The financial impact of a cancer diagnosis can be devastating, but social-media savvy cancer patients and their supporters are using online fundraising to help brunt the impact. The site GoFundMe makes it possible for people to invite friends, family members, colleagues and even complete strangers to make online contributions that can be used to help with everything from household bills to copays for treatments and doctor’s visits.
The site is simple to use. Patients or their friends or family members can set up an account that provides basic information about the patient’s story. Photos can be entered and narrative can be as concise or detailed as desired. Donations are made over a highly secure payment system and the funds are presented as a personal gift, so that the patient generally does not face any kind of tax burden. The GoFundMe site deducts a five percent fee from each donation and charges a three percent processing fee as well, but it is a small price to pay for the convenience and comfort that the ability to solicit and send donations so easily provides.
Once a GoFundMe site is established, it can quickly reach a large number of people, as patients and their support network can post a link to the contribution page on social media sites such as Facebook. As people donate they are also able to see how much has been raised, and even to leave personal notes of encouragement for the patient. The site has been a revelation for many. Julie McGonigal is a recent beneficiary who was diagnosed with breast cancer just after her thirtieth birthday. Her friends set up a GoFundMe page for her and she was astonished at the results. “It has been amazing to see the generosity not only of my friends and family, but from people I’ve never met before that just heard about my story from my friends and family members,” she said.
When people hear about a cancer diagnosis, they generally focus on the emotional and physical impact. Few realize the financial devastation that can follow a cancer diagnosis. Fifth Season Financial understands that there you have things you want to do, so we provide a cancer loan program that provides advanced cancer patients freedom from financial worry.