Facebook teamed up with over 750,000 charities to encourage users to use their birthdays and social media for a good cause, but what is Facebook getting out of it?
In the past, Facebook charged non-profits a 5% fee for payment processing, fraud protection, operational costs and payment support. In November 2017, these fees were abolished.
The Facebook Help Center says that Facebook now covers all of these fees and there are no fees on donations made to non-profit organizations using Facebook Fundraisers, Facebook Birthday Fundraisers or the Donate Button.
If the minimum $100 is raised, funds are available to non-profit organizations two weeks after the donation period has ended. Organizations are able to view a Daily Transaction Report and a Payout Report in order to keep track of funds raised using Facebook.
The Daily Transaction Report supplies information on all donations, donors and if they donated using a Facebook Fundraiser or the Donate button. The Payout Report provides information on funds that will be transferred to the organization’s account. Organizations can set up an account with Facebook Payments Inc. in order to receive donations via direct deposit in the U.S.
Facebook does charge fees from Personal Fundraisers. Any user can create a Personal Fundraiser in order to raise money for things such as medical expenses or a little league tournament.
Personal Fundraisers face tax implications and users must create a Facebook Payment account to receive the funds, which requires payment processing fees. The fees on Personal Fundraisers vary by where you live and how the money will be used.
Allie, from Auburn University, raised $305 for an organization called Free the Girls on her birthday in March last year.
She said, “It was pretty easy to set up. Facebook sent me a notification a couple weeks before my birthday offering the chance to set up a charity donation.” She received four public donations and one private donation, where the donor’s name is not shown on the site. Amounts donated by individuals are not shown on the page.
When asked how she chose Free The Girls out of 750,000 other charities, Allie said, “I had been reading a lot about human trafficking in the past year after I went to Passion 2017, who sponsors the End It Movement. I ended up finding a different organization that helps donate bras and other clothes to women who are survivors of trafficking and I thought it was such a good idea so I picked them.”
The Free the Girls Facebook Page commented on Allie’s Birthday Fundraiser Page, wishing her a happy birthday and thanking her for choosing to support the women in the program.
Some Facebook users compete with each other in order to see who can raise the most on their birthdays. Some frown upon this use of charities to seek attention on a birthday. But, no matter the motive, charities are collecting donations and gaining attention from people who may have never heard of them before.