New App Looks to Put Philanthropy in the Hands of a Mobile Generation



Cassie McHugh Culture Editor

In a world where ‘Venmo’ has become a common vocabulary word and transferring money from one bank account to another is easier than finding a payphone, it’s strange to think that giving back isn’t quite so simple.  

GiveTide is looking to change that.

The start-up company is preparing to launch an app that would allow users to collect the ‘spare change’ from their electronic purchases and then donate the money to charities and causes of their choice with just a few single taps. 

Co-founder and CEO Peter Ghiorse said the idea stemmed from a disconnect his college roommate observed. 

“(He) was always talking about how at the [fundraising] call center, he would always have such great interactions with older alumni, but when it came to the younger alumni, there seemed to be a little bit of a disconnect,” Ghiorse said. “Looking into the industry, I realized that there’s really no way to give to charity that’s up to speed with the technology we have today.” 

Ghiorse, a recent graduate from the University of Richmond left his job as a project engineer to found GiveTide with his younger brother James Ghiorse, a student at the University, and former classmate Peter Tight.

With the app, GiveTide looks to break down some of the barriers that currently exist that prevent individuals, especially in younger demographics, from easily making charitable donations. 

“Our mission is to democratize philanthropy [and] to make it much more inclusive,” Ghiorse said. “I think that at least to some extent, a lot of people would really enjoy including it in their lives, and they just haven’t had the opportunity to do it yet.”

Once the app becomes available for download, users will be able to link their debit or credit cards to their accounts. The app collects your ‘spare change’ by rounding up the electronic purchases users make as they go about their everyday routine. 

“If you buy a cup of coffee for $2.75, it takes the extra $0.25 and adds it up,” Ghiorse said.  

Users will have the opportunity to set a weekly cap for their change collection. Then, the money can be instantly donated with a single tap.

GiveTide plans to feature a sample of both charities and causes for users to donate to, but users will also have the opportunity to request the additions of charities of their choice. 

“If you have a nonprofit that is compelling to you and that you’d like to donate to through GiveTide, you can click a link and email us and we’ll have it on the app within 24 hours,” Ghiorse said. 

The app does not yet have a launch date, but it has been approved by the Apple app store and will be available free for download upon its release. 

Ghiorse encourages those who are interested in becoming involved with GiveTide’s mission to reach out and provide the company with feedback on both the idea and its execution.

“At the end of the day, what we’re trying to do here is to create something that lets people incorporate philanthropy into their lives and the best way we can do that is by making it for the people we want to use it,” Ghiorse said.    

As for those wondering whether a career in philanthropy might be the path for them, Ghiorse encourages taking the leap of faith. 

“I think the best advice I could give is just to go for it. What’s the worst that happens? You can always just get another job,” he said.

 Ghiorse hopes GiveTide can be a leader in transforming the ways we give back as a society. 

“Five years from now, I hope that GiveTide is one of the primary, if not the primary driver of the reduction of the barriers that are in place in the industry,” Ghiorse said. “The problem that we see is that there are a lot of barriers—financial, procedural, societal barriers—if we can tear those barriers down to the lowest level and include the highest amount of people who want to include philanthropy in their lives, that would be incredibly fulfilling.”

If you are interested in learning more about GiveTide, you can visit