Saturday, March 3, 2012

Caring Cause: Disrupt Debt

Writer/Entrepreneur/University lecturer Sarah Nadav was the model social entrepreneur until she found herself in the position where she was the one who needed help. She was 7 months pregnant and had a toddler when doctors informed her that they had found a mass on her husband’s brain.

Her life quickly spun out of control and she went from solidly middle class to deeply in debt and barely able to cover her own rent. That is when the calls began, collections agents began pushing her- and she realized that it was time to push back.

With her academic background Sarah began to do what she does best- she researched the problem. She studied every aspect of debt and along the way began to find that there were others like herself who are trying to change the way we do business and handle our finances.

Sarah then moved to Israel and found herself in the middle of one of the most innovative and exciting start up communities in the world. She began her own financial sector start up (which hasn’t launched yet) and was lucky enough to be backed by Jeff Pulver, one of the world’s leading entrepreneurs who was part of the creation of VOIP technology and an early investor in companies like twitter, Facebook and foursquare.

Sarah began meeting people working on amazing technologies and that is where she learned about what it meant to use technology to “disrupt.”

“The word “Disrupt” is very common in the techie world but it is not what people think. They think that a disruptive technology is just there to shake things up, but it’s more than that. It has a specific definition- a disruptive technology is one which ousts an established business by catering to customers that are being ignored or treated badly. It’s pretty obvious that people in debt are treated horribly and the business hasn’t been innovated for eons- so it makes the industry ripe for a disrupt.”

Sarah began working on her book with the goal of introducing people to new and innovative technologies in the financial sector. She felt that many great companies were being missed or ignored because people didn’t really understand them.

“I am a busy working mother, I really want to do this but it is something I can’t afford to do on my own- but kickstarter is a great way to try and do an innovative new project. It is a lot of pressure though, because if you don’t meet the deadline for your funding goal (mine is March 14th) then you don’t get anything.”

The money from kickstarter will go towards covering the design, editing, and the first round of printing. Sarah also really wants to try incorporating a variety of different kinds of media into the ebook version so that people can see videos and make the book interactive.

Sarah has less than two weeks to achieve her goal of raising money for her book- she is looking to raise $8,500 to complete the project. If you want to help, visit Disrupting Debt on Kickstarter.

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