Archive | January, 2011

New Press: Fox Business Video and Dowser Case Study

31 Jan

Check out this video profile of Rachael and Catchafire from the “Young Guns” segment on Fox Business!

You can also read the accompanying article, from Fox’s Small Business Center. And as if that wasn’t enough,  Catchafire was also featured as a Mini Case Study on today.

Young Guns: Catchafire is Catching On [Fox Business]

Mini Case Study: Catchafire pairs professionals with social change organizations []

Browse other recent press in our Press Room


Our $1 Million Campaign is Down to the Wire!

27 Jan

We have some exciting news about our $1 Million Give What You’re Good At Holiday Campaign!

We are now less than $120,000 away from meeting our goal of $1 Million worth of pledged pro-bono hours! We’re thrilled that so many skilled professionals have signed up to make a difference so far, and have brought us this close to our goal. But we need to close the gap by Monday, and it’s going to take a real push.

That’s where we hope you’ll come in — if you haven’t yet signed up for pro bono project, there’s no better time than now!

You can start by browsing our open projects. We have 37 wonderful open projects right now — everything from Event Publicity for the Susan G. Komen Foundation to a Social Media Plan for the Tibet Fund, and many, many more. We’ll also be rolling out new projects on Facebook and Twitter over the next few days. Once you find a project you like, all you have to do is sign up to join us, and let us know a little bit about your professional skills. It only takes a few minutes.

And if you’ve already signed up to volunteer your professional skills, we hope you’ll join us to rally others in these last few days of our campaign. Here’s what you can do:

  • Follow us on Twitter (@catchafire) and help spread the word by tweeting this: “I’m helping @catchafire raise $1 MILLION in pro-bono hours by Monday. We’re almost there! Please join us at
  • Like us on Facebook ( and help share our new projects and announcements in the next few days
  • Email your friends! It won’t take any time at all, and hearing directly from you can really make a difference. You can keep it short and sweet. Feel free to personalize it in any way you want, but here is what we recommend saying:
“I just signed up on to use my professional skills to help a nonprofit in need as part of Catchafire’s $1 Million Give What You’re Good At Holiday Campaign! Together, we’re raising $1 Million worth of pro bono services for New York-area nonprofits. The campaign ends on Monday, January 31, and we have less than $120,000 to go! There are 37 open projects, which you can view here. I hope you’ll join me by signing up before Monday to volunteer your skills, build your resume, and make professional contacts.”

  • Good old-fashioned word-of-mouth! Do you know an ace accountant? Is there a PR whizkid in your office? Tell them about Catchafire and encourage them to sign up by Monday!

With your help, we know we can reach our $1 Million goal by this Monday!

Announcing Three New Project Types!

26 Jan

We’re thrilled to announce the addition of three new types of projects to our project menu!

This batch brings our total to 34 project types in the areas of Accounting and Finance, Design, Human Resources, Marketing, Multimedia, Fundraising, Public Relation and Communications, Social Media, Strategy, and Technology.

The new offerings are:

Grant Proposal Preparation: An experienced grantwriter or fundraiser helps an organization develop grant proposals based on assessment of its programs, needs, and a knowledge of grantmaker guidelines.

Copywriting: A skilled writer or marketing professional helps an organization develop concise and convincing content for brochures, one-pagers, or other written marketing materials.

Media Training: Media training with a public relations professional can turn an executive director or other key staff member into an effective and savvy spokesperson, able to leverage media interest to the organization’s best advantage.

We encourage nonprofits to browse the project menu and see whether any of our projects could help your organization grow. If so, it’s easy to register here.

And if you’re a professional with skills in any of these areas, we enthusiastically recommend that you fill out a profile letting us know which of these projects matches your skillset.

For a list of our current open projects, please visit our Open Projects page.

For more on our matching process, please read our FAQ.

If you have an idea for a project on our menu, email

Pro Bono Projects of the Week!

25 Jan

We sign up new projects every day, so there’s always a new cause that needs your help. While we love all of our organizations, here are a few of the projects we’re particularly fond of this week. Check them out and apply today if you’ve got the skills for the job and the passion for the organization!

Do you have a passion for the ballet and a knack for social media?

New York International Ballet Competition (NYIBC) provides the world’s finest young ballet dancers with an extraordinary educational, mentoring, and cultural experiences. They’re planning a huge gala in March that will feature dancers from some of the top dance companies in the world. Help them with a Social Media Campaign!

Are you a branding guru who wants to help build with a new model for diaspora networking?

Turkish Women’s International Network is building a global network for Turkish women living outside of Turkey. They want to be sure they clearly communicate their values as they bring these women together. Lend your expertise to help shape their Brand Identity.

Do you want to use your publicity prowess to support the fight against breast cancer?

Susan G. Komen for the Cure exists to eradicate breast cancer as a life-threatening disease. Their March 4th Ticked Pink! fundraising event will celebrate the lives of breast cancer survivors. Help them drum up some Event Publicity for this fantastic evening which will feature a Diane Von Furstenberg fashion show and some big name celebrities..

Can your design skills change the lives of thousands of young people?

iMentor cultivates relationships between young people and volunteer mentors through an innovative platform. They’ve matched over 10,000 mentor and mentees. To match even more, they need your Graphic Design skills to create recruitment materials.

Want to use your awesome tech skills to lower the rate of childhood obesity?

CYCLE Kids, Inc. is a social enterprise working to lower the rate of childhood obesity by integrating bicycling programs into classrooms. Help them with a Salesforce Database Customization so they can improve their data tracking.

Can you crunch numbers and do you have a deep passion for literacy?

Knowledge iTrust partners with educational leaders to develop the best digital and real-world literacy learning projects. They need a Market Analysis to learn more about their niche market and maximize the reach of their services.

New Press: Crain’s and Nonprofit Quarterly

24 Jan

We’ve got some new press for the file! Anne Fisher of Crain’s New York Business recently featured Catchafire in her “Executive Inbox” column, calling our service “a way for savvy businesspeople to give back to the community.” The Crain’s piece spurred some further coverage by Nonprofit Quarterly‘s Bruce Trachtenberg. To read more about Catchafire in the press, visit our Press Room.

A matchmaker for nonprofits and skilled volunteers [Crain’s New York Business]

Some Volunteers Would Rather Crunch Numbers Than Haul Lumber [Nonprofit Quarterly]


Get To Know Catchafire’s New Team Member, Ruti Wajnberg

20 Jan

How did you hear about Catchafire?

I heard about Catchafire through a close friend who recognized that the organization’s mission is very in-line with my own interests; mainly, the intersections between the private and public sectors in strategic and mutually beneficial ways. I attended the organization’s launch event where I heard Rachael speak about her inspiration for Catchafire – and from there, I was hooked. I’ve since created a Project Proposal in the field of online advertising and have been an active proponent of this volunteering model, both within my most recent company and in my social circles.

What will you be doing for Catchafire?

Initially, I will be hiring and training our Catchafire Consultant team and streamlining our sales channel. Once our sales strategy is ironed out, I will be transitioning into a Marketing role where I will be responsible for strategic partnerships, event planning and volunteer recruitment.

What past volunteer experiences have you had?

I have had many skills-based volunteer experiences. Most recently, I curated and facilitated Action Day of the Feast conference, which gathers the world’s greatest innovators from across industries and society to empower, inspire and engage each other in creating world-shaking change.

What past experiences have you had working with nonprofits and for social good?

I began my career working for non-profit museums, educating the public about genocide and the power of hatred. During my Masters in Entrepreneurship, I co-founded a socially conscious for-profit in the field of product recalls. Additionally, I have served on the Board of several organizations which I believe are building bridges between sectors, including StartingBloc, and serve as Events Director for The Feast, hosted by All Day Buffet.

What were you doing before Catchafire?

In my last position as Senior Digital Product Specialist at Yodle, I consulted with small business owners to build their web presence in order to get new leads online. In addition to this role, I launched several social and environmental initiatives – working to align the corporation’s socially responsible efforts strategically with its bottom line.

What are some of your hobbies outside of your job?

Many of the roles in which I volunteer allow me to pursue my hobbies – like event planning. Outside of those opportunities, I love live music and try to see as many concerts as possible – from hip hop to bluegrass to funk and soul. I also enjoy camping, spending time with my beautiful niece and taking advantage of all that NYC has to offer.

What is your favorite place in New York City?

My favorite place in NYC is Lincoln Center – my parents are avid opera fans and introduced us to this space at an early age. The front windows feature massive mounted Chagall’s (my favorite artist), and there’s just nothing like enjoying a glass of champagne on the balcony of the Metropolitan Opera House overlooking the courtyard’s fountain.

What inspired you to pursue this type of career?

I am inspired by the notion that a professional career and creating positive social impact need not be mutually exclusive, and am excited by the strides being taken to make this a reality for my generation.

Where did you attend college?  What was your degree in?

I studied History with a double minor in Music & Italian at New York University (NYU). Later, I received an MBA in Entrepreneurship from a University in Israel called IDC (the Interdisciplinary Center).

What’s one thing that you find interesting about yourself?

Upon graduation from NYU, I moved to a commune on the beach in Israel for six months where I learned how to plant grass, tend to roses, chop down a tree and drive a tractor.

Rachael Chong at iMentor’s 4 Under 40 Event on January 25

20 Jan

Catchafire Founder and CEO Rachael Chong will be part of a very special panel discussion next Tuesday, January 25. The evening will be hosted by iMentor, a mentoring nonprofit that uses technology and innovative curriculum to expand on the mentoring model. The discussion, part of National Mentoring Month, will be moderated by iMentor CEO Mike O’Brien, and other panelists will include:

As if that isn’t reason enough, the panel will be held in Google’s New York offices. There’s a suggested donation of $20, which includes a wine and cheese reception. All proceeds will go to iMentor.

4 Under 40: Making a Difference in NYC
Tuesday, January 25th, 2011
Google NYC Office
76 Ninth Avenue, 4th Floor

For more information and to RSVP (by tomorrow!), please visit

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