TMT estimated the social impact from crowdfunding charity Ray of Hope (ROH)’s 2019 work. Through our metrics for education, housing and employment, we could show that in some cases, ROH’s social impact exceeded the value of the disbursements because ROH allowed beneficiaries to keep their children in school, keep their homes, or enabled them to find new income streams or better housing.
For each beneficiary, we identified where each ROH payment went to. Next, we valued the corresponding forgone benefits and costs. For example, if a client would have lost his home without ROH’s help, we assigned a value to that housing and add it to ROH’s social impact.
For each benefit we also considered what percentage could be attributed to ROH because our beneficiaries still have initiative and agency (though constrained). TMT and ROH also operate in a larger social service ecosystem. Hence ROH’s social impact also needs to be adjusted by the likelihood of beneficiaries achieving similar outcomes in a world without ROH. We adjust the social impact accordingly before adding it to social impact.
TMT’s social impact metrics helped Ray of Hope clarify the value it was providing to its clients, and validated the unique role it plays in the social service sector — helping those who fall through the cracks.