Throwback Thursday: Old College Friends “Crowdsource” to Raise Money Quickly for ALS Victim
For today’s Throwback Thursday, we’re sharing a personal On The Marc Media success story about the power of social media. Just last week, public relations manager Debra Scheinberg, along with some generous friends from her college days, harnessed the power of the phenomenon known as “crowdsourcing,” the practice of obtaining needed services, ideas, or funds by soliciting contributions from an online community, to raise a remarkable amount of money for a friend in need. It’s an amazing story that begins with a text message. Early one morning, Debra received a text message that her friend, ALS patient Betsy Hurley, was in dire need of financial help. She then sent a Facebook message to a group of Roanoke College Chi Omega sorority sisters who have known Betsy for 20+ years. Within an hour, those friends set up a site called “Betsy’s Weekend Nursing Fund” with a lofty goal: to raise $3,000 within eight days to help pay for Betsy’s nursing care. Through the kindness of people who learned about the fundraising site on Facebook and Twitter, the initial $3,000 was collected before the end of the first day. When the drive ended after eight days, $13,700 was raised for Betsy, all through online credit card donations. And the most fascinating part of the story? Not a single phone call was made during the week-long fundraising drive. There were no jars for collecting pocket change placed at local restaurants, no churches put notices in their bulletins and no concerned neighbors held a bake sale. Every cent was raised online via Facebook and Twitter with the help of some lifelong friends with their smartphones and computers. (Betsy is the one with the big grin on top of the pyramid and Debra is on the bottom right in this Throwback Thursday photo, circa 1987).