Why Fundraising is Important
Kelly Green, is the Executive Director of a charity called Help Hope Live, an organization that supports community-based fundraising for people with unmet medical expenses and related costs due to cell and organ transplants or catastrophic injuries and illnesses.
As healthy adults or children, we're always making a choice. We're always thinking, “can I afford to go to the doctor today? can I afford to be in the forefront of my health?” It's a choice we always have but for the people that the organization serves, there is no choice. They have to seek medical care and in this case, insurance doesn't always cover everything.
It doesn't cover somebody who has a spinal cord injury for a ramp to get back in or out of their house. It doesn't cover anything but maybe a manual wheelchair when you need an electric wheelchair or when you need a transplant. Oftentimes we need to secure tens and thousands of dollars and show that you have these available funds in order to be listed.
In the last 40 years, Help Hope Live has provided access to funds so that people can get the quality care that they need during a period of time where they are forced essentially to become a fundraiser at a time of great crisis.
The organization has grown in the last 40 years to not only cover transplants but to cover catastrophic injury and catastrophic illnesses, cancer, ALS, and a variety of muscular dystrophy as well. It's just important to recognize that people who are facing a crisis also face a financial crisis.
How "Help Hope Live" Helps
Crowdfunding is the new buzzword and it's solving a very old problem. Help Hope Live helps people one-to-one to fundraise for their needs. They bring together a community of support with them and for them so that they have access to the financial needs to get through their medical crisis. They provide a website for them, the tools necessary for them, and they define a community that supports them.
One of the main things that they do is provide people with a mechanism that allows them to do this in a way that protects a donor. The donor knows that the dollars that they are giving go directly to the medical needs of that person. They are protected, not only that but it's tax-deductible.
When you use crowdfunding mechanisms like a GoFundme, oftentimes they drop into a bank account and that becomes your asset. Asset-based fundraising oftentimes can eliminate and jeopardize your ability to qualify for any kind of government assistance. However, the organization manages those funds and they pay those bills directly. The donor knows that those funds are being used properly and the individual knows that they are protected and their bills will be paid.
They also offer their 501c3 so the people that are fundraising can get matching gifts from their donors, and can also qualify for foundation gifts or charitable giving, corporate giving, foundation giving. They provide them with a safe and trusting mechanism to raise the funds that they need during their period of crisis.
See the first part of the Lunch and Learn Event here: Characteristics of a Healthy Business
Q&A with Kelly
Q: What is the best way that the people can help you and your organization?
A: Covid has given us this weird opportunity to live in isolation just like our clients do every day. However, our patients and our clients depend on in-person events oftentimes to raise funds for their needs. We have had to shut down over 130 events across the country in the face of what has happened and our patients still have desperate needs so any donation and support is welcome.
We've been purchasing durable equipment and vans for people with spinal cord injuries or without an immune system when you're in need of a transplant can't be around other people so they need to have a van for transportation. They need to have access to home health care and without fundraising, they're unable to make those needs so any dollar counts, every gift counts. Support our fundraisers and support our efforts. You can go on our website and pick a campaign to support the organization in general.
Q: How do patients qualify?
A: We verify that everyone who comes and gets accepted into our program has a verified medical condition. We work with all the medical professionals across the country and we do have grants to offer.
Q: How do you choose who to help?
A: We are meeting some of those needs the clients can't raise funds for through grants but we accept everybody in the program as long as it's an agreement of mutual responsibility. They agree to fundraise while we agree to help them to identify a community of support and we will work with them to build them a website, tell their story attached to the local news media and we can accept anybody who is ready to seek help. We've raised over 158 million dollars over our 40 years.
See our Featured Charity for October 2021: Help Hope Live: A Unique Nonprofit Helping With Medical Costs
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