Check out the 2011 winners of the DoGooder Nonprofit Video Awards. They include:
- For best small-organization video: The Post Carbon Institute, with "300 Years of Fossil Fuels in 300 Seconds"
- For best medium-organization video: Ronald MacDonald House Austin, with "Meet the Digits"
- For best large-organization video: American Jewish World Service, with "A Public Service Announcement Not Approved by AJWS"
- For best thrifty video: Watershed Management Group, "It's in Your Hands."
- Takeaway factoids. Each video tells us something we didn't already know -- facts we can tell our friends, like, "Did you know that studies show that children heal better if the people they love are close by?"
- Humor. Whether it's fun cartoons, finger puppets with silly hairdos or offbeat ethnic one-liners by Sarah Silverman, each video finds a way to take a lighthearted approach to a serious subject. (The Watershed Management Group is the one exception, but it uses a gentle, artful, cinematic approach instead -- another way of avoiding pounding viewers over the head with a dire message.) Viewers can watch them for enjoyment, not out of a sense of duty.
- Hope. The Watershed Management Group video, for example, highlights the simple solution of getting kids access to soap and water using "tippy taps" as a way of reducing by half the instances of deadly childhood diarrhea. Viewers instantly think, "That's doable!" (What's a tippy tap? The video makes it clear, as does the photo to the right, from USAID.)
- A call to action. There's no point in getting us interested without giving us a way to follow up, and each video does that, whether by asking for support of the group itself, or with tips like, "Learn to live without fossil fuels" (and an image of a bicycle), or "Understand the issues and pitch in."