Run From Traditional

How New Story is defying the norm in the nonprofit world, and how you can do the same in any industry.


One month ago we launched New Story — a radically transparent crowdfunding platform with a mission to transform communities in developing countries.

The people who need help around the world are individuals, not news photos, and when you see them as individuals it’s hard to ignore them. Technology can now put a face on need. — Paul Graham

We agree, PG. This post describes how we wanted nothing to do with ‘the old’ way of charity, and simply shows ‘the new’ approach we’re taking.

The Old

(think of the last time you gave to something)…. Donating to a charity in traditional, status-quo terms mostly plays out like this:

  1. Donate to a charity.
  2. Don’t know what % of your donation goes to that need.
  3. Clueless as to who it actually impacts.
  4. Can’t see your specific, individual impact.
  5. If you make it to gala, you’ll ‘be part’ of the year’s accomplishments!

Maybe, some questions arise — how much of my $1,000 went to the need vs. going to overhead? Who (as in person) is my gift actually impacting? Will I ever get to see the results from my donation?

It’s easy for charity to take a donation, split it up between need vs. overhead, then give donors big, macro stats. You can paint pretty pictures with big stats, but it’s not personal.

It doesn’t show the donor what their $100 did.

Sure, the charity can say (because it’s easier) “your $100 was part of the 50,000 vaccine program!” But c’mon, what does that mean.

What if, the charity said, “your $100 went to Ornil(age 7) and Anita(age 12) in Kenya, here is their picture and here is the results!”


That’s a lot better if I’m a donor. That’s a lot harder if I’m a charity.

Why don’t all charities do this? Simple, because it’s hard! But the ‘harder’ is where the opportunity is. Running from traditional ways — the ways every other charity operates — is how disruption and change arises. And it’s happening.

The New

At New Story, we’ve looked at traditional, status-quo charity in the face, and we’re running as far away as we can from it. We’re running towards transparency, technology, and extraordinary donor experiences.

New Story was founded on these radically transparent core principles that defy the norm of traditional charity.

  1. 100% of public donations go to the need. We’ll convince private investors (thanks Data Blue!) into paying for operational cost.
  2. Donors see exactly who they’re helping.

3. Donors see results. They get a video of the exact impact they made.

4. Empower donors with technology to start their own campaigns. Whether you’re a college student, young married couple, a mom, or a technology company — you’re able to step up and make something happen — then see exactly who your team has helped!

We’re keeping things insanely simple.

We believe this transparent approach is how charity should operate. As a startup, this is cemented in our DNA and we will grow from the inside-out. Unfortunately, the big charities can’t do this. They are too big, too traditional to provide this kind of personal, transparent, accountable experience.

And just like in any other industry, that’s how disruption happens.

We’re not claiming to invent this concept, we’ve been inspired. There are pioneers out there — charity: water, Pencils of Promise, Watsi, and Donors Choose that have all inspired New Story. We’re so grateful for their trailblazing spirit and progressive bravdo. Thank you. And specifically, thank you Scott Harrison.

Just like these organizations, we’re sworn enemies of the charity status-quo. And because of that, we offer an unparalleled donor experience.

What about you?

What do you see in your industry, your division, your team that is too traditional? What can you do to start running towards something new — something better.

Whatever you think of, you must act. You gotta be that leader that brings it up to your boss, coach, wife, boyfriend, church, etc.

Run from traditional.

-your friends at New Story

CLICK HERE to help give Anita and her family a life-changing story.

At New Story, we’ve looked at traditional, status-quo charity in the face, and we’re running as far away as we can from it. We’re running towards transparency, technology, and extraordinary donor experiences.

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