Crowdfunding Platform Open For UK Charities
8 May 2018 at 8:40 am
Crowdfunding platform GoFundMe has opened up its platform to enable people in the UK to raise money for charities as well as crowdfund for individuals.
The platform announced that fundraisers would be able to claim Gift Aid on donations made via the platform.
It marks the first time the US platform, which launched in 2010, has been available for fundraisers in the UK to raise money for charities.
It comes after GoFundMe revealed in January it was dropping its 5 per cent platform fee, in a move it claimed made it “the only major peer-to-peer fundraising platform available in the UK that doesn’t charge a platform fee”.
The latest announcement also coincided with new research, carried out by YouGov on behalf of GoFundMe, that found 72 per cent of people in the UK thought it “unreasonable” for platforms to take a cut of Gift Aid claimed for charities on eligible donations.
The research also found that 41 per cent would be more likely to use online fundraising platforms if they dropped their fees, with 34 per cent more likely to donate online if it was easier to see how much of the money went to the charity rather than the platform.
When making the announcement, GoFundMe attacked rival platform JustGiving claiming its new fundraising service stood in “stark contrast to JustGiving” which charges a 5 per cent fee on donations.
John Coventry, head of UK communications for GoFundMe, said they were “shocked” to discover that some platforms “take a slice from Gift Aid they claim on behalf of charities”.
“It beggars belief that a company would take taxpayer cash from a government scheme designed to help people give to charity and the research we’re releasing today shows that we’re not the only ones shocked,” Coventry said.
“Generous British donors can be absolutely sure that 100 per cent of the gift aid generated through campaigns they run on GoFundMe will go to charity, end of story.”
On Thursday, GoFundMe announced it would also now be free for users in Ireland as it marked 10,000 campaigns for GoFundMe Ireland since its launch in the country two years ago.
Rob Solomon, CEO of GoFundMe, said: “We’ve been amazed by the generosity of people in Ireland since we launched here. We want to mark that anniversary by giving GoFundMe organisers in Ireland the chance to raise even more money for the causes they love without a platform fee. We’re looking forward to seeing more people giving and getting the help they need.”
As in the UK, US and Canada, the platform will now rely on voluntary tips from donors to help cover the costs.
Meanwhile, in Australia GoFundMe made headlines this week with News.com.au reporting on the most ridiculous GoFundMe campaigns of all time, including funding a “spiritual journey” and buying an actual human.