In the last two years a small organization called Watsi has raised over $2 million for over 1,000 people around the world. The ability to raise and allocate capital in such an efficient way, for such a noble cause, make Watsi a company worth watching.
The idea for Watsi came when Chase Adam was in Costa Rica. He came across a woman who was trying to raise money for her son’s medical care. It dawned on Chase that by using modern technology and tapping into the new wave of crowdfunding, he might be able to help other people who are in similar situations.
Watsi was the first non-profit company to be accepted into the startup accelerator Y Combinator. The concept is simple, Watsi connects donors with patients. 100% of the donations that happen through the site are used for the medical procedure that patients need.
When you visit Watsi and browse around the site you are essentially exploring different profiles. Each profile highlights a patient who is in need of care and their target funding goal. From that point it’s extremely easy to donate. The website has a highly efficient funnel that makes each step quick easy.
The cost of care for the patients on Watsi are very attainable in comparison to the cost of medical care in the United States. This means that even the minimal $5 donation can chip away at the overall treatment cost. This helps provide incentive for people to get involved no matter how much money they can spare.
The company has done a great job of utilizing social media to help spread their message as well. Hearing about how donors helped save a child from a brain tumor inspires other people to get involved as well. This new-school strategy is also used by other large non-profits like charity:water. In the past many organizations would accept donations and say “thank you.” These days non-profits have embraced the practice of sharing as much information as possible with their donors, and are thriving because of it.
Watsi has been growing at a very consistent pace in terms of treatments and patients funded. With so many people being inspired by the work Watsi is doing, they will probably be making an impact for some time to come.