Jersey City — If someone offered to pay for your next night out with friends – would you take them up on it?
If your answer was no, I’d question your sanity. But, it wouldn’t be surprising considering the fact that Gen Z is a digital first generation, often interacting online more than in-person.
According to recent data, compared to two decades ago, young adults are getting 1,000 fewer hours of in-person connection time each year.
To combat that, Hinge, a dating app that believes in creating meaningful relationships, has launched a $1 million social impact initiative: One More Hour. The initiative aims to mobilize Gen Z to embrace in-person connections and combat the loneliness epidemic that is lingering post-pandemic.
Starting in January 2024, One More Hour will extend a helping hand to select social groups in Atlanta, Los Angeles and New York City, offering individual grants of up to $25,000. They will support social organizations that help provide fresh, affordable and recurring opportunities for Gen Z to connect with others in the real world.
Hinge has partnered with DoSomething Strategic and the Foundation for Social Connection to establish impact benchmarks for the program and identify the organizations that will receive these vital grants. Most importantly, Gen Z judges will play a pivotal role in selecting the final awardees, ensuring that the funds go to the most deserving and impactful initiatives.
I love that Hinge is putting its money where its mouth is when it comes to combating loneliness.
It’s one thing for the platform as a business to offer its services to connect people to meaningful relationships, it's a completely separate – and more generous act to pay for Gen Z to find opportunities to connect in-person.
With student-loan payments restarting and the cost-of-living increasing,65% of early-career aged Gen Zers believe they are starting further behind financially than older generations
Keeping it gee, Hinge and its partner organizations offering to foot the bill for Gen Z’s meet ups could be a huge assistance not only to their mental health, but their finances as well.
Miranda Perez (she/her/hers) is a Jersey City, NJ-based journalist who covers the tech industry. Follow her on X and Instagram: @mimithegee.
Edited by NaTyshca Pickett