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our impact in 2018

Thank you

Thank you for making 2018 a pivotal year for Our Better World. Not only were we able to tell a record number of stories and win international awards, we began building our new website that will be home to a global online community, inspired by stories to take action for a better world.

We couldn’t have done this without you. Here’s the good we were able to do together in 2018.

Our Milestones

International Awards

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Best International Not-for-Profit Case Study

Our five-country study on how stories motivate people to take action – Empowering Digital Storytelling for Good – won this prestigious award at ESOMAR Foundation’s Making a Difference competition. ESOMAR is a world-leading market research association, and ESOMAR Foundation is its charity arm.

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Best in Youth and Family

Our social media campaign for our story on Cactus Foundation tackling the silence on child sexual abuse in India won Best in Youth and Family category in the Shorty Social Good Awards in New York. The annual Shorty Awards is one of the world’s most prestigious awards honouring the best work in social media.

Sophanna Award

Silver in Best Documentary Short

One of our stories, The Soul of Sophanna’s Songs, won Silver in the Best Documentary Short category at the Asia South East-Short Film Festival in Phnom Penh. The seasonal film festival gives local and international audiences a chance to see a wide variety of quality short films produced from around the world.

New Website

New Website Report

We launched our new website – the first step in our goal to create a community space that enables you to easily get involved with causes that matter to you, connect with others and eventually track your personal impact.

The Better Traveller on TripAdvisor

Tripadvisor Report

We became one of only 30 brand publishers in Asia selected by TripAdvisor for their new content feed. Follow us there and we’ll inspire the Better Traveller in you – connecting you to authentic experiences that also do good.

New Community Blog

Blog Report

We launched a space for you, our community, to share your own stories of building a better world so you can inspire others, as well as be inspired by stories from people just like you. Pitch your story here.

Stories we told

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35 stories

Video, photo essay, blog post

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6 countries

India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines,

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9 causes

Animals, Arts and Culture, Children and Youth, Diversity
and Inclusion, Elderly, Education, Environment,
Health, Women and Girls

Online Views

Number of times you viewed our stories (and counting!)


Social media followers, newsletter subscribers

Actions taken

Number of times you took action (and counting!)
through shares, likes, comments and story actions

What you told us

The deepening involvement of our growing online community made it a bumper year for our annual community survey, with the most number of respondents (2,276) ever in the five years we conducted it.

Our stories created a positive mindset and behavioural change

After seeing our stories…

96% Awareness Image

96% of you

became more aware of
people doing good in Asia

75% Inspired

75% of you

felt inspired to contribute to
social causes

60% Action Taken

60% of you

took action

Impact Chart 1Impact Chart 1


shared Our Better World
stories with others


found out more about
the causes featured


recommended friends /
family to join our community


personally got involved
in the causes featured


collaborated with us


shared a story with us


donated to the causes featured

Most Shared

most Shared story

The story of HelpUsGreen, a social enterprise from India, was shared 9,774 times

Most Talked About

most talked about

The story of Sangeeta Darvekar Charitable Trust started by a dentist from India, sparked 1,334 comments

Most Watched

most watched story

The story of Bioskop Bisik, a volunteer group helping the blind in Indonesia, drew 2,594,528 views

We heard you

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you spoke

We want to meet you in person

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we took action

We met you in Singapore, Malaysia and India

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More in 2019

More events in 2019

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you spoke

We want more stories

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we took action

We published 35 stories,
our most ever in a year

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More in 2019

New story themes, series
and formats

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you spoke

How do we support OBW
and volunteer for stories

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we took action

Launched new website where you can create an account and get involved in causes through stories

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More in 2019

More community features on the site for you

Impact we made together

Highlights from some of our stories


A baby’s last moments, wrapped in love

Angel Hearts turns old wedding gowns into burial clothing for babies to comfort grieving parents.

View story

Impact after the story was told

341 volunteer sign-ups

(From 10 volunteers/month)


Blind people can’t ‘watch’ movies, right? Wrong.

Bioskop Bisik (“Whispering Cinema”) pairs the blind with sighted volunteers who describe movies to them.

View story

Impact after the story was told

609 volunteer sign-ups


Breaking the silence on child sexual abuse

Cactus Foundation fights child sexual abuse by teaching children to recognise an “unsafe” touch.

View story

Impact after the story was told

1,021 sign-ups in a month

(from 10 volunteers/year)


From “dirty” to dignified: These flowers transform lives

HelpUsGreen hires so-called “untouchables” to recycle waste flowers into eco-friendly incense.

View story

Impact after the story was told

15-fold increase in visitors to its website

Products made for Diwali were sold out

1,823 new volunteer sign-ups


Friends doing good, across borders

Once employer and employee, Thomas and Maria are now co-founders of Willing Hearts Orphanage.

View story

Impact after the story was told

US$1,416 in donations/month

(from US$377/month)

US$283 in-kind donations/month

(from US$132/month)


How can a mother behind bars bond with her child?

New Life Stories helps mothers in jail pen stories for their kids, to bond across prison walls.

View story

Impact after the story was told

US$1,757 in donations

(from US$193)

84 new volunteer sign-ups



Thank you for taking action, both big and small. Let’s do more good in the world together in 2019! Join the community by creating an account on our website, and subscribe to our newsletter below so you never miss a story.