Example of our application running on St Jude's Children's Hospital Website
Our extension showing information about the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
A close up view.
A browser extension that gives you the lowdown on your favorite charity sites. Make informed donations!
Many of us have seen articles like "How the American Red Cross Spends Your Donations" or "Think Before You Donate to Goodwill," but of those who donate, few take the time to research the credentials of the charities they are supporting. We wanted to increase the transparency in charity spending reports, and the ease with which donors can search them up, directly on the charity website. We were very surprised to find that an extension like this does not already exist!
What it does
Charity Checker automatically pulls concise, relevant information about a charity when you are on their website or secure donate page. It lets you see what percentage of your dollar actually goes to support the cause, and also gives you more detailed information about the charity's financial accountability, potential concerns, credibility ratings, and more. We also have developed an Alexa application that gives you information about a charity that you ask about verbally, and remembers which charities you previously donated to!
How we built it
TLDR: With only one cup of coffee, great mentor support (shoutout to Max and Maxwell!), a ton of snacks, even more struggling, and not enough sleep.
Challenges we ran into
We were originally in a larger group but needed to split up without leaving anyone out. Once we found a team, we had a hard figuring out where to even start. Due to the somewhat poorly documented API combined with our lack of web dev experience, we had to constantly troubleshoot and ask for help. Some specific pain points were going through with API calls and transferring information between different languages dynamically. The mentors and the internet were a great help in this regard!
Accomplishments that we're proud of
What we learned
What's next for Charity Checker
In terms of our browser extension, we see great potential in our database to expand to news sources, for-profit corporations, and government organizations. We plan to expand our data set and look at more variables/characteristics such as average employee compensation and a company's sustainability. For our Alexa application, we plan to integrate all of our extension functionality into voice commands.