Facebook introduces ‘personal fundraisers’ so you can raise money for yourself

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If you need money for something, you might think about using a service such as GoFundMe to ask people to donate cash to you. But now you can turn to Facebook instead, as the social network launches a new “personal fundraiser” feature, as well as Donate buttons in Facebook Live for Pages.

As the name suggests, a personal fundraiser is a way for individuals to raise money for themselves — or someone they know. To start with, Facebook says that it is only possible to raise money for “critical financial needs” that fall under one of six headings, but this may expand over time. So how do you go about looking for donations through the social network?

To start with, personal fundraisers are only available to people aged over 18 living in the US, but this will spread in due course. The feature is launching as a beta as Facebook says it hopes “to continue to learn and improve the product to make it even more useful.” Any fundraisers are subject to a manual review process which should take no more than 24 hours — and Facebook says it plans to automated the process in future.

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The categories into which your fundraising must fall are:

  • Education: such as tuition, books or classroom supplies
  • Medical: such as medical procedures, treatments or injuries
  • Pet Medical: such as veterinary procedures, treatments or injuries
  • Crisis Relief: such as public crises or natural disasters
  • Personal Emergency: such as a house fire, theft or car accident
  • Funeral and Loss: such as burial expenses or living costs after losing a loved one

Facebook says that the new feature helps to build trust:

Personal fundraisers allow people to reach friends where they already are to quickly build momentum for their cause. Friends can donate in a few taps with secure payments, without leaving Facebook. Since you can see real profiles on Facebook, donors will see how they are connected to the person who created the fundraiser, the person benefiting and others who are supporting the fundraiser.

Another money-raising option is available to page owners who can now make use of Donate buttons in Facebook Live broadcasts.

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