Eugene Cho

calling on dreamers, visionaries, and investors

Eugene & Minhee Cho, co-founders of One Day's Wages

We recently unveiled our vision for One Day’s Wages – a movement to fight extreme global poverty. We’re still working hard to get the beta version of the website ready by late June/early July and a full launch by September but we still need your help.  This is my invitation for the early Dreamers, Visionaries, & Investors to help launch One Day’s Wages.

Raising funds is not an easy to do especially in light of two things: 1) I hear there’s a global financial recession going on, and 2) It’s not easy investing in something you’re really not sure if it’s going to do what it aspires to do.

And what is ODW’s aspiration?

Inspiring people around the world through human relationships & stories and technology & social media to stir a movement to fight extreme global poverty.

Would you consider being amongst our early Dreamers, Visionaries, and Investors?  Here’s the good news: We’ve already raised $50,519.63 for the Administration Fund and our goal is to raise $150,000.  We’re also receiving donations for the Giving Fund (100% of these funds go towards organizations, causes, and projects and we’ve raised $4,035). If you’re interested or know someone that might be interested, here’s some relevant links for your due diligence:

Additional good news: Until mid-September, people can donate to One Day’s Wages via Amazon Payments with absolutely ZERO surcharges (amazing!). You can also mail your donation.

Yesterday, Seattle Business Journal published this article about One Day’s Wages.  Help us spread the word by tweeting or posting the article on Facebook, or sending our Vision Letter to some of your family & friends that might resonate with ODW’s vision.

Thank for dreaming with us…

[link to article]
A Seattle pastor and blogger is launching a grass-roots, global movement to fight extreme poverty by asking supporters to donate something he says won’t break the budgets: one day’s worth of wages.

The group, One Day’s Wages, was granted status as a nonprofit in May and will unveil a website to accept donations this month. Founded by Eugene Cho and his wife, Min Hee Cho, One Day’s Wages is using social networking tools such as Facebook and Twitter to seek funds. The nonprofit’s mission is not associated with any faith, the Chos said.

The concept is simple: Donate a single workday’s worth of wages — equal to $192 for an income of $50,000 a year — and have donors renew the pledge each year on their birthday.

“My wife and I want to do our part to impact the larger world,” said Eugene Cho, a blogger and Christian pastor at Quest Church in Seattle.

The nonprofit’s Facebook group, called Fight Global Poverty, lists an astounding 803,000 members. The Chos pledged to give $1 for every member of the Facebook group, up to $100,000, and Eugene Cho asked his 2,000 friends on Facebook to consider joining the group. From there word spread rapidly, he said.

“It is pretty stunning to us,” Eugene Cho said of the interest the concept has received.

One Day’s Wages has begun receiving donations but will not make grants until September after screening groups to be eligible to receive the donations, Cho said.

Cho said the idea came to him and his wife three years ago after one of their three children asked about poor children in a television commercial. The question resonated, so Cho and his wife pledged one year of their household income — about $68,000 — to fight poverty. From that, One Day’s Wages was born and the Chos increased their total pledge to $100,000, some of which might go to cover administrative costs for One Day’s Wages.

The group is trying to raise $150,000 to cover the first two years’ administrative costs for the new nonprofit, Cho said. Still, as the recession worsened, the pledge has put the family in a financial bind and they have sold some assets to cover basic needs, Cho said. “It has been a very humbling, painful time as a family.”

The interest on Facebook is providing inspiration, Cho said. “A big part of our vision is this is what we mean by a movement,” he said. “We really are trying to inspire people to be more generous and compassionate.”

Cho said donations will be passed through to established organizations that support clean water, education, health and other strategies for fighting poverty.

“Our desire is not to reinvent the wheel,” Cho said.

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5 Responses

  1. Hey Eugene,

    I’ve been following you on Twitter…I can’t make a financial contribution at this time, but if there is any other way I can support ODW please let me know (photography? video/film?). My website is http://www.blueskyhill.com.

  2. Matt Busby says:

    Can’t wait to spread the word! Your faithfulness through this process is what is so inspiring!

  3. randplaty says:

    I’ve been reading about your organization and watched the videos and read the letter and I must confess to you that I still don’t quite understand the purpose of your organization. It seems like you are encouraging and collecting funds to fight global poverty and in turn are then giving the funds to other organizations.

    I don’t mean to be disrespectful or anything but isn’t your organization a type of “middleman?” Why can you publish a list of your recommended NGOs and we can donate directly to the NGOs? That way we save the $150000 in operational costs for your organization and that money can be used directly in the war against extreme poverty. I’m probably just missing something here, but what added value does your organization contribute?

  4. me says:

    @randplaty: if it’s not clear, then we haven’t done a good job communicating our vision. hopefully, it’ll become clearer when we share our website.

    but i would encourage you to donate directly to NGOs you believe in. that would be cool.

  5. Pat says:

    Hmmm.

    Makes sense to me, Eugene. You’ve made everything transparent and that’s what I really appreciate. You’re asking for some investment to build a network to inspire thousands to join the cause. And if I read your letter correctly, you’ve already stated that 100% of all public donations are going to organizations that people choose via One Day’s Wages.

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One Day’s Wages

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Collaboration.

col·lab·o·ra·tion
kəˌlabəˈrāSH(ə)n/
noun

the action of working with someone or a group of others  to produce or create something.

May we hold our logos, egos, and tribalism have their place. May we hold them loosely for they too shall pass. May we collaborate for the sake of the greater Kingdom of God ... which endures forever. As we honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., don't forget the God behind the man. The one true God who deposited this dream into MLK is still speaking to us today. Are we listening?

Be courageous. Be brave.

Being invited by the King Family to speak at the MLK worship service at Ebenezer Baptist Church in 2016 remains one of the most unexpected honors of my life. On the right is his daughter, Dr. Bernice King and his sister, Dr. Christine King Farris. Walking throughstreet markets in different parts of the world is the best. Soaking in the culture. Listening to the local language and music. Enjoying the amazing cuisine. Meeting new friends. Praying for the Gospel to penetrate. #ChiangRai Blessed be the local, indigenous leaders for it is they who live in the very communities they seek to love. For it is they who understand their context and culture...better than a Westerner ever will. For it is they who will continue to tenaciously pursue a better world with hope, justice and love when visitors like me leave.

Yes, blessed be the local, indigenous leaders. What an honor and privilege to celebrate with the on-the-ground local @thefreedomstory team to celebrate the recent opening of their Education and Resource Center for the local youth in Chiang Rai, Thailanf. This was made possible through a partnership and matching grant by @onedayswages and The Freedom Story.

While it was an honor to be there to cut the cord and say a few words, this is an example of collaboration. Much love to the Freedom Story team including their co-founders Tawee Donchai and @Rachel Goble, to their staff who live in the community, who understand their context and culture, and who tenaciously pursue a better world with hope, justice and love. And of course, much love to the students themselves for they each matter. Finally, to each person that donated to @onedayswages to make this grant possible.

May hundreds and even thousands of youth be impacted, encouraged, and mentored. May they capture a glimpse of God's love for them.

Photo: @benjaminedwards Part 2 on my wrestling with the complex issue of human trafficking. In part, documenting my trip to Thailand for @onedayswages...to listen, learn, and visit one of our partner orgs @thefreedomstory. More to come.

There's such painful and poignant irony in pursuing justice...unjustly. One way we do this is when we reduce people into projects...and thus, propagating the dangerous power dynamic of US as heroes and THEM as helpless and exclusively as victims. So dangerous.

Human trafficking is not just an issue. It’s ultimately, about people. Depending on the sources of statistics, there are anywhere from 29-40 million people in some form of forced labor and slavery, including sex trafficking.

And one thing I’ve learned, personally, is how easy it is easy to reduce people into projects which is why mutuality, reciprocity, and dignity are so vital. These are critical because God never intended people to be reduced into projects.

We forget this and we indirectly foster a culture and system of victimization or worse, the pornification of the poor or in this case, "the trafficked." And when you start dehumanizing the poor or trafficked, you have no genuine desire to build relationships with them. You believe or build stereotypes in broad strokes, singular, black and white narratives that have been told about them. You believe the lie that they have nothing to teach us and are incapable of contributing to the larger society.

Lord, break our hearts for the things that break your heart. Give us eyes to see others through your eyes. Give us humility so that we acknowledge our own need to learn and grow. (Photo via @thefreedomstory)

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