There’s something new in charitable gifting, and it’s going to change the way non-profits share the impact of donor generosity. UNICEF is first out of the gate with it’s truly WOW-worthy 360° virtual reality viewer.
For just $12, you can add the 360° viewer to any UNICEF Survival Gift — several of which I featured in my 2015 charitable gift guide. In some cases, bigger gifts even come with a complimentary viewer. And while I’m going to do my best to describe how unbelievably cool this contraption is, it’s really one of those you-have-to-experience-it-to-totally-appreciate-it kind of things.
Putting the viewer together is a relatively quick exercise:
Be sure you visit unicef360.com on your smartphone of choice and download the free app. Once you open the app, follow the on-screen instructions before you slide your phone into the UNICEF 360° viewer. Then, just wait for the film, called Clouds Over Sidra, to start.
If you’ve never experienced virtual reality, which I hadn’t, it’s like a 3D movie times a thousand. You actually feel like you’ve walked into the video; it doesn’t matter which way you turn or look, you get — literally — a 360-degree view of the world into which the video places you.
In this case, the first video experience in what will be a docu-series that UNICEF will produce to take donors on multiple “trips” to various places where the organization is on the ground saving children’s lives, we meet Sidra, a 12-year-old Syrian living in a refugee camp. You’ll tour her makeshift home, visit her bustling classroom and even play soccer outside with some of her friends.
You get the kids’ energy. They look right at you. The connection feels real.
Even my seven-year-old son’s experience — to a video that I wasn’t sure would hold much interest — was so powerful that he not only watched it three times in a row, but also thought the UNICEF 360° viewer would make an awesome Christmas gift:
DISCLAIMER: I was compensated for this post, but the opinions expressed are solely mine.