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Social Entrepreneur

328 EpisodesProduced by Tony LoydWebsite

Social Entrepreneur exists at the intersection of profit and purpose. We tell positive stories from underrepresented voices, focused on solutions.


043, Mike Vo, we2o | $62.4 B in Untapped Funds for Charitable Giving

Charitable giving seems to be stuck in a time warp. While we easily bank, shop and communicate across mobile apps, online charitable giving is not always the best user experience. This poor user experience came to the attention of Tesla Motor’s Director of Quality Product Engineering, Mike Vo.

Something else came to Mike’s notice. After 5 years of working 90+ hours per week with almost every day of the year, his accrued personal time off, or vacation time, was about to be forfeited. Mike wondered how common this problem was, and if he could do something with those unused vacation hours.

In the US alone, every year there is $52.4 Billion in accrued, unused vacation time. That’s a lot of value that can be put to use. Also, every year, US companies set aside $10 billion in matching funds that go unused.

So, these three factors: a poor user experience with many charity web sites, $52.4 billion in untapped wealth and another $10 billion in matching funds seemed like a compelling business case to Mike Vo. Today, Mike runs we2o. We2o is the world's first philanthropy platform to enable donation of unused vacation time. You can donate unused vacation time to your favorite causes.

Social Entrepreneurship Quotes from Mike Vo:

“At the end of the day, what we want to do is two things. One, we want to find new, worthwhile, compelling buckets of money to funnel to charities that do amazing work. And two, we want to bring technology to the game to propel and improve the user experience.”

“I did a bit more research and what I realized is that every year, there is $52.4 billion dollars in unused vacation time.”

“Online charitable giving is still stuck below 10%.”

“Giving in the US has been stuck at 2% GDP since the ‘70s.”

“Every year, people in the US give about $300 billion…But we have almost 1.5 million charities.”

“US corporations set aside $10 billion in matching funds every year that go unused.”

“Every 30 seconds a child dies from a lack of nutrition. “

“Every 60 seconds a child dies from a lack of access to clean water.”

Social Entrepreneurship Resources:  

Fair Anita Quote Giveaway Announcement!

Remember that we’re still giving away a pair of earrings from Fair Anita. The giveaway ends February 15, 2016. Click here for details.

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