New Year’s resolutions usually only last the amount of time it takes for instant gratification to wrestle long-term goals out of the human conscience, or, four days. But if weight loss is one of the items on your 2014 list, a new initiative backed by popular guru Deepak Chopra’s philanthropic arm, the Chopra Foundation, marries your wearable fitness tracker to fighting hunger in places where people can’t afford to consume calories and new technologies endlessly. It’s a kinder kind of instant gratification, maybe.
The Weightless Project launched in late November, and has since partnered with the companies that make the Fitbit, Jawbone, and Basis fitness trackers. The idea is simple: For those who sign up, every 1,000 calories burned translates into a $1 donation to the Weightless Project’s food aid programs of choice. Until December 31, Weightless dedicated all calories to helping survivors of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, which tallied up to over $18,000, according to the project’s site.
Chopra, who has thrown his full proverbial weight behind the project, calls it a “creative solution to solving the two most devastating epidemics of our time: obesity and diabetes on one hand and malnutrition and hunger on the other hand.” The idea, however, came from entrepreneur Poonacha Machaiah and the team at Happy Creative Services, a Bangalore-based “idea shop” that caters to big brands like Diesel and MTV.
Now that funding typhoon aid has ended, the Weightless site remains skimpy on the details of where, exactly, its food aid dollars are going. (We’ll update when we learn more.) In the meantime, the site also promises that more apps and devices will be integrated soon. No complaints in that respect–it’s high time we shifted away from the “Like” button as a primary means of philanthropic support.