Avaaz meaning “voice” or “song” in the Persian language was created by Canadian Rick Patel to close the gap between the world as it currently is and the world that most people desire. Service Employees International Union and Res Publica helped to start the organization. The organization now has more than 44 million members in 194 countries around the world.
Giving People a Voice
The organization hopes to give people everywhere a voice through asking them to join email campaigns aimed at changing a variety of conditions around the globe including climate change, animal abuse, human rights, poverty and international conflicts. Avaaz has been an outspoken critic of President Donald Trump during the recent United States elections.
Henry Root Inspiration
Avaaz is headquartered in New York City. The organization draws inspiration from the fictional Henry Root who wrote letters to the London Evening Standard complaining about changes needing to be made in the England.
How Campaigns are Chosen
Avaaz works virtually with workers in 30 different countries ensuring that each campaign they embrace has international coverage. Any member can suggest a campaign they feel that Avaaz should become involved with supporting. Then, a team of specialist develop a platform calling for the proposed change. A tester email is then sent to 10,000 members with Avaaz getting involved with those where the organization gets the largest response.
Avaaz has had several successful campaigns. They encouraged over 2.8 million people to sign a petition to keep the internet free. They were also instrumental in the signing of the Paris Climate Accord which they hope is the beginning to the end of fossil fuel. They have also encouraged over 1.3 million people to sign a petition increasing the size of marine reserves. They have been outspoken in wanting the use of glyphosate in pesticides discontinued. The organization has given millions in aid where natural disasters have struck.
Avaaz continues to be a great example in servant leadership everywhere. They accept funding from no government relying on donations from members. They believe that the world will be a better place as people learn to work together.
For more information follow Avaaz on Twitter.