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The best source for news and information about crowdfunding for good.

Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: November 2015

Help The Wild Parrot Rescue Center in Honduras to Save Their National Bird

LoraKim Joyner, an avian veterinarian from the USA, a parrot conservationist, and the Director of One Earth Conservation has recently opened a wild parrot rescue center in Honduras. They are raising money on Deposit a Gift. Recently, I caught up with LoraKim Joyner to learn more about the effort; here’s what he told me:

What is the social benefit you hope to achieve with or through your crowdfunding campaign?

We seek to improve the lives of the indigenous Miskito people of Honduras and the parrots they protect. In particular, our crowd funding will support the establishment of Wild Parrot Rescue Center in the village of Mabita. This rescue center will care for parrots that have been confiscated from poachers who sell the birds into the illegal wildlife trade. These parrots are cared for until they can be released into the wild. Funds raised also go to pay the staff of the rescue center, improving the lives of those in this remote village by providing income.


How much money are you hoping to raise and why? How much have you raised so far?

We seek to raise $17,500. Funds raised go to pay the $2,700 for salaries for the two Co-Directors, $2,700 for food, $1,500 to build a flight cage, $300 for veterinary supplies, and $300 for other needed supplies. In addition, we would like to construct a clinic and nursery, which will cost another $10,000.

We have raised: $5,220.

Whom are you trying to help with your project and why?

The primary purpose of the Rescue Center is to save the scarlet macaws of Honduras. Once they flew over all of Honduras, and now there are only several hundred left in La Moskitia. If we don’t save them there, the Honduran national bird will be gone forever. A Rescue Center is the key piece for saving the birds, for the governmental authorities must have a reliable place to send parrots that they have confiscated from the poachers. If there is no center, the authorities will be less likely to enforce their national laws. The Center has been operating without support and funds for the last couple of years, and the villagers have been caring for and paying for food and supplies on their own. At times, they have had to choose whether to feed themselves, or the parrots.

Contributions to the Rescue Center will keep the villagers from using their scant resources to care for the birds, and will also help them earn the necessary cash income to pay for medicines and other important items to survive.

If the indigenous people in this village of Mabita know of our support, and receive it, they can continue to take a stand against the forces that seek to take their land, their resources, and their parrots.

What rewards, if any, are you offering to your supporters?

We offer:

  • “Parrots Fly Free” wrist bands
  • Public acknowledgement of donations in our newsletter
  • T-shirts
  • Personal acknowledgement from a rescue center worker in Honduras
  • Their name on a sign or plaque on the flight cage and clinic
  • Free Nurture Nature Workshop

Check out the campaign:

Visit the website.
Follow on Facebook.
Follow on Twitter at @LoraKimJoyner

How A Charity Can Stand-Out And Thrive In Today’s Crowdfunding World

Chicago, IL; A Charity does not have the next best product to sell or business idea to invest in or gimmicky perk. Fact is a Charity does not have anything to sell, they are in the emotional story business and one of the hardest things a Charity constantly contends with is how to properly portray their story to elicit an emotional response from the public. Not an easy hill to climb every day, especially without a budget or marketing department.

Influence The Cause ( is that marketing partner. With no up-front cost we provide that competitive edge for a Charity’s fundraising campaign by power of video production, the influence of social media and a marketing engine to properly portray the story to the public and trigger an emotional response from a potential donor or influencer.

We do not just give you a nice landing page to display your cause and tell you, “good luck” , we provide all the tools your cause needs to create and market a campaign on day one and help you all year long.

We take a Charity’s story and bring it to life through our own internet TV channel ( so as to give each donor an in depth look into a Charity and empower the public through social media to support a cause.

Our system creates a deeper emotional bond for its donors knowing they are a part of something real.

A Charity can now create and maintain a data base of followers to keep them informed about where their donations are going, events that are coming up, how donations are helping the cause and where the Charity is heading.

We want to be there for the longevity of a Charity and its cause not just a one and done campaign.

But we are not all about donations. We also want to give the power of Influence to each person and encourage people to easily push a cause they have an emotional bond with to each of their followers and help spread the word through our Pledging Process.

We feel the publics influence can be just as important as a donation.

“First off I want to say we are not a crowdfunding site, we are a Charity informational and promotional platform. You will not see a business on our site trying to promote a new product you will not see someone trying to fund their vacation. We provide the tools a Charity needs to showcase and manage their cause so as to encourage the public to help either financially or by the power of their influence,” says Jason Shimitz, co-founder.

StartEngine, Elio Motors and the Securities and Exchange Commission Make Crowdfunding History; SEC Qualifies Elio Motors for $25MM, Largest Equity Offering to Date under Regulation A+

LOS ANGELES – November 20, 2015 – StartEngine, the nation’s leading equity crowdfunding platform, revealed today that the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has qualified a $25MM offering for equity shares of automotive startup Elio Motors, through a campaign hosted on StartEngine. American investors can now purchase equity shares in Elio Motors and participate in building a business they are passionate about. It is anticipated these shares will trade like conventional stocks.

“This is a major victory for investment equality, and may be the biggest financial breakthrough of this generation,” said StartEngine CEO Ron Miller. “With this momentous SEC qualification, the government is setting an example for how nonaccredited investors can pursue opportunities via the StartEngine platform, including investing in Elio Motors and the next wave of progressive companies.”

A StartEngine issuer from the outset, Elio Motors is among the first handful of companies to receive SEC qualification under the Regulation A+ rules. Since the June 2015 launch of Regulation A+, these new rules facilitate investment by nonaccredited individuals using a crowdfunding mechanism. Elio Motors founder Paul Elio seeks to challenge the status quo of personal transportation with an affordable, safe and environmentally friendly vehicle.

“Our goal is to alter the course of American transportation, and with today’s breakthrough, we are one step closer to this revolution, not just for drivers, but for anyone who believes that a good idea has the power to change the world,” said Elio Motors founder Paul Elio. “We’re thrilled to open our doors to thousands of new investors, and will utilize the capital as part of our plan to begin production in late 2016.”

Elio Motors is one of the first companies on the platform to issue equity shares, with many more coming soon. Visit to learn more about investing in equity shares of Elio Motors.

About StartEngine Crowdfunding, Inc.

StartEngine is the premier equity crowdfunding platform, connecting Millennials and aspiring investors with tomorrow’s progressive companies. Based in Los Angeles, the company was created in 2013 by Howard Marks, co-founder of Activision, and Ron Miller. StartEngine aims to revolutionize the startup business model by helping all people invest in private companies on a public platform, now viable for the first time in history, thereby helping entrepreneurs achieve their dreams.

Learn more at

KoreConX Expands Equity Crowdfunding Services with Major New Partners

Platform Disrupts the Equity Crowdfunding Market by Offering a Free, All-in-One Solution to Help Companies Navigate Process of Raising Equity Capital

Toronto, Canada – November 19, 2015 – KoreConX, the recently launched free all-in-one solution that is disrupting the market by helping companies navigate the equity crowdfunding process and reduce risk, today announced major new partners that add additional value and resources for their users. These additions greatly expand the scope and usefulness of the platform, allowing companies to have even greater control over their equity crowdfunding.

The integrated tools and services platform, available at, saves companies time and helps reduce legal fees by having all the required corporate documents proactively organized, while allowing organizations to efficiently manage corporate records. KoreConX makes onboarding and dealflow screening for equity crowdfunding portals much easier while ensuring issuers are prepared for due diligence, reporting regularly and managing shareholders properly.

“KoreConX is providing the infrastructure and eco-system for companies to efficiently manage their business while maintaining proper governance, transparency and compliance,” said Oscar Jofre, CEO of KoreConX. “The addition of these new partners is designed to make it even easier for companies seeking equity crowdfunding to have all of the tools, resources and solutions available on the KoreConX platform.”

The new partners, with solutions now directly available via KoreConX, include:

  • CrowdCheck: CrowdCheck undertakes the due diligence that a reasonable person would do when investing his own funds online, and lets investors see the results of this due diligence in an easy-to-understand Report. This helps entrepreneurs seeking funding too as they can show they are legitimate.
  • iDisclose: iDisclose is a web-based application that streamlines the legal procedure of raising capital by guiding entrepreneurs through an adaptive process to customize institutional quality disclosure documents, including Private Placement Memorandums (PPMs). Built by a team of experienced securities lawyers iDisclose fuses cutting-edge technology with legal know-how to significantly reduce the time, money and effort traditionally exerted on the disclosure process.
  • Early IQ: Early IQ is a provider of simple, secure online diligence and compliance solutions for private financial markets.  Early IQ will be incorporated into KoreConX to provide companies with the tools necessary to conduct background checks and to help further their due diligence efforts.
  • AlgoValue: AlgoValue is an online valuation and cap table analysis platform to valuate stage and mature companies and their equity securities, including preferred stock, convertible notes, warrants, stock options, common shares, and others. AlgoValue enables users to simulate consequences of future funding rounds/M&A/IPO in terms of founders and other investor holdings. In addition, AlgoValue is used for financial reporting and US tax compliance (409A) and produces templates that are workpaper-ready, saving hours of time for financial statement auditors. AlgoValue is used by startups, private companies,valuation firms, accounting firms, venture capital firms, law firms, and equity crowdfunding platforms in the US, Israel and
  • Marketwired: Marketwired provides news distribution and social communication solutions to public relations, investor relations and marketing professionals who represent companies of all sizes, from start-up to Fortune 500. By sharing market-moving, direct-from-source information with media, investors, social networks and consumers anywhere in the world, Marketwired plays a pivotal role in connecting newsmakers with news consumers.

“We look forward to helping KoreConX users expand their visibility and uncover opportunities,” said Bernadette Lee, Marketwired’s Vice President, Global Partners and Media Solutions. ”As the crowdfunding industry multiplies in volume and influence, it’s more important than ever to reach these new communities of investors and decision-makers.”

“Crowdfunding is about taking deals from elite back rooms and making them accessible to everyone,” said Georgia Quinn, CEO of iDisclose. “Transparency is essential to this process, and we are so happy to be working with KoreConX to simplify and streamline the processes for crowdfunding.”

“We are looking forward to making the due diligence process more efficient and faster using the resources of KoreConX”, according to Sara Hanks, CEO of CrowdCheck.

KoreConx also added additional portals to the platform today, so companies can access these portals directly, thus making the process easier, faster and less complicated. The new portals include Folio and Interactive Shares, a new real estate portal.

What KoreConX Provides

The highly secure KoreConX platform provides a suite of tools and services that centralizes and streamlines governance functions, ensuring that corporate information is always up to date while helping companies from start to finish during the process of Pre-During-Post regulated crowdfunding transactions.

Companies can use the KoreConX platform to organize and share their company information with portal operators, through a single point of entry, allowing them to comprehensively manage their equity raise without leaving the platform. Once the capital raising round is complete, KoreConX helps companies manage and communicate with their shareholders, practicing good governance as they grow.

About KoreConX

KoreConX is a free all-in-one solution that helps companies navigate the process of raising equity capital, and simplifies shareholder communications to reduce risk. The KoreConX eco-system empowers stakeholders (regulated crowdfunding portals, shareholders, board directors, CEO, CFO, corporate secretary, lawyers, auditors, investor relations, members and 3rd party providers) to manage corporate information from a Single Point of Entry within a secure, hosted application that results in efficient and transparent corporate governance. More information is available at

The Power of the Crowd is Saving Children from Sex Trafficking—and So Can You

I work for a crowdfunding startup, so I’ve come across many definitions that attempt to describe crowdfunding at its core. My favorite one is essentially a one-sentence parable: “Many hands make light work.”


The reason this particular definition resonates so strongly for me—and I know I’m not alone (Dan Baird, founder of Crack the Crowd uses it often)—is that it prompts the realization that anything is possible—even thorny, unsolvable challenges that seem impossible to match with solutions.

When it comes to crowdfunding for a good cause, the power of a collective offers an imposing strength we can’t muster up individually. But the power of a formidable many is radioactive—turning dark into light, making possible what seemed futile, and altering the world as we know it.

When we band together to support a worthy cause we accomplish one of our fundamental purposes: to do some good while we have the chance in this fleeting adventure we call life, and to shore up those among us up who cannot stand on their own, or lack the voice to advocate for themselves.

This is why I recently accepted the offer to work on a pro bono crowdfunding campaign for the Child Rescue Association (CRA). Though the organization is based in Salt Lake City, it has an international reach both in the services it offers and the volunteers who work on its behalf

CRA’s charter is to eradicate child sex trafficking—full stop. One of the ways CRA fights this seemingly intractable battle is through undercover rescue missions that remove victims from their violent realities, and dismantle nefarious trafficking rings permanently.

CRA is planning another rescue mission, after confirming a ring in a Latin American country. While the average age of trafficking victims is between 12 and 14, this particular ring includes children younger than that.

Despite what some cinematic thrillers might show, a rescue mission is costly and complex. To take down a sex trafficking ring for good, in-the-field operatives (highly-trained expert volunteers with CRA) must conduct surveillance, gather evidence, and work closely with local law enforcement before executing the mission itself.

To make this rescue mission happen, CRA has launched the #ChildRescue Undercover Rescue Mission & Aftercare campaign on Indiegogo, with a $30,000 target. The funds will cover volunteers’ travel and accommodation expenses, and necessary field equipment. Rescued kids will be provided housing in a safe environment, and the critical aftercare they need to grow up and lead normal lives.

Donations start at five dollars, because every little bit helps (you can donate even less). But more than a fiscal contribution, you can do your part by helping to spread the word, because this is how we, the formidable many, increase the glare of the spotlight on an incredibly worthy cause.

The lives of children are at stake, and the opportunity to help them is in our hands—right now. We can break the cycle of torture, rape, and violence, turning darkness into light and helping vulnerable children who cannot fight for themselves. It just takes minutes, but the results will last much longer than that—they will last a lifetime.


About Gabi Barragan

Gabi Barragan is director of marketing at Crack the Crowd, which helps crowdfunding platforms launch, and provides marketing and innovation strategies to current platforms looking to strengthen their position in the market. She believes in the potential to change the world for the better—through the power of the crowd. You can follow her @gabriela_7

Experts Explain New Crowdfunding Rules

This post was originally produced for Forbes.

Late last month, the SEC kept its word from late 2014 when it said it would issue final rules for Regulation Crowdfunding under the JOBS Act by October 2015.

Todd Crosland, CEO and Founder of Seed Equity Ventures, a broker dealer already operating and doing crowdfunding type equity raises under the SEC’s Regulation D 506(c) rules for general solicitations, says, “ I believe the SEC passing Title III will be a watershed event for both startups and investors. Startups and the general investing public will be forever changed.”

Crosland explains the import of the new rules, “The purpose is to allow non accredited investors the ability to invest in startups, which was once only reserved for the elite few.”

The rules are final, but they aren’t effective, yet. As Crosland notes, “Once the rules go live on May 16, 2016 and Seed Equity’s platform is approved by the SEC and Finra, non-accredited investors will be able to invest through the Seed Equity platform.”

EnergyFunders will operate as a “platform” rather than as a broker-dealer under the new Regulation Crowdfunding rules, giving ordinary investors an opportunity to invest in oil and gas investments for the first time.

EnergyFunders founder Philip Racusin says, “We hope to educate investors and provide them transparent access to an elite asset class which was previously inaccessible for many. We also hope to attract more small operators to use our platform, which will provide them project funding traditionally denied to them by banks.”

Many in the small business and startup arenas have hoped that there would be many crowdfunding platforms like EnergyFunders. Draft rules issued by the SEC in 2013 were disappointing to many and some players left the space or pivoted to other opportunities. It may be too soon to tell whether the new rules will yet create the intended jobs.

One of the biggest stumbling blocks in the draft rules, an audit requirement for companies wishing to raise more than $500,000, was amended in the final regulations such that an audit is required only for a second raise under the rules. A formal review is still required for all raises of $100,000 or more.

On Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 3:00 Eastern, Racusin and Crossland will join me for a live discussion about the new rules. We will be joined by Jason Best, one of the authors of the JOBS Act, attorney Douglas Ellenoff, and public relations pro Joy Schoffler. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.

More about Leverage PR:

Twitter: @leverage_pr

Leverage PR is an Austin-based full-service public relations firm that delivers strategic planning, media relations and communications strategies to companies within the financial, legal, real estate and technology industries.

Schoffler’s bio:

Twitter: @joyschoffler

Joy Schoffler, principal of Leverage PR, is a nationally recognized author and speaker in the field of innovative financial services marketing and communication. Prior to launching Leverage PR, Joy served as director of acquisitions for the Inc. award-winning private equity firm. Joy has written for a number of publications including:, Social Media Monthly and MarketingProfs, among other outlets. She is a contributing author for the Wiley-published Bloomberg Media book “Crowdfunding: The Ultimate Guide to Raising Capital on the Internet.” Her expertise in helping issuers and investment firms market themselves to the accredited investment community has additionally led to Joy being featured in a number of outlets including: CNBC, Forbes, Inc., Reuters, Yahoo! Small Business and dozens of other niche sites.

More about Energy Funders:

Twitter: @EnergyFunders

EnergyFunders is an online marketplace that connects qualified investors to nationwide, small cap oil and gas projects managed by proven operators. Developed by experienced securities attorneys and trusted specialists in the oil and gas industry, EnergyFunders is the first platform to offer global and national participation in the $263 billion “small oil” market through equity crowdfunding, allowing investors to buy directly into wells themselves for investment minimums as low as $5,000. Managing assets of more than one hundred wells, the company has raised millions for projects, bringing unprecedented access, transparency and efficiency to one of the most elite and lucrative asset classes.

Racusin’s bio:

Twitter: @philipracusin

Philip Racusin is the CEO and co-founder of EnergyFunders, an online marketplace that connects qualified investors to nationwide, small cap oil and gas projects managed by proven operators. A seasoned litigation attorney, Philip currently serves as a senior associate of Pagel, Davis & Hill, P.C., where he has successfully represented clients, ranging from individuals to large companies, in a variety of legal disputes for nearly a decade. He also launched several startup ventures prior to EnergyFunders, including a legal technology company that totaled over 50,000% ROI in one year. Both a savvy entrepreneur and accomplished litigator, Philip fuses legal expertise with astute business knowhow to navigate the oil and gas industry’s regulatory waters and carefully pre-vet each project offered through the site.

More about Seed Equity Ventures:

Twitter: @getseedequity

Seed Equity Ventures is a registered broker dealer with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and is a member of both FINRA and SIPC. Seed Equity Ventures provides investment banking services to startups and growth companies from around the world.

Todd Crosland, courtesy of Seed Equity Ventures

Todd Crosland, courtesy of Seed Equity Ventures

Crosland’s bio:

Twitter: @toddcrosland

A seasoned entrepreneur, Mr. Crosland has demonstrated the ability to build successful teams and companies. Mr. Crosland was the Founder, Chairman and CEO of Interbank FX, LLC (“IBFX“), from 2001 until he sold the firm in 2011. IBFX was a Futures Commission Merchant and Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer registered with the U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission. IBFX was also authorized and regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. IBFX was a worldwide leader in retail Forex trading services. IBFX offered individual traders, fund managers and institutional customer’s proprietary technology and tools to trade Forex online. IBFX saw Global customers grow to over 40,000, in more than 140 countries. Annual trading volume reached $750 billion. IBFX had 120 employees and offices in Beijing, China; Seoul, South Korea; Sydney, Australia; Salt Lake City, Utah and London, England. Mr. Crosland holds a B.A. in Business (Business Finance) from the University of Utah. He also currently holds the following Securities Licenses: Series 7, 24, and 63 and previously held series 3 and 30 Licenses.

More about Ellenoff Grossman & Schole LLP:

Ellenoff Grossman & Schole LLP is a New York City-based law firm comprised of over 65 professionals, offering its clients legal services in a broad range of business related matters. Founded in 1992, the Firm specializes in many areas of commercial law: Corporate, Securities, Private Investment Funds, Broker-Dealer Regulation, Real Estate, Labor and Employment, Intellectual Property, Litigation, Arbitration, Tax and Estate Planning.

Douglas Ellenoff, photo by Devin Thorpe

Douglas Ellenoff, photo by Devin Thorpe

Ellenoff’s bio:

Douglas Ellenoff serves as the co-founder of iDisclose, an adaptive web-based application that enables entrepreneurs to prepare customized institutional grade private placement documents for a fraction of the time and cost. A highly esteemed corporate and securities attorney for more than two decades, Doug also serves as founding partner of Ellenoff, Grossman & Schole, a finance law firm known as a leader in crowdfunding, where he has facilitated several billion dollars in transactions for dozens of broker-dealers, investor groups and small businesses. As one of the world’s most prominent figures in crowdfunding, Doug was a key player in the implementation of JOBS Act regulations. A sought after speaker and media source on innovative capital formation, Doug is passionate about placing high quality legal disclosure within any businesses’ reach.

More about Crowdfund Capital Advisors:

Crowdfund Capital Advisors (CCA) delivers strategic insights to government agencies, financial institutions, and professional investors seeking to both create and implement innovative strategies to utilize crowdfund investing (CFI) technologies to drive innovation, job creation and entrepreneurship. They also study and invest in the emerging ecosystem of crowdfunding and the new solutions being created that will impact the broader private capital markets. The social web has changed the way individuals businesses, and governments organize and communicate and transact business. We are passionate about creating innovation, entrepreneurship and jobs through the use of crowdfunding. CCA delivers strategic services and implementation programs that create, proprietary deal flow for professional investors, better access to capital for businesses, and policy and regulatory innovation for governments.

Jason Best, photo by Devin Thorpe

Jason Best, photo by Devin Thorpe

Best’s bio:

As co-founder and principal of Crowdfund Capital Advisors (CCA), Jason Best co-authored the crowdfund investing framework used in the JOBS Act to legalize equity and debt based crowdfunding in the USA. He has provided congressional testimony on crowdfunding and was honored to attend the White House ceremony when President Obama signed the JOBS Act into law on April 5, 2012. Jason co-founded the crowdfunding industry trade group that works with the Securities and Exchange Commission and FINRA as they create the rules for crowdfund investing. Jason also works with angel groups, PE/VC firms as well as governments and NGOs, including The World Bank, to understand the crowdfunding ecosystem and create successful crowdfund investing strategies. He was instrumental in the successful effort to have CCA selected by the US State Department’s Global Entrepreneurship Program as a Key Partner.

New Online Charitable Platform Launches In The UK To Revolutionise Traditional Fundraising

eSolidar, a new online fundraising initiative which allows users to donate items and charities to raise money online, is launching today in the UK. eSolidar has already seen success in Brazil and Portugal, including running partnerships with festivals, such as Rock in Rio, where Elton John generously donated an autographed keyboard via the eSolidar website.

eSolidar is free to join and allows users to sell items and give some or all of the proceeds to the charity of their choice. For charities, it also offers a new way of fundraising, moving away from chugging and cold calling. The site not only allows charities to sell items, but also to post ‘auctions for good’.

eSolidar was founded by Marco Barbosa in Portugal in May 2014 and aims to disrupt the way traditional fundraising and charitable giving is carried out – by taking it online. It currently has 35,000 registered users, and has raised over £70,000 so far via online donations and auctions.

CEO of eSolidar Marco Barbosa said:

“The aim of the eSolidar is for people to be able to sell or donate their items easily online, whilst also supporting the causes they care about most. It’s the chance to make some money and do a little good.”

Father Works to Create Opportunities for Those with Autism

“Autism is the fastest growing developmental diagnosis in the world today more than diabetes, HIV or cancer combined,” notes Dr. Julian Maha, founder of KultureCity, a nonprofit serving those with autism, including Julian’s son. “Only 20% of these children go on to have jobs yet very little attention is being paid to this issue.”

Julian created KultureCity to answer the questions, “How do you create a future without limits and job opportunities for children with disabilities specifically autism?”

Julian explains, “We are doing this by engaging the community and helping them realize not only the social good benefits of inclusion and job creation for individuals with autism but also the monetary and PR benefits.”

“If we are right about KultureCIty, in 10 years, we would have created a world where inclusion is promoted and abilities are celebrated. A world where every child regardless of their medical diagnosis has a chance at a future without limits and is accepted and included,” he concludes.

On Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 4:00 Eastern, Julian will join me here for a live discussion about KultureCity and how it is driving impact. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.

You can download an audio podcast here or subscribe via iTunes.

More about KultureCity:

Twitter: @kulturec

KultureCity is an impact driven nonprofit founded in 2013 in Birmingham, Alabama with the mission to create a world where all individuals with autism and their families can be accepted and treated equally. We fundamentally believe that these children are not limited by their diagnosis and deserve a future without limits. Our programs reflect our mission to change the kulture on how autism is viewed in our world today. To date, we have helped more than 14,893 individuals with our toy and tablet programs, as well as the lifeBOKS initiative that helps prevent wandering and wandering related accidents/deaths in children with autism. We have also launched several sensory friendly initiatives that focus on making local attractions and restaurants sensory friendly. At the end of the day, we are most proud of the community of acceptance that we have created. A community where all individuals with autism and their families not only feel loved but empowered. In addition to this, we are also striving to challenge the status quo on how nonprofits operate by applying a start up model to the nonprofit structure so that the mission and not donations are what drive the impact of the nonprofit.

Dr. Julian Maha, courtesy of KultureCity

Dr. Julian Maha, courtesy of KultureCity

Julian’s bio:

Dr. Julian Maha graduated from the University of Calgary School of Medicine at the age of 23. Working as an Emergency Department and Emergency Medical Services medical director in the state of Alabama, Dr. Maha has also done hospital consulting work on emergency room work and patient flow. When his oldest son was diagnosed with autism, Dr. Maha focused his attention on helping his son. This effort led him to found KultureCity: an impact driven nonprofit that has applied a startup model to the nonprofit world. Since its creation 20 months ago, KultureCity has become not only the best reviewed special needs nonprofit in the United States but also the fastest growing. Recent achievements include being named one of the Top 10 nonprofits in the US by Microsoft in 2015. With the impact of KultureCIty and the change in the nonprofit world that it has brought, Dr. Maha has become a sought after speaker and consultant. He has spoken at numerous national and international conferences including Collision, Ignite and many more. He has also been interviewed and featured by national media such as Inc and IntoConnection. With KultureCIty, Dr. Maha has created an innovative approach to the nonprofit model that emphasizes impact and promotes sustainability.

Remember to “join the cavalry” by subscribing to our content here.

Devin D. Thorpe

Brookstone & Indiegogo Partner to Bring New Inventions to Market Faster

Innovative Crowdfunded Projects Now Available at Brookstone Stores

Merrimack, NH and San Francisco, CA — (Marketwired – November 16, 2015) — Brookstone, the innovative product developer and specialty retailer, and Indiegogo, the platform for entrepreneurial projects, announce a new partnership to help bring the most groundbreaking crowdfunded products to market quicker than ever before. Indiegogo campaigners will now be able to submit their ideas directly to Brookstone’s partner page on Brookstone can provide select campaigners access to design, manufacturing, packaging, distribution, sales and customer support services. Brookstone is particularly interested in products falling within Brookstone’s core product focus areas (technology, wellness, home, travel) that have demonstrated a strong market validation and customer demand through their Indiegogo campaigns. Brookstone may also provide pre-campaign launch consultations for qualified products to help streamline their product development process.

With the new partnership, customers will now be able to buy an assortment of new inventions “Funded with Indiegogo” at Brookstone stores nationwide and at Among the first Indiegogo campaigns to become major product rollouts at Brookstone are Cat Ear Headphones, which feature working cat ear-shaped speakers and built-in accent lighting, and Fizzics™, a personal beer dispenser that creates a fresh-from-the-tap experience from any bottle, can or growler. “Funded With Indiegogo” packaging, as well as in-store promotions, will identify products.

“Brookstone can provide everything successful campaigners need to turn their great products into a reality,” said Tom Via, CEO of Brookstone. “Indiegogo has democratized the way new ideas are discovered and funded. They proved that innovative product ideas can come from anywhere. But successful campaigners then have to turn funds raised into products that reach customers. Engineering, packaging, retail and wholesale distribution—these are the things at which Brookstone is expert. The job of the Brookstone Launch program is to speed up development and delivery time, and to help Indiegogo campaigners realize the most opportunities from their ideas.”

“Indiegogo is a one-stop-shop for makers, entrepreneurs and startups to introduce, fund and test the market for their products,” said Slava Rubin, CEO of Indiegogo. “By partnering with Brookstone, we’re now also able to offer access to development, manufacturing and distribution services that successful campaigners may need as they move from idea to reality.”

The Brookstone Cat Ear Headphones evolved from an extraordinary idea by Axent Wear co-founders Wenqing Yan and Victoria Hu. Their Indiegogo campaign raised more than $3.4 million in backer funding. Brookstone assisted with product engineering, manufacturing, packaging and distribution, and is currently launching the product worldwide through retail and wholesale channels.

The Fizzics Group raised more than $200,000 with their Indiegogo campaign, and chose Brookstone to be its first retail launch partner because of the company’s commitment to the development and launch of innovative technologies and unique lifestyle products.

Cat Ear Headphones and Fizzics are currently available in all Brookstone stores and at

About Brookstone, Inc.

Brookstone, founded in 1965, is a specialized developer and retailer of innovative and lifestyle products designed for smart living. Brookstone offers a diverse collection of uniquely designed, high-quality products through a multi-channel strategy including catalog mail orders, phone orders, online at and 218 store locations in shopping malls and high-traffic airports across the US and Puerto Rico. In 2015, the company inaugurated its Brookstone Launch program to give inventors, startup incubators, crowdfunders and other companies access to Brookstone product development, manufacturing, marketing and retail resources. To submit products, visit

About Indiegogo

Indiegogo is the place for entrepreneurial projects to move quickly from concept to market, amplified by a community of backers who believe the world benefits when every idea gets an equal shot at success. Indiegogo empowers people around the world to fund what matters to them. As the world’s first crowdfunding platform, campaigns have launched from almost every country around the world with millions of dollars being distributed every week due to contributions made by the Indiegogo community. At its core, Indiegogo is the equal opportunity platform dedicated to democratizing the way people raise funds for any project –creative, entrepreneurial or cause-related. The company was launched in 2008 and is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in Los Angeles and New York. For more information, visit and follow us at and

#ChildRescue is Crowdfunding An Undercover Rescue Mission

Nonprofit Turns to the Crowd to Organize Child Sex-Trafficking Sting Operation

#ChildRescue Association

Child Rescue Association is taking a novel approach to combating child slavery by turning to Indiegogo to crowdfund $30,000 for an undercover rescue mission. The organization is collaborating with a partner in Latin America to dismantle a child sex trafficking ring and bring the children in it to safety.

Child Rescue Association co-founder Stephanie Larsen, whose mother was a fourth-generation trafficking victim, and a team of volunteers are now crowdfunding the costs of undercover agents, travel and equipment for the sting, which will be conducted in partnership with local law enforcement, and survivor aftercare.

“The boots-on-the-ground team has already been offered children as young as ten-years-old,” said Larsen. “Through this crowdfunding campaign, our backers will be directly involved in changing lives, in giving children back the childhoods that were stolen from them, and spreading awareness for the 2,000,000 child trafficking victims each year. This is one of the most important social issues our world faces.”

Any donations in excess of the $30,000 target will be applied to additional living expenses and aftercare for survivors, and future rescue missions.

The campaign offers backers the option to donate directly, as low as five dollars. A variety of “perks” include a handwritten “Thank You” from a trafficking survivor, a personal debrief of the rescue mission by one of the operational team members, and an Escape and Evasion class that has been donated by a group of Special Forces Combat Veterans. The campaign also offers “the opportunity to change a life,” with a contribution of $1,800, which singlehandedly covers the cost of rescuing one child.

The campaign will run through December 18th.

About #ChildRescue:

Child Rescue Association is a 501c3 non-profit founded in 2010 to eradicate child exploitation through undercover rescue missions, providing survivor aftercare, youth prevention programs, and training programs through partnerships with law enforcement.

Campaign URL:

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