From emergency room visits and ambulance costs to long-term medical care, hospital bills and other healthcare expenses can take a toll on your finances. They will in many cases, quickly burn through entire savings accounts and leave mounting debt behind. Medical fundraising is powerful in the sense that it can help you conquer devastating medical expenses, so that you can focus on healing. Many people have found that fundraising for medical expenses, can help pay for not only the doctor visits and prescribed medications, but also procedures and services that are typically not covered by insurance (such as gender confirmation surgery or IVF treatments and/or nutritional needs).
When people face a sudden financial hardship due to unexpected medical expenses, they are often left wondering how they can possibly pay for the ongoing treatments, and how they can avoid financial distress or even possibly a medical related bankruptcy. As such, people will use medical fundraising to raise money for a wide variety of medical related expenses. From IVF and cancer treatments to surgery costs and everything in between, the money can be used for many things.
Raising money for medical expenses can effectively help to ease the financial stress that might come with the sudden medical hardships. This lets you focus more on healing, and other benefits that are sure to follow.
• Medical fundraising helps spread your story among your friends, family and their friends, as well as strangers who might be willing to support your cause.
• Fundraising can help you get the funds you need promptly, when facing mounting medical bills. You can actually start withdrawing the funds as soon as you start receiving donations.
• It’s an ideal way of raising funds when you have no other means of getting financial help for out-of-pocket expenses.
• Medical fundraising can help spread the awareness of certain medical conditions, as well as the healthcare system.
For people who are new to fundraising, you might not know how to set up a successful fundraiser. The section below will help you create a compelling fundraiser. However keep in mind, that the most important thing when it comes to any kind of fundraiser, is simply getting started in a timely manner.
This will help to take the pressure off the patient, who should ideally be focused on getting better – not raising money. You might find someone who is much better placed at telling your story effectively than you are. Remember that having an outside perspective on what you’re going through, can be quite beneficial when sharing your fundraiser story.
Chances are, you’ve heard of the growing trend of crowdfunding, and you’re probably even considering it. Crowd-funding is a buzzword, that refers to the acts of sourcing funds from individuals for a cause, mission or goal. Medical crowd-funding is a growing segment, where families use crowd-funding platforms, to fundraise for medical expenses.
Having an online fundraiser hosted on a crowd-funding site, is a proven effective channel for medical fundraising. Remember that most of the platforms that offer this service, will charge a percent or fee of every donation you receive. An alternative, is making sure that of all the funds raised that will go to you; platforms such as PeoplePledge are being used. You can create and run a fundraiser completely free of charge.
Considering that billions of people are using the internet on a daily basis, online fundraisers are a proven way of sourcing donations from different parts of the world. Unlike other forms of fundraising, you get the ability to receive donations any time of day or night. You will no longer need to limit your fundraising efforts to a particular day; which often faces challenges with time and locality.
There’s usually a limit on the amount of money you can fundraise. Supporters might often feel a sense of donor fatigue, in the case that they are constantly being asked for money. One of the best approaches to medical fundraising, is asking for what you really need. Generally, honesty is the best approach when it comes to asking family and friends for support. The more genuine you are, the more likely they will support you.
Before setting up your online fundraising page, spend some time figuring out the actual costs involved with the medical expenses you will need to cover. You should then deduct this amount from the money or savings you’ve set aside for these treatments. The difference between these, is the amount you will be fundraising for.
Ensure that you add a buffer to the amount, in case you run into unexpected costs ahead. Figure out what you need and avoid setting goals that are difficult to reach. Break down your goals, to help encourage your supporters in small steps along the way. This will ensure you’re working with smaller more achievable goals, and will be able to reach your big goal much faster.
Radio stations, newspapers and other forms of media, actually love hearing about social causes like medical fundraising. This is especially great when a topic like healthcare is a newsworthy and debatable topic. With the media involved, awareness about your medical fundraiser can lead to more potential supporters and public donations.
A large audience can propel your medical fundraiser to the next level. This can help to boost your fundraiser much further. One best practice when setting up your story in the first weeks of your fundraiser, is making sure that you include a link to your online fundraiser. This will certainly help to bring new potential supporters. Follow this up with a story, highlighting how much of an impact the donations you received have helped so far.
Although making yourself vulnerable is sometimes scary, sharing your fundraiser story thoroughly and honestly will help people connect more to your cause. The more people can understand the reality of your medical condition and situation, the more they will be willing to give money for your fundraiser. Unique ideas when raising money for medical expenses, can also help to grab people’s attention right away and compel them to donate.
Keep in mind that telling your story is a huge selling point for your fundraiser. Without it, it can be quite difficult for the supporters to feel connected to your cause, making them less likely to help. Your story is an effective way of communicating your story to your supporters directly.
To help make the supporters feel the need to act fast, try to create a sense of urgency. You can do this by setting a deadline to your medical fundraiser, for when you need to pay for the medical treatment. Be sure to also include photos and videos to share your story visually. It will also help break up the story, and make the fundraising more appealing.
These days, social media plays a major role in our everyday lives, in terms of how we communicate and connect with other people. As these tools are already available and readily at our disposal, it can be quite beneficial to use them to enhance your efforts when raising money for medical expenses.
Sharing your medical fundraiser on different social media accounts, and making sure that you’re using hashtags, can effectively get you more supporters. Consider also sharing your fundraiser on pages or groups that are relevant to your cause.
Another way is to create a page or group about your fundraiser. This will help to create more buzz, and fetch you more donors from all over the world. Emails can also be effective especially when reaching out to your contacts, such as family and friends who aren’t active on social media. Personalizing the emails can help to create more of a personal connection with the different supporters, and incline them to donate to your cause.
One indispensable part of a successful fundraiser, is whether or not it acknowledges the efforts of the different donors. Showing gratitude and saying thank you, will not only show that you appreciate the efforts of each and every person who donated, but will also demonstrate that you’ve taken your time to acknowledge their help.
You can show appreciation either privately or publicly. Most fundraisers actually do both. Publicly thanking your supporters can help to create the social proof to others. This is critical, because it creates the buzz and hype around your fundraiser. In most cases, publicly acknowledging your supporters’ efforts, will cause the network of the current supporters; to become more curious and interested about your medical fundraiser.
On the other hand; private letters, emails, and phone calls will make a huge difference when it comes to acknowledging the efforts of your donors. Ensuring that you recognize each and every one of your supporters and their donations, can also help make your fundraiser highly social, while also letting your supporters know that you really appreciate their efforts.
Approaching your workplace to ask for support, can sometimes be an effective way of receiving huge donations and even corporate sponsorships. Many businesses often want to support their employees, especially when they are facing a family emergency or an unexpected medical issue. Some businesses can actually offer you paid leave, or communicate with all employees about your fundraiser on your behalf to help with your efforts.
Small local businesses within your community might also be able to help. When you approach them with your story, some might feel compelled to help a fellow member & friend of the community, to raise fund for medical expenses. This could come as a donation directly from the business owner, or as gifts or vouchers that can be used as prizes to complement your fundraiser. You will in turn, be helping to promote their business to local potential customers, making it a win-win for everyone.
Having your local community involved, will help to create more awareness for your fundraising campaign. It may even help to build a sense of communal unity in helping you, and your loved ones afford much needed medical treatment.
Staying in touch with your supporters can make a huge difference. Some of the most successful fundraisers, actually used the fundraisers’ networks beyond their close family and friends. In case you’ve exhausted your general networks like friends and family; think beyond the main social network group.
If you are part of a social club or social group, try approaching them with your fundraiser too. Consider also finding other organizations and associations related to your medical condition. For instance, in case you’re fundraising for a loved one suffering from cancer, you can reach out to cancer foundations and charities. Here, you may find potential donors as they will already have a common ground with you. You might also get support from cancer survivors, people who work in these organizations or even fellow supporters of the charity.
In case you’re raising funds for a child’s medical expenses, consider approaching the day care center, after school and school programs.
A huge part of keeping your donors and supporters connected to your fundraiser is by providing them with regular updates of any progress and news that happen. This is a vital element when raising money for medical expenses that many people tend to ignore.
The people who support your fundraiser are almost always looking to know how the treatment is coming along. You can opt to share achievements and milestones towards your recovery. Be sure to also share any setbacks, tough challenges, and bad days that have occurred. Being honest, real, and open about every step of your journey can have a profound impact. It will also help make your supported feel more connected and involved in your journey.
It’s up to you how you’ll choose to share the updates. Being creative is however always appreciated, and so is using a range of mediums. Try using videos, photos, and writing messages. Personalizing them will make them even better.
MedGift Advocacy Services, Inc. is a 501c3 non-profit organization, classified as a public charity and is registered in the State of Georgia under EIN 81-4017965.