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Tiny Spark Heads to Southern India

As we announced earlier this month, Tiny Spark is going to be expanding its coverage of philanthropy, nonprofits and for-profit social good initiatives, thanks to a generous grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Read more…

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Tiny Spark receives $400,000 Grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

PRESS RELEASE

AUSTIN, Texas, September 12, 2014 – Tiny Spark announced today that it has received a two-year grant totaling $400,000 to expand its coverage of philanthropy, nonprofits, international aid and for-profit social good initiatives. Read more…

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Questioning our Relationship with Africa

A few years ago, I had the good fortune of working with veteran television producer Cassandra Herrman, pictured above. She produced and directed our story on the PlayPump, a profound reporting experience that would later compel me to launch Tiny Spark. Read more…

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Want to Help? Three Lessons from Post Quake Haiti

Typhoon Haiyan has led to an enormous loss of life in the Philippines. The search for survivors continues, and getting medical care to the wounded as soon as possible will be key. As international relief agencies begin to coordinate the humanitarian response, it is important to remember what we’ve learned from past natural disasters and figure out how we can most effectively help those in need. Read more…

TOMS Shoes Listens to its Critics

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An announcement came out of the Clinton Global Initiative last week. It didn’t involve lofty issues of world peace or universal access to education. But the announcement was important and it’s worth noting here. Read more…

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An Idea Sparked in Africa

I wanted to take this opportunity to let you know about the impetus behind Tiny Spark.

For several years, I worked as a public radio and television correspondent in Africa. During that time, I traveled around the continent, seeing a range of social enterprise initiatives and aid programs on the ground, each meeting with varying degrees of success. I also discovered that well-intentioned ideas, poorly executed, can actually do harm. Read more…

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Lessons from an Expat Aid Worker

Here is an excerpt from Letters Left Unsent:

Aid and development workers are notorious for being self-righteous and smug. While I do not care for those labels, I also know that there’s some basis to them. We, and I include myself, sometimes wear our genteel poverty as a badge of honor. We are not like our materialist peers in the for-profit sector. We are on the right sides of all the issues. Read more…

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New Documentary Profiles Inventor Doing Good

I recently watched a new documentary about inventor Dean Kamen. He’s the guy who invented the Segway, that impressive but only moderately successful people mover. Read more…

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Demanding More Than Good Intentions

A lot of people ask me what factors they should consider when deciding which charities to support. It’s a tough question. And an important one. So I turned to one of the experts. Read more…

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Positive Stories? We’re Listening…

I took this picture near my home in Austin, Texas. I love the LISTEN sign and the tranquility of the space. In a world where most of us are busy broadcasting our news, it’s nice to be reminded to create spaces for listening, too.

With that in mind, I wanted you to know that I’ve been listening to all of you. Read more…

Photo Credit: Jennifer Collins

Ball Generates Electricity for Poor Kids…Until It Breaks

I’m so happy to bring you our first story produced by an outside contributor. Reporter Jennifer Collins’ investigation was made possible by the generosity of Tiny Spark’s Kickstarter backers. Read more…

Amy Costello, Head of Strategy, Lily Jamali, Dir of Technology, Justin Nowell.

Tiny Spark at NYU

Last night we took part in a showcase at NYU’s Stern School of Business Social Venture competition. Read more…

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Our New Intern!

I’m very happy to introduce Tiny Spark’s first intern!

Dhanya Addanki is a journalism major and senior at The University of Texas at Austin. She is interested mainly in using different media platforms to affect social change and to empower developing communities. Read more…