“What can I do to help out when a loved one gets sick?” This is the question that Desiree Vargas Wrigley is hoping to provide a clear answer to. As founder and president of GiveForward, a platform to help raise money for loved ones who've been afflicted with an illness, Wrigley is giving hope to those who may otherwise feel helpless.
The inspiration for GiveForward came primarily from Hurricane Katrina. I was frustrated by the fact that I couldn't easily give to families that were rebuilding, and I wished there was an easy way to do that online.
Since its launch, the GiveForward platform has helped raise more than $16.5 million to help cover the expensive out of pocket costs for treatment – a $13 million increase since the last time Tech Cocktail covered the Chicago-based social good startup.
Today GiveForward has announced they closed a $2 million A round led by Founder Collective and First Round Capital, with Naval Ravikant and Firestarter Fund participating. This follows a previous $500,000 angel round in 2011 with investors New World Ventures, David Cohen, HowardLindzon, Tim Krauskopf and others.
Tech Cocktail caught up with Wrigley to learn more about how they've benefited from the Excelerate Labs program, what it's like to raise money as a social good startup, and what advice she'd offer to aspiring entrepreneurs. Watch the full video with Desiree Vargas Wrigley. The interview was filmed at Techweek 2012 in Chicago on June 25, 2012. It is also part of the Tech Cocktail Conversations podcast – subscribe on iTunes.