Poll: Which Donors Choose Project Should I Support?

Donors Choose is a charity organization that puts donors directly in touch with teachers at public schools who are in need of resources. Last month they ran a Bloggers' Challenge and invited bloggers to help raise money. Personal Finance bloggers stepped up to the call with the Financial Literacy Challenge and were able to raise $2,225 which is 111% of the goal of $2,000! The money raised will fund several projects that will help 102 students learn about money management in the real world. I was quite impressed by the response.

And yesterday, I found out that there is a lot more to it. I received a mail from Donors Choose that the blogging community overall managed to raise $420,000 reaching 75,000 students from low-income communities! That’s awesome! Talk about little drops of water making up a mighty ocean! But it doesn’t stop at that. One of the supporters of Donors Choose has sponsored gift certificates to bloggers who participated. So I have received $100.00 that I can use to fund other projects on Donors Choose! Isn’t that neat? As I started looking to find which project to support, I started getting really confused. There are so many worthy causes out there! Since you readers are what made this possible, I decided to put the ball in your court. Here is a short list of 4 projects that I am leaning towards. Your help in picking a project is much appreciated. Each option contains a short description and a link to the project page if you are interested in finding out more details. Please let me know if any one of them stand out for you. Also, if you are passionate about some other cause, or are a teacher in need of funds, please choose the "other" option and send me an email or leave a comment with the name of the project that you would like to be considered. A request from a teacher who is also a reader of this blog will receive the highest priority :) Finally, if I don't receive any responses, I will split the money among these 4 projects.

Here is my list so far (the poll is at the top of the right sidebar) –

  1. Financial math classroom activities kits to replace those destroyed by Hurricane Rita. Total cost: $462. Current funding: 11%. (Details)

  2. White boards for small special education group of students with disabilities ranging from mildly mental retarded, to high functioning autistic. Total cost: $228. Current funding: 56%. (Details)

  3. Guided reading book bundle for immigrant and first generation students from Algeria, Bosnia, China, India, Kenya, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Pakistan and Morocco. Total cost: $379. Current funding: 13%. (Details)

  4. Guidance counselor support to provide counseling services that expand the post-secondary options available for students of all ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Total cost: $188. Current funding: 61%. (Details)

  5. Other – please leave a comment below or send me a mail with details of the project you are interested in.

I will leave the poll on at the top of the right sidebar for a week or so. Thank you all for your help. (PS: If any of the options on the list are fully funded by the time the polling ends, then I will pick another project that is similar in spirit.)

Update (11/23/2007): Donors Choose would not allow me to split the gift certificate among multiple projects. Since the first project on the list received the highest number of votes I have applied the entire $100 to that project. Thanks everyone for voting!

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SJean said...

They are all great causes. I like number 4 in particular because it can really make a difference for those students who don't have the "social capital" (ie, parents) that can help them figure out college.

But really, they are all great. I also saw one there the other day that encourages students (esp girls) to get into engineering and science.

Matthew Paulson said...

I think I'm going to start supporting a compassion child, 85% of the money goes to the Kid, and that way there's one less starving person in teh world.

ispf said...

SJean: After spending some time on the donors choose site, I actually have a mild sense of guilt that I am not sponsoring more causes :( They are all such basic requests and most of them are good causes, and the amount requested is very small too. Anyway, I think I might choose to fund all the projects on my list, but change the percentage of contribution according to the votes on this blog. And it looks like number 4 is already 61% funded - if it gets fully funded by the time I contribute, I will replace it with the project to encourage girl students to get into engineering and science. Thanks for the suggestion!

Matthew: Both the better half and I have paycheck deductions for charity causes. But recently, due to participating in the Bloggers Challenge conducted by the charity called "Donors Choose" I received an additional $100 pledge that I can contribute to any project. And I am having a difficult time choosing a particular project since there are so many great causes to support on the Donors Choose site! The money contributed goes directly to the teachers in public schools to support various causes.