Facebook has a brand new feature for all the budding philanthropists out there, one that makes it a lot easier for them to raise money for causes they care about.
For the past few months users in the US have had access to a new “fundraising” feature, allowing not-for-profits and charities to collect donations on the social media platform.
This week, the tool was expanded to individuals, so they can create their own dedicated fundraising pages for verified charitable organisations.
An example of one of the new fundraising pages. Source: Facebook
It's the latest initiative of Facebook's Social Good team, which wants to leverage the platform's reach (and one billion plus users) to actually make a difference.
According to Naomi Gleit, vice president of product management for social good at Facebook, the inspiration came from the wildly popular ALS ice bucket challenge.
"People are already using Facebook to fund for causes — it was already happening even before we built this tool," she told Mashable. "I just see this as making it even easier. I think people will continue using those other products, and this will just be additive.
At the moment the service is free, but a small fee will likely be charged in the future with aim of breaking even, rather than turning a profit.
The pages have a similar format to event pages, and allow users to write a description of a particular campaign and collect donations directly.
These will be showcased on a progress bar towards a specific goal, not unlike a Pozible or other online crowdfunding campaigns.
At this stage, it's unclear when roll-out will occur worldwide, but while only US users can create fundraisers, people around the world can still donate.
Using the companies existing payment platform infrastructure, fundraisers support donations from 39 different countries in various currencies.
In the meantime if you're feeling charitable we suggest heading to GiveNow — Australia's most user-friendly giving portal — where you can find thousands of local causes in need of support or post your own.