SA crowdfunding platform hits R50-million mark

20 November 2017 - 15:14 By Farren Collins
Rand notes. File picture
Rand notes. File picture
Image: Russell Roberts

Crowdfunding and fundraising platform BackaBuddy has become the first website of its kind in South Africa to raise over R50-million for its charities and campaigns.

The popular philanthropic website reached the mark on Thursday with the help of over 70‚000 donors who have raised money for 2‚651 causes throughout the country since 2005.

Many of those causes have become a part of the South African story and many will remember drives such as the one to raise funds for Darryn August‚ who was paralysed after he was stabbed and thrown off a moving train in Cape Town while attempting to save a pregnant woman’s life.

More than half a million rand has been raised for August who now has hopes of competing in the paralympics.

Cody‚ the horse who was burnt in the fires that ravaged Knysna in June‚ is another popular recipient of donations gathered by BackaBuddy who have also raised funds for numerous cancer and other ill patients‚ while also sponsoring life-changing surgeries.

BackaBuddy COO Catherine Du Plooy said crowdfunding had the potential of making a huge social impact.

“We have seen that by offering the service of managing funds directly‚ individuals are more open to supporting charitable causes‚” she said.

The platform’s marketing officer Zane Groenewald believed the model could bring out meaningful social change.

“It creates an opportunity for individuals to support their passions and to spread kindness that is often lacking in our fast-paced world‚” said Groenewald.

“Crowdfunding has shown phenomenal growth in South Africa. Individuals are becoming more aware of alternative financing to support causes they resonate with.” The website’s most popular crowdfunding campaign types are health and medical‚ sporting trips and school fees.