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CBD's iGivefirst releases "Show the Love" app on Facebook, looks to revolutionize online giving

iGivefirst CEO and Founder Sharif Youssef launched iGivefirst in 2010 after seeing images of the Haiti earthquake on television. He was moved to action, but found donating to a good charity a difficult task to accomplish online.
Fact of the matter: Of the $260 billion individuals who donated to nonprofits in the U.S. in 2011, only about six percent donated online, far lower than other areas.
"We're trying to make giving easy and also make it trustworthy and secure," says Youssef. "The key to that is creating a brand."
Publishers can put iGivefirst's "Give" button on websites next to "Like" and "Tweet" and support charities related to the content. Charities receive more than 90 percent of donations, which get passed through iGivefirst's own nonprofit en route.

New in January 2013 is a "Show the Love" app on Facebook, allowing users to raise awareness of their favorite causes.
In the fundraising world, "40 percent is satisfactory" for fundraising overhead, says Youssef. "Ten percent is almost unheard of. We allow the nonprofits to focus on raising awareness and doing good."
Now four employees, iGivefirst has streamlined its operations while building an online database of all 1.5 million U.S.-based nonprofits. 
Youssef has been meeting with major publishers in New York to push them to deploy the "Give" button. "The minute we get that first deal signed, we're going to start hiring," he says.
In 2012, Youssef declined a term sheet from a VC investor in Silicon Valley and is now pursuing an angel investment. "They undervalued what we did," he says. "Now we're chasing revenue."

Read more articles by Eric Peterson.

Eric is a Denver-based tech writer and guidebook wiz. Contact him here.
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