I just took a survey submitted by the Motion Picture and Television Fund, a charitable organization that has looked after the health and welfare of individuals in the entertainment industry for 89 years. It's an organization that encompasses a wide variety of services for industry members of all ages. My father, throughout his industry career, took regular payroll deductions to contribute to the Fund.
Yet, as long-standing and respectable as the Fund has been (not withstanding some recent controversies), it's remained somewhat below the radar for most industry people. In fact, after I took the survey, I wrote an email to the Fund, suggesting they include in their new outreach efforts a better definition of just what they actually do for industry veterans (i.e. retirees). As the saying goes, "I wish I knew then what I know now." In simply providing guidance, it seems that their extensive services could prove invaluable on so many levels - I know our family could have benefited from their help as my father's health failed - if only we had known.
Though the Fund hasn't employed social media as yet (judging by the website) - it seems that today, even with the volume of information that bombards us every day, service organizations like this would find social media particularly useful, if only to raise their awareness among their supporters. Additionally, a few weeks ago, Kenrg called my attention to a new website, http://www.jumo.com , which is somewhat of a Facebook-type site for following your favorite non-profits. I'm not entirely certain whether that's a workable solution for most people (after all, it's another site to track), but I think it a worthwhile step in developing awareness among important non-profits about the critical importance of reaching out through social media.