Actor and philanthropist Kevin Bacon is asking you to join him in the fight against hunger. From September 24th through the 29th, Bacon and his friend Jeff Bridges are challenging the public to roll up their sleeves and start a fundraising campaign on his website SixDegrees.org. We were lucky enough to get the inside scoop from Kevin on this new initiative.
Not familiar with SixDegrees.org? It’s a social fundraising site that allows you to choose your favorite charity, and ask everyone you know to help out by raising funds. In this competition called Six Days of Good for Hunger, the people who gather the most donors (not dollar amounts but actual people who give to your campaign) will win cash for their charity out of Bacon’s wallet. It’s all about getting people involved.
See what Kevin had to say, and tips on how you can have a successful campaign.
We’ve noticed a pattern in your philanthropy. While you’ve supported the planet, human rights, and organizations that fight disease, ending hunger seems to be an area that is particularly meaningful to you. Can you talk a bit about why this cause is so important?
KB: It’s so easy to walk by social challenges because they seem so daunting to solve – especially on your own. But hunger is hard to ignore. Living in New York City, there are daily reminders of what hunger and homelessness can do to the human spirit, from the guy on the subway humbly entertaining passengers between stops to earn enough to buy a meal to the thousands of children who show up hungry to school each day. I know that a few dollars or a few hours volunteering at a soup kitchen will have a direct impact on someone’s life that day, and hopefully in the days after. If we all donated a few dollars or a few hours, we could help innumerable families get beyond hunger to thrive.
We love that to win the prizes for charity, it’s not about how much you raise, but about how many people you get involved. That certainly isn’t the normal way to win in competitions like this. Why did you choose to set it up this way?
KB: SixDegrees.org is all about leveraging social networking for social good because small acts can add up to big change. We want people to rally their friends and family around an important cause like hunger so the measurement of success is participation, not dollars. We want every generous act to count, not just the ones with the biggest dollar signs attached.
Getting large numbers of people to open up their wallets isn’t easy. Any recommendations for how people taking part in 6 Days of Good can get as many people to donate as possible?
KB: Lead with your story and put the call to action front and center. People respond to emotional appeals that speak to them as compassionate individuals. Share why the cause matters to you and what difference others can make if they join with you. And remember that a poignant image or short video can really make your case.
Do you have any more 6 day challenges on the horizon?
KB: Yes! We are planning 5 more Challenges throughout the year. Be sure to check back to www.sixdegrees.org/6daysofgood for news on additional Celebrity Ambassadors joining the team to promote ‘6 Days of Good’ Challenges for global aid, health, environment, animals and youth.
The competition started yesterday, so best sign up right now. You’ll want each and every day to get everyone you know to contribute. Whether it’s one dollar or one hundred dollars, raise awareness and funds for the fight against hunger.