First Global Crowdfunding Website for Medical Treatments Opens to Public
Press release (Aug. 23, 2012) — Watsi.org, the first global crowdfunding website for medical treatments, is now open to the public after two months of private testing.
In a world where 1 billion people cannot afford medical care, Watsi.org revolutionizes the way everyday people participate in the fight for global health by empowering anyone, anywhere to fund a low-cost, high-impact medical treatment for an individual who would otherwise lack access to necessary care.
Crowdfunding has exploded onto the scene in recent years, but Watsi.org is the first platform to apply its principles to the global health care space. By enabling people to directly fund medical treatments for individuals in developing countries, Watsi.org embodies a new generation of philanthropy, one where donors can have a direct personal connection with a beneficiary across the world.
During testing of Watsi.org this summer, 50 users from around the world donated $3,025 in increments as small as $5 to fund life-changing medical treatments for three initial patients from a village in Nepal where the average per capita income is less than $1 per day. During this test phase, donors funded treatments for a 12-year-old girl with a heart condition that made it difficult for her to breathe, a 14-year-old boy who lost the use of his hand after an epileptic seizure, and a 24-year-old widow whose face and body was disfigured in a fire.
Today, Watsi.org opens to the public with patients from three continents fundraising for life-changing medical care. Hundreds of donors are expected to participate, with more than 1000 people having already pledged their support on the “coming soon” launch page.