Last year, right around this time, I wrote about a new website called GiveLocally.net, that connects would-be donors with real-life recipients in need of a helping hand. One year later, with the economy still baring down hard on most folks, it seems like a great time to revisit this site that connects social marketing with charitable giving and helps you think globally and give locally.

 

GiveLocally takes a unique approach to charity. Instead of blindly writing a check to a large organization, or handing over cash to someone on the street, you can connect with real people who need help — people who have been pre-screened to ensure that they are legit. And you're not just handing over cash and hoping for the best. Based on the recipient's needs, you can choose gifts such as a grocery gift card, rent assistance, a voucher to pay off an electric bill or tuition assistance.

 

According to GiveLocally's CEO Bo Young, in the past six months, more than 200 families have benefited from tens of thousands of donations coming from the pockets of about 850 donors. That's a lot of money going directly into the hands of folks in need.   

 

It's not about giving thousands, it's about giving $50 to help an out-of-work dad pay off this month's electric bill or $20 to help a single mom afford groceries for her kids. You can give as much or as little as you want, and you can feel confident that every dollar you spend will truly help someone in need.

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