Instagram is rolling out a fundraising feature that will allow users to raise money for a personal cause they care about.
While Instagram already lets users fundraise for charities via its donation stickers and during Instagram Lives, the “Personal Fundraiser” feature will allow them to raise money for themselves, their business or other types of personal causes.
This could be for example “community projects, crisis relief, education, family, medical costs, emergencies, pets or animals and volunteering”, Instagram says.
In order to qualify for the use of donation stickers, charities and non-profits currently need to enrol and be approved to use Facebook Charitable Giving Tools, as well as having both an Instagram business account and a non-profit verified Facebook page.
The Personal Fundraiser feature will make it easier to raise money for a wider range of causes and for groups that are not formally registered as non-profit. For example, the UK Black Lives Matter group, which has raised more than £1.1m on GoFundMe since the beginning of June, is not a formal organisation.
However, while Instagram does not charge processing fees for non-profit fundraisers, personal fundraisers will accrue them. In the UK, the fee amounts to £0.24 plus 1.50% of the total for each donation.
The “Personal Fundraiser” feature is being trialled with a small number of Android users in the UK, US and Ireland. Instagram said it will expand it “in the coming months”.
'A large wave of digital activism'
The move comes in response to the rise in fundraising for the Covid-19 crisis and for the Black Lives Matter movement.
In an update on its website, Instagram said: “Since January, people have raised more than $100m for Covid-19 fundraisers globally across Instagram and Facebook. In the last 30 days, donations on Instagram have doubled in the US.
“We’ve also seen a large wave of digital activism responding to the global conversation around racial justice. From people raising money to buy medical equipment for Black Lives Matter protesters, rebuilding Black-owned small businesses affected by Covid-19 and funding educational resources related to racial justice, people are eager to mobilise around causes they care about.
“Now, we’re making it easier to create fundraisers directly on Instagram that benefit such personal causes.”