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Go Fund Me requests
Old 01-21-2018, 11:35 AM   #1
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Go Fund Me requests

Once in a blue moon I've given money to a Go Fund Me request. Usually, it's for someone in my town who has fallen on very hard times (e.g., need for catastrophic or ongoing high medical costs), or occasionally someone in the greater local area in a similar situation.
I subscribe to a couple of local online news outlets, and these outlets are being used for seemingly more and more of these Go Fund Me requests. I don't doubt the underlying story, but some of the requests don't seem, to me, necessary for Go Fund Me. For example, a request to defray funeral costs or other one time situations.
It's kind of academic anyway, as DW has expressly forbidden me to give to any more of these requests. She thinks they're frauds. Just curious if my ER friends think I'm a cold-hearted guy for doubting the need for many of these requests, and what you may be seeing in your area.
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Old 01-21-2018, 11:55 AM   #2
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I am uncomfortable when I see go fund me requests for people I know would not be devastated by the event they are collecting money for. I have given in the situations you describe tho.
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:33 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by mystang52 View Post
Just curious if my ER friends think I'm a cold-hearted guy for doubting the need for many of these requests, and what you may be seeing in your area.
Well, if you are a cold-hearted guy, then I'm a cold-hearted old lady. I often doubt the need, and also I don't see any oversight as to how the money is spent.
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:35 PM   #4
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I'm not a big fan of begging under any circumstance. I refuse to give to the cheerleaders begging for spare change outside the grocery store door, while mommy looks on holding a $300 purse.
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:46 PM   #5
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Some GoFundMe seem like legitimate causes that I can support. Many seem like frivolous money requests (need car repairs, fund my mission trip, college spring break) but there may be additional details missing. One high school club I know had a GoFundMe for a field trip but they were really just collecting money from parents to pay for it and someone thought GoFundMe was a convenient way to organize. To me the fees seem too high for the service, but they were happy with how it worked.
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:58 PM   #6
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I donated when my brother used GoFundMe to collect money to buy tablets for children to use during cancer treatments at the hospital that saved his life. He saw that the kids who were sitting through long chemo sessions could use some interactive entertainment and I was grateful that we still have him with us and wanted to help him give back. Obviously I know him, and I was aware that he put his own money and time into this project as well, so to me that's different than the appeals for funeral expenses or generic support when a stranger dies, no matter how tragically. I don't give to those.

The one online charity that I do give to regularly is DonorsChoose.org. I like to support STEM education, so I try to find a math or science project where I can afford to fund the whole thing. I usually get photos and thank you notes from the kids, so I know the money went to what the teacher said it would.
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Old 01-21-2018, 01:04 PM   #7
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I think it is the same as so many other things that have gone bad over time. A great idea and a good thing starting out, only to be ruined eventually by a bunch of dunderheads.
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Old 01-21-2018, 01:10 PM   #8
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I don't give to it because none of the causes are bonafide for me. One was from a friend who needed special treatments but has a condo in PV and rents it out for big bucks. Do I look like I have sucker on my forehead?
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Old 01-21-2018, 01:22 PM   #9
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I donate to legitimate causes, over the Holidays a terrible fire claimed the lives of 2 children and the entire home was gutted - only the parents and a their little girl survived. It is near to where I live and I wanted to help the family and made a donation to the lukens GoFundMe page, It seemed like the right thing to do. The BIL setup the page and all donations went to the couple to help them rebuild.

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Old 01-21-2018, 02:18 PM   #10
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I saw one not long ago where the screen defaulted to a monthly recurring amount. You could change it to a one time deal tho. The cause was an ongoing project, but that took the wind from my sails. I escaped out and made no donation. Imo...a sneaky way to get someone locked into an ongoing donation as many would not have noticed it.
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Old 01-21-2018, 02:23 PM   #11
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We almost never give to go fund me's.

The rare exceptions are when we know the specifics and want to support whoever/whatever. Nephew's business venture; neighborhood project we enjoy, etc. We also gave $50 to a friend/acquaintance/neighbor that set up a gofundme when she got breast cancer. She's a waitress and was going to be out of work for several weeks post-surgery and needed a little help.
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Old 01-21-2018, 02:36 PM   #12
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I've given to a few where I knew the people- a friend's son who lived in FL had his property devastated by the recent hurricane, and insurance never covers everything. Many of the others I see seem less urgent or could have been avoided with planning- why did you get a pet if you didn't have the means to pay vet bills?

A former classmate started a GoFundMe for one of our other HS classmates who needed hip replacement surgery. He's a small-town night club entertainer, no insurance even though this was after Obamacare first became available. I gave anyway (he also had to be out of work while he recovered, so there was loss of income as well) but really was not impressed that he could have bought insurance and chose not to.
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Old 01-21-2018, 02:39 PM   #13
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I can see doing something for high medical costs as that can be something that is beyond someone control...

But my old boss who has given to some 'needy' families told me that he was going to stop doing it... he had some families at his church he helped, but they kept calling him for almost every little financial 'crisis'... IOW, they never changed their bad way with handling money and were expecting charity to help them instead of actually changing what they did....

OP, do not feel bad for what you are doing...
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Old 01-21-2018, 03:15 PM   #14
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I donated once. It was someone that I've know for several years playing a videogame. She happens to live, however, in my area. Her GoFundMe was related to her losing her job during cancer treatment. This was a legitimate cause and we donated to it. I felt that it was good was that it allowed her to put her need out there and explain it and then people could choose to donate or not. I felt no pressure to do it, but was glad to be able to do it in a way that would help her.
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Old 01-21-2018, 03:57 PM   #15
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I donated when my brother used GoFundMe to collect money to buy tablets for children to use during cancer treatments at the hospital that saved his life. He saw that the kids who were sitting through long chemo sessions could use some interactive entertainment and I was grateful that we still have him with us and wanted to help him give back. Obviously I know him, and I was aware that he put his own money and time into this project as well, so to me that's different than the appeals for funeral expenses or generic support when a stranger dies, no matter how tragically. I don't give to those.

The one online charity that I do give to regularly is DonorsChoose.org. I like to support STEM education, so I try to find a math or science project where I can afford to fund the whole thing. I usually get photos and thank you notes from the kids, so I know the money went to what the teacher said it would.
I was going to also mention Donors Choose. We have received response from most if not all donations. Some from the students, too
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Old 01-21-2018, 04:52 PM   #16
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Can't say I would ever donate money to Go Fund Me. That doesn't mean there aren't any worthy causes, I'm sure there are.

I prefer to help certain family members and close friends. When someone dies and the family requests donations to an association instead of flowers, I'll donate.

Wish I could help everyone, but I can't.
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Old 01-21-2018, 05:17 PM   #17
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My BIL started one to pay for treating his dog's cancer treatment. I thought it was unseemly, but I shot him $100 via Paypal so he got the full amount. He was a little embarrassed - I did it for the dog.
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Old 01-21-2018, 05:26 PM   #18
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I like the idea of go fund me but too hard to vet. I'll stick to well known charities. A neighbor's house burned down, no one was hurt, but horrible and terrifying for them I'm sure. They started a go fund me and got $15k in small donations from around the world. They are now building a large house on the lake. I'd guess the $15k will pay for the driveway.
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Old 01-21-2018, 11:38 PM   #19
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I've heard of them, but never seen one, except on tv some poor 89 yr old fellow still working was televised and his gofundme garnered over $384K , so they are buying him a house and car, and he gave up his work.

Chicago popsicle vendor given over $384K from GoFundMe campaign | abc7.com

I'm sure some causes are good, but I can't tell which are real or not, so I give to charities that helped me or people I know in the past.
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Old 01-22-2018, 05:42 AM   #20
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Just be careful - There have been a few scam pages set up by those with no connection to the cause/people being helped. If it is local hopefully you know the people involved.


We do everything locally except for one superefficient international charity so we know the money is actually being used to help others. We always check out charity navigator ratings, unfortunately third party fund raising business are always doing the emotional appeals. Some of these fundraiser take as much as 90%! So always do the homework before giving so your dollars have the most impact.
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