Estimated reading time: 4 minutes, 23 seconds

myfikiMany donors are of the mindset that they don’t want to give money to a nonprofit organization. Instead, they want to donate time, goods, or services so they know that their hard-earned money isn’t going to line some CEO’s pockets. Although pessimistic, nonprofits are not immune to scandal and when it occurs it scares away potential donors who want to give back. Enter, MyFiki (My Fundraising Initiatives built on Kindness and Involvement); a website that allows nonprofits to create an Amazon Wish list. Instead of donating money directly to the organizations, donors can purchase items off of a charity’s wish list and send it directly to them. This way, the charity is getting items that they need whether it’s school supplies, food, or other necessities and donors know exactly what they are buying, because they’re the ones that bought it.


In Use:
MyFiki was founded by Rafik Tawadrous and Tara Fardellone. It started off as a way for Tawadrous and Fardellone to help struggling nonprofits continue their mission by providing them with goods and services they needed to maintain their organization. According to Tawadrous; “The main issue is that most organizations are starved for time and money, and they have to decide how to prioritize - do what they need to in order to keep running in survival mode, or, dedicate time to vetting the many marketing options with which they are bombarded by companies, at a cost.” MyFiki is free for nonprofits to join and according to Tawadrous, “once they see our value, they usually come on board and continue to receive free help.” MyFiki is active in seven states with plans on expanding both nationally and internationally over time.

When a user goes to the website it clearly states what MyFiki’s mission is and how a potential user can benefit from the website whether they want to donate goods or sign their organization up to receive goods. From there they can review participating nonprofits, learn more about them and their goals, and then view their wish list all on MyFiki.

Technology Used:
Whether you’re a donor wanting to help or a nonprofit wishing to join MyFiki all you need is an electronic device such as a tablet, computer, or telephone. Tawadrous writes; “All of our interfaces are mobile optimized so that nonprofits who don’t have a website or mobile friendly website, don’t have to invest cash to bring their mission into the iDigital age.”

Ease of Use:
Navigating MyFiki is easy and that was one of the goals of MyFiki. “We set MyFiki up with a clean, simple, and functional user interface so nonprofits/users don’t get lost,” Tawadrous states. The userface is well set up so a donor can explore different nonprofits and view their individual wish list. Once an item is chosen, the user simply purchases it the same way they would purchase an item from Amazon for themselves. Once they click submit, the user’s job is finished. They’ve helped an organization stay afloat without ever having to leave their couch.  

Recap:
MyFiki is a platform which enables nonprofit organizations to receive goods and services they need to help their constituents. Donors can go on to MyFiki’s website and research potential charities and their wish list. If they see something they want to donate, they are directed to Amazon where they can finish purchasing the item. MyFiki is a way to donate goods and services as opposed to just money.



Advantages:

  • Amazon is universally used therefore a majority of donors are familiar with the platform and how to purchase and send items

  • It’s an alternative for donors who wish to help but do not want to donate money
    It’s an alternative for those who want to help but may not have a significant amount of money to donate. Even purchasing a small item can mean a difference to these nonprofits

  • It’s easy for a nonprofit organization to set up an account with both Amazon and MyFiki
    Userface is clean and easy to use

  • Free for nonprofits to join

  • Disadvantages:

  • MyFiki need to find a way to bring in more donors because at the moment not many people know the organization or what it is.

  • Tawadrous and and Fardellone do not charge nonprofits for using their platform. While this is noble, it’s not sustainable in the long run.

  • While they ask for an EIN number, MyFiki does not require organizations who register to have one. This means that anyone could potentially sign up a fake organization and keep the goods.

  • In order to get a tax deductible receipt a donor has to contact the organization they donated to

  • My Opinion
    MyFiki is still new but I do think it has the potential to be a great organization that helps nonprofits get the supplies they need but otherwise could not afford. They do have plans to expand to states and countries where Amazon is accepted. Partnering with Amazon, I think the possibilities are endless.

    I am concerned that they don’t require a EIN number. Anyone can just create a fake website and a fake organization and then accept donations. As they expand, they should have the EIN number mandatory.


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    Danielle Loughnane

    Danielle Loughnane earned her B.F.A. in Creative Writing from Emerson College and has currently been working in the data science field since 2015. She is the author of a comic book entitled, “The Superhighs” and wrote a blog from 2011-2015 about working in the restaurant industry called, "Sir I Think You've Had Too Much.” In her spare time she likes reading graphic novels and snuggling with her dogs.

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