6 Smartphone Apps That Make Charitable Giving More Fun

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One Today

onetoday projects available on our smartphones.
Several of the hundreds of projects available on One Today. Screenshot by JFritz

Almost all of us have a smartphone now. So lots of people have been working on integrating our phones with our love for supporting good causes. As a result, apps for charitable giving are easy to find. 

Here are six of my favorites. I picked these for ease-of-use, transparency, and dependability.  I figured that if I can use them, anyone can. Pick one or more and try them out.

One Today

One Today comes from Google and is as slick and beautiful as you would expect. It can be used with Apple products as well as Android.

Give $1 per day to your choice of pre-selected charities with this app. Google vets the charities so you can be sure your money is in good hands.  You can even set up a matching gift and urge your friends to donate.  It’s easy to share your charitable act with your social networks.

What’s to like: Charities receive all of the donation because Google covers the transaction fee. Donations are processed through Network for Good. You can set up daily alerts so you will remember to donate.

More Info:  Website for Google’s One Today  

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ShareTheMeal

Share TheMeal smarphone app.
Screenshot by JFritz

ShareTheMeal

ShareTheMeal fights global hunger through the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP). The concept is simple. Tap the app on your phone and give 50 cents. That will feed one child for one day.

Why not use the app whenever you sit down to a meal? Help feed the hundreds of thousands of undernourished people in the world.

What’s to like: It’s simple, and grants and partner companies cover the costs.

More Info: ShareTheMeal website. Be sure to watch the video! 

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Budge

Budge is a smarphone app for charitable giving.
Screenshot by JFritz

Budge

If you think giving to charity is something of a drag, here’s a game you will like. Budge allows you to challenge (make a bet) friends to do something, like lose weight, jump off a diving board, give up smoking, or walk five miles. If you win the challenge, your friends give a donation to charity. If they win, you give. It’s straightforward and fun.

What’s to like: You can turn almost anything that’s fun to do with friends into a charitable donation. Gamers should love this. Do note that Budge charges 5 percent of the donation for operations, and there may be credit card fees as well.  Fees come out of the gift, and the charity gets the rest.

More Information: The Budge website

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Donate a Photo

Photos in the Donate a Pholo Gallery.
Just a few of the millions of photos donated to Donate a Photo. Screenshot by JFritz

Donate a Photo

This app is a keeper for sure.  What do we do with our phones? Take photos and more photos. Here’s a way to turn them into charitable do-gooding.  And it costs nothing. That's because Johnson & Johnson sponsors this app.

For every photo you send to J&J’s website with this app, the company donates $1 to a good cause.  And those causes are many.  You pick the cause you want to help from the curated list J&J has assembled. The only hard part is that you can donate only one photo per day.

Your photo ends up in an online gallery, but it’s safe there.  You can also share what you’re doing with friends and family so they can share their photos too. Browse through the gallery of photos for a shot of good feelings.

What’s to like:  Everything! Free, easy to do, fits right into our lifestyles.

More Information: Donate a Photo homepage.

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Charity Miles

Charity Miles is a smartphone app for charitable giving.
Screenshot by JFritz

Charity Miles 

Charity Miles was one of the first charity apps, and it has proven to be quite popular. You run, walk, bike, whatever and a small amount of money gets donated to a charity for each mile.

You don’t make the donation yourself.  Corporations do that.  So easy, peasy.  You can choose the charity you wish to support from the 30 preselected by Charity Miles. 

What’s to like: No money! No credit cards! Just move around, and contributions happen.

More Info: Charity Miles website.

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Tinbox

Screenshot of smartphones using the Tinbox charitable app.
Tinbox

Tinbox

Ever wished you could just donate to a particular charitable project rather than to a charity’s general fund?

Tinbox lets you do just that. Furthermore, Tinbox doesn’t take money out of your pocket but allows you to team up with a corporate sponsor to make the donation.

The donation is only $1 and, like Donate a Photo, you can only donate once a day, but those dollar bills add up over time.

How does it work? Download Tinbox (free on IOS and Android) and then, whenever you wish, log in and pick a project. Tap and you’re done. Tinbox says that you can do this in about 20 seconds.

What's to Like? Just the thing for those odd times when you are waiting in line, riding the bus, or taking a break from Netflix. Tinbox aims to support charitable organizations across the Europe and the US.  For the States, it’s setting up in San Francisco and New York as a start. 

More info: Tinbox website.