Jeff Brooks rightly laments the amount of boring fundraising that exists in the world today. He highlights the fantastic Donor's Choose as an example of an organisation that you'd talk to your friend about.
To cheer you up Jeff (and everyone else reading) here are a few other examples I've come across recently that show that there are a few non-profits who are giving donors something to talk about.
First up, two examples via the Open Fundraising website. The first is a fantastic thank you from the Smile Train. Secondly is the launch of LendWithCare.org, which looks like being the UK answer to Kiva and allows people to lend directly to entrepreneurs in developing countries.
Crowdrise is a great site, with huge potential. It combines a number of things - volunteering, donating, sharing - and gives people the tools to tell compelling stories. What also makes it stand out is that they offer points to fundraisers, volunteers etc and these can be redeemed for prizes and other goodies. HT to Frogloop - there a couple of other good examples, but this was my favourite.
The next example is the opening of a non-profit restaurant that asks people to pay what they can afford. Any surplus profits are then used to support people who can't afford food in the local community. HT Freakonomics blog.
Finally, I thought I'd share two 'for profit' sites, that I found interesting.
Kickstarter is similar to Crowdrise and helps people get start up funding for a variety of projects. The idea has been around for a while, but I really like the layout and design of the site and it seems to be attracting some serious money.
Got any design needs? Then 99Designs is a great concept. You set your budget for a design project, upload a design brief, designers around the world pitch to you, you pick your favourite and pay the chosen amount. The whole thing comes with a 100% money back guarantee and the quality of work looks very good at first glance.