The Serial Podcast has been an incredible hit, making the top of the iTunes download charts, and gathering in users each week to hear the tale. Serial is a mystery, a tragedy, and a tale of justice sought — but unlike so many similar tales, it’s also a true story, with real people affected. Listeners have found themselves pulled into the story of Adnan Syed, and his conviction for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee. While the Serial Podcast may center on Adnan’s story, though, it’s Hae’s story that’s truly at the center, and compassion for Hae, her family, and the entire community that lost a promising and beloved young member has inspired the Serial Podcast fans on Reddit to find a way to give something back to that community.
Thus, the Serial Podcast subreddit has begun the Hae Min Lee Memorial Fund. They’ve partnered with CharitySmith to create a fundraising site, and the money collected is to be turned over to Woodlawn High School — the school attended by Adnan, Hae, and most of the other people Serial listeners have come to feel familiar with. The donation page for the Hae Min Lee Memorial Fund is here, and there’s more information and further discussion of the fund here. One anonymous donor has paid
Like the podcast itself, the memorial fund isn’t without its detractors. Mods of the sub say they’ve been unable to reach Hae’s family for their feelings about the fund, and many would-be donors are calling for a name change, to be called the Woodlawn High Memorial Fund instead. There’s a feeling among some that using Hae’s name without her family’s consent isn’t appropriate, and mods have said they are taking that into consideration.
For now, though, the fund inspired by the Serial Podcast is up and running, and has collected over $900 in the single day it has been active. This is in addition to a $700 donation by one anonymous giver to cover fees associated with the fund. There’s a goal of $25,000, which will be turned over to Woodland High guidance counselor Ashley Gallant to manage. The school will be responsible for selecting students to benefit from the fund.
The fund will collect donations for 30 days, after which there the money will be turned over and there will be a decision to either close the fund or continue to accept donations. You don’t have to be a Reddit member (or a Serial podcast fan, for that matter) to donate, but Redditors who donate over $50 can message mod Jakeprops with a receipt to be given special flair. (Inquisitr has reached out to Serial Podcast sub admins for any additional info they’d like to share, and will update as appropriate.)
Serial Podcast recently announced a second season would be forthcoming, though no information has been released about its contents. The last episode of Serial Podcast’s first season is due on Thursday, and with it, the public’s main connection with Adnan and Hae’s story will end as well.
[photo credit: DJOtaku]