Introducing the Donation Kiosk
New Hope is constantly looking for innovative ways to use technology to reach people in creative ways. The latest innovation is donation kiosk that individuals can use to tithe to New Hope O‘ahu using credit cards. The Donation Kiosk which debuted at New Hope O‘ahu at the April 28-29 weekend services—uses an iPad based kiosk as a conduit of electronic tithing.
“Pastor Wayne Cordeiro wanted to introduce a donation kiosk to the church because more and more people —especially in the younger generation—don’t have checks and don’t carry cash with them,” says Peter Thourson, technology director for New Hope International. “We wanted to make it as easy as possible for a person to give. We looked at different options, and a number of companies use computers with touch-screens … and then we decided to rethink the way people give with their credit card from the ground up in order to make it as easy and user-friendly as possible.”
For those who are wary of the newest technology or aren’t very savvy with computers, no fear … using the Donation Kiosk is as easy as one, two, three. A person using the kiosk for the first time swipes his credit card, and a screen comes up, asking for his e-mail address and zip code. After that information is entered, a second screen comes up, saying, “How much do you want to give?” The individual enters in the desired gift amount and hits “confirm,” and his credit card is authorized immediately and an e-mail confirmation is sent. If it’s the individual’s second time tithing, the last donation amount comes up as soon as he swipes his credit card and he can choose to alter or confirm the amount he wants to give. Thourson assures the Donation Kiosk is secure to use and minimum information is entered while at the kiosk.
“Everything is done in real time so we don’t store any information on the kiosk itself,” he confirms. “The data is sent over a secure connection which instantly authorizes the card with the credit card company.”
Donors also do not need to worry about winding lines at the kiosk with people taking a long time to enter contact information.
“We wanted to focus on letting a person spend their time at church in community, engaging with people instead of standing at a kiosk — putting in their name, address and other information,” Thourson explains. “You can do that later at a time convenient for you. The kiosk focuses on collecting just the essential information.”
While New Hope O‘ahu just introduced the Donation Kiosk at the end of April, New Hope Leeward has been using a similar device for the past few years.
“As I was traveling, I noticed that there’s lots of big churches using the (donation) kiosk,” says Mike Lwin, senior pastor of New Hope Leeward. “Nowadays, most of us don’t carry checkbooks and we rarely carry cash; everything’s ATM, debit cards or credit cards. It (introducing the donation kiosk) was a neat opportunity to try to figure out a way for people to be able to give in the contemporary exchange of finances that everyone’s used to.”
Lwin says that congregants at New Hope Leeward find the kiosk to be an efficient means to tithe.
“People find it very easy and convenient to use,” he says. “It (the kiosk) will instantly increase the giving because people have the accessibility to do it right there on Sundays. Probably about 15-20 percent of our giving is through the kiosk.”
Congregants can expect similar updates in the future, as New Hope’s innovative teams continue to dream big to utilize technology for the sake of the Kingdom.
“We’re working on adding recurring giving to the kiosk and creating an iPhone and Android app so people can give from wherever they’re at,” Thourson says. “We’re always working on new things … and currently we’re working on a Life at its Best magazine app that allows a person to read through the magazine on their iPhone or iPad.”