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Non-Profit Matchmaker

November 3, 2009


An idea has been slowly percolating in my head the past few weeks — partly from personal need as a non-profit board member, partly from need I witnessed at the last Speed Date event. It’s based on the following circumstances:

  1. There is a large community of non-profits in Rochester, most of which do not have staff or money to publicize their services.
  2. There is a large pool of bright-eyed, bushy-tailed arts/communications students in the area that are eager for real-world experience prior to graduation.
  3. Additionally, we have this great service in the Ad Council, that helps non-profits figure out what their messaging is, and some tactical ideas of how to execute. But I always have the sinking feeling that the execution won’t happen due to lack of resources.

So, the percolating idea is that we (the marketing/advertising community) find a way to coordinate student workers for non-profits. I know this is not a new idea, but I don’t know where it fell down in the past. I realize this is not only hooking up workers with work — there will need to be some oversight by a volunteer mentor, to keep the work on strategy. Perhaps this is a rotating responsibility, or one mentor is matched up to each agency.

I’ll be checking in with the Ad Council to see what role they may play, but would love to hear from all of you as to if and how you think this may work.