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GlobalGiving Reinforcing Siberian Snow Babies’ Animals for Autism

This week the families lucky enough to be chosen as recipients of FREE autism service dogs by the Illinois-based Siberian Snow Babies’ Animals for Autism program received a bit of news that none were expecting.

They did NOT receive answers to any of the questions they had recently posed to the founder/owner of Siberian Snow Babies, Lea Kaydus.  Nor did they receive a response from GlobalGiving.


You don’t know about GlobalGiving.  Let me catch you up to speed.  GlobalGiving is a charity fundraising web site that gives social entrepreneurs and non-profits from anywhere in the world a chance to raise the money that they need to improve their communities.  GlobalGiving is changing the way people give, offering donors a TRANSPARENT, high-impact giving experience.  All projects on GlobalGiving go through a rigorous due diligence review, satisfy IRS guidelines for international grant-making and tax deductibility…they are a registered 501(c)3 and receive a nominal 15% fulfillment fee.  They are the grant administrators for the Pepsi Refresh Everything Project.

Lea Kaydus applied for a $50,000 grant from the Pepsi Refresh Project back in May, 2011.  Now as we have now heard many times over since the grant was dispersed; she applied for the grant as an individual BUT she didn’t sell it like that on any of her social media outlets.  Check out the Facebook post from May, 2011 and tell me who you think will be the recipient of the grant funds.

I thought I was supporting the Animals for Autism program get funding to place 10 FREE Autism Service Animals.  But that is another tangent and I really want to get back to GlobalGiving.

GlobalGiving recently had their representatives begin calling the families who were promised these 10 FREE Autism Service Animals, and in essence issuing to them an ultimatum.  They were told that they must decide if they want to be part of the free service dog program still despite all the unanswered questions (found here: letter in which the united families ask simple questions and very clearly ask for WRITTEN contact).

Did you just get that look too??

 Not only were they expecting an answer from the families but they were expecting an answer without having answered any of the questions posed by the families to them.  An answer by the end of the week demanded by a person who has evaded answering any of the questions posed to her by the families.

Yeah, me too.

So instead of answering those simple questions, admitting that an honest mistake had been made and she was in over her head, and maybe an apology, this is looking to be a knock-down, drag-out fight.  On the one side we have Lea Kaydus of the Animals for Autism program backed and advised by GlobalGiving bankrolled by Pepsi.  And on the other side are the children.  The children that these highly-trained autism service animals were to help.  Ms. Kaydus, GlobalGiving, Pepsi – may I introduce you to your victims in this struggle.  You remember, the children of the families involved.  Perhaps another couple views of this same event might help as well:

Right now, neither Ms. Kaydus nor GlobalGiving are operating in a transparent manner.  Secrecy abounds even down to the fact that one can no longer see the details of what is being voted on during the Pepsi Refresh Project…all one sees is the teaser.  There was a time when you could see the Project outline, the proposed budget, and there was even a blog that accompanied the project.  That has all been removed…apparently that was too transparent.  People might get upset if the idea being funded was not the same idea they had voted on and supported. (CLICK on the picture to enlarge)

CLICK to enlarge

I wonder why they allowed the submission of a project that had an unacceptable line item budget.  It was clearly outlined when the idea was approved as a contender.  I would have thought that if it did not meet funding criteria that it would be either rejected or corrected prior to being put up for voting by the many millions of Pepsi fans out there.

Too many questions left unanswered, strong-arm tactics by GlobalGiving representatives, and children caught in the crossfire while a company refuses to admit that it may have made a mistake.

Back on December 13, 2011 GlobalGiving sent this Tweet out for us to ponder:

I don’t think that the true meaning of this article (The Simple Way to Avoid Social Media Failures by Jeff Stibel, Chairman and CEO of Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.) was understood.  I encourage you to read it and apply it to the situation at hand.  In fact, GlobalGiving, I would encourage you to go back and re-read the article.  I will leave you with the closing paragraph from the article in hopes that it will refresh your memory.

The difference between those who fail and those who succeed in the age of social media is simple. Success is no longer about fancy packaging and carefully controlled messages. When everyone can see what you’re doing, the most essential values are transparency, honesty and credibility. Even with advanced privacy tools — like private lists, tweets and circles — the most foolproof way to stay safe on social media is simply to be who you say you are. Pretending to be something you’re not, or attempting to conceal or manipulate the truth is a surefire way to lose. You win by matching your image with reality, acting with integrity, and sincerely apologizing when you’re wrong.

{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Ginger Jackson February 1, 2012, 4:04 AM

    Well said. I am so, so sorry your families are being put through this. It’s disgusting.

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