takers here.

For more information on Gilda’s Club, or to make a donation, please click here or call (248) 577-0800.

Flickr photo credit: James Marvin Phelps