How to change the world in 5 seconds : A smarter way to help good causes

&peace in brief: &peace lets you help the causes you care about, whatever time or resources you have. Just like Pinterest, a button (simply labeled ‘Peace’) can be accessed from any webpage. When clicked, a cause related to the content of the page pops up. With another click a sponsor makes a donation. Log in to the &peace site to connect with friends and share donating activity.

Like it? Signup here to be notified when the service is launched. Please help make this service fly by spreading the word on Facebook and Twitter!

The problem

Stories of tragedy constantly filter into our day-to-day through the web - natural disaster, war, terrorism, abuse, climate change, etc, etc. Despite often having a desire to help, we’re not always able to react and make a difference. The main reason? We’re just too busy, too stretched. Our lives have become so overloaded with information, choices, work, family, social-life, etc that the issues that move us can get demoted on the to-do list.

&peace: the solution

I realised that there is a way to help without having to adjust our priorities or give what we don't have. A solution that works with, not against, the realities of our everyday lives.

So, in my spare time over a couple of years, I developed a concept for an online service that I call &peace. It's simple, yet powerful. Here's how it works:

Say you're on the Guardian website reading about a young boy killed in Gaza. You're struck by the story, an innocent boy and his family destroyed by a war they didn't choose to be part of. You want to reach out, to do something. The service &peace lets you take action there and then on the webpage.

You can access the 'Peace' button from any webpage

Working in a similar way to Pinterest, the ‘Peace’ button is installed in your browser's bookmarksbar or can be directly embedded in any webpage. When clicked, a charity related to the page’s content is auto-selected. By clicking on the popup that appears, a sponsor then donates a predetermined sum on your behalf.

A charity is selected within seconds of clicking the ‘Peace’ button

A sponsor donates to the charity on your behalf

It’s not just ‘tragic’ stories that you can take action on, &peace can be applied to almost any type of news story or webpage. Here are some examples of news stories matched to charities & sponsors:

  • Hurricane Sandy article / disaster relief charity / Dunkin' Donuts sponsor
  • Overfishing article / environmental charity / Starbucks sponsor
  • Football article / kids football charity / Adidas sponsor

Unlike standard ‘click-to-donate’ services, &peace takes just seconds, works on any website and you don't have to leave the page you're on to participate. You can still make a difference however busy you are, whatever your resources.

Connected through causes

There will be a dedicated &peace website, where you'll be able to sign in with your Facebook details to connect with friends, see what issues they support and share your own donating activity. The site will also host information about the &peace sponsors, how much they have given and where.  

Log in to the &peace site using Facebook details to see friends’ activity

What's in it for the sponsors?

  • Any company, big/small, local/global can become an &peace sponsor
  • Companies get to select the causes they want to give to, matching their concerns to the right issues
  • &peace acts as a platform for companies to communicate their corporate social responsibility (CSR). Every click on the ‘Peace’ button is added to a counter on the company’s &peace profile page. 
  • On the &peace site, users can check CSR profiles to see which companies align with their own concerns. They can then make informed decisions about what brands they want to buy and support.

Each sponsor has its own profile page

What can you do now?

The concept outlined is just the bare bones. There are many other paths to explore. However, I first need to figure out if this is something you really want. In other words, do you believe in what I believe in?

If you do, I’d very much appreciate if you could:

  • Signup to be notified when the service is launched at http://www.andpeace.com/
  • Spread the word using social media, shout from a megaphone, etc 
  • Let me know if you'd like to help in any way, or just get in contact to share your thoughts at: feedback(at)andpeace.com

Thanks for reading this.

Peace to you!

/ Masa

N.B. All brand names mentioned in this article are for the purpose of example only and are not necessarily part of the project at this point.