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Food for Points

It is a super proud moment for us in SDN and BPX land. Triggered by the Three little words – ‘Change the world’ post from SAP Mentor Nigel James we revamped our points recognition system and announced today at TechEd that we will feed school children in third world countries in part from the money we save by changing our model.

Well we have a press release, but unfortunately we missed the opportunity to announce it during the keynote at TechEd Bangalore this morning. Only later in the day during Demo Jam my boss Mark Yolton mentioned it.

As there is already a discussion going on in the Changes to recognition program regarding it, I thought I quickly share some details, that didn’t come accross in the press release.

No points recognition t-shirts anymore. To send them around the world was a lot of trouble and they often didn’t arrive and some countries put exorbitant tariffs on them, it was just not worth it, or they didn’t even arrive: “Well, I have over 2000 points, but I haven’t seen a single T-Shirt yet”. I can live happily for the rest of my life without ever hearing that sentence again 😉

Instead there are Community Badges:

Community Badge backCN Community Badge Front

Every year once you collected over 250 points, you are a Top Contributor and we will send you one of these community badges. There are no other levels.

For every role that you play: Blogger, Moderator or SAP Mentor you will get one lifetime community badge too.

That is it regarding personal recognition and shipping stuff around.

Now to the element that excites us all. By changing our approach, we save money and we were able to round up that money to a garantied 100K Euro (which lately has hold it’s vallue better than the other world currency).

The whole community collected around 2.5 million points last year.

If we reach the same amount of points next year, we will have 100K Euro. (If we don’t, we will walk in shame.)

If we reach 3.0 million points, SAP will donate 150K Euro.

Now if we even reach 3.5 million points, the amount will rise to the maximum of 200K Euro.

With that money we are supporting School Feeding from the World Food Programme. From their page:

WFP school meals encourage hungry children to attend school and help them concentrate on their studies

The food that these children are getting through this program are often their only meals of the day.

An empty stomach doesn’t study well and I love that this brings the kids to school to enable them a better life through education.

Well done Nigel and community to nudge us in the right direction to improve not only our own community, but to go beyond it and with your help Change the World.

P.S. There is already a discussion in the Changes to recognition program welcoming the change. Someone also voiced the hope, to be able to select the charity that the points are going to. Unfortunately there are legal as well as governance, risk and compliance issues that are tricky and we didn’t want to create overhead and rather have more money to give away to one this worthy cause.

P.P.S. Now I am back on the road to the Bay Area. Bangalore TechEd was great. Loved to meet all these people that I only knew online so far. Great stories too. Sorry I had to leave already.

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  • “One person can make a difference and every person should try.”  John Fitzgerald Kennedy

    Thanks for doing this, glad to see our community helping the world community.

      • Hi All,

        Instead of giving badges, what SDN can do is develop a logo along with the S-User Id printed on it. This particular logo can be added in the resume of the one who is recognised by SDN.

        This will be of great help for an individual

        Babu Kilari

  • Today I am very proud member of the community that cares.

    My SCN motto for 2008 will be ‘Contributing (useful content) for charity’.


    Btw, World Food Programme has a very nice online shop with the slogan ‘Donating is fast fun and easy’ 🙂 I had to check it out and they offer a lot of useful things like ‘Food for a child for one year’ for USD 34 or a ‘Fuel efficient stove’ for USD 60 only. Ordering an check out works like a charm, all major cards are accepted.
    So, you don’t have to necessarily wait for your next 250 pts.

  • I haven’t been that regular (in the forums) of late.. this announcement will definitely pull me back.. I’m proud to be a member of the community that cares..
    I sincerely wish this Program would be a grand success..


  • Enough of “assign points”, and discussing point hunters. Now SDN will be left with only those memebers who are really want to contribute without asking for points. I am happy to see the new face of SDN recognition programme.


  • Wow! This just exceeds my expectations. I am so so happy that program is now in place. Well done to everyone who has made this happen.


  • Hi all.

    Congradulations to the team working on this concept.
    Now this gives a chance for all SDN members to devote time for a Good cause 🙂

    Warm Regards,
    Amrish Purohit

  • Hi Mark,

    excellent concept. I already had a chat with Marylin, in Munich, regarding points and how we could use then to give something back to another community instead of the t-shirts. Nice to see the solution 🙂

    cheers Thomas

  • Being a Blogger/Moderator/SAP Mentor I can’t be happier! This is really good news Mark…Thanks for Sharing and thanks for Charing -:)

    Gotta blog about this in my personal blog, so everybody knows that we all can help to make this a better place to live -;)



  • A hearty well done to all involved.  Now how can we set up a charity auction for the collectibles already distributed?  I just got a 1/2 K SDN T shirt  I will never wear. – Jim
  • This is an awesome and most welcomed initiative.  Thanks to all who were involved in getting putting this together; it couldn’t have been an easy program to coordinate.


  • It’s great to see that the community members around the world are responding so positively to this change.  In Bangalore when we talked about it, we got spontaneous applause from 5000 people in the audience … it’s nice to know when a project is on the right track, and expecially that this community is about more than “just” innovative technology… there’s a higher purpose behind the people who collaborate here, and every single one can make a contribution simply by doing what you do already: sharing your knowledge and experience with others. 
  • Hi,
    What a surprising program…
    I am sure the benefit to have badge and t-shirts will be different either for SAP or receiver. I have an idea  i.e. to continue t-shirts program but it is only given for the forum contributors only that have reached 3500 points rewards (for functional) 1000 points for technical, it would be better beside badges. I agree to collect the money and give to the poor countries, like India, Africa, Indonesia, etc, but I hope it is only by semi-discontinuing t-shirt program. Tks.


  • Lately I have not been contributing to SDN due to several reasons. But with this initative I will be more than happy to take some time out of my schedule to help both my fellow members with what I learned and kids who are in need.

    Thanks for those who came up with this concept and those who are trying to make it a reality.

    P.S. 1 euro for 10 points will be a good idea as per my opinion.

  • I think this is a good beginning, but it’s not for celebrate. In this field nothing is enought and please don’t call “third world”. There is just one world and it’s everybody responsability.
  • Good to know that our contributions will help others.
    Also we will get something from SAP as recognisition which will reach (as pointed by Mark on t-shirts).

    I will love to auction my tshirt if I ever get and donate earning to this charity.

    I think this is a good beginning and great initiative.

  • Hi Mark,

    This is a truly a great idea. Just a suggestion, Why do SAP is planning to send the Community Badges. Even sending these badges by post will cost lots of money. Can’t we even utilize that amount also for the food for education program. If you want to recognize the contribution then even the certificate will also work instead of a badge.So just a certificate which can be sent usnig an email can also serve the purpose instead of badges.

  • hi all,
           Its great to hear that as a team we are contibuting to this society . I feel sdn community has step forward to change the society as a responsbility.Its a gud initiative.


  • As someone who actually received 3 T-Shirts (black, bright red and bright orange!!!) I would say that this is a far more worthwhile distribution of funds. Well done SDN and BPX.
  • Hi,

    this is a very good idea and a very good start.

    To do more and thus to help much more people in the world, it is very easy: look, what you buy. With products from faire trade you help much more people in the world, without paying much more for your products.

    Best regards,

    Miriam Hamel

  • Hi Mark,
    unfortunately I’m not a maniacal SDN contributor as before, but I’m really proud to be a member of a community in which a similar laudable initiative has been launched…FOOD FOR POINT…wonderful…

    Really thanks!

  • Its really wonderful to be part of SDN where we our points are helping poor in getting good education…


  • i have been  member from past 1+ yr-
    but i came to know today only that our earned poitns, helping poor children for their education.
    now Really i feel proud by an SDN member.

  • Hi,

    i am with SDN is very happy the thing is rewarding points is not updating when contributor reach his eligible level.

    and also T-Shirt of eligible persons is not providing correct time.
    i am waiting for above requirements but SDN will not ifirming.

    Is this is not correct procedure with contributors above points will give to energise to every contributor
    This is just request for SDN.
    SDN now also looking childrens side this is fantastic improvement.i am very much happy with that