How to Start a Fundraiser After An Emergency Using Facebook

Facebook has several useful tools for disasters, including a way to let others know you’re safe, and find out if others are safe, too. You can even connect with people who need or are offering help, or donate to existing fundraisers. If you want to raise money for your own cause, you can set up a fundraiser through Facebook’s Safety Check.

Facebook’s fundraisers let you raise money for people in need after a crisis. So, for example, if your neighbor’s house was damaged during a hurricane, you can set up a fundraiser so the people in your community can pitch in to help get it fixed. Facebook has specific rules for what you are allowed to raise funds for (though crisis relief is firmly in the approved category).

You can read Facebook’s policies for setting up a personal fundraiser here, and we recommend it before you get started. Among other things, it states that Facebook and its third-party payment processor can take up to 6.9% + $0.30 per donation in fees for the money you raise. This also doesn’t cover any taxes you may be obliged to pay, depending on where you live. Before you set up a fundraiser, make sure to take these fees into account so you don’t end up falling short even if you meet your goal.

To get started with your fundraiser, head to Facebook’s Safety Check section here, and then select the disaster or event for which you’re raising money.

On the right side of the page, there’s a sidebar of fundraisers you can donate to. If you’re just looking for a way to contribute to disaster relief and don’t have a specific cause in mind, consider donating to an existing fundraiser rather than creating your own.

To create your own fundraiser, click the “Raise Money” button.

Next, click the “Get Started” button in the window that appears.

Facebook asks whether you’re raising money for a friend or non-profit. We’re going to choose “Friend” for this example.

At the top of the window that appears, search for the name of the friend for whom you want to help raise money.

Give your fundraiser a title, select a category, add a picture, set an end date, and put in a goal amount. Remember, your goal amount should take into account any taxes and fees you’ll end up incurring. You can also add a description to your fundraiser to explain the situation and let people know how you’re going to use the money you raise.

When you’re ready to post your fundraiser, click “Create” at the bottom. After this, your fundraiser page goes public and you can start sharing it.

Eric Ravenscraft covers smarthome tech for How-To Geek. He's a problem solver who never learned to say no to a project. When he's not fixing things, he's cosplaying at cons, playing video games, and watching too many comic book movies. You can follow him on Twitter or Instagram.