Washington, D.C.—In honor of the 10-year anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks that changed America forever, GuideStar—the leading source of nonprofit information—has joined forces with MyGoodDeed, a leading 9/11 nonprofit, and HandsOn Network, the volunteer activation division of Points of Light Institute and the nation's leading volunteer service organization, to organize the single largest day of charitable service in U.S. history.
9/11 Day Observance is asking people to support nonprofits and engage in charitable service in tribute to the victims of September 11 and all those who rose in service in response to the attacks. Interested parties can visit http://911day.org, enter a few keywords into the search function about a cause they care about or the exact name of a charitable organization, and then take action by joining an e-mail list of those interested in the cause; spreading a message of support through Facebook or Twitter; making a financial contribution; inviting five friends to support a cause; or requesting information on upcoming volunteering opportunities. Because the "Support a Cause" function of the Web site is powered by GuideStar, visitors can be assured that the resulting information is trusted and vetted.
"No one will forget the heartbreak of September 11, or the extraordinary response from people all across the nation," said Bob Ottenhoff, president and CEO of GuideStar. "This country united in a powerful way in the wake of that tragedy, and I think we can do it again through this tribute movement. We're thrilled to be a part of it."
Nonprofits are encouraged to use the anniversary to connect with their stakeholders and engage with new audiences through resources available at 911day.org, including planning a project and sharing the good deeds they intend to perform. Once an organization has decided to participate, it can return to the Web site to pledge its "I will" plans and register its 9/11 Day project plans on the database to attract attention to its efforts. Nonprofits can also access marketing and communications tool kits for information on how to talk to the media about their projects and for checklists to keep each organization coordinated and on track to serve on the anniversary.
"By registering your projects you are providing Americans the opportunity to easily find service projects that allow them to pay tribute to the victims and heroes of September 11," said David Paine, president and co-founder of MyGoodDeed, which led the successful effort to designate September 11 formally as a National Day of Service and Remembrance. "September 11 is a powerful motivator for engagement especially for new volunteers." Independent research commissioned in 2010 by MyGoodDeed and conducted by Horizon Research found that more than 60 percent of Americans today—and 84 percent of those between ages 21-35—are ready to commemorate September 11 through acts of charitable service or volunteerism.
GuideStar is hosting a free webinar on August 17 with Kimberly Boyd, vice president of HandsOn Network, to help nonprofits join this movement through activation of their communities while also increasing their visibility. GuideStar will live tweet during the event, using the hashtag #911day, for those who want to engage or submit questions via Twitter. Space is limited, so everyone is encouraged to register at http://www2.guidestar.org/rxg/news/webinars/8-17-11-guidestar-webinar-9-11-day.aspx.
"We want to not only remember those that tragically lost their lives on September 11 but also support those people and nonprofits that want to make a difference today in honor of this special anniversary," added Ottenhoff. "Whether a nonprofit is organizing a small group or galvanizing an entire community, GuideStar supports and salutes those who plan to serve."
About 9/11 Day
The annual 9/11 Day Observance is a day when individuals, nonprofits, companies, schools, and other groups around the world remember by doing, taking time to engage in charitable service in tribute of the victims of 9/11 and all those who rose in service in response to the attacks. MyGoodDeed and HandsOn Network, the volunteer activation division of Points of Light Institute, are leading an influential coalition of organizations that are working together to plan and implement the 9/11 Day Observance for the 10th anniversary of 9/11, with the goal of organizing the single largest day of charitable service in U.S. history. Go to: 911day.org;Facebook.com/911day; Twitter.com/911day for more information.
GuideStar, www.guidestar.org, connects people and organizations with information on the programs and finances of more than 1.8 million IRS-recognized nonprofits. GuideStar serves a wide audience inside and outside the nonprofit sector, including individual donors, nonprofit leaders, grantmakers, government officials, academic researchers, and the media.
Lindsay J.K. Nichols