Kind Mankind is a simple collaborative platform for independent changemakers. It connects pro-active volunteers with true grassroots initiatives that need their help.
Open Volunteering Directory
On first sight, Kind Mankind thus simply aspires to be a kind of global Volunteering Directory. It is freely accessible and offers the visitor a quick and comprehensive interface to a large number of volunteering initiatives around the globe. It lists a variety of "initiatives" related to "simply doing something good": solid Volunteering Opportunities (volunteer classical placements) are among our initiatives, but also and especially tiny struggling project.
Courtesy of the existing websites independentvolunteer.org and volunteersouthamerica.net the website currently lists about 600 Initiatives around the world.
So what's New?
You might ask yourself what is the difference with the many existing listings and websites? Well, that difference is subtle but worthwile:
- We are reaching out. We practice what we preach and reach out actively to grass-roots initiatives that really need help. And we inspire our growing community to do the same. We treat our database with tender care;
- It's simple. A direct what/where search. A quick list or a map. And we are always open to suggestions to make it even better;
- It's community driven. We add a simple and low-cost but effective method to generate trust by enabling our community to mention their reviews in social profiles such as couchsurfing.org, facebook connect, linked in and that innovative technology that will come out next year, too.
* Note: new flashy internet (volunteering) startups seem to require at least 100,000 USD to get started. We just do it. It would be nice if the hundreds of hours we have put in this will eventually help the true grassroots.
Reviews, References, Trust
How can the organisations listed on Kind Mankind be trusted? This is a difficult problem but our virtual social reality offers a quick and clean solution: through social network User Profiles, such as CouchSurfing, Facebook and LinkedIn. Volunteers vouching for a trusted initiative will also refer back to their experience on their profiles, thus adding credentials to the review they write.
Established Volunteer Agencies won't need that - but our website is concentrating more on the tiny struggling grassroots. They are in dire need of reviews, references, shared contacts, media exposure, interconnectedness - and the kindmankind community can help them fast forward that process that used to take years of energy.
Joy Valley Orphan home and school is an initiative in Nairobi, Kenya. It is extremely poor and depends on charity. Food is prepared on open fires in a makeshift hut, the children's dormitories are infested with rats - and therefore, snakes. The walls around the small compound, that is in Kayole practically on a garbage dump, are high to protect the 100 children from ruthless rapists.
Sometimes, someone with a sustainable idea comes along and the older girls start sewing for income generation or a chicken run is built. But there are no NGOs here because you won't find Joy Valley if you get in through the official channels. But one independent changemaker can tip the scale here by starting income generation, sharing expertise, telling the story back home, fundraise, teach, build a roof.
It's challenging because this is not an established organisation. It needs the help of us independent changemakers to become one.
What's next? Development and how you can help
Currently, kind mankind is under development by a small number of people (2) and hosting is privately funded by its founder, Kamiel Verwer. If you believe in this idea as strongly as he does, you might want to help with its further development. Here are a few suggestions of how you could help make this better:
- Tell your friends about this and ask them to help us getting as many amazing initiatives listed and reviewed here;
- Suggest a design that can compete in our flashy world and increases the usability of the site;
- Help out with technical stuff (server space, programming, SEO);
- Make a donation (a monetary one, or simply a few encouraging words) to the idealists behind this site.
Please contact us at info [at] kindmankind [dot] net