10 apps to help those in need

10 apps to help those in need
Sara Weber, Deseret News

Donations to charity have been on the rise the past few years, thanks to the growing trend of online giving. A study done by nonprofit services provider Blackbaud shows that in 2015 alone, online donations to nonprofits came out to $2.2 billion.

Many of the digital methods of giving are right in the palm of your hand. Here are 10 apps to choose from that will help you help others, most of which can be found on the iOS and Google Play stores. You’re already on your phone for a significant part of your day, why not earn some positive karma points while you’re at it?

Charity Miles

Charity Miles offers a more altruistic incentive for getting up and moving by using your phone’s GPS capabilities. Users can choose if their workout is most similar to a walk, run or bike ride and choose which charity they would most like to support through the mobile app. For every mile a user walks or runs, Charity Miles will give 25 cents to the selected charity. For bike rides, the app will donate 10 cents. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

Donate a Photo

Phone photographers, this one’s for you. Once a day, you can upload one of your prized pictures to the Donate a Photo gallery through the app, and Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 to a charity of your choosing. The company promises not to sell your photo for commercial purposes, and users can adjust the privacy settings of their work as they see fit. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

GoodSAM

The response time for emergency medical services and a patient in need can often be a matter of life or death. One new app aims to help those services by offering interim attention. GoodSAM (SAM being short for Smartphone Activated Medics) is a new way for medically trained professionals to help those around them in need of immediate attention. There are two version of the GoodSAM app: one for responders and one for alerters. Those who download the responder app will be verified before being able to receive notifications. They are then allowed to perform the necessary life-saving treatments they specialize in before handing the patient over to emergency services. Alerters can simply press a button to alert nearby responders and submit videos and notes as needed. There’s even an option to monitor the patient’s heart rate, if necessary. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS, Android and Windows phones systems.

Goodshop

Curb buyer’s remorse by using the Goodshop app, which donates a percentage of your total purchase to charity and offers exclusive discounts to its subscribers. Stores on Goodshop include Amazon, which will donate 1.5 percent of your purchase; Expedia, which will give up to 5 percent; and Staples, which will donate 2.5 percent. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

One Today

Google is living up to its longstanding commitment to support nonprofits with its One Today app. The minimalist app highlights one organization per day. Users can donate $1 to the featured charity, or to one of their choosing. The more you use the app, the more it gets to know your interests and predict organizations you may want to support. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

Red Cross Blood

According to the American Red Cross, someone in the United States is in need of blood every two seconds. That means nearly 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U.S. alone. The organization is making donating blood easier than ever with its Red Cross Blood app. Users can schedule appointments to donate, find blood drives close by, follow their donation as it’s sent to someone in need and more. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

ShareTheMeal

The World Food Programme estimates that there are now 795 million undernourished people in the world. With the help of their latest app, ShareTheMeal, you can now use your smartphone to help feed a hungry child in some of the poorest countries around the world. For every 50 cents donated, ShareTheMeal can give one voucher to a refugee family that will allow them to buy one nutritious meal. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

SnapDonate

If your to-do list is becoming intimidatingly long and the thought of adding one more task sounds unappealing, you can now make charitable donations as easy as taking a picture and choosing an amount. Increase your impulse donating by simply taking a photo of an organization’s logo through the SnapDonate app and selecting a dollar amount. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

Tinbox

Giving to charity can be hard when finances are tight, and those who developed the new app Tinbox understand that. Tinbox lets you donate $1 a day to specific charities without emptying your own wallet. Instead, you’ll be paired with a company — which likely has a lot more money than you do — and work together to finance projects you care about. Tinbox is only live in San Francisco, but plans to expand across the nation. The app is free to download and is available for both iOS and Android systems.

WeCount

WeCount is a new organization dedicated to helping the homeless or those experiencing poverty to receive vital, everyday items. Those interested in participating can visit wecount.org and sign up to be a donor or recipient. Those in need can confidentially post what it is they’re looking for from a list created by WeCount, and donors can drop off donations at a secure location. Specifics like exact addresses are emailed or texted to both parties. WeCount is currently limited to areas in California and the Northwest, and can be accessed online or on any smartphone with internet access systems.

Sara can be reached at sweber@deseretdigital.com.

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