When I started Baking for Good in 2009, I wanted to build a fundraising platform that would allow organizations large and small to support charities that were close to their hearts. I was tired of the same old school fundraisers that encourage students to go door to door selling wrapping paper and chocolate bars (especially since I’m pretty sure most kids aren’t allowed to wander door to door in their neighborhoods anymore). I wanted to create a website — an online bake sale, if you will — that would offer really delicious, gourmet baked goods that would be perfect for gifts and special occasions AND that would help great organizations raise money for projects that matter.
Three years later, I can say with confidence that lots of organizations, large and small, were excited about this model. Our list of charity partners started out at about 50 and grew to 200+ in a matter of months. The downside, however, was that the list grew to be so long that many of our customers felt overwhelmed at checkout, and we found that even though we were donating a lot of money each month, it was spread across so many organizations that it was sometimes difficult to see it making a difference in any one place.
Surely the list couldn’t keep growing forever, so I knew from pretty early on that we would need to make a change in our donation program. The true catalyst for us making a change came earlier this summer, when we learned that commercial co-venture laws in several states restrict nonprofits’ ability to promote companies like ours, and discourage businesses like ours from linking the names of nonprofits directly with the purchases of products. It’s complicated, and the rules vary from state to state, but we decided it was time to simplify the way we make our donations.
Change is good. We’re really excited about the changes we’re making to our cause program, and we hope you’ll enjoy them. Now when you shop at Baking for Good, instead of choosing one nonprofit from a list of dozens of organizations, you can choose from a shorter list of causes by category. Each month we will choose one nonprofit within each category to receive the funds for that month. We’ll be using nominations from our customers as well as rating systems like Charity Navigator to determine which nonprofits to support.
We know that sometimes you really want to choose a specific organization that has important meaning to you or to your recipients, and we want to still allow that to happen. For wedding orders and other big events and gifts (any purchase over $300), you can select a specific organization of your choice. Contact us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org to talk to us about these types of orders.
If you haven’t visited Baking for Good lately, swing by the site and check out the new cause program. We’ll be sharing stories about the nonprofits we’re supporting on our blog, and we welcome your nominations for organizations to support in the future at email@example.com.
Thanks for being on this journey with us!