Facebook users who find themselves in desperate straits after a fire, flood, or other disaster that triggers a Facebook Safety Check will now be able to ask friends to make donations after letting everyone know they’re safe. Facebook Fundraisers will now be part of Safety Checks, one in a series of changes announced by Facebook today to give people more control during such events.
Fundraisers can be created for friends, a favorite nonprofit organization, or yourself. At launch, the new fundraising feature will only be available in the United States.
Each Safety Check begins with an alert from a crisis reporting agency, like NC4. If several users in the area are talking about the same event, they’re invited to do a Safety Check to alert their friends by pressing a button that says “I’m Safe” or “Not in this area.”
Facebook Safety Checks have been initiated more than 600 times and used more than one billion times since 2014.
Each event that triggers a Safety Check will now come with a description provided by NC4, while users responding to a Facebook Safety Check can now include a more detailed description of their status and whereabouts.
Also new today, Facebook will expand access to Community Help to desktop computers. Community Help was first introduced last fall to connect people in need with those willing to help in areas recently hit by a disaster. Help can be provided across 11 different categories ranging from pet supplies and transportation to food and shelter. Community Help was incorporated into Safety Checks in February.
Facebook Fundraising first launched in November 2015. Since then, the tool has grown to allow people to do things like make donations during Facebook Live videos or dedicate their birthday to a cause and invite friends to make donations to a nonprofit of their choosing.