How to Make a Bigger Impact with International Crowdfunding

| 6 min read Crowdfunding

So many people and places around the world are in need of help and relief. You might feel compelled to volunteer money, time, and energy, but lack the means for a donation or international travel. That’s where international crowdfunding can help. By reaching out to your network of friends and family, along with sympathetic donors around the world, you can raise funds to improve the lives of people near and far—through both hands-on service and long-distance support. Beyond the money you raise, an international fundraiser can also be a place for supporters to offer encouragement as they follow your journey. 

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Top 4 uses for international crowdfunding

1. Volunteer abroad

Are you looking to volunteer abroad, or take part in community service projects in another country? International crowdfunding can help you raise funds from your home country, as well as the country you visit. Volunteers often discover that crowdfunding brings people together and helps forge new relationships, amplifying the impact you can make on your own. 

2. International medical mission trips

Medical mission trip fundraising is a popular option when it comes to traveling internationally., Through starting your own international fundraiser, you can quickly and easily build the emotional and financial bridges you need to make your medical mission trip a success. In addition to raising money to cover the cost of travel and other needs, your fundraiser page is a place to post fundraiser updates during your mission trip. Some great mission trip fundraising ideas include hosting a fun community event like a trivia night, or organizing a bake sale at your local church in support of your trip.  

3. Teach in a foreign country

While you’ll find many paid opportunities to teach in a foreign country, some of the most underserved communities lack any kind of formal established program or school to serve them. This is where crowdfunding can help—allowing you to raise the funds you need to reach these communities and teach those who need it the most. Through crowdfunding, not only can you fund your own volunteer teaching trip, but you can also raise money for a school supply drive, to help a teacher in need, or even to start a classroom fundraiser that benefits both students and teachers alike.   

4. Help a family in need

It can be incredibly gratifying to raise money for a family in need, and see the tremendous difference you’ve made in their lives. And to further increase awareness for your family fundraiser, consider starting a fundraiser Facebook page and sharing your cause on social media

Best international crowdfunding platforms

If you’re looking to start crowdfunding for an international cause that matters to you, there are a wide variety of international crowdfunding sites that can help you meet your goal. Take a look below at some of the most popular websites for crowdfunding. 


GoFundMe is one of the most popular international crowdfunding websites—more than $15 billion has been raised on the site. In the US, there’s no fee to start or manage your fundraiser on GoFundMe. However, there is one small transaction fee per donation that covers all your fundraising needs. Everything else goes directly to your cause, because that’s what matters most. When crowdfunding on GoFundMe, you’re covered by the first and only donor protection guarantee: the GoFundMe Giving Guarantee. There are also no long waiting periods to receive funds.  


Another popular site, FundMyTravel is specifically for raising funds for volunteering abroad, service learning, and mission trips. Funds are automatically deposited into your account as you receive donations. The site also charges a 5% platform fee, on top of the 3 to 5% payment processing fee. 


A platform focused on individual and charity fundraisers, MightyCause gives donors the option to cover part of their platform fee—which is capped at 2.2%. Additionally, this international fundraising website has their own payment processing system, which only charges a $0.29 fee per campaign. A paid monthly subscription is also available, offering branding and marketing support.  

International fundraising examples that work

Take a look at some examples of how others are using GoFundMe to start their own fundraiser, and help important causes and communities all around the world.

Tanzania volunteer experience

After booking a trip to Tanzania for two weeks to volunteer with building a local school, Monica knew she could help even more. She started a fundraiser to collect donations for supplies, and successfully raised over $1,300. Donations were used to purchase roofing for the classrooms, and to install a potable water tank for the school.  

Medical mission trip to the Dominican Republic

Dr. Michael Gocke, an oral surgeon, started a fundraiser to help bring medical supplies to people in need living in the Dominican Republic. His practice paid for all travel expenses for himself and his team, and during their trip they performed services at a local hospital—including facial reconstruction and cleft palate surgery. He raised nearly $5,000 through his fundraiser, using the donations to purchase much-needed supplies for the hospital like antibiotics, blankets, and pain relievers. 

Volunteer teaching in Costa Rica

College senior Astra started a fundraiser to help pay for her service learning trip abroad to Costa Rica, where she spent ten days teaching English to underprivileged schools. She exceeded her fundraising goal, and raised nearly $2,400 to fund her volunteer teaching trip.  

Houses for Myanmar refugees

Founder of Humans of New York, Brandon Stanton started a fundraiser to help the hundreds of thousands of Myanmar refugees who fled to Bangladesh in late 2017. His mission is provide durable shelter for refugees, many of whom live in plastic tents. These innovative bamboo houses are designed and built by the nonprofit Love Army, and can comfortably house up to six people. So far, he has raised more than $2 million through his fundraiser and built over 3,000 houses for families in need. 

Impact communities with international crowdfunding

Whether you’re looking to volunteer abroad, go on an international mission trip,  or help those in need any number of other ways, an international crowdfunding fundraiser can offer the support you need to make it happen. Sign up today and start your fundraiser, and see what kind of impact you can make for people all around the world. 

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Written by GoFundMe Team