Aha! Commits $400,000 to Charitable Giving in 2022
How do you measure the impact a business makes? It is easy to focus exclusively on the typical performance metrics — revenue, profit, new customers. But I believe there is a different type of impact that is also worth considering. I am talking about the amount of hope you create for people in need. Take a moment to think about the following numbers: 854 meals, 452 nights of shelter, and 300 car seats. These are a few examples of what community-based nonprofits were able to provide folks last year — based on financial contributions from the Aha! team.
Companies have a moral responsibility to share their success and uplift those who are most vulnerable — this is why we established Aha! Cares. And we now have contributed and pledged well over $1 million through the program.
If you are not familiar, Aha! Cares is our company's philanthropic giving initiative. We started the program in 2018 and centered our efforts around the three pillars of food, safety, and shelter. Instead of making one large donation as a company, our remote team members select and champion nonprofits in their local communities. This unique model means that we are able to reach people around the world — making a difference in 90 cities and eight countries.
In 2020 it became obvious that we must do more to address issues of social justice. So we added opportunity as the fourth pillar and launched the Aha! Fellowship — to give business and product development training to folks from historically underrepresented groups. Three classes of fellows have already graduated from our program, and we look forward to welcoming another cohort next year.
It is humbling to reflect on the impact of Aha! Cares in 2021. We dedicated $350,000 to charitable giving and funded 26 worthy nonprofits. Teammates volunteered in their communities to help children in foster care, homeless women, and low-income families, amongst others. We typically also volunteer together at our biannual onsites. But since we could not meet as a team in one destination this winter, we completed a virtual volunteer challenge — raising $10,000 for nonprofits in San Diego (where we had originally planned to meet).
As our company grows, so does our investment in Aha! Cares. Today I am thrilled to share that we are raising our financial giving to $400,000 for 2022.
This number will include our financial contributions to nonprofits and the stipends we give to Aha! fellows. We are excited to kick off our Aha! Cares financial giving program for 2022 by granting $174,000 to nonprofits in the U.S., Canada, Ireland, South Africa, and U.K. Here are the 21 organizations selected and championed by members of our team — and where the funding will go:
Friends of Fieldworkers, Inc. (Oak View, CA, USA) — food and supplies for families
Long Beach Community Table (Long Beach, CA, USA) — food for underserved populations
Manna Food Bank (Thousand Oaks, CA, USA) — food distribution program
Servants Heart Ministry (Pine Castle, FL, USA) — food for children, families, and seniors
WestSide Baby (Seattle, WA, USA) — baby food and car seats
Carroll County Child Advocacy Center (Carrollton, GA, USA) — child abuse recovery services
Couchiching Jubilee House (Orillia, Ontario, Canada) — outreach program for vulnerable women
Rose Haven (Portland, OR, USA) — services for homeless individuals
Safe Passage (Coeur d'Alene, ID, USA) — domestic violence recovery services
Casa Marianella (Austin, TX, USA) — emergency and transitional shelter
The Julian Trust (Bristol, England, UK) — bed pods
Room One (Twisp, WA, USA) — emergency shelter
Simon Community (Dublin, Ireland) — emergency shelter
Be A Mentor (North Charleston, SC, USA) — mentoring program for at-risk youth
Chess and Community (Athens, GA, USA) — chess and STEM program
Gilda's Club Metro Detroit (Royal Oak, MI, USA) — cancer-related support
Hotel Hope Ministries (Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa) — vehicle for women and children in need
ICAN (Chandler, AZ, USA) — youth development program
Maui Hui Malama (Wailuku, Hawaii, USA) — job skills educational program
Packs of Hope (Arvada, CO, USA) — backpacks with essential supplies for kids in foster care
Rhode Islanders Sponsoring Education (Providence, RI, USA) — school scholarships
Offering meaningful help to others is both empowering and impactful. How will you make a difference in your community this coming year?
A few organizations have reached out to us to express interest in starting a similar philanthropic giving program. If you are interested in learning more about how we built Aha! Cares and what you can do to create a similar program at your company, check out these downloadable templates. We have created resources to help teammates reach out to nonprofits, apply for funding, and gather information for impact reports.
Together we can amplify hope through giving, community by community.
Learn more about Aha! Cares.