– Up to $1 million in prize funding on CrowdRise

social-entrepreneurs5

PALO ALTO, California, Sept. 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — The Skoll Foundation, in partnership with The Huffington Post, is launching its first crowdfunding challenge designed to provide some of the world’s leading social entrepreneurs with an innovative platform to raise funds.

The “Skoll Social Entrepreneurs Challenge,” hosted on Edward Norton’s platform CrowdRise, has the potential to leverage up to $1 million in prize funding from the Skoll Foundation, including $250,000 in dedicated prize money through daily and weekly challenges and up to $750,000 in additional matching funds to be shared by all participants as fundraising thresholds are reached during the campaign.

The prize funding will go to the groups that raise the most through the Challenge. The top fundraising organization will receive$50,000; the runner-up will receive $40,000; and the organizations in third place through fifth place will receive $30,000,$20,000 and $10,000 respectively. Plus, an additional $100,000 in bonus prizing will be awarded throughout the Challenge.

Organizations participating in the Challenge are recipients of the “Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship” and represent some of the most successful entrepreneurial organizations in the world. Working on the frontlines, social entrepreneurs fight disease, poverty, and injustice with their innovative approaches, proving that health care, education, and basic needs can be delivered efficiently and equitably, that sustainability trumps depletion, and that large-scale impact is possible.

“This Challenge gives individual donors the opportunity to support high-impact social entrepreneurs working in countries around the world through a healthy dose of competition that still promises to reward all participants,” said Sally Osberg, President and CEO of the Skoll Foundation. “We’re pleased to provide funding that will not only leverage donor gifts but also deliver an important capacity building exercise in crowdfunding, which is a critical tool for social entrepreneurs who want to maximize their impact.”

“Usually when people think of how smart non-profit organizations get funded they assume that most of the money comes from foundations and major philanthropists and that a smaller percentage comes from grassroots efforts,” said actor and CrowdRise co-founder Edward Norton. “What CrowdRise Challenges have clearly demonstrated is that we can flip the equation. The smart use of networking technology and smart game-theory can take funds from major philanthropists like our friends at the Skoll Foundation, and use these funds to activate the power of crowdfunding and leverage the initial donation 8x, 10x, even 13x. We think this is really exciting.”

“Our partnership with CrowdRise on the JobRaising Challenge raised more than $1.2 million to help put Americans back to work, a demonstration of just how powerful a tool crowdfunding can be for raising money, raising awareness, and inspiring others around the issues that matter most,” said Arianna Huffington, president and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post Media Group. “So we are really excited to be collaborating with CrowdRise again for the Skoll Social Entrepreneurs Challenge, to further empower the boldest and most creative social entrepreneurs already at work solving our biggest problems, and at the same time inviting them to tell their stories on HuffPost’s platform.”

The Skoll Foundation has used crowdfunding to support important social issues twice before. In March, the Skoll Foundation and The Huffington Post committed $250,000 in prize donations for the “Job Raising Challenge” to leverage more than $1.2 million in donations for domestic job-creating nonprofits. In June, the Foundation and Huffington Post committed $75,000 in prize donations for the “RaiseForWomen Challenge,” which raised more than $1 million in donations for women’s causes.

The Skoll Social Entrepreneur Challenge will run from September 30 through November 22. For more information and to donate, go to http://www.crowdrise.com/skollSEChallenge.

About Skoll Foundation

Jeff Skoll established The Skoll Foundation in 1999 to drive large-scale change by connecting, celebrating, and investing in social entrepreneurs and the innovators who help them solve the world’s most pressing problems. Social entrepreneurs are society’s change agents-creators of innovations that disrupt the status quo and transform our world for the better. By identifying the people and programs already enacting positive change throughout the world, the Foundation empowers them to extend their reach, deepen their impact, and fundamentally improve society.

The Foundation is a leader in social entrepreneurship and has awarded more than $358 million to nearly 100 social entrepreneurs and organizations across the globe. The Foundation also funds program-related and mission-aligned investments. To build public awareness of social entrepreneurship and innovative solutions, the Foundation partners with leading film and broadcast organizations such as PBS and the Sundance Institute to tell compelling stories of impact.

About CrowdRise

CrowdRise is a crowd-funding platform for people and organizations to raise support for charitable causes. CrowdRise’s core principles are that people have unprecedented power to use the power of networks to leverage their personal capacity and that raising money for charity and giving back should be fun. CrowdRise’s custom-built platform and game theory, as well as the company’s proven record of designing innovative crowd-funding strategies, provide individual fundraisers, charities, and events with powerful tools to raise the most money for their causes and share compelling philanthropic stories with their personal networks. The site lets anyone turn their friends into an active base of donors for any cause and lets any organization, company, or event unlock untapped leverage out of their existing platform.

CrowdRise topped Mashable’s list of “Most Innovative Crowdfunding Platforms” and was named a “Top 25 Best Global Philanthropist” by Barron’s. CrowdRise was founded by actor and activist Edward Norton, producer Shauna Robertson, and the founders of Moosejaw, Robert and Jeffrey Wolfe. Thousands of charitable organizations, events, celebrities, and everyday donors have made CrowdRise their philanthropic base for giving back.

SOURCE The Skoll Foundation

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