In 2007 Avaaz was founded in the United States with the noble goal to unite innovators from around the globe to close the gap between the world as it is and the world how people would like it to be. This is reflected in the name of the organization, Avaaz means voice in several Middle Eastern and Asian countries.
The employees work with local populations to erase political corruption, reform environmental policy to eliminate climate change, alleviating poverty, and ensuring the safety of food sources from genetically modified food organizations.
The group consists of over 44 million members and hosts campaigns in 15 languages. Grassroots efforts the group engages in range from calling campaigns, online petitions, financing media advertisements about campaigns, emailing local policy makers, and offline protests and other local activities.
The focus of the organization is decided by its members through polling and randomly checking member groups for satisfaction with the course the group is taking. Results are available online, providing a great amount of transparency across all parts of Avaaz.
When a situation becomes a crisis, Avaaz works to make the most of a challenging situation and have the most impact possible. For example, by smuggling photographers in Syria during the recent outbreak of civil war, Avaaz was able to better educate the world on what was occurring in the war-torn country. This urged other groups to lend aid and act to help refugee’s.
Understanding an internet free of oversight and easily accessible by all is paramount to impacting change, Avaaz has worked to secure net neutrality in the United States and the Europen Union. The group has also worked to provide internet connections in Iran and other countries during times of crisis to allow protestors to effectively organize and communicate.
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