This graduate is raising funds during the coronavirus pandemic – using likes!
A recent journalism honours graduate from Stellenbosch University has taken it upon himself to raise funds for the Solidarity Fund – an initiative to support and aid those in need during the coronavirus pandemic with donations.
Mike Wright has taken on the challenge headfirst to raise funds through likes on his post on Instagram, which features brilliantly edited shots of himself poolside with himself.
“Jeepers. I was sitting at the pool yesterday with the alter egos and DJ Pure Euphoria, and we were just marvelling at how incredible the year of March was, how quickly social movements evolve these days, how fickle some aspects of life are,” he wrote alongside his post.
“1 like on this post = R1 to the @solidarityfund... Additionally, R2 rond per comment will go to @support.a.saffa,” he continued.
The social media initiative was kickstarted
by Robbie Ball who was keen to spread some light amid these dark times.
Participants are nominated by someone and are encouraged to make charitable donations at a set monetary value for each like, and thereafter nominate friends and family.
Mike has played an integral part in getting the campaign off the ground.
“I was called by Robbie Ball who asked (me) whether I thought a ‘R1 per like’ post would be an effective method of raising money for the fund,” said Mike speaking to YOU.
“He was basing his idea on a post that I made in January in support of an anti-poaching unit and therefore sought my guidance. I proposed that he went through with the "R1 per like" style of post, but that he should also include a nomination at the bottom to feed on Instagram.”
Mike initiated a similar anti-poaching fundraiser earlier this year, which garnered more than 11 000 likes and for which he has raised more than R12 000 to date.
Although the Solidarity fund donations via social media and the initiative itself are all about sending out a positive message and creating cohesion, it has faced backlash on social media from naysayers.
“I was all for this 1 like = R1 initiative, but the more I think about it the more uncomfortable I get. Why do we have to publish this kind of donation, and why do I get the feeling so many people aren’t actually donating and don’t actually know what it’s about..?” Sarah Story wrote on Twitter.
Mike said he’s disappointed that the intentions of the challenge have been misconstrued.
“The challenge asked for people who aren’t battling as much as others to publicly announce what they’re most appreciative for as well as which things and activities they miss most during the lockdown,” he said.
“Then acknowledge just how insignificant these things are in comparison to how affected others are by poverty, job loss, financial struggle and hunger, and Covid-19 – the main point of the fund.
“While this challenge brought about a lot of positivity, and money, it also showed the fragility in this country.”