If nothing else, the phenomenon of social media has helped us to share in our sense of a collective humanity, letting us share common interests and passions with people we could never hope to meet face-to-face. These 6 apps count on that enhanced sense of shared humanity to help us help ourselves (and in case you missed it, check out our original 7 random apps of kindness article for even more options):
Blood Donor from the American Red Cross (Free for Android and iOS) lets you connect with your local Red Cross for a blood drive, as well as earn rewards for your donations.
If you can’t resist a good dare, The Budge (Free for iOS) app takes a wager—such as who wins a footrace or who can name the most characters from “The Simpsons,” whatever it is—where the winnings go to a charity linked to the app. Thus, the bragging rights are doubled, since not only can users brag on winning a bet, but also on giving to a good cause.
Check-in for Good (Free for Android and iOS) lets you check in at businesses you visit every day to make micro-donations to good causes. After downloading the app, check out the participating locations nearest you that you’d want to visit: the coffee shop, the music venue, the retailer. Once you’re there and checking in, the participating location will make a donation to a Check-in for Good cause.
If you’re one of those people who takes pictures of his or her meals to send to Facebook or Instagram, then Feedie (Free for Android and iOS) is the app for you. The app lets restaurants exchange donations for social media shout-outs, so for each photo shared through the Feedie app, participating restaurants will donate to The Lunchbox Fund, a non-profit organization that provides meals to schoolchildren in South Africa.
Share the Meal is an app from the United Nations World Food Program. It lets you donate 50¢ with just a tap on your smartphone, and feed a hungry child for a day.
Tin Box users give $1 to charity each day, but the dollar that they’re giving comes not from their own pockets but from the pockets of corporate sponsors. The corporate sponsorship, meanwhile, pays out in return for advertising, which shows up on users’ smartphones for a maximum of five seconds after donation. One other notable aspect of Tin Box is that its charitable causes are very focused, ranging from a floating Bangladeshi hospital to an education program about female healthcare for young women in Africa.