Facebook co-founder's new venture to promote causes

Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, who left the social network to work on the online arm of Barack Obama's presidential campaign, launched a new venture on Tuesday to promote charitable causes.

Jumo.com, which launched in beta, or test mode, said its mission is to connect the "millions of people working to improve the lives of others" with the "millions more who want to help, but don't know how."

The Jumo website features tools that allow users who join via Facebook to find issues and organizations they care about, to receive news and updates and to contribute time, money and skills.

Hundreds of non-profits and charitable organizations are featured on the site specializing in health care, education, the environment, poverty, human rights and other areas.

In a blog post, Hughes said the mission of Jumo, a non-profit, is to "use networking technology to connect individuals and organizations working for global change."

He said it is intended as a "network to help everyday people find, follow, and support those working day in and day out to make change happen in our communities and in regions around the world."

"There is no shortage of problems in our world," Hughes said. "Here in the United States people are struggling to make ends meet, to find well-paying jobs, to support their families.

"The recession has been equally hard, if not even harder, on people in the developing world," he said. "Billions of people around the world still don't have adequate access to basic healthcare or education.

"Governments are corrupt, and natural disasters keep striking."

Hughes said the explosion of new communications technologies such as the mobile phone and the Internet "make it easier for people to share their work and passions, learn from others, and improve the quality of their activism."

Hughes left Facebook, which he founded with Mark Zuckerberg and others while studying at Harvard University, for the Obama campaign in 2007.

Obama's online efforts have been credited with contributing to his November 2008 victory over John McCain.

Hughes was notably responsible for creating the Obama campaign website, My.BarackObama.com, and incorporating social media into the campaign for the White House.

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