Second Life Business: Nonprofits in Second Life? Really?!

June 11th, 2008  |  Published in SL Entrepreneur Magazine, SLENTRE.COM Magazine Feature Articles

By Khrys Kanto

The grand opening event for Aloft Island took place last Wednesday, May 28th. It marks not only the success of nonprofits operating within SL, but also the beginning of true collaboration among virtual world organizations with real world implications.

Aloft Island on Second Life













Nonprofit ventures are not only alive and well in Second Life; they’re thriving. The mixed reality celebration of the grand opening of Aloft NonProfit Commons (aka NPC2) marked the second island launched exclusively for nonprofits and NGOs in Second Life. Approximately 90 avatars were in attendance and participated in various events and entertainment throughout the day, with additional attendees coming from the NetSquared Conference in San Jose, CA.

Glitteractica Cookie, Senior Manager of TechSoup













(Glitteractica Cookie, Senior Manager of TechSoup)

Welcoming remarks were delivered by Glitteractica Cookie, Senior Manager of TechSoup, the organization managing the NPC. After some slight technical difficulties, attention quickly proceeded to the first event of the day – the mixed reality panel featuring Aloft tenants and their organizations. Panel speakers were Rik Riel (Global Kids), Ozma Malibu (Floaters), Coughran Mayo (Preferred Family Healthcare), Kali Izdiak (Community Voicemail), and Jani Myriam (Transgender Resource Center). Kudos to the organizers for beginning the day in this fashion as it immediately gave attendees a better understanding of virtual worlds and their application to real world environments. Rik Riel further addressed this subject with a presentation which provided a humorous response to a critic’s comments.

SL Artist Louis Volare













(SL Artist Louis Volare)

While enjoying the music of SL artists such as Louis Volare and Noma Falta, I had the chance to speak with NPC tenants. Kali Izdiak of Community Voicemail stated “It was good to get the word out about what we do and to have folks so interested. There is something magical about SL. The ability to run into someone who works at a major telecom in Canada, who loves what we do and wants to help is but one example. In the end, if we can get people excited about what we do – that’s incredibly important. Even if they aren’t linked to a nonprofit it winds up being powerful. You can’t underestimate the power of getting people passionate about what you do.” Likewise, In Kenzo of Amoration holds similar thoughts when it comes to drawing attention to in-world projects. Amoration is responsible for some of the most relevant and socially-aware spaces in-world including Camp Darfur, Virtual Guantanamo, and the Justice Commons. All projects have drawn a great deal of attention, but these are not the only ones underway. There are 46 organizations within the NPC.

Aloft is the second of two sims generously donated by TakingITGlobal and managed by NPC2 creates and houses a community of social benefit organizations within SL, is entirely volunteer-run, and hosts organizations from across the globe. Supporting features include a Google group and community blog, a resource-rich wiki, various workshops, and weekly town hall meetings. This international community is a hub for charities to share best practices, work together on innovative ways to benefit their causes, and network with organizations from across the globe. To become involved with the NonProfit Commons or for additional information, please contact Penguin Kuhn in-world or Megan [at]

SL Launch Party Blog:

Flickr Photos:

NetSquared Conference PR: (see “Press releases from 2008”)

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