CINCINNATI (October 23, 2013) – RushCard— the prepaid Visa debit card founded by Russell Simmons in order to provide financial freedom and access to those long-ignored by traditional banks – and CrowdRise, the crowdfunding site founded by Edward Norton — today announced the winners of the #RiseToThrive Charity Challenge. Over the past six weeks, charities dedicated to building prosperous futures for people in neighborhoods all over America served by RushCard, participated in the crowdfunding challenge. Participating charities raised more than $308,000 in vying for $50,000 in awards from RushCard.
“We’re thrilled that thousands of people across the country have risen to the occasion and raised tons of money to support these important charities,” said Russell Simmons, co-founder of RushCard. “RushCard is proud to support the people and organizations that are inspiring change in their communities and making a difference in our world.”
The top three charities that raised the most money received grants from RushCard. Winning charities received the following grants:
· $25k grant, First Place (raised $86,150) — Workshop in Business Opportunities (WIBO), a 47-year old non-profit organization dedicated to helping people in underserved communities realize the American Dream through entrepreneurship
· $10k grant, Second Place (raised $69,402) – Students for Service, an inspiring organization that partners with non-profits in New York City to address hunger, poverty, and the environment.
· $5k grant, Third Place (raised $41,228) – Move for Hunger, an organization the works with relocation companies across America to support local food banks.
Since 1996, WIBO has trained over 17,000 entrepreneurs who collectively have created close to 32,000 jobs. Of the people that start businesses upon graduation from the WIBO 16-Week Workshop, 54% are still in business five years later compared to the average business survival rate of 20%.
“Economic opportunity and self-sufficiency through entrepreneurship is what we are all about. We realize however for some in our society, there are barriers to success – access to knowledge, networks and capital,” said WIBO CEO Jill Johnson. “WIBO programming helps increase the likelihood of business success by helping our participants gain access to all three.”
“The #RiseToThrive Challenge was an amazing opportunity to galvanize our supporters in a short period of time in a way that would have been tough for us to do on our own,” added WIBO Board Chair Dan Hoffman. “The RiseToThrive Challenge worked.”
Visit www.crowdrise.com/risetothrive to view the winners and participants.
Founded in 2003, RushCard has been providing access to the financial mainstream for 10 years. Today, RushCard is a comprehensive payment platform that serves as a feature-rich and mobile alternative to a traditional checking account. RushCard offers a full range of financial management tools including electronic bill pay, payroll direct deposit, card-to-card money transfer, mobile text alerts and electronic servicing – all available to the millions of Americans who want an alternative to traditional banking.
About UniRush, LLC
Co-founded in 2003 by entrepreneur and philanthropist Russell Simmons, UniRush, LLC, revolutionized the payments industry when it launched one of the first prepaid Visa cards. RushCard provides instant access to a set of basic financial services for millions of Americans who cannot or choose not to establish a traditional banking relationship. For more information on RushCard, please visit www.rushcard.com.
The Prepaid Visa RushCard is issued by The Bancorp Bank pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. The Bancorp Bank; Member FDIC.
CrowdRise is a crowdfunding platform for people and organizations to raise support for charitable causes. CrowdRise’s core principles are that people have unprecedented power to use the power of networks to leverage their personal capacity and that raising money for charity and giving back should be fun. CrowdRise’s custom-built platform and game theory, as well as the company’s proven record of designing innovative crowdfunding strategies, provide individual fundraisers, charities, and events with powerful tools to raise the most money for their causes and share compelling philanthropic stories with their personal networks. The site lets anyone turn their friends into an active base of donors for any cause and lets any organization, company, or event unlock untapped leverage out of their existing platform.
CrowdRise topped Mashable’s list of “Most Innovative Crowdfunding Platforms” and was named a “Top 25 Best Global Philanthropist” by Barron’s. CrowdRise was founded by actor and activist Edward Norton, producer Shauna Robertson, and the founders of Moosejaw, Robert and Jeffrey Wolfe. Thousands of charitable organizations, events, celebrities, and everyday donors have made CrowdRise their philanthropic base for giving back.