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August 18 , 2009

GTA geeks gather to support local food bank
Twitter campaign raises over $10k in two weeks

In an extraordinary example of the power of self-organizing online groups, the Toronto technology, digital marketing and social media communities have come together once again through their Twitter streams to create what looks set to be one of the biggest and most exciting summer gatherings of 2009.

hoHOTo, a party in support of Toronto's Daily Bread Food Bank, takes place today in downtown Toronto. More than 300 people have signed up to attend so far, drawn by the appeal of a night of DJs, interactive media, summer festivities, and the chance to meet the real world friends behind their online avatars.

Pulled together over the course of a few weeks, with all organization and promotion being run via Twitter and email messages, hoHOTo was inspired by a small group of volunteer organizers who wanted to do something to help the hungry this holiday season in 2008. That event raised over $25,000 for Daily Bread Food Bank. This same group gathers once again with the addition of a few more friends to create a summer event.

“It all began on Twitter. One tweet started it all,” says Corey Reid, one of the hoHOTo organizers. “The thing that strikes me is that it is a community project with no one leading the charge. It happened in December organically with the right people with the right skills and passion to make it happen. And the same can be said for the summer edition.”

By reaching out through their personal networks using Twitter, the hoHOTo instigators have succeeded in securing sponsorships and donations fromorganizations as diverse as Molson, teehan+lax, Agoracom, Rogers, Thornley Fallis & 76 Design, MCC - Moore Carlyle Consulting, SUN, SimpleLogic, Sequentia Environics and many more.

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