Initiative Includes New GoFundMe and Yelp In-Product Features and Tools as well as a Relief Fund to Support Small Businesses
Today, GoFundMe, the world’s largest social fundraising platform, launched the Small Business Relief Initiative to support those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the announcement, GoFundMe is partnering with Yelp, the company that connects people with great local businesses. The Small Business Relief Initiative will supply financial assistance and support to businesses across the country by providing fundraising tools and grants to help during the crisis. GoFundMe is teaming up with Yelp to make it easy for people to donate to businesses directly from their Yelp page.
"With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting all of us, many small businesses are being forced to shut their doors," said Tim Cadogan, GoFundMe CEO. "Our goal with the Small Business Relief Initiative is to help small businesses and empower their communities to rally behind them. Local businesses provide jobs, a place to go, and are often the heart and soul of a community. By partnering with Yelp, we are able to reach businesses and provide a quick and easy way to get funds to these independent businesses in need."
There are more than 30 million small businesses in the U.S. and every day more are facing challenges related to this pandemic. The Small Business Relief Initiative combines Yelp's extensive network of small businesses with GoFundMe's social fundraising power to provide small business owners with financial support during these difficult times. The companies have united to help small business owners everywhere so that they can focus on what matters—keeping their businesses alive.
"This pandemic has been particularly hard on small local businesses that are struggling to pay staff and keep the lights on, causing instability for millions and devastating ripple effects throughout our economy," said Jeremy Stoppelman, Yelp co-founder and chief executive officer. "Through our partnership with GoFundMe, businesses can now raise much-needed funds quickly, and people are able to make an immediate impact by helping businesses in their community weather this crisis."
The Small Business Relief Initiative will roll out starting today and includes:
Donate to a Business Directly from Yelp: GoFundMe fundraisers will automatically appear on Yelp pages for restaurants, nightlife, beauty, and fitness & active life, rolling out nationwide starting today. By incorporating fundraisers onto existing Yelp pages for small businesses, community members can easily support the businesses they know and love through donations, and business owners will have quick access to the funds they desperately need. Users will see a "donate" icon on the business’ Yelp profile, inspiring them to take action. This gives the community a simple way to show their support for their favorite local businesses.
GoFundMe.org Small Business Relief Fund: GoFundMe.org, the company’s nonprofit and charitable arm, has launched the Small Business Relief Fund where people can donate to support the overall initiative. Until the fund is depleted, donations to the relief fund will be paid out as one-time $500 matching grants to qualifying small businesses that created a fundraiser through the Small Business Relief Initiative or already had an existing GoFundMe. For fundraisers started prior to this announcement or outside of this partnership, the organizer can update their fundraiser description with the hashtag #SmallBusinessRelief to receive an email explaining how they can apply for a grant from the Small Business Relief Fund.
GoFundMe Centralized Fundraiser Hub for Small Businesses: For people looking to support and donate to a local business, GoFundMe has created a new small business centralized hub that identifies verified fundraisers that people can search by business name or location. Fundraisers started through the Small Business Relief Initiative and those created prior to this announcement will be included in the hub.
GoFundMe and Yelp Foundation have committed to collectively donating the first $1 million into the Small Business Relief Fund, which will be used to issue $500 matching grants to businesses that raise at least $500 on their GoFundMe. These funds will be distributed with hopes of helping small businesses in need because of the pandemic across the country.
GoFundMe will continue to expand the Small Business Relief Initiative with additional partners, product features, and corporate donors in the coming weeks.
Started in 2010, GoFundMe is the world’s largest free social fundraising platform. The GoFundMe community has raised over $9 billion from more than 120 million donations for people, causes, and organizations. GoFundMe is changing the way the world gives. Find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Yelp Inc. (www.yelp.com) connects people with great local businesses. With unmatched local business information, photos and review content, Yelp provides a one-stop local platform for consumers to discover, connect and transact with local businesses of all sizes by making it easy to request a quote, join a waitlist, and make a reservation, appointment or purchase. Yelp was founded in San Francisco in July 2004. Since then, Yelp has taken root in major metros in more than 30 countries.
GoFundMe.org is the advocacy and charitable arm of GoFundMe and is an independent, 501(c)(3) public charity registered in the United States (EIN 81-2279757). GoFundMe.org provides the opportunity for the community to take action on the broad causes and needs that are ever-present on GoFundMe.com. All donations to a GoFundMe.org-supported fundraiser are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.
About Yelp Foundation
The Yelp Foundation's mission is to support charitable organizations and activities addressing the needs of local communities, including access to information, education, local economic development, and freedom of expression, and to promote a culture of philanthropy among employees of Yelp Inc.