KaBOOM is a US non-profit which specializes in building playgrounds in low-income communities. Over the past 12 months, it has used the internet to disseminate its way of working with striking results. In 2009, its internet-based approach helped people build 1,600 do-it-yourself playgrounds, almost as many as KaBOOM! had built itself in the previous 14 years since its foundation.
Many other non-profits are experimenting with an internet-based approach to spread their work. By looking at the KaBOOM! model, the Monitor Institute has come up with seven basic principles to guide them, among them: keep it simple and concrete; build your own technical competency; give up credit to increase your impact; and pay more attention to actual outcomes than online metrics.
As the Monitor study (Breaking New Ground: Using the internet to scale) points out, and as the third item on the above list implies, KaBOOM! has had to forfeit some degree of control, but the rewards – a far greater number of beneficiaries of the organization’s work and reduced costs – have been worth any sacrifices made.
To download Breaking New Ground