HandsOn Network Launches Giant Game of Virtual Tag to Mobilize 500,000 Volunteers in 2 Million Projects
Submitted by Points of Light
The world's largest game of virtual tag launched today on gethandson.com, harnessing the power of social networks to inspire people to create positive change in their communities. HandsOn Network has created the game, which includes more than $25,000 in cash awards for top-tagging participants and their favorite charities.
Tag is part of the Get HandsOn campaign, a national call to action and multi-year effort to solve the nation's urgent challenges in education, the environment, the economy, and emergency response. The campaign aims to mobilize 500,000 volunteer leaders over three years who will in turn organize their family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers to undertake 2 million projects that will create measurable impact in their communities.
"People want to create change and make a difference; many just need to be asked, preferably by someone they know, trust, and respect," said Michelle Nunn, CEO of Points of Light Institute and co-founder of HandsOn Network. "Our GetHandsOn Campaign and its fun Tag challenge is a way to harness the passion of thousands of people to address the crucial issues in their communities. I urge everyone to get in the game and make it matter!"
Over the next four weeks, players can tag their friends and family via Facebook, Twitter, email, and other online tools. The community-driven Website www.gethandson.com shows what friends have been tagged, what volunteer commitments have been made, who the top taggers and tag masters are, what resources they can download, and what celebrities have been tagged or made tags themselves. HandsOn Network wants to motivate individuals already creating change and tap into the vast network of those who want to join them but need to be asked - in an imaginative way.
The hit band Maroon 5 is already playing Tag by using its new album and tour to encourage its fans to get involved and volunteer in their communities. John Gidding, star of HGTV's Curb Appeal: The Block, has agreed to join the game, make a volunteer commitment, and tag others. JetBlue has agreed to be the official sponsor of Tag.
Here's how virtual Tag works:
The goal is to be "It" by first committing to making a difference and then tagging your friends, encouraging them to do the same. Every volunteer act, every volunteer project counts as a commitment. It could be planting one tree; it could be creating a park. It could be providing tax help to the indigent elderly; it could be math tutoring one afternoon a week at the local high school. (A successful tag means the person tagged makes a commitment or registers and confirms an email address.)
The more people you tag to play, the better your chances of winning money for your favorite nonprofit and for yourself. Each day, the top tagger will receive a pair of round-trip tickets from JetBlue. The three players with the highest number of successful tags each day will win $100 for their chosen charity and a $25 gift card for themselves. They will also be entered in the weekly drawing for an iPad. At the end of the Tag challenge on November 23, the players with the highest number of successful tags will win awards from $500 to $5,000 for the nonprofit organizations of their choice, and $50 to $500 for themselves. (What better way to say "thanks!")
Try it out at GetHandsOn.com!
To add even more incentive, Gowalla, the location-based mobile and web service, has created a "Volunteer and Service" category within its Events section that encourages people to create and check into volunteer projects to receive a custom Gowalla Passport Stamp. By engaging with Gowalla, community members can post their check-ins to Facebook and Twitter, exchange comments with friends and upload images to raise awareness and share their experience.
Coming next year are two more challenges: Follow the Leader, launching on Martin Luther King Day, and Break the Record on Earth Day (April 22, 2011). Follow the Leader will ask organizations and individuals to replicate volunteer projects that have demonstrated meaningful community impact tied to education, the environment, and poverty reduction. Break the Record will create a Guinness Book of World Records for the most people volunteering on one day tied to the environment, demonstrating the impact of what we can accomplish together.
About HandsOn Network
HandsOn Network, the volunteer-focused arm of Points of Light Institute, is the largest volunteer network in the nation and includes 250 HandsOn Action Centers in 16 countries. HandsOn includes a powerful network of more than 70,000 corporate, faith and nonprofit organizations that are answering the call to serve and creating meaningful change in their communities. Annually, the network delivers approximately 30 million hours of volunteer service valued at $626 million. For more information, please visit www.HandsOnNetwork.org.
In 2010, JetBlue was ranked "Highest in Customer Satisfaction Among Low-Cost Carriers in North America" by J.D. Power and Associates for the sixth year in a row. In addition it was voted "Most Eco-Friendly Airline" by Zagat's Airline Survey in 2008 and 2009. JetBlue serves 61 cities with 600 daily flights. It is the first and only airline to offer its own Customer Bill of Rights, with specific compensation for customers inconvenienced by service disruptions within JetBlue's control.
Points of Light is a nonpartisan, global nonprofit organization that inspires, equips and mobilizes millions of people to take action that changes the world. We envision a world in which every individual discovers the power to make a difference, creating healthy communities in vibrant, participatory societies. Through 177 affiliates across 38 countries, and in partnership with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages 5 million volunteers in 16 million hours of service each year. We bring the power of people to bear where it’s needed most.
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