Lendingahand.net serves as a platform to connect consumers, businesses and charities.
Great ideas are often the result of synergy—two or more things coming together and their combined effect is greater than their individual effects. In this case, a passion for local businesses to succeed and a desire for charities to be better funded combined in the heart of Julia Fiechter. So she created Lendingahand.net. Lendingahand.net is a unique program that encourages consumers to patronize businesses that are giving back to partner charities. Fiechter, 38, is a 20-year volunteer, fundraising addict and recent winner of the 2012 Young Athena award.
How does it work? Partner businesses pledge in-kind-donations or a portion of the proceeds generated from Lendingahand.net customers to a partner charity.
How are Lendingahand.net sales distinguished? Customers carry a Lendingahand.net key tag or download a free smartphone app. At the end of the month the partner businesses submit a donation form on the Lendingahand.net website, compile the donations and send them directly to the partner charity they have chosen to fund.
Getting involved in the program not only benefits the community, it is a community—a growing group of like-minded people who want to give back. Jen Fisher, 39, graduate retention manager for the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce and lead singer of local band Sugar Shot was inspired by the program and wrote its theme song (available on the website).
Lendingahand.net is growing strong, with over 60 partner businesses ranging from banks to spas and lawn care companies to restaurants. The program has raised over $9,000 for partner charities (visit lendingahand.net for the complete list).
“I have had the opportunity to meet many inspiring individuals that have a strong desire to make a difference,” says Kristen Bowen, 22, community outreach coordinator for Lendingahand.net.
Lendingahand.net gets caring businesses and consumers working together for the good of the community. Businesses grow. Charities are funded. People are blessed. That’s an idea with heart and feet.