The director of Activate Good, Amber Smith, reached out to me almost immediately after my Color Run post, having been alerted by a mutual friend. We chatted some this afternoon about the run and the aftermath.
It seems Activate Good was given the same deal that most other charities get from Color Run. That is, they got a donation based on the number of volunteers they provided. Activate Good contributed over 180 volunteers and performed a lot of the heavy lifting for the run, including the “color toss.” Amber says their volunteers were not involved in the clean up as that was done by others.
In return, Activate Good got some stage time, the donation, and a booth at the event. While Amber says it would’ve been nice if more run participants to have visited their booth, she was happy with the amount of the donation the organization received. The organization also got a significant fan boost on Facebook as well. Still, she is sympathetic to the residents who were inconvenienced and wants her organization to make a positive impact in our community.
I thanked Amber for getting in touch with me, and want to say that it was never my intention to make Activate Good out as the bad guy here. I believe Activate Good does some outstanding work in our community and I wholeheartedly support its mission. My issue with this event is primarily with the poor job done in cleaning up as well as the strong possibility that the run participants might have been unaware that the vast majority of their event fees were going not to support the fine work of Activate Good but instead to fatten the wallets of The Color Run owners.
I guess the bottom line is that if you’d like what your local charities are doing in your community, nothing beats paying them directly.