Philanthropy and Tech

Too Busy (or Lazy) To Volunteer? Exec Lets You Pay Someone to Volunteer for You

At least this might net more charitable volunteers?
 Too Busy (or Lazy) To Volunteer? Exec Lets You Pay Someone to Volunteer <em>for</em> You

(Photo: Exec)

Sometimes when we pass a homeless person on the way into our multi-million dollar luxury Chelsea apartment, or our driver takes us through the island slums to get to our private beach on St. John’s, we suspect that we should probably think about giving back a little bit. People are, like, poor, you know? But the problem is that we’re frequently so busy being the CEO of a Very Important Venture-Backed Startup that we don’t have the time to go volunteer somewhere.

For that, we are thankful that Exec exists.

The San Francisco-based startup is a lot like TaskRabbit, minus the price bidding for each task. All execs make a flat rate fee of $25/hour, and you can hire them to do everything from personal shopping to cleaning to research. Starting today, you can also hire them to volunteer for you.

Users can pay to hire an exec for a definitive amount of time to volunteer at one of three designated charities. It’s an interesting twist on the volunteering model: the thinking behind it is that people frequently donate money instead of time even though a lot of charities desperately need physical volunteers. All profits go to the three charities beginning now through the end of August.

Any honest way to help a charity–no matter how painfully privileged–is a good thing. But we couldn’t help but bristle at the notion that if you throw enough money at something you’ll never have to interact with it. Maybe instead of paying a poor Exec employee to help build a house or read to kids, you could actually get out in the world and make a difference? Just spitballing here.

Now if you’ll excuse us, we have Instagram photos of our tennis court to take.

Follow Jessica Roy on Twitter or via RSS. jroy@observer.com