Non-profit group hits DC streets with 'The Giving Experiment' - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Non-profit group hits DC streets with 'The Giving Experiment'

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WASHINGTON -

What would you do if a total stranger on the street offered you free money? Would you take it? Or would you give it back if you knew the money could help save lives? That is the premise of an unusual fundraising drive called “The Giving Experiment.”

On Thursday afternoon, the non-profit group, The Life You Can Save, hit the streets of Northwest D.C. to give away money and capture reactions and responses.

The responses were generally an initial shock, followed by glee and then confusion. Many passersby wondered why a total stranger would just give away money.

After hearing that if the money were given back, not only would it go to charity, but that it would matched, most people returned the cash.

The Life You Can Save has conducted The Giving Experiment in New York, Seattle, Santa Monica, Calif., and Austin, Texas.

So far, thousands of dollars have been given away, and even more has been raised to fight poverty and diseases like malaria around the world.

Laura Gamse, with The Life You Can Save, says, "We're doing our best to encourage people do just do whatever makes them happiest, and there's some research that says being generous, makes you happiest."

It turns out D.C. is quite altruistic. Only one person took the cash, about $40, and four others donated a total of $72 on top of the cash they gave back.

The Life You Can Save gave away $4,310 and will be donating the total of $4,342 to the Against Malaria Foundation.

Online:

http://www.thelifeyoucansave.org/GetInvolved/GivingExperiment.aspx

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