How Innovative Crowdfund Connects Student Debt with Volunteerism


Hopelessness. Every college graduate with student loans experiences it.

Although you have a solid debt repayment plan, live a modest life, and make every payment on time it still feels like the mountain of debt will never disappear.

And it’s overwhelming.

You calculate the years it will take to build a positive net worth and you begin to fear…

The time spent on your education will go to waste. And your quest for self purpose is impossible.

The crowdfund site Zerobound is answering this fear in a major way.

Paying Loans with Volunteerism

With the slogan “paying it down by paying it forward,” Zerobound has created a platform for graduates to use their vigor for social change into a debt repayment campaign.

The crowdfund websites beta phase went live in Spring 2014 with it’s first set of skill-based volunteers ready to inspire sponsors to donate to their student debt in exchange for volunteer work. The site offers an opportunity for volunteers to create a profile with a bio, project, and campaign goal.

Zerobound promotes the stories of their volunteers to their network for potential corporate sponsors and volunteers tap into their personal network for donations. During their campaign period participants build awareness of their efforts for supporters and share their experience through photos and posts.

All funds collected from the crowdfund go directly to the recipients student loan accounts as a third-party payment. Turning the anxiety of debt repayment into a mutually positive experience for the volunteer and community.

Can you think of a better way to pay off pesky student loans?

Meet the Zerobound Front Runner

Ani Mercedes has a story similar to so many graduates. She struggles with pursuing her passion and paying off student debt. An aspiring documentarian, Ani uses her volunteer time for her true calling while working full time to pay off debt.

Her community film campaign is currently in the lead having raised $250 towards her $1,000 goal. By volunteering with the Indie Film Club Miami she helps unite experienced and novice filmmakers with projects, workshops and festivals centered on the community experience.

Read more here on Ani’s campaign.

How to Get Involved

Itching to start your own campaign? Here’s a few ways you can support the movement and prepare yourself to participate!

Sign up – Read their facts page and join the site mailing list to be notified of future campaign openings.

Volunteer – In it’s first phase Zerobound is looking for people who are actively volunteering. Reach out to local organizations for volunteer opportunities that meet your passion and education skill set. (In the future Zerobound hopes to open up a database of volunteer opportunities.)

Donate – Read the stories of the current volunteers and donate to their campaigns!

Share it – Help it go viral! Share the crowdfund’s message with your network. Help the site grow awareness for it’s unique mission.

The message of Zerobound is both clear and empowering. Not even the enormity of student debt can hold back this generation of changers from self purpose.

Posted in: Education

Top of page