GlobalGiving Success Stories Posts

DAKTARI Bush School & Wildlife Orphanage: A GlobalGiving Success Story

DAKTARI Bush School & Wildlife Orphanage: A GlobalGiving Success Story

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Case Study_Daktari_Blog_1_Image 1DAKTARI Bush School and Wildlife Orphanage, DAKTARI for short, is an organization that connects local youth with the environment around them. Located in Hoedspruit, South Africa, DAKTARI hosts students from local schools each week and teaches them about the wildlife in nearby game reserves. DAKTARI’s founders, Michèle and Ian Merrifield first set out to create a backyard operation which cared for a few animals, but that vision grew when Michèle saw a gap in the education that local youth were receiving in school. Michèle recognized an opportunity to combine conservation with education.  “We noticed that none of them had any environmental or wildlife education although they are surrounded by game reserves,” said Michèle. Since that moment, Michèle and Ian have worked to fill the environmental education gap in their community and in 2006 they opened DAKTARI. By investing in the next generation of environmentalists, the DAKTARI team ensures that their local environment will have many advocates for years to come.


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Case Study_Daktari_Blog_1_Image 2Ian and Michèle saw success in their students and program early on. One of their unforgettable students, Mina, went on to study environmental education after her time spent with DAKTARI and now has a career in environmental conservation. Students like Mina, inspire Ian and Michèle to keep DAKTARI’s doors open and their programs running. But in 2008 the organization began to struggle financially and the organization was on the verge of closure. When researching funding opportunities Ian came across GlobalGiving and Ian and Michèle decided it would be a good way to expand their current network. “We chose GlobalGiving for fundraising because we needed to be present on the American continents,” shared Michèle. Though online fundraising was new to them it was time to try something different  in order to keep DAKTARI open. “We were in a critical situation at the time of the Open Challenge. We were just stagnate if not going backward,” said Michèle, so the two decided GlobalGiving was worth a try and in 2008 they joined GlobalGiving’s Open Challenge. Without much experience in nonprofit management or fundraising, the Merrifields knew they would need support in order to succeed in the Open Challenge.


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Case Study_Daktari_Blog_1_Quote 1_Version 2Though Michèle and Ian were newcomers to crowdfunding, they  were able to lean on GlobalGiving for support. “We had no strategy heading into the Open Challenge,” says Michèle, but, “GlobalGiving was very present and gave us the support to help us develop the technique and knowledge of fundraising that we didn’t have.” During the Open Challenge, the DAKTARI team surpassed their expectations, by raising almost $8,000! This spike in funding allowed DAKTARI to continue operating fully and provide educational opportunities to their students. Michèle and Ian credit GlobalGiving for helping DAKTARI to learn how to become a more effective organization, and being there to support them every step of the way. “GG gave us heart-warming support. leopardNot only the staff we were in contact with but the webinars and toolkits they offered. We didn’t feel alone in managing our nonprofit. DAKTARI is alive today because we managed to raise funds on GG in the Open Challenge,” shared Michèle.


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Case Study_Daktari_Blog_3_Photo 4In January 2016, DAKTARI will celebrate 10 years of operation! Since 2006, more than 3,000 students have participated in their programs. As the DAKTARI team approaches this impressive 10 year milestone the team continue to host local students each week teaching them about the environment in which they live and ways in which they can help keep it safe to enjoy for years to come. The DAKTARI team hopes to continue inspiring more students like Mina, to be lifetime conservation advocates by pursuing careers in environmental preservation.

Case Study_Daktari_Blog_2_NumbersToday, the DAKTARI team continues to successfully fundraise on the GlobalGiving platform. In 2014 DAKTARI raised more than $18500 alone!  Michèle considers GlobalGiving to be an extension of their organization, I am very attached to GlobalGiving because it saved the future of DAKTARI. GlobalGiving has taught me how to fundraise effectively and given a new dimension to our organization.”  The DAKTARI team can’t wait to celebrate another 10 years and GlobalGiving looks forward  to celebrating with them!

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All photo credit to DAKTARI

Written in collaboration by Karis Ailabouni, Jenn Bell, and Katherine  Sammons

Designed by Emma Park 

Arlington Academy of Hope: A GlobalGiving Success Story

Arlington Academy of Hope: A GlobalGiving Success Story

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Arlington Academy of Hope (AACase Study_AAH_Blog_3_Photo 1H) is a small, nonprofit located in Arlington, Virginia, that helps support  children living in the Bududa district of Eastern Uganda reach their full potential by providing them with access to quality education and health services. In 1995, the organization’s founders John and Joyce Wanda relocated to Arlington, Virginia. There, they witnessed the high level of education their children received in the public school system and were inspired to create the same experience for students in Uganda. In 1999, they began providing financial resources for education purposes to a handful of students in local schools, but they wanted to do more, so in 2004 they established a primary school in the village of Bumalukani, and in 2015 about 350 students are enrolled.


Case Study_AAH_Blog_3_Title 2Case Study_AAH_Blog_3_Photo 2AAH’s primary school grew rapidly, both in the number of students it was supporting and the number of graduating students eligible to attend secondary school. By 2006, 100% of AAH’s seventh graders were passing their national exams and qualifying for admission to secondary schools throughout Uganda. While the AAH team celebrated this milestone, they faced a new challenge. How could they ensure that their primary school graduates attended and completed secondary school? They badly wanted to support their students beyond primary school but found that they did not have the resources to do so. AAH has a solid base of donors and supporters in the United States, but the increasing number of students eligible for secondary school would require them to raise funds quickly and look outside their existing network.


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Case Study_AAH_Blog_3_Quote 1In order to grow their programs AAH’s Executive Director Maureen Dugan knew they needed to increase their visibility and find a broader donor base. Maureen searched for a crowdfunding platform that would help the organization grow their donor network and provide hands on customer support. For Maureen and her team, that platform is GlobalGiving. In 2012, AAH joined GlobalGiving’s September Open Challenge.“I had no prior experience with online fundraising; it was not a part of my skillset when I came to AAH,” explained Maureen. But she soon found that GlobalGiving specialized in working with organizations new to crowdfunding. “What’s great is that GlobalGiving works with organizations at all different levels.The GG staff is very approachable. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and call in,” Maureen stated.

Case Study_AAH_Blog_3_Photo 4By explaining the potential of a partnership with GlobalGiving to their supporters,  the AAH team was able to get them behind their Open Challenge campaign, and they raised almost $7,000 during the Open Challenge. Due to more donors and increased funding, 100% of AAH primary school graduates have gone on to secondary schools since 2012! Rachel, who began as an AAH primary school student, is now entering her third year at university. She credits AAH for her success as a student: “Before AAH, I just assumed that after 7th grade, I would get married. That is what all my older sisters did. That was all I knew. Now, I am in university and will have a career helping others.”


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Maureen and the AAHCase Study_AAH_Blog_3_Quote 2 team are now crowdfunding experts! Due to their hard work and open communication with the GlobalGiving staff the AAH team quickly became a Superstar organization that actively participates in GlobalGiving’s programs. “GlobalGiving is making us a more effective organization because of what the team asks us to do and by the tools and information they share. GlobalGiving also increases the visibility of our organization, even though we are small”, Maureen said. Maureen has made learning from GlobalGiving’s tools and programs like the Online Fundraising Academy an investment  and priority. Maureen shared her experience with the Online Fundraising Academy, “GG has brought many new donors to us and enabled many youths to go to school as a result. I would say that the Fundraising Academy was an absolute lifesaver for us.”

Case Study_AAH_Blog_3_NumbersAs of July 2015, the team has raised more than $300,000 on the GlobalGiving platform, including $15,681 in GlobalGiving’s July Partner Rewards Bonus Day.  AAH’s crowdfunding success has allowed them to provide each of their students with a secondary education and the greater Bumwalukani community of schools with additional resources ensuring that students like Rachel will continue their education.



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All photo credit to AAH

Written in collaboration by Karis Ailabouni, Jenn Bell, and Emma Park, and Katherine  Sammons

Designed by Emma Park 

Awamaki: A GlobalGiving Success Story

Awamaki: A GlobalGiving Success Story

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Based in the Sacred Valley of Peru, Awamaki works to empower rural female artisans by providing them with the training and market access to run successful cooperative businesses. The organization’s mission is to enable these women to generate a reliable source of income and lead their communities out of poverty.

Founded in 2009 by Kennedy Leavens, Awamaki originally served a single cooperative made up of 10 women. Now, the nonprofit works with 150 women in eight cooperatives. Awamaki’s cooperative members like Florentina not only run successful businesses but also engage in sustainable tourism and community education programs.


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A year after the organization was created, Awamaki’s team and cooperative members were making great strides in their work. They came across an exciting opportunity, the chance for two Awamaki members to travel to Santa Fe, New Mexico, the location of America’s largest folk art market. Participation in the market could be an amazing opportunity to connect their cooperative to an expansive global market. However, the organization needed to raise funds in order to be able to participate.


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Case Study_Awamaki_Blog_3_Quote 1As Awamaki searched for a way to fund the trip, it became clear that their current income would not cover the cost. They identified crowdfunding as a way to tap into their broad network of global donors.  Kennedy recalls, “We had no previous experience in online fundraising, but we figured we had nothing to lose.” By raising small amounts of money from a large number of people, Awamaki hoped to receive the financial boost they needed to achieve their goal.

It was decided that crowdfunding was the solution, but how?  As a small, internationally-based nonprofit, Awamaki needed a platform that would effectively rally their supporters, connect them with new donors who care about their cause, and offer them tools to help grow their organization. The Awamaki team was introduced to GlobalGiving through a friend and after learning more about the platform it was decided that GlobalGiving was the right fit.

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Awamaki joined GlobalGiving’s Open Challenge, which is a time-bound campaign that offers an opportunity to test out the power of crowdfunding. They built a project page on GlobalGiving that shared their story with potential donors and then spread the word about their GlobalGiving project through phone calls, emails, and social media outreach. Awamaki’s supporters were inspired to help the organization succeed in the Open Challenge due the team’s unwavering enthusiasm for their work and time sensitive nature of the Open Challenge.

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The Awamaki team and members were blown away by the results of their fundraising efforts on GlobalGiving. In just 30 days, Awamaki raised more than $10,000 from 379 unique donors and earned $5,000 in bonus prizes from GlobalGiving! Most importantly, two team members were able to attend the market in Santa Fe and spread the word about Awamaki.


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Awamaki joined GlobalGiving with the intent of funding one unique project. Today, Awamaki is a Superstar on the GlobalGiving platform and raises around $12,000 every year! As Leavens puts it, “GlobalGiving has helped our organization to grow and is now part of our core operations.” What’s their strategy for long-term success? Rallying their donor base around GlobalGiving’s Bonus Days.The Awamaki team has found that establishing a specific monetary and donor engagement goal during a time-bound campaign creates an urgency that motivates donors to give.

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Today, Awamaki has been able to continue to harness the power of a crowd to further their mission so that cooperative members like Florentina can continue their businesses for years to come. Fundraising isn’t easy, but GlobalGiving, a trusted crowdfunding platform can help you accelerate your efforts and help you to continue your earth-changing work!


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All photo credit to Awamaki

Written in collaboration by Karis Ailabouni, Jenn Bell, and Emma Park, and Katherine  Sammons

Designed by Emma Park