On September 30, we announced that Pitch Practice had partnered with New Story Charity to crowdfund the cost of a home for a family in El Salvador. We decided on a 90 day campaign to raise the $6,000 required to build a 2BR/1BA home for the Escobar Campos family. Here’s how New Story can build a house for only $6k.

New Story (2017 Annual Report) has cracked the code on making charitable crowdfunding vastly more efficient than it ever has been in the past. The simple metric of funding 100 homes in 100 days during their cohort at YCombinator in the summer of 2015 should tell you all you need to know. That accomplishment came on the heels of The American Red Cross raising half a billion dollars in the wake of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti and building six – yes 6 – homes in 5 years.

New Story’s methods and accomplishments earned them a spot in Forbes’ 50 Most Innovative Companies, alongside the likes of Amazon, Google, Uber, and Apple. Their innovative approach to funding and operating a nonprofit is a model that every other nonprofit should adopt, and New Story gladly opens their books and shares their secret sauce to interested nonprofits.

That’s what New Story does. Here’s what we did.

First, fret a little. When I decided to jump into a campaign to build a home for the Escobar Campos family, I vacillated between “Sweet! Lots of people have been through Pitch Practice! They’ll all help, right?” and “OMG, what if nobody listens, cares, or donates?” I literally went through both of those emotions, and everything in between, for the last 3 months.

Second, build a plan. I knew going in, before I ever officially signed up, that I would need to create a lot of content and share it continuously, to capture the attention of the Pitch Practice audience, my personal network, and some folks in the Atlanta Tech Blogs audience. Here’s exactly what we did.

  • 4 blog posts here, LinkedIn, and Medium
  • 40 social posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. We used MeetEdgar to post and repost and repost and repost and repost for 90 days
  • 2 email campaigns to friends and family
  • 24 follow up emails, texts, and phone calls after each non-anonymous donation
  • 9 elevator pitches – at every session of Pitch Practice from Sept 30 through December, I’d go first, and pitch for donations. Here’s the one that did the best:

For the last 4 1/2 years, Pitch Practice has helped entrepreneurs build their pitch. Now we’re asking the Pitch Practice community to help fund a home. The Escobar Campos family lives in a tent with no protection from weather, bugs, rodents, disease, and crime. We’re raising $6,000 to build them a 2 bedroom, 1 bath home with a locking door. Will you please donate at pitchpractice.org?

Now Here’s what YOU did:

  • 31 total donations
  • 7 Anonymous donations
  • Average donation: $179
  • Donation amount range: $5 to $1,500 (any amount moves the needle!)
  • $6,540 total donated (109% of funds required!)
  • 1 life-changing Home Funded

So, What’s It Take? A little help from your friends.

Thank you. We’re finished, thanks to your generosity. Stay tuned for the “move in” video, coming soon. That’s when the Escobar Campos family gets to start living their new story.


What do you think about that?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.