YouTube takes a regular pasting for a lot of its content but there's no denying that it's also an incredibly powerful platform for encouraging social awareness and positive action. Alongside the make up tutorials and CoD walkthroughs, there are films that have changed our perception of many political and socio-economic events and given a voice to those who are powerless to get their message across in other, more "traditional" ways. YouTube recognises the impact these videos have and, through their DoGooder Video awards, they support and promote films that carry a message and are also "funny, creative, episodic, and [have] interactive cause-related content". The following four winners were chosen from the twelve finalists.
Best Nonprofit Video Award: Follow The Frog
Sometimes the desire to make a grand gesture means that we forget the real difference we can actually make to the environment just by changing the way we consume resources from those affected areas. This winning video, from the Rainforest Alliance, reassures us that we can all play our part from the comfort of our own homes by supporting and buying Rainforest Alliance Certified Products – and that gesture alone can help affect significant change.
Change Agent Award: 350km Message For Women With Ovarian Cancer
This is a beautiful and inspiring video from a son to his late mother who he lost to ovarian cancer in 2011. His has committed to walking 1 KM across Scotland for every photo message he receives in support, his target being 350 KM.
Funny for Good: No Joke. Choice Matters. Everywhere.
Pathfinder International’s winning entry “No Joke. Choice Matters. Everywhere.” highlights the extreme difficulties faced by many women when it comes to reproductive health care.
ImpactX Award: END7: How to Shock a Celebrity
The fourth winning video takes a very upsetting subject and the viewers reaction to watching heartbreaking images on film to spur us into action. The Sabin Vaccine Institute wants to bring the world's attention to seven Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTD) and hopes to generate enough funding to eradicate them by 2020. They aren't joking about making it to the end of the film, it's tough.
All four winners of the DoGooder awards 2013 will receive $3,500 in prizes from Cisco, who sponsored the contest.