Lesotho-born and raised, Nancy Messieh, The Next Web's Middle East Editor, is an Egyptian writer and photographer based in Cairo, Egypt. Fol Lesotho-born and raised, Nancy Messieh, The Next Web's Middle East Editor, is an Egyptian writer and photographer based in Cairo, Egypt. Follow her on Twitter, her site or Google+ or get in touch at [email protected]
In an announcement today, the petition site Avaaz revealed some pretty interesting figures on its growth and latest efforts around the world.
In December, we reported that the site’s anti-SOPA petition managed to garner well over 1 million signatures, and as of today, it has been signed almost 3.5 million times.
As it turns out that Avaaz’s own membership numbers have also seen pretty significant growth in the past month. In a newsletter, Avaaz announced that its user-base increased by a whopping 2.5 million people in the past 30 days, bringing the total number of users to almost 13 million, spread around almost 200 countries.
That’s not the only good news that Avaaz had to report. In addition to the growth, its users have been actively fund-raising for its causes. Through the Smuggle Hope into Syria campaign, launched after one of Avaaz’s own citizen journalists in Syria was killed, over 30,000 Avaaz users managed to raise $1.8 million worth of medical supplies for Syria, as well as $1.5 million more in donations, totaling $3.3 million in aid.
In the meantime, Avaaz has also been busy kicking butt and taking names elsewhere. According to the newsletter, its sex trafficking hotline managed to generate information which will result in what is described as “a major set of arrests this week,” although the where, who and why of this story has yet to be revealed.
It is often hard to imagine what kind of impact sites like Avaaz have and whether or not petitions ever do any good, but the site has many tangible results to its name, even to the point of smuggling humanitarian aid into Syria, in the form of surgical and first aid equipment.
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