The crowdfunding website GoFundMe stirred controversy last month when it launched its own campaign to fund abortion rights organizations. Now, a Christian crowdfunding website – GiveSendGo.com – is countering that message with its own fundraiser, but for pro-life causes.
The “Life Back” campaign at GiveSendGo.com seeks to raise at least $10,000 for National Right to Life and crisis pregnancy centers, although its founders hope the campaign soars far beyond that target.
“We cannot let GoFundMe be the louder voice. We cannot let GoFundMe make the biggest wave,” Heather Wilson, Chief Marketing Officer for GiveSendGo, told Christian Headlines. “… Let’s be the louder voice in this.”
Launched in 2015, GiveSendGo calls itself the No. 1 free Christian crowdfunding site. It stays afloat off donations.
GoFundMe launched its “Fight Back” abortion rights campaign last month with a target of $500,000, although it stood at only $42,000 on Thursday.
The GoFundMe campaign’s webpage says, “access to abortion is under attack” and donations will be given to the National Network of Abortion Funds, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, American Civil Liberties Union, and the ACLU Foundation. The webpage references new abortion restrictions in Missouri, Georgia and Alabama and says, “We’re teaming up to fuel the fight against these bans – and make sure that every person who needs abortion care can actually get it, without delay.” The goal is to “protect abortion.”
Unlike most fundraisers on GoFundMe, the Fight Back campaign was launched by the company itself.
Wilson was taken aback that GoFundMe took sides in the abortion debate.
“What is GoFundMe fighting? To be able to kill babies in the womb?” Wilson asked. “That's how we came to the idea that, ‘Let's start a campaign and be the louder voice in this.’ We are a Christian crowdfunding platform. We're going to raise money for life.”
It’s not the first time GoFundMe has taken sides in the culture wars. The website took down a fundraiser for Australian rugby star Israel Folau after he was fired for stating traditional Christian beliefs about homosexuality. It also shut down fundraisers for Christian bakers and for a Christian florist who refused to participate in same-sex weddings.
“GoFundMe, time and time again, shows what their underlying agenda is, which is very anti-faith-based,” Wilson said.
Jacob Wells, Chief Financial Officer of GiveSendGo, agreed.
“One of the things that we see in tech companies more and more is the desire to censor things they don't believe in, whether they're legal or not,” Wells told Christian Headlines.
GiveSendGo takes a free-speech approach to fundraising. It won’t shut down campaigns, Wells said.
“If you're raising funds for something that's legal in this country, then you should have the right to do it,” Wells added.
Wilson said she hopes people who disagree with GiveSendGo will launch campaigns on the website. That’s because they will “learn about Jesus.”
“They're going to be hearing from us – that Jesus is the hope of the world. Please, come have a campaign on GiveSendGo. We’re going to introduce you to Jesus.”
Donations to the GiveSendGo’s Life Back campaign can be a one-time gift or recurring.
“We believe that EVERY SINGLE baby from conception is loved, known, and has purpose given to them by a gracious and loving God,” the webpage says.
Donate to the LifeBack campaign at GiveSendGo.com/LifeBack.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Drew Angerer/Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.