Yesterday’s column about viral fundraisers omitted one important argument about why these massive viral fundraisers are a problem. While it’s great that some $80 million has been raised over the last month thanks to the Ice Bucket Challenge, ALS affects only a very small portion of the population but is now eating up a massive part of the charitable donations people might have made during the year. After all, money doesn’t grow on trees.
The other problem with viral fundraisers is that it disproportionately overfundraises for diseases compared to how they affect society. Sure, there are people who would be quite justified to advocate for their causes. For example, the ALSA has, in the last one month, pulled in about half of what the American Heart Association has raised over the last 12 months. The number of ALS diagnoses over the next year will be less than 10% of the deaths from heart disease over the next year. It’s just not proportionate to what affects the health of the population.
To give you a little food for thought, here’s a handy little infographic for your perusal.