The strong communities within YouTube can be more than content creators; they can also be a huge machine of charity promoters and donators that last year made over a million dollars for charities around the world.
The Project for Awesome is an annual drive that encourages thousands of creators to donate and promote their favorite charities around the world. Anyone is welcome to participate in the charity event. This event began towards the end of John and Hank Green’s Brotherhood 2.0 endeavor. They had the idea to use the dedicated community surrounding their project to create a charity drive that would take over/spam the YouTube charts, encouraging others to make videos about charities important to them and hopefully convincing viewers to donate. The two brothers have hosted P4A since its start in 2007, adding more and more additional guests as it grew and grew.
At that time it was very easy for P4A to get noticed, the algorithms of YouTube were very different back then. The YouTube Browse page showed the most popular videos of the day all in one convenient location. John and Hank used this to their advantage, having viewers spam the comments section to get their community videos to rise to the top of the daily charts.
Since 2007, YouTube’s algorithms have changed and the Browse page is gone, but the yearly liveshow which encourages comment-spamming continues partly out of tradition and partly to help videos by lesser-known YouTubers become more popular in search results.
How do you contribute to P4A? It’s simple, make a video about a charity of your choice and post it on a specific date (last year it was December 12th). After just tune into the livestream, comment, and donate! And always as Nerdfighters say “DFTBA” or “Don’t Forget to Be Awesome”- I’ll explain in a future post, for now I trust you can Google it.
According to Hank Green, the 3 main components to help out with Project for Awesome are
- Create videos that promote charities.
- Promote videos to promote charities.
- Donate money to these charities.
The third one is kind of a given as this event is a charity drive, but if you can’t donate any money, donate your time with a video! They’re simple to do and do a lot more help than you might think!
The Project for Awesome raises money every year for the Foundation to Decrease Worldsuck, with the money then being distributed to the top-voted videos from the website. In 2012, P4A raised $483,296 (with 30k going to the top 10 charities), and then in 2013, the P4A raised almost double that with $869,171. Last year the community made a whopping $1,279,847 for the promoted charities. That’s amazing!
In 2014 they did things a little differently compared to previous years. The funds raised before 12 Noon EST on December 13th, the first day of the project, would be donated to two charities: Save the Children and Partners in Health. The money raised after that day until the 16th of December would be split up between the top 10 charities submitted and voted by the community.
Last year, they somehow even managed to get Bill Gates in on the project. If they earned $100k for the foundation water.org, Gates would match that donation.
Here’s Project for Awesome 2014 Livestream- it’s the whole 48 hours, but don’t feel obligated to watch the whole thing.
For more information, check out projectforawesome.com!
See all the cool perks and donations offered to their Indiegogo 2014 campaign here!