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  • Writer's pictureAndy Gordon

Recognising Exception Women Entrepreneur

Rachael Chong

Passion, determination, and a selfless desire to serve mankind summarize the life and career of Rachael Chong, a young professional who gave up her chance to rise up the corporate ladder so she could help others and make a greater impact in the world. As the founder of “Catchafire,” one of today’s most successful volunteering sites, Rachael is a powerful inspiration to a young generation of professionals who are looking to make their mark in history.

Rachael Chong is a young philanthropist and entrepreneur who is best known as the founder of “Catchafire,” a non-profit organization which connects young professionals to various organizations and causes so they can volunteer their skills. Rachael has been active in philanthropy throughout her career, and also significant in the development of several non-profit organizations such as BRAC USA, the Duke Microfinance Club and FINCA International.

As a genuine philanthropist, Rachael has received numerous awards and recognitions for her work. She is a recipient of the “Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Award,” the “Changing the Game, No Apologies Award” by the AWNY, and the “Duke University Start-Up Challenge Social Enterprise Track Award.” She has also been included in the “100 Most Creative People in Business” by Fast Company.

Ever since she started her career, Rachael has been “radical” in her view of helping people, which is why she entered the world of microfinance and volunteering. For her, there is something about volunteering that brings great fulfilment; perhaps that she is able to use her skills for the betterment of the community.

Chong created Catchafire: an online matching service for social entrepreneurs and non-profits in need of pro-bono professional services, engaging a network of professionals seeking worthy projects for the public good. The one quote that Rachael hangs by her desk says,

“Be truthful, gentle, and fearless.”

She wants to leave this earth known as a leader who empowers others to be better than her. Rachael is described by others as gritty, hungry to learn, humble and visionary — but her passion is what truly defines and elevates her. Whether she’s talking about how amazing the spoken-word artist she saw last week was or a new social enterprise she just heard about, she can’t help but gush. She’s one of the lucky ones to be born with fire, and she works daily to channel it for good.

Catchafire is a community of individuals striving to push the social good sector forward by focusing on efficient and effective ways to give back. One way we do this is by matching professionals with nonprofits based on their skills, cause interest and time availability. We’re committed to providing transformational volunteer experiences, so all of the nonprofits we welcome into our community must have demonstrable impact, strong leadership and be aligned to our mission. Our nonprofits are required to make a financial investment to confirm their commitment to our partnership and Catchafire Consultants’ time. This also allows us to continue to provide high quality matches and support to our partners. Our goal is to provide a significant return on investment for our partners and save them time, money and resources in finding talented and passionate individuals who have the potential to become long term advocates.


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