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Crowdfunding for Weight Loss Surgery

Crowdfunding.jpg

Crowdfunding for weight loss surgery is a worthwhile alternative for individuals lacking funds for their treatment.

There are times when all the avenues for arranging finances for bariatric surgery close due to reasons such as:

  • Bad credit score
  • Non-completion of formalities
  • Cumbersome procedure for arranging finances

Crowdfunding for Weight Loss Surgery

Under such circumstances, the process of treatment of an individual comes to a standstill. This can be emotionally frustrating and take a toll on someone who is already suffering.

Did you know? Medical bills are one of the biggest reasons for bankruptcies in the U.S.1 This makes concepts such as crowdfunding more popular when it comes to arranging funds for medical treatment.

People seeking treatment require an easy alternative for raising funds for medical treatment so that when they are not physically fit, they can at least be emotionally fit. So, when all the doors close, crowdfunding can be resorted to!

What is Crowdfunding for Bariatric Surgery?

Crowdfunding is a relatively new concept of raising money that has become popular over the internet. It is an online practice for raising funds from the web community.

Via this, people seeking bariatric surgery are able to convey their story of suffering to the community of which they are a part of. It serves as a platform for individuals to make their voice heard so that people contribute towards the treatment on compassionate grounds.

Also, since the amount to be contributed is at the discretion of the contributor, people gladly contribute towards the better health of the individual seeking weight loss surgery.

History of Crowdfunding

In 1997, crowdfunding was used by a British rock band named Marillion for their reunion tour. Online donations were collected from fans. Taking inspiration from the same, ArtistShare became the first crowdfunding platform in the year 2000.2

Crowdfunding was initially used for business purposes but later it opened up for other avenues. By 2009, crowdfunding had emerged as a major funding source with the industry’s revenue growing by leaps and bounds.

How It Works?

The crowdfunding portal begins a fundraiser campaign for the individual seeking treatment. The individual is required to tell the story of their suffering. The story is then circulated over the internet. This way maximum numbers of people can be reached out.

During the course of campaigning, people are asked to contribute a very small amount so that more of them join in.

People also tend to contribute more as the campaign generally involves an emotional element. This makes people donate on humanitarian grounds.

Humans of New York, a photo blog raised a whopping $250,000 for Memorial Sloan Kettering Paediatric Cancer Centre in the first 24 hours of the campaign.3

Crowdfunding Example - Humans of New York

Source: Fundraiser.org

How Social Network can Help?

Some crowdfunding sites may not provide for campaigning over the social media. The individuals can themselves circulate their story on social media. This will make their friends and relatives aware of their suffering.

Often the near and dear ones contribute a major portion for the treatment since they have a soft corner for the person.

Research states that the major portion of crowdfunding campaign amount is collected in the first 30 days!4

Philanthropists and Crowdfunding

There are many people who love to serve the mankind and have plenty of resources for the cause. The tougher part, however, is finding them and approaching them. You could always get in contact with them over e-mails or via your campaigning portal.

Popular Crowdfunding Platforms

There are various websites that specialize in crowdfunding. GiveForward, Fundrazr, GoFundMe, IndieGoGo, KickStarter are few of the leading crowdfunding websites in the United States and Canada.

GiveForward chiefly deals in medical campaigning.5

These websites have helped people suffering from varied ailments raise thousands of dollars for their treatment.

The crowdfunding websites charge a fee for the entire campaign that they undertake on behalf of the individual seeking treatment. Most of the websites charge a fee of 5% apart from the processing fee.

According to a report published in Time U.S., 22% of Americans have donated to crowdfunding websites.6

Crowdfunding for Bariatric Surgery – a Success Story

Take a look at how Kami Perritt financed her weight loss surgery through crowdfunding. She was rejected for loan multiple times. Via crowdfunding, she was able to raise an amount of $3,274 for her bariatric surgery. Here’s her story.

Advantages of Crowdfunding

  • It is an easy way to finance a weight loss surgery without getting into the burdensome procedure of availing a loan.
  • There is no debt or related obligations.
  • No interest payment is to be made.
  • The facilitator’s fee needs to be paid out of pocket. It is a charged at a fixed percentage on the total amount collected.
  • It saves you from the awkwardness of asking for help from your social relations.

Crowdfunding Common Mistakes - Infographic

Common Crowdfunding Mistakes

  • Not paying attention to the minute details.
  • Unrealistic stories that create a doubt in the minds of the readers about its authenticity.
  • Not staying active online. The trick is to keep putting efforts to attract more and more people.
  • Not researching before beginning the campaign.
  • Not keeping a tab on the comments of the readers. These reflect how the campaign is being perceived by the people being reached out.

Factors on Which Success of a Campaign Depends

  • The manner of presenting the story.
  • The number of people that are reached out to (the larger, the better).
  • A powerful plea that has an emotional impact on the reader.
  • Using maximum number of online social platforms.

Crowdfunding has come up as a rescue for people who do not have or are unable to collect finances for their weight loss surgery. The convenience and success of this option has attracted a lot of people seeking treatment towards it and continues to do so.

The platform has especially been a life saver for people suffering from serious diseases. Any one desiring bariatric surgery but unable to afford it can resort to this option.

One can also look into raising funds through crowdfunding for weight loss surgery outside their native country, say, a gastric bypass or vertical sleeve gastrectomy in Mexico or the United States.

References:

  1. Mangan Dan (2013), Medical Bills are the biggest Cause of U.S. Bankruptcies: Study , Available at: https://www.cnbc.com/id/100840148 [Accessed on 26 October 2017]
  2. The History of Crowdfunding, the start-ups.co platform, Available at: https://www.fundable.com/crowdfunding101/history-of-crowdfunding [Accessed on 26 October 2017]
  3. Lake Howard (2016), Eighth Humans of Crowdfunding campaign raises $250k in 24 hours, Available at: https://fundraising.co.uk/2016/05/13/eighth-humans-new-york-crowdfunding-campaign-raises-250k-24-hours/#.WfMV_fmCzIU [Accessed on 26 October 2017]
  4. Yeh Ami (2015), New Research Study: 7 stats from 100,000 campaigns, Available at: https://go.indiegogo.com/blog/2015/10/crowdfunding-statistics-trends-infographic.html [Accessed on 26 October 2017]
  5. Sisler Julia (2013), Crowdfunding for medical expenses, Canadian Medical Association Journal, 184(2), E123–E124.
  6. Chan Melissa (2017), How the Kindness of Strangers Became a Multi-Billion-Dollar Industry, Time U.S, Available at:  http://time.com/4912910/crowdfunding-gofundme-youcaring/ [Accesses on 30 October 2017]




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