NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — If you’re looking for a place to donate some of your stimulus check, an unprecedented number of GoFundMe pages have sprung up online.
One in three are now COVID-19 related.
CBS2’s Natalie Duddridge looked at how the food industry is using the fundraising site to help out.
Staff at Mimi Cheng’s two locations in Manhattan are working around the clock to send thousands of “Dumplings To Doctors.”
The idea came to the owners and sisters Hannah and Marian Cheng after hearing about a friend’s mother — a nurse who wasn’t stopping to eat.
“Her hospital closed their cafeterias, so people do not have anything to eat and didn’t even really have time to eat. That really just broke our hearts,” Hannah Cheng said.
Mimi Cheng’s decided to pause their take-out and delivery services to focus solely on feeding health care workers.
They started the “Dumplings For Doctors” GoFundMe campaign, which had raised about $45,000 by Thursday night.
The response from health care workers has been moving.
“It’s given our teams at both locations a fresh mission,” Marian Cheng said.
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GoFundMe says it’s seeing more charitable campaigns than ever before.
They’re hiring additional staff to make sure sites are legitimate and, in some cases, have been holding funds until accounts are verified.
Donations aren’t guaranteed to be tax deductible unless it’s to a certified charity campaign.
Sara Leveen and Ben Lowell started a GoFundMe page to help the 29 staff members they had to let go from their restaurant Hanoi House in the East Village.
So far, it’s raised $15,000.
“The response has been very, very emotional and really, really sweet,” Leveen said.
CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ Health Dept. | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211
Renee Cafaro is focused on helping first responders.
She came up with “Eats For EMTs” and raised $15,000 on GoFundMe.
“To say thank you to those who are taking the bulk of the 911 calls,” Cafaro said.
Cafaro is on track to achieve her goal of delivering a meal to every EMT in the city.
GoFundMe worldwide is on track to raise $120 million for COVID-19 relief.