PARKLAND, Fla., Feb. 22, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Broward Education Foundation, in close coordination with GoFundMe, announced an agreement with the National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC) to develop and implement a fund distribution plan to provide direct financial support to the families of those killed and injured in the horrific mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last week.
In response to the mass shooting, the Foundation, the National Center, and GoFundMe are collaborating to serve victims by maximizing resources and ensuring a victim-centered, transparent distribution process. Broward Education Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit direct support organization solely dedicated to raising funds for Broward County Public Schools, will serve as the central repository for the Stoneman Douglas Victims' Fund and will organize a local steering committee responsible for setting the fund's distribution policy. The National Center for Victims of Crime, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and a leading authority on how victims are compensated for loss, will advise the committee, assist with ongoing fundraising efforts, administer victim application and vetting processes, and coordinate the distribution of proceeds from the Foundation's official GoFundMe campaign, other fundraisers, and third-party donation sources. GoFundMe will advise the Foundation and support both ongoing fundraising and distribution of proceeds to victims and their families. GoFundMe has also donated $50,000 to the Fund to cover the committee's and the National Center's operating costs associated with developing and implementing the distribution plan so that 100% of the donations can be distributed directly to the victims and their families.
In consultation with the National Center, the Foundation will form the steering committee that includes local leaders, and victim representatives to ensure that the voices of the victims are heard, as they are integral to the distribution process. Experts with experience in mass crime victim compensation and the needs of crime victims will also be asked to serve in a volunteer capacity. The fund and committee are completely transparent, and the committee will inform the public of its deliberations in the distribution of funds.
To make a contribution, you can donate here: https://www.gofundme.com/stonemandouglasvictimsfund
"Just over a week ago, our community was shattered by this horrific tragedy," said Christina Fischer, Broward Education Foundation Board Chair. "Through the tears, Broward Education Foundation's amazing team mobilized overnight, and immediately assembled the best resources to help us aid the victims' families, survivors and those impacted by this senseless act of violence. We are grateful to partner with the National Center for Victims of Crime and GoFundMe because they are the experts in this field, and have dealt with nearly every major tragedy of this type in the US. We truly value their leadership, guidance and direction as we proceed in this difficult process." She continued, "The global outpouring of love and support for our MSD community has been awe-inspiring - and we humbly thank everyone for their generosity and compassion."
"Our hearts go out to the students, teachers, their families, and the entire Stoneman Douglas and Parkland community," said Jeffrey Dion, Deputy Executive Director of the National Center for Victims of Crime. "The National Center is honored to join forces with Broward Education Foundation and GoFundMe to increase charitable giving and help meet the overwhelming needs of victims of mass shootings, this time in Parkland. We stand in solidarity with all of those impacted by gun violence."
"From all of us here at GoFundMe, I extend our deepest condolences to the victims of this heinous attack, their families, and the Stoneman Douglas and Broward County communities," said Rob Solomon, CEO of GoFundMe. "During this time of mourning, healing, and action, we are proud to support Broward Education Foundation's efforts to provide direct and transparent help to victims of this horrific shooting."
In the coming weeks, additional details will be provided about the distribution plan. The committee will receive public input and will keep the community updated about how the funds will be delivered.
The National Center was founded in collaboration with parents and family members from some of the worst mass casualty events in U.S. history – September 11th , Columbine, Virginia Tech, Northern Illinois University, Aurora, Oak Creek Sikh Temple and Newtown. Unlike other charitable funds, 100% of donations are distributed directly to the established victim base of these terrible atrocities. The National Center preserves the intent of donors who want to know that their gift is going directly to those harmed and will not be used for other purposes. The National Center has the experience to help victims navigate this process, and to treat victims with the respect and dignity they deserve.
About Broward Education Foundation
Established in 1983, Broward Education Foundation is the only non-profit 501(c)3 charitable direct support organization solely dedicated to supporting teachers and students in Broward County Public Schools. Each year, Broward Education Foundation contributes more than $3 million to Broward County schools, serving as the catalyst for educational excellence. To learn more, visit browardeducationfoundation.org, email BEFInfo@browardschools.com, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.
About National Center for Victims of Crime
For 30 years, the National Center for Victims of Crime has been the nation's leading resource and advocacy organization for crime victims and those who serve them. The National Center for Victims of Crime is a 501(c)3 nonprofit and an authority on how victims are compensated for loss.
Launched in 2010, GoFundMe is the world's largest free social fundraising platform, with over $5 billion raised so far. With a community of more than 50 million donors, GoFundMe is changing the way the world gives. Find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.