Gabe O’Neill could have never predicted back in March 2008 that a father-daughter project would blossom into one of the most influential nonprofits in social media. Now – with a combined audience of about 50,000 Twitter followers and Facebook fans, and a network of more than 1.4 million followers through tweets donated by supporters – Mashable considers Kids Are Heroes to be the No. 4 must-follow nonprofit making a difference with social media.
It all started when Gabe’s daughter, MaryMargaret, approached him about building a website to help animals. “Why stop at animals?” asked Gabe, a software engineer in Maryland with an entrepreneurial spirit. “Why not help people too?” And that’s when the father-daughter duo came up with the concept for “Kids Are Heroes,” an organization dedicated to encouraging children to become leaders through community involvement.