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  • Writer's pictureDrew Schneider

Creating climate crisis readiness with GoFundMe.org this summer 

As extreme weather takes a greater toll on our country, we’re supporting GoFundMe.org’s work to strengthen vulnerable communities as our July Cause of the Month



“What happens in the world, happens on GoFundMe, particularly in crisis moments,” shares Amanda Brown Lierman, Executive Director of GoFundMe.org.


“With an ever-increasing number of people asking for and providing help on GoFundMe.com, there’s so much opportunity for GoFundMe.org to take a more strategic approach to our impact.”


Historically, the nonprofit’s role was primarily to turn tax-deductible donations into micro-grants for vetted & qualified people in need using GoFundMe in times of crisis. Now Amanda and her team are ushering in a new era where GoFundMe.org is proactively addressing the most common driver of disaster fundraising - the climate crisis.


In May, they launched the Weather Resilience Fund to better prepare the most vulnerable communities in California for climate-related disasters, in partnership with Comite Civico del Valle and Central California Environmental Justice Network (see the full press release here). 



This campaign will equip these “on-the-ground” partners with funding to provide low-income households in the central valley with air purifiers, water-filtration, ductless mini-split air conditioners - all supplies that reduce the financial and health burdens from extreme heat that have been upending these communities. 



“Every summer, these natural disasters get worse. And while the fundraising that happens in the days following a specific crisis is still critical, we want to couple that with more proactive and holistic measures to reduce human suffering"

In this new chapter, GoFundMe.org is working to bring the crowdsourcing ethos, which has made their disaster response so effective, to campaigns for preparedness and resilience. Is it possible to activate the same kind of social mechanism and feeling of shared community to important work that can be done in advance of these “unexpected” events as they become more predictable - and extreme? 


GoFundMe certainly believes it’s possible - and demonstrated their conviction by making a $1.5 million investment into the Weather Resilience Fund at its launch.



The two-pronged approach of better preparation and faster response also provides an incredible new opportunity for Donor Advised Fund holders to have an impact. 


In May, GoFundMe also announced a new partnership with Chariot to implement DAFpay on all verified charity fundraising pages. This includes individuals and organizations leveraging the crowdfunding platform to raise money for their favorite 501(c)3 nonprofits, and campaigns directly managed by GoFundMe.org - like The Weather Resilience Fund and their crisis response efforts.




Historically DAF users were completely left out of the momentum and excitement of these crowdfunding efforts since there was no way to “pay” with their DAF online. Before DAFpay, the only option was for DAF holders to go offline through their DAF platform and there was no way to participate in real time. 


“It is an exciting time for DAF donors to further diversify their philanthropic efforts,” adds Amanda.


“Thanks to GoFundMe.org’s partnership with Chariot, they can now easily move funds to vetted individuals, families and communities in need through GoFundMe.org - before and after a crisis.”

After the Maui wildfires in 2023, GoFundMe.org was able to verify personal GoFundMe pages created to directly help those impacted and disbursed the first grants within 36 hours. DAF donors at the time were desperately seeking ways to deploy the funds in their accounts - which can only be donated to 501(c)3 nonprofits - but a gift to GoFundMe.org to support this work had to be made through a DAF portal that wouldn’t arrive for weeks. This made it impossible for their dollars to be included in the real-time response when they were most desperately needed. 


This kind of innovation in crisis response will play a critical role in moving more of the $230 billion in Donor Advised Funds to people and communities in need, while improving the donor and nonprofit experience with sending and receiving Donor Advised Fund gifts.




Chariot’s Cause of the Month is an initiative where we select a nonprofit organization close to our hearts to support with funds from our company's Donor-Advised Fund. We also spend the month encouraging our networks to support the Cause of the Month with us, especially for people who have a DAF. Chariot’s DAF payment option, DAFpay, makes it possible to support great organizations like GoFundMe.org’s Weather Resilience Fund directly in their campaign pages in under 20 seconds.





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