This game-changing, multi-organization online fundraising event crossed the $3M mark before the deadline. But it was all for one or none for all, with a group of organizations, most of whom had never before used social media for their causes. All organizations agreed that they must each reach their goals in order to collect – keeping donors glued to their screens and tensions high.
Donors from around the world were frantic as the 1PM finale drew closer. Facebook messages were circulating heavily in organizations’ communities: “I sent emails to all my ny relatives and friends to donate a lot of them did. if they get stuck at the end it will be horrible!”
With less than 10 minutes to spare, two organizations still hadn’t met their mark. Donors on facebook were going wild, and traffic to www.millionsforchesed.com spiked in the final minutes. At 1PM – the site was being showered with virtual confetti: the final organization had crossed its $200K goal – and all organizations would collect their donations.
“I was constantly getting messages from friends asking whether I knew if a large donor was going to step up at the last minute. Why was I waiting until the end? Would the organizations who finished ask their donors to stop giving to them and give to others? I didn’t know. It’s all up to the participating organizations and their supporters. It was a real nail-biter,” commented Tobey Finkelstein, a MillionsforChesed organizer.
Tomchei Shabbos of Queens met its $100K goal first on Tuesday, more than doubling its goal after just a few hours. Tomche Shabbos of Rockland County exceeded its $500K goal raising $567K, and Ahavas Yisrael of Baltimore met its $600K goal and upped their goal to $750K, meeting that goal as well. Bikur Cholim of Lakewood met its $300K goal and increased to $360K and CSB Care exceeded its $60K goal, raising $69K. At midnight, 11 organizations were still moving toward their goals and reaching out to the community for support.
These organizations excel as community-based Jewish humanitarian services. Their specialty is not fundraising, and many had not even used social media as an organization prior to this event. They went out on a limb using Charidy.com to raise more money, on less time, with less expense – so that their organizations can spend more time supporting members of our communities. Each used the methods of promotion they were comfortable with, but the value of each organization was clear, as the donations from their communities poured in.
Participating organizations original goals / final totals:
- Ahavas Yisrael Baltimore, MD $600,000 ($800K)
- Ahavat Hinam, France $100,000
- Bikur Cholim Lakewood, NJ $300,000 ($354K)
- Chabad Chesed Queens, NY $40,000
- CSB Care US $64,000 ($76K)
- JCC Marine Park / Project Machal Flatbush $200,000
- Jewish Relief Agency MetroWest NJ $20,000
- Jewish Relief Agency Chicago, IL $10,000
- Kind Kitchen FL $200,000
- Keren Simchas Chassan V’Kallah Crown Heights, NY $100,000
- Mesila Israel $200,000
- Misameach US $20,000
- Seach Sod Israel $200,000
- Tomche Shabbos of Rockland County Monsey, NY $500,000 ($618K)
- Tomchei Shabbos of Queens Queens, NY $100,000 ($263K)
- Yad Ezra v’Shulamit Israel $200,000