TGUP: Vision - A Simple Idea
TGUP’s Vision: A Simple Idea to Change the World that's Working Today

Everybody wants a better world, don’t they? But who knows how to get one? We think we know, and we’re not talking metaphorically. We’re talking literally.

Our conviction comes from 17 years of experience helping close to three million of the poorest people in the world have a better chance in life. The idea has three elements: small donations; collective action; and high impact projects. Those elements create three corresponding strands of culture: compassion; collaboration; and competence. Combined, they are what makes the change. Architecturally, it looks like this.

Image of a Simple Idea

On the left are donors. On the right are the villages where we build our projects. In the middle is TGUP. Since 2007, we’ve invested almost $3 million to fund more than 400 projects in 25 developing world countries. By all measures, it works, and well.

One important point: we’ve raised money from private foundations that covers all our operating costs: literature; website; travel; software subscriptions; etc. Because of that, 100% of every dollar an individual or group donates goes into their intended project. We don’t know of any other charity in the world that can say—and show—that.

The core idea is simple: everybody gives just a little bit, and we use all that money to help the poorest people in the world help themselves. Here’s why it works…

Small donations mean that everybody can participate. The single biggest change we can make toward a better world is to show millions of people that we’re bigger when we help others. Because we are, aren’t we? What we’re really working to create, here, is culture of compassion, where it’s OK to help others. In fact, it’s easy, and fun! With that in place, positive change becomes almost inevitable.

The second element in the model is collective action. In addition to individuals, we work with schools, companies, churches, service clubs (Rotary; Kiwanis), etc. to help their members realize the same nobility in altruism that an individual feels. It’s just that it happens as a shared experience. It’s magnified.

Here, we’re creating a culture of collaboration, because we’re stronger when we work together. Aren’t we? And Uplifting the human condition is too big for any one of us to do alone. We need collaboration.

Finally, there are high impact projects. We build small-scale, low-cost projects that have almost no overhead, yet dramatically improve life chances for the recipients. Classrooms; medical clinics; libraries; water wells; latrines, etc. They change the dynamic of any village, helping boost thousands of people at a time.

We target projects in education because a better educated person remains better educated their entire life. They pass that along to their children, who pass it along to theirs. The effect literally ripples into eternity. High impact projects add the cultural component of competence. to compassion and collaboration.

TGUP Projects by Year

This, then, is the model: small donations, collective action, and high-impact projects creating a culture of compassion, collaboration, and competence.

Does it work? Look at the chart. And, we have only really marketed in northern California. Yet, we’re already helping almost three million people have a slightly better chance in life. It is SO working! Imagine when we’re doing 10X, or 100X more. The better world we’re all longing for suddenly begins coming into reach.

This works because it is simple, it’s rewarding to all who touch it, it’s effective, and it leaves its imprint in the culture, there to spawn a new ethic: that we’re bigger when we help others, and we’re stronger when we work together.

Our challenge, then, is to scale it up. That is our invitation to you, to help. We need people like you, people with compassion, vision, and the capacity to act. Together, we really can change the world. We are. That’s why we’re confident that we will. Join us.


Uplift  for a Better World

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