Virtual Reality for Social Causes and tackling real world problems

Project Description: You see a pamphlet or a charity commercial about suffering kids in third world countries. Do you feel the kind of empathy that facilitates generosity, or do you feel the uncomfortable guilt that you try to avoid? At first, the shocking statistics and graphic photos worked — the message was powerful and emotive. But after one too many pamphlets and commercials, the message is plain.

Now, pictures aren’t as moving, and statistics aren’t as impactful since nearly all the shock value has faded away. The issue is that most of us are so greatly distanced both physically and emotionally from those who need help. Donors are no longer as invested in philanthropic causes because non-profit organizations fail to create empathy, let alone an understanding of the problem. So what do you do now? Where does the future of fundraising lie for charities? The answer may lie in virtual reality. The examples below show how to raise money for charity or social enterprises using virtual reality.

a] Clouds Over Sidra by the United Nations []

b] Nepal Quake Project []

c] Project Water [

While the biggest problem for nonprofit organizations is the physical and emotional distance between donors and those in need, the biggest benefit of virtual reality is that you can be somewhere physically and yet still be in the center of a different environment. It immerses you into a different world. This should explain why VR is the perfect solution for non-profits — virtual reality closes that emotional distance, and already, we have so many different nonprofits companies using virtual reality to promote and support their cause.

I would like to work on VR for any socially important cause and see how connected and moved the users feel after the experience.

Project Type: Experience

Interest: I am interested in doing this project

Device(s) to Be Used: Headset like Rift, Samsung Gear

Things I Know How To Do: Programming and design

Things I Would Need Help With: Projecting images 360 degrees