How the Points of Light Institute Works


MissionFish works with a section of eBay to provide donation support for nonprofit organizations. The MissionFish network was created in 2000 as an online fundraising tool for receiving and selling in-kind donations. Through the partnership of MissionFish and eBay Giving Works, nonprofits are able to accept in-kind gifts from anyone via the Internet. Donations of any type can be given or received in the United States or the United Kingdom, which opens the realm of opportunity for nonprofits with limited resources. Another unique function of this system is that eBay users can choose to donate the money from any sale to the nonprofit of his or her choice [sources: eBay Giving, MissionFish].

And on the flipside, nonprofits can also raise funds by selling well-intentioned gifts for which they have no use. The organization not only keeps 100 percent of the sale, but it also gets free advertising. Along with every item posted on eBay Giving Works is the organization's logo, mission statement and a link to the organization's Web site [source: MissionFish].

The first step to using eBay Giving Works is to become a registered nonprofit organization with MissionFish. Any member of your group can complete this process online in a few simple steps. In order to register as a nonprofit account your organization needs the following:

  • Valid e-mail address
  • Mission statement
  • Digital logo
  • Voided organization check
  • Letter or other proof of tax deductibility

If you're not part of an organization, but would like to donate or purchase goods in support of a nonprofit, you don't need a special Giving Works eBay account. All you need to do is shop on eBay or eBay Giving Works and look for sales marked with the blue and yellow ribbon icon.

Something's cooking in the newest addition to the Points of Light Institute. See the next page for information on the Civic Incubator.