Crowdfunding for Sandy: Donations top $200k on Indiegogo

Crowdfunding platform Indiegogo has brought in more than $200,000 in donations to help victims of superstorm Sandy.

Indiegogo, which competes with Kickstarter, typically caters to inventors and entrepreneurs trying to pool funds to finance their big ideas. In recent days, the site has become a home base for Sandy recovery, with community members turning to peers to fund not-for-profit relief efforts.

Currently, 107 Sandy disaster relief campaigns are taking donations. The Help Long Beach project, for instance, was started by teachers in Long Beach, New York to feed and clothe the people in that area devastated by the storm. The NYC Food Truck Sandy Outreach initiative raised more than $24,000 to deliver hot meals to people in the most affected parts of New York and New Jersey. Altogether, these types of campaigns have pooled together more than $205,000 in Sandy relief donations.

“There’s a huge and growing number of people who want to do more than just click a ‘donate now’ button,” Indiegogo co-founder and COO Danae Ringelman told VentureBeat. “They want to mobilize their friends, families, and social networks to join with them in making a difference at a deeper level.”

For its part, Indiegogo is offering its platform free of charge to all verified nonprofits. The startup has also partnered with the American Red Cross in an effort to funnel even more money to the organization and provide shelter, food, and assistance to Sandy victims. Indiegogo and PayPal have waived their fees so that members who start campaigns to raise money for the Red Cross can do so with 100 percent of funds going directly to the Red Cross.

“Our objective is to harness the passion and energy of these motivated folks and ignite a flurry of crowdfunding campaigns for Sandy Disaster relief,” Ringelman said. “We want people and organizations to know that there’s more they can do via crowdfunding and it’s easy, impactful, and lets them target causes they specifically care about.”

Indiegogo joins a host of other technology companies rallying to support the victims of superstorm Sandy. Community-powered hotel alternative Airbnb is helping victims find free temporary housing, last-minute booking app HotelTonight partnered with 25 New York City hotels to donate $60,000 to the American Red Cross, and Apple ponied up $2.5 million in a generous donation to the Red Cross.

Photo credit: NYC Food Truck Sandy Outreach/Indiegogo


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