In response to the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, GoFundMe has launched a centralized hub for verified fundraisers looking to raise money for humanitarian aid in Ukraine.
The hub currently hosts fundraisers that range from supporting large aid organizations like Save the Children to raising funds for specific families in Ukraine. All fundraisers hosted on the official hub have been verified by GoFundMe’s global Trust & Safety team, which monitors the larger GoFundMe site in order to identify and validate fundraisers made in response to crises.
Credit: Screenshot: GoFundMe
According to a blog post from GoFundMe, the Trust & Safety team is a large and diverse team that makes up a quarter of the organization, and it works to verify personal information and the identity of recipients in order to make sure that donations are sent to the right place. To do this, GoFundMe says it uses proprietary tools on par with those used by the financial industry that requires “government-issued identification, address details, and other forms of ID.”
To be considered verified and therefore hosted on the donation hub, GoFundMe and the Trust & Safety team must know “the identity of the organizer, who they are raising funds for, the organizer’s relationship to the recipient of the funds, and how the funds will be used.” The company holds on to “all funds raised until the recipient is added to the fundraiser to withdraw [their money], and their identity has been confirmed.”
If a fundraiser hosted on GoFundMe is not on the hub or officially verified, that doesn’t necessarily mean the campaign isn’t valid; it’s also possible that GoFundMe’s payment processors have just not yet collected the necessary information, and delays like this may happen more often during a crisis like the one in Ukraine.
In a larger blog post about how to help Ukraine generally, GoFundMe also states that fundraisers not allowed on its platform include “any war effort support, regardless of the country, which can include funding weapons, any supplies to soldiers, and propaganda” and “travel to the location to support military or propaganda efforts.”
GoFundMe has created donations hubs like this in the past, in response for crises like the West Coast wildfires, the Covid-19 surge in India, the Atlanta spa shootings, and the Surfside Condo collapse. The site also hosts its own fundraiser, dubbed the “Ukraine Humanitarian Fund,” and it will distribute the total amount raised amongst various verified nonprofits working to provide relief in Ukraine.