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Charities Turn To Texting For Donations

January 15, 2010, 6:04 PM by Nick Carbone

Charities Turn To Texting For Donations
Charities have made it easier than ever to reach into your pocket in times of tragedy. Now you don't even need a credit card.

"Instead of giving with our checkbooks, we're giving through our cell phones," Chief Outreach Officer at 9Clouds Scott Meyer said.

Just hours after the earthquake struck, a mobile donation code was set up and word spread quickly through social media Web sites like Facebook and Twitter.

"By grabbing your phone and typing a few numbers and a few words, you can donate 10 dollars," Wireless World co-owner Vince Lubben said.

The goal is simplicity and convenience. Donating $10 to Haiti is simple because it's easy, fast and you don't even have to leave the comfort of your own armchair.

”If you're watching a story on the news and your heartstrings are pulled, you can donate immediately," Meyer said.

The charge is tacked on to your monthly cell phone bill. And phone carriers are assuring texters the Red Cross will receive every penny.

”Hitting the masses for a small dollar amount that people can afford, it's so easy that they will do it," Lubben said.

And they have. In just three days since the quake, texters have given more than 7 million dollars to the Red Cross.
Social media experts like Meyer say it's a movement that's here to stay. 

"I don't think it's a novelty thing.  I think it's more of a caring thing, and hopefully caring doesn't wear out," Meyer said. 

And that generosity will be clear as long as the text messages continue to flood in.

If you want to help with the earthquake relief, just use your cell phone to text "HAITI" to 90999, or visit the Red Cross Web site.

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