Since OFTW started in 2014 we have grown to a movement of over 1,000 donors and 30+ chapters at the country’s top undergraduate, MBA and law programs. To date, OFTW has been run by a group of volunteers, who have built OFTW on nights and weekends alongside their day jobs. In the last year we have received seed funding from the Open Philanthropy Project (on the recommendation of GiveWell) to support our expansion through to 2020, have tripled the number of campus chapters we operate, and have increased our pledged donations nearly five-fold (see our recent blog post here). We are now looking to hand the leadership of the organization over to one or two exceptional people who want to build One for the World into one of the defining parts of the American philanthropic landscape.
The 'annual donations in the pipeline' recruited so far this academic year is up ~500% relative to the same time last year ($404k vs $70k). However, ~40% of the new dollars recruited will only become active after 1-3 years, which presents challenges in limiting donor churn. Taking this delay and historical rates of churn into account, we estimate that the expected present discounted value of these pledges is about $1.1m.
We think that this step change in growth is a direct result of increasing our capacity by hiring Evan in July 2018, which has allowed us to expand the number of chapters we have, improve chapter management and focus on improving OFTW's donation infrastructure.
Our members have donated ~$110k to our charities in the first half of the year (July - Dec 2018), compared to ~$67k in the same period last year (July - Dec 2017).
Do you want to learn about highly effective charities and how to evaluate their impact? Are you interested in helping to select One for the World’s Top Pick charities for 2019? If so, we’d love you to apply to join our partner selection committee! Apply before 11:59pm (Eastern time) on Sunday 16 December using the form at bit.ly/oftw2019.
One for the World has been run entirely by volunteers since we started in 2014, but have now made our first full time hire, with a generous grant from the Open Philanthropy Project and a private donor, on the recommendation of GiveWell. We have made significant progress in engaging larger numbers of people with effective altruism (EA) in our most successful chapters, and think there is an opportunity for this type of approach to work well in other places. Now that we have more capacity, we are looking for effective altruists and existing local EA groups that might be interested in starting and running their own One for the World chapter in their non-EA communities. We provide an infrastructure of resources and established practices that try to make it easier to get others involved in effective giving through our 1% pledge system. By utilizing our system, we think that you can raise significant funds for effective global poverty charities and help to grow your community.
We want to significantly contribute towards ending global poverty by growing aggressively and raising large sums of money for some of the world's most effective charities. In line with this, we're excited to announce two important steps in the growth of One for the World. On the recommendation of GiveWell, we’ve secured multi-year financial support from the Open Philanthropy Project and a private donor. This has allowed us to make our first full time hire, and we are delighted to introduce Evan McVail in the role of COO.
We have just concluded the annual review of our charity partners and are excited to announce our Top Picks for 2018! The charities in our Top Picks portfolio this year are: Against Malaria Foundation, Living Goods, GiveDirectly, Possible and Project Healthy Children. This is the first year that we have added Project Healthy Children to our Top Picks portfolio, and we're excited to support their excellent work improving nutrition in low income countries. Our wider portfolio of 19 charities selected by The Life You Can Save's panel of experts, remains the same. This blog post will give an overview of this year's selection process, and each of the charities in our Top Picks portfolio.
As I was finishing my MBA I argued that likely the best opportunity my classmates and I had for making a positive difference in the world was to give away a relatively small portion of our incomes to highly effective charities that help the world’s poorest people. In that piece, I outlined the pledge my wife and I had made to give about 10% of our income to charities that do just that. Now, about two years later I want to share my experience of trying to live out that argument in practice.
In February 2018, The Times published an article giving details of serious misconduct by Oxfam staff in Haiti in 2011, during their response to the 2010 earthquake. In 2011, Oxfam allowed three men to resign and fired four others for gross misconduct after an inquiry concerning sexual exploitation, the downloading of pornography, bullying and intimidation. In the following weeks, more details and allegations of staff misconduct have emerged, some of which are very disturbing. Wikipedia provides a clear summary of the allegations. As Oxfam is currently in our portfolio of recommended charities, because of its recommendation by The Life You Can Save, we are monitoring the situation closely as more information becomes available.
One of the people who inspires me most is Boston-area social worker Julia Wise. Julia is President of Giving What We Can, and also sits on the board of GiveWell, the quantitative charity evaluator upon which many effective altruists rely for donation guidance. She and her husband donate upwards of 40% of their income to effective charities every year. In Strangers Drowning, journalist Larissa MacFarquhar profiled Julia as one of many people with extraordinary dedication to helping others.
We have added two new charities to our portfolio for 2018, D-Rev and Helen Keller International's Vitamin A supplementation program. D-Rev (from "Design Revolution") designs and delivers innovative medical devices to save and transform the lives of the global poor. Helen Keller International's Vitamin A supplementation program provides critical nutrition to at-risk children to prevent Vitamin A deficiency, which can lead to blindness and increased risk of disease and death.
When I was nine years old, I had the chance to go to an island called Sumba with my family. I had no idea that I would be returning to this eastern Indonesian island every summer for the next twelve years. At that time, I had always lived in France. I had never set a foot in Asia. I knew that in some places across the globe people suffered from poverty but the word poverty only rang a distant bell in my mind.
Do you want to learn about highly effective charities and how to evaluate their impact? Are you interested in helping to select One for the World’s Top Pick charities for 2018? If so, we’d love you to apply to join our partner selection committee! Apply before 11:59pm (Eastern time) on Tuesday 12 December using the form at bit.ly/oftw_app2018.
When we give money to a charity, we assume the money will be used to do good. But that’s not always the case. Some charities accomplish very little; a few may even unintentionally cause harm. Most charities probably have some positive impact, but the amount of good they achieve varies widely. By ensuring that you give to effective charities, you can be confident that your donations will make a significant difference.
What makes a charity effective, how do we know whether it’s effective, and how can we use this information to guide our giving?
We've had feedback from a number of people who, in light of recent political developments in the US, are unsure about supporting charities that focus on improving the lives of the world’s poorest people, through initiatives like One for the World. We recognize that many of our members care deeply about, and give generously to, domestic causes, but we want to set out a few reasons why we think it is a great idea to continue to give generously to help the world’s poorest people.
We have just concluded our annual review and selection process and are excited to announce our Top Picks for 2017! The charities in our Top Picks portfolio this year are: Against Malaria Foundation, Living Goods, Population Services International, GiveDirectly and Possible. Our wider portfolio of 18 charities selected by our partners, The Life You Can Save, remains the same. This is the first year that GiveDirectly and Possible are in our Top Picks, and we are excited to recommend them to our members. This blog post will give an overview of this year's selection process, and each of the charities in our Top Picks portfolio.
We have added a new charity to our portfolio - Village Enterprise - a charity that provides cash grants and business training to people living in extreme poverty in Kenya and Uganda. Their programs have a proven track record of helping families escape from extreme poverty and achieve sustained increases in household income.
Do you want to find more about highly effective charities and how to evaluate their impact? Are you interested in helping to select One for the World’s top charities for 2017? If so, we’d love you to apply to join our partner selection committee! Apply before 11:59pm on Thursday February 23 using the form at bit.ly/oftw_app2017.
Did you know that the average American gives 2.6% of their income to charity every year? Think about that for a minute, and think about how you compare!
I found this out back in 2012, and finally in 2016 will exceed the average (chart below). It has been a bit of a journey, and I wanted to share some recommendations, if you are interested in optimizing how you give to charities.
Giving Tuesday is a relatively new movement that has sprung up as a counterpoint to the retail frenzy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Charities and their fundraising professionals have pushed Giving Tuesday as the marquee day of the year to solicit donations.
This means you can expect a substantial amount of outreach from charities on Giving Tuesday - including charities to which you’ve previously given, charities your friends are involved with, and schools you’ve attended.
If you’re charitably minded, this influx of solicitations can be hard to navigate. How do you know which ones to respond to? How can you understand the impact of a gift to an organization you don’t follow closely? How do you decide how much to give?
With these kinds of questions in mind, One for the World has developed this short guide to Giving Tuesday. We hope it helps you make the most of your giving.
We recently entered into an exciting new partnership with The Life You Can Save (TLYCS), which you can read more about here. As part of this partnership, we are merging our charity selection process and enabling our members to give to any of The Life You Can Save's 17 Top Charities through our platform. TLYCS's list includes our existing 5 recommendations, which you can continue to give to, and we will market these as our 'Top 5 Favorite' charities in our widened portfolio of 17.
In this blog post, we give a brief overview of the 12 new charities that you can give to, and you can find more information about them on The Life You Can Save's website. You can read about our existing 5 recommendations, and the process we used to select them, here.
We’re thrilled to announce our new Partnership with The Life You Can Save (TLYCS), an advocacy and educational outreach organization that raises awareness for the ~700M men, women, and children living in extreme poverty. TLYCS was founded by world-renowned Princeton ethicist and philosopher Peter Singer, who was deemed “the world’s most influential living philosopher” by The New Yorker.
This partnership will provide One for the World with access to thought leadership, funding, infrastructure, and part-time staff. It will also allow TLYCS to broaden their reach by targeting different segments including undergraduate and graduate students.
It’s sometimes easy to forget just how lucky we are. As Penn students, we get caught up in our own worlds and sometimes feel that our lives might end if we don’t get that top-tier banking internship and make $15,000 in one summer. If we take a step back and think about how much money this is in the context of the rest of the world, it seems a bit silly. Earning over $32,000 a year (which, upon graduation, almost every Penn student will) puts you in the top one percent of earners worldwide. So even if you don’t get that big banking job, you will likely still come out on top when looking at the bigger picture.
Each year we conduct an extensive review of the performance of our existing partners, and search for new organizations to add to our portfolio. Over the past two months, we have reviewed the performance of our four existing partners, as well as 43 potential additions to our portfolio, which were nominated by OFTW members and current students at Penn, HBS and MIT. We continue to be impressed by the impact and transparency of our existing partners, Schistosomiasis Control Initiative, Against Malaria Foundation, Evidence Action and Living Goods, all of which represent fantastic giving opportunities, and will remain in our portfolio for 2016. We are also excited to add Population Services International to our list of recommendations for the first time!
Each year One for the World conducts a review of its existing recommended charities, and searches for any outstanding organizations that we might want to add to our portfolio. I got involved in this stage of the process last year, when I met Josh (one of OFTW’s co-founders) at a party, where we spent most of the evening talking about charity effectiveness. This year, I managed the process and was delighted at how it turned out. This post will give an overview of the charity selection process, and the decisions we have made for our portfolio for 2015.