Google's One Today makes it so easy to donate, you have no reason not to

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Florence Ion

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We should all strive to make the world a better place, but that can be difficult to do when your life is moving ahead a thousand miles per hour. If you can’t donate your time, the least you can do is donate a little money to someone in need, and with Google’s One Today app you can easily find a new nonprofit to help support.

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One Today showcases a new nonprofit every day that’s in need of financial help.

I’ve written before about apps that help you choose a charity to work with, but One Today is particularly neat because it makes giving with your smartphone more interactive. The app will notify you each day of a different nonprofit to check out based on your interests; the more you give, the better the app gets at picking one that interests you.

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Donate a small sum or rally your friends through social media to get more money together. 

You can offer to donate between $1-$10, or set up a match donation to rally your friends on social media and collectively contribute even more money. The more people you bring on board, the more rallying power you have in your giving profile.

One Today even offers silly achievement badges to inspire you to donate as often as you can. Each nonprofit’s description page usually explains how much money it needs to make its goal, so you’ll always have a bit of criteria to help you decide how much to put forward. All of the projects featured in the app are also vetted by the Google for Nonprofits program.

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You can pay for the nonprofits you’ve elected to help in one lump sum.

When you’re ready to close out your tab (so to speak) you can pay off your balance with Google Wallet. Frankly, I appreciate the flexibility of being able to pay a lump sum every few weeks rather than every time I donate. Donations are tax deductible, too, and when you hit the $250 minimum Google will email you a tax deduction certificate.

Pay it forward

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Want to get your friend on board with One Today? Pay it forward. 

The best part of One Today is the Pay it Forward feature, which aims to help you get more friends on board the giving train. You can help nudge a friend by donating money that she can use toward a nonprofit of her choice. 

I’m typically wary of apps that aim to make it “effortless” to help others. However, I’ve received plenty of positive feedback on One Today from my friends, many of whom I’ve managed to rally on Facebook and Twitter to match my donations. At the end of the day, I’m giving money to a worthy cause that promises to use the money for good. Isn’t that better than doing nothing at all?

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