A GoFundMe campaign set up for Orlando shooting victims has set a new record for the crowdfunding site, and it’s still going strong. Since it was created, the GoFundMe campaign has pulled in more than $3 million. The campaign was started by Equality Florida, which is the biggest LGBT rights group in Florida. The Orlando shooting has become the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, with 49 victims being brutally slaughtered due to their sexual orientation. It happened in the early hours of Sunday, and in addition to the dead, 53 more were injured in the terrorist attack.
Previously, the number of dead had been cited as 50, but that number included the gunman.
By early Tuesday, over 69,000 people had contributed to the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign (which you can contribute to by clicking here). As CNN reports, the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign has raised over $3 million dollars ($3,059,817 at the time of this article, to be precise), that amount includes a $100,000 donation from the GoFundMe site itself, which will amount to the waiver of the traditional GoFundMe transaction fees for the Orlando shooting campaign.
Equality Florida had some words of thanksgiving following the outpouring of public support for their GoFundMe campaign.
“We are beyond moved by the support from all corners of the world and all walks of life. We do not know the total costs for the victims of this horrific hate crime, therefore are working to raise as much as possible and disperse the funds as fast as possible.”
Equality Florida will work with the National Center for Victims of Crimes in order to ensure that the money raised through the Orlando Shooting GoFundMe campaign will be dispersed properly and to those who need it. The National Center for Victims of Crimes is a nonprofit organization that has been involved with dispersing funds following other high-profile crowdfunding campaigns such as the one the followed the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting. Equality Florida is working with the nonprofit on the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign to ensure that “ensure that every penny will be correctly and quickly dispersed to the victims and families.”
Victims and their families are being encouraged to get a hold of the Victim Connect Resource Center’s hotline to begin the process of getting their portion of the funds raised through the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign.
Despite the group steering victims to the resource center’s hotline to be assisted, Equality Florida is not being overwhelmed by Orlando shooting victims seeking assistance at this point. Rather, the organization is being overwhelmed by people who want to know how they can help victims of the Orlando shooting.
Initially, Equality Florida listed its Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign goal at $100,000. That amount eclipsed very early in the GoFundMe campaign. On Sunday alone, donations for the victims of the Orlando shooting poured in all day, and in only 10 hours, the GoFundMe campaign had raised nearly $1 million.
Early Tuesday, Equality Florida raised its Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign funding goal to $5 million.
“We’re going to make sure every penny raised goes to supporting these victims.”
The vast majority of the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign’s donations have been donations of $1,000 or less, with so many average citizens wanting to do something in the wake of the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.
However, some sizable donations have been contributed to the campaign, too.
Cricket Wireless donated $25,000 to the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign. Executive Pride, an organization that promotes LGBT rights, donated $30,000 on Sunday. Singer-songwriter Jeffree Star (one of the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign’s earliest donors), contributed $20,000. Star also had some words about the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign.
“Our community and the rest of the world has spoken volumes by helping out, and it makes me feel less alone in a world where I’m not always accepted. It’s not about the dollar amount, it’s about being a decent person and standing up for human rights.”
Equality Florida has done far more for the victims of the Orlando shooting than set up a GoFundMe campaign. The group is also working with a variety of other organizations to coordinate blood donations, vigils, and grief/victim’s counseling.
The GoFundMe campaign for the victims of Sunday’s Orlando shooting isn’t the only one that has done very well in the last few days. Another GoFundMe campaign was launched on June 11 to benefit the family of slain singer Christina Grimmie (formerly a contestant on The Voice). That campaign hoped to bring in $4,000 for her family and had raised over $128,000 as of Monday.
What do you think about the overwhelming success of the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign? Have you already donated? Do you plan to? Does the success of the Orlando shooting GoFundMe campaign say more about the state of LGBT rights and acceptance in the U.S. than the psychotic actions of the shooter?
[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]