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Pinterest For Nonprofits: 7 Organizations To Watch

First Posted: 02/21/2012 9:06 am   Updated: 02/21/2012 7:36 pm

By now, most nonprofits have likely been bombarded with suggestions to hop on the Pinterest craze. So what's it all about, and which organizations can you learn from that have already harnessed the trend?

Pinterest, a virtual bulletin board for saving and sharing web pages of interest, allows users to create and display boards of interests -- creating an identity through links, pictures, words and ideas.

The social media site also hit 11.7 million unique monthly U.S. visitors, hitting the 10 million mark faster than any other standalone site in history, according to Tech Crunch.

So its initial appeal to nonprofits might come as an obvious one: Pinterest provides another way to connect and share messages with a mass audience.

Beyond that, Pinterest also symbolizes our aspirations, displaying not who we are, but who we want to be, HuffPost Tech Editor, Bianca Bosker, points out.

She points to the fact that Pinterest's success may lie in its ability to change the social media conversation from "look at me" to "look at this," ultimately providing an untapped space for inspiration, creativity and action.

As an example, Amnesty International pins inspiring pictures related to rights and equality, as well as links to T-shirts and jewelry that support the organization.

Nonprofits and cause-related organizations can be easily shared if their story can easily be told through images; if they've already made a name for themselves in the social media space; and if the nonprofit has an eye for search-friendly content, HuffPost blogger Joe Waters points out.

The majority of Pinterest's users are 25 to 40 year-old women, which for organizations like GlobalGiving, makes up 60 percent of its charitable base. Although the capability to directly donate to a nonprofit on Pinterest doesn't exist (yet), it gives consumers and potential-donators an option understand the organization on what seems like a more intimate level, according to

In the end, nonprofit Pinterest users might learn a thing or two about their audience, and a large audience will get the chance to learn about the organization.

Check out a few nonprofits that are already paving the way on Pinterest.

On Pinterest already? Tell us about how you're spreading good things on the social media platform in the comments below!


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  • Amnesty International

    <a href="" target="_hplink">Amnesty International</a> pins items on its site ranging from shopping poverty statistics to ways to shop and support the organization. See Amnesty Intåernational's Pinterest <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.

  • Charity: water

    <a href="" target="_hplink">Charity: water</a>, dedicated to bringing safe drinking water to developing nations, uses pictures of its work to tell its story on Pinterest. The organization also has boards devoted to creative fundraising ideas. Check out charity:water's Pinterest, <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.

  • Operation Smile

    Providing free surgeries for child born with cleft-lip all over the world, <a href="" target="_hplink">Operation Smile's</a> Pinterest posts before-and-after photos of the children it helps and also shares messages that support its cause. See Operation Smile's Pinterest <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.

  • PETA

    PETA posts funny cartoons, items for sale and vegan and vegetarian recipes for its audience to share. Check out PETA's Pinterest, <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.

  • The Gates Foundation (source)

    Because Pinterest is still new to the social media game, quite a few nonprofits have yet to make a page. Still, some organizations, such as <a href="" target="_hplink">the Gates Foundation</a>, are getting pinned and repinned for their gripping photos and profound messages. Check out the Gates Foundation's pins <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.

  • American Red Cross (source)

    Also without an official account, fans of the <a href="" target="_hplink">American Red Cross</a> are sharing its message on Pinterest through vintage-inspired ads and pictures of the organization's buttons. Check out more pins from Red Cross, <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.

  • Women For Women International (source)

    Pinterest users are also sharing the message of <a href="" target="_hplink">Women for Women International</a>, which works with female victims of war in rebuilding their lives. Though the organization doesn't have its own page yet, popular pins people are sharing include pictures of the founder Zainab Salbi, as well as brief descriptions of the organization's message. Check out Women for Women International pins, <a href="" target="_hplink">here</a>.


Filed by Emily Heinz  |