Pulse nightclub shooting GoFundMe breaks $5M in donations
ORLANDO, Fla. - The most prominent GoFundMe page set up for victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando has broken site records as it passed the $5 million raised mark on Thursday.
The Orlando Sentinel reports the website now lists 300 campaigns for victims and families of victims that passed a total of $5.35 million in donations by Thursday. The largest of those funds, set up by non-profit Equality Florida, smashed records on Monday for fastest-growing fund and largest fund.
49 people died at the Orlando nightclub on Sunday morning when Omar Mateen opened up fire in the club. At least 50 others were wounded. Fundraising efforts are taking place all over the globe in the week after one of the most horrific mass shootings in U.S. history. The city has launched a separate fund of its own at OneOrlando.org that has attracted large donations from the Disney and Universal corporations of $1 million each. The OneOrlando fund will garner more than $6.8 million in pledges and donations, according to a city spokesperson.
GoFundMe has been allowing people to set up fundraising campaigns quickly and easily since 2012. It provides a simple way for users to contribute to a cause by donating online. The site says they are attempting to vet all campaigns that are being launched in connection with the mass shooting in order to ensure they are legitimate.
The funds in the various campaigns will not be released until the accounts are verified.
“We have encouraged people to donate to Equality Florida, or to set up a personal campaign if they know a victim that needs help,” GoFundMe spokesman Bobby Whithorne said.