In The Spirit Of Giving

GoFundMe Launches A Holiday Program To Support Kid Heroes Making A Difference

“The best part of helping others is that things get better once you help them ... ”

We love tinsel and trappings as much as the next Elf on the Shelf devotees, but here at A Plus, we believe that true wintertime magic comes in the form of connection and human kindness. Over the next month, come back and join us in raising a glass to those who give — because what's December without a little holiday spirit?

We can learn a lot from kids, especially ones who are working on making the world a better place. This holiday season, GoFundMe launched an initiative called Kid Heroes to celebrate little ones making a big difference.

The program includes a hub celebrating and spotlighting over 100 Kid Heroes, a Parent Guide that offers tips and conversation starters for parents to help get their child more active in their communities, and short videos showcasing the work of a few Kid Heroes. On this year's Giving Tuesday, November 28, GoFundMe donated $100,000 to the Kid Heroes campaigns through their Gives Back program.

"The kids in the GoFundMe community were our source of inspiration, and in speaking to them, we realized that when it comes to empathy, kids are often great role models for us adults because they don't have all these adult biases or justifications for why they can't jump in and help," Raquel Rozas, chief marketing officer at GoFundMe, told A Plus. 

The program supports hundreds of kids who not only help solve issues in their community, but also help fellow kids in need. For example, there's Paul Burnett, a 7-year-old who raised over $10, 000 to buy a new wheelchair for his best friend Kamden.  "I saw people help other people, so I thought I could help Kamden," Paul told A Plus. "The best part of helping others is that things get better once you help them. It makes me happy."  

"The kids themselves start the campaign," explained Rozas. "What we're doing in our content hub is featuring hundreds of campaigns at a time, rotating them in and out. It has more to do with what is currently relevant and what's happening in the community at that moment and time. From the hundreds in the hub we select a handful of those to feature with editorial content as well as video."

Through the Kid Heroes parent guide, parents are able to learn more about how to get their child involved in charitable projects. "We worked with a couple of experts to help us put together that resource guide," said Rozas. "And part of our objective there is helping parents understand that kids, even at a very young age, start to show a lot of compassion. So, a lot of what is entailed there is just getting parents involved. We provide a lot of conversation starters to help parents guide their kids and raise kids that are fundamentally open to giving back." 

What started out as just a holiday program may become year-round, according to Rozas. Kids such as Burnett are constantly doing amazing things. Another Kid Hero example is 11-year-old Ryder who created a GoFundMe campaign on his birthday to raise money to buy Christmas presents for kids at St. Jude Hospital, hoping to help brighten their day. There's also Walt, a 7-year-old who raised over $4,000 to donate pajamas to foster children who aren't able to take their belongings from house to house.

"We kicked it off for the season, but we think it's an evergreen program," Rozas told A Plus. "Because these kids are running campaigns year round, and the kinds of campaigns that are running are not just seasonal, they really are addressing fundamental issues in their communities."

To learn more about Kid Heroes, check out the program here

Cover image via YouTube / GoFundMe

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