The model will allow EqualityCard™ business and consumer cardholders to generate tax-deductible donations equal to 1 percent of their purchases for the LGBT charities of their choice, with no out of pocket expense.
“We’re thrilled to be on the verge of launching EqualityCard™, a dynamic new way to increase giving in the LGBT non-profit arena.” said Nick Lepetsos, Philanthropy Ventures LLC, Founder/CEO and EqualityCard™ creator. “Our Board of Advisors, who represent a wide cross-section of the LGBT movement, are working closely with us to ensure that this card represents LGBT people and causes in the most positive, inclusive, and meaningful way.”
Several LGBT non-profit organizations have already agreed to become EqualityCard™ Non-Profit Affiliates, which will allow them to add their organization’s profile to the EqualityCard™ donation portal, a non-public site where new cardholders are directed to help them decide which organizations to designate as their beneficiaries of 1 percent of their purchases. Cardholders will be able to choose up to three charities to receive the funds. One of the first non-profits to become an EqualityCard™ Affiliate is Immigration Equality, a national organization fighting for equality under U.S. immigration law for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and HIV-positive individuals.
“I’m delighted by the positive impact this initiative will have on the LGBT fundraising climate,” said Win Chesson, Director of Development at Immigration Equality and member of the EqualityCard™ Board of Advisors. “This new fundraising tool will give organizations like ours a new revenue stream and allow us to serve more LGBT people fleeing violence and abuse. With the deteriorating conditions for LGBT people in places like Russia and Uganda, it is vital we have the resources to welcome every LGBT person seeking freedom and safety.”
Other LGBT organizations to become EqualityCard™ Affiliates include Athlete Ally, The New York City Anti-Violence Project, Campus Pride, Circle of Voices, The National Center for Transgender Equality, SunServe in South Florida, The Transgender Law Center, and the Hetrick-Martin Institute, a group that creates a safe and supportive environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and, questioning youth between the ages of 13 and 24 and their families.
“We see the EqualityCard™ initiative as a unique opportunity to bring a new source of funding to our programs that support LGBTQ youth.” said Darra Gordon, Chief Operating Officer at Hetrick-Martin Institute and member of EqualityCard™ Board of Advisors. “We also feel reassured that the EqualityCard™ has sought guidance from LGBT movement leaders prior to launch to ensure that this product positively reflects our community. ”
Dozens of additional LGBT nonprofits are expected to join the initiative throughout the year, bringing in new streams of revenue for their respective causes.
EqualityCard™ will build on the momentum of Philanthropy Ventures’ flagship brand, HaloCard® which launched last year in support of a host of other non-profits that are largely outside the LGBT giving space. Forbes highlighted the new venture last spring in a feature story titled “A Startup Aims to Disrupt The Charity– And The Credit Card– Business”. EqualityCard™will raise funds using the exact same model as HaloCard®.
EqualityCard™ will officially launch on February 24, 2014. Over the next month the the LGBT community can meet EqualityCard™ representatives and learn more about the enterprise at Aspen Gay Ski Week (January 12 – 19) and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s Creating Change conference in Houston, Texas (January 29 – February 2).
To view the EqualityCard™ Board of Advisor’s page, visit: www.equalitycardproject.com/board-of-advisors.html