Online fundraising is pretty common these days. It is very easy to set up a campaign. And we, as you know, are very tech minded and internet savvy. So why, in the era of FirstGiving and GoFundMe, Kickstarter and more did we decide to have our fundraising go through the Children’s Organ Transplant Association?
The answer is that this non-profit offers more than just an online place to collect donations. Here are a few reasons why we love COTA.
1. They are a non-profit. COTA is a 501(3)(c) charity. That means that donations are tax-deductible for the giver.
2. Donations can be matched. They can work with many company’s donation matching programs. If you give, it’s possible your employer will also give. COTA also matched donations themselves.
3. They help fundraise. They act as mentors in fundraising efforts. So our local volunteers have had help in planning and executing events. They have helped publish press releases. They provided the means to do cell phone and printer cartridge recycling. (Yes, we still accept those.) And miracle makers we don’t even know have put together events benefiting our family.
4. They provide other support, too. I can’t tell you how many phone calls I have had with COTA staff. They listen when we need someone to talk to. And since transplant? I can’t call the without them trying to find one more way that they can offer help.
5. They keep donations safe. One of the drawbacks of fundraising is that large sums of money suddenly hitting your bank account can count against you in terms of taxes and other benefits. Fundraising through COTA makes it so we only deposit the money into our own accounts as we need it. Also, there is some security in knowing that there isn’t a risk of a company going bankrupt and disappearing with the donations.
6. The money is earmarked for transplant. This helps us a lot in our budgeting. Anything related to transplant, be it pre-transplant medical expenses, current and future medical bills, lodging, food, transportation, etc. is all covered. 100% of the funds raised are used for transplant expenses. The dollar figure you see on Patrick’s fundraising page is how much has been raised on his behalf and how much he can claim.
7. The donations help other families, too. Now, make no mistake. Money raised in Patrick’s behalf isn’t going to be spent in other ways. This is something people ask a lot. “Wouldn’t it be better to just give you the cash so we know it went to you?” We can claim the full amount donated as we need it. However, we also like knowing that if, by some unexpected chance, Patrick didn’t need all of the money raised for his own transplant expenses, that they would go to another child. We consider these donations sacred funds and wouldn’t dream of using them in another way.
Today is Giving Tuesday. A chance to take a break from the commercialism of Black Friday and Cyber Monday and give back to the community. We know that a lot of people want to offer help and that we are far away and there isn’t a lot that can be done. But helping us raise funds for Patrick’s transplant-related expenses is something that you can do. We’ve raised a little more than 30% of our goal.
This venture is definitely not a cheap one. Prescription co-pays alone are about $200 a month. That’s not including the costs of living out of the hospital or flying Brian back and forth. And this is going to be a lifetime venture. So every little bit helps.
To make a donation, just go to http://cota.donorpages.com/PatientOnlineDonation/COTAforPatrickH/ and click on the “Donate Now” link. If you’re not tech savvy like us, donations can be mailed. Just go to http://cota.org/userfiles/CheckDonationForm.pdf to download a donation form and get instructions.