start-ups, CrowdRise, and giving back all rolled up into one!

Last week I won a CrowdRise T-shirt on twitter. Thanks Felix for promptly shipping it out to me!  This was so exciting because I never win anything!  If you do not know what CrowdRise is, you should check them out at Basically, CrowdRise “crowd funds” charities. Which is funny because this week, I participated on a podcast for crowd funding for start-ups with Susan Outlaw of PeerBackers AND my fave, Tory Johnson, did a segment on crowd funding on GMA earlier in the week.  Obviously, crowd funding is all the rage, so why not blog about it? Of course, I should blog about it.  I thought that I would give you a deeper look at CrowdRise and its importance for start-ups………..

The CrowdRise concept is unique because it raises money for charities of your choice.  CrowdRise also has the support of peeps like Ben Stiller, Kristen Bell, Edward Norton, and Mary McCormack.  With a fabulously easy website to navigate, you can set up a charity campaign for the non-profit of your choice and send it out to your crowd. Oh, and you can win cool prizes along the way.

This concept is important for Start-up Businesses and Entrepreneurs.  Why?  Well, it is important to give back and stay involved both locally, nationally, and globally yet start-ups certainly do not have the bank accounts to make large donations.  Therefore, crowd funding for your charity makes sense.  You could pick something close to you personally or professionally, and be ready to feel good in no time.

Volunteering and giving back has always been a big part of who I am with volunteering at a number of local non-profits in both giving and doing capacities.  The most rewarding experience for me was volunteering in the Pet Friends Program of Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.  My Lab, Cash, is a certified Pet Therapy Dog, and we would visit twice a month at the hospital with chronically ill patients and their families.  Words cannot even describe the happiness that Cash would bring to those kids and their families.  Cash is now 12 years old, and too old to walk the hospital floors (and the beagles do not like to work that hard), so Cash retired from the program.  Cash will always be a part of Children’s because he is the dog representing Pet Friends on the Wall of Fame in the hospital.

Since Cash’s retirement left me with a few minutes of spare time, I started giving time to a local women’s shelter. AND, now I was recently approached about helping the local Boys and Girls Club raise money for a new basketball gym.  Our local Boys and Girls Club provides a safe environment year round for kids of all backgrounds to go and participate in extracurriculars, receive homework help, and hang out while their moms and dads are at work.  The club is fortunate to have a very dedicated basketball staff and provides an outlet for boys and girls all year-long (which is especially important during our LONG winters).  Guess what?  CrowdRise is the perfect way to get the ball rolling for the new gym.  Looks like this BCKNGRUVMOM will be setting up her charity of choice at CrowdRise.

How about you?  Where do you give back?  Do you have a charity that you would like to set up with CrowdRise?

{ 5 comments… add one }

  • Haralee February 17, 2011, 1:47 PM

    How great for You! I often talk about the thrill of volunteering and you and Cash, how wonderful. I hope he is enjoying his retirement. I know when I was going through cancer and the dogs came in it was great, and for the children it was fantastic.
    Our company gives a percentage of every sale to breast cancer research.Because I was the recipient of new drugs and treatment funded by the charity Susan G Komen, that is where most of our charitbable funds go.
    I think CrowdRise is a great concept for many entrepreneurs. A way to spread their wealth!

    • Rachel Blaufeld February 20, 2011, 5:16 PM

      Thanks Haralee.
      That is so awesome that a percentage of your sales goes to breast cancer awareness. I recently heard Julia Fikse from Save the Tatas speak, and it was extremely motivating.
      I agree that CrowdRise is perfect for entrepreneurs — just need to spread it around now! Rachel

  • Michelle Beitzel February 19, 2011, 5:49 PM

    How cool! I’m always looking for more ways (on a very personal level) to give. This is a great organization – thank you for sharing.

  • Rachel Blaufeld February 20, 2011, 5:17 PM

    Michelle – I am in the process of linking a few of my personal favorite non-profits with CrowdRise so I will keep you posted on how it goes! Rachel

  • Nicole February 21, 2011, 8:15 AM


    Sounds like Cash has earned his retirement. My daughter was hospitalized at 6 months, and even glimpsing a dog (since we have one at home) just made her light up.

    I have been trying to figure out the best way to incorporate a non-profit with my business, and will definitely check into CrowdRise.



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