Without a doubt, cats dominate the Internet. There is a large community of online users dedicated to consuming contents related to these furry creatures. In fact, some of the most popular social media celebrities we have are cats—there is Nala Cat who has a sizeable Instagram following and Grumpy Cat whose Internet fame has lead to television guesting and endorsement deals.
Two friends have decided to further legitimise this obsession about cats. In December 2014, Tom O’Connor and Eddie Peña launched Cats vs Cancer—a website that lets cat-obsessed users to watch cat-relate videos while at the same time, help individuals fight cancer.
According to its official website, “Cats vs Cancer is a non-profit site, run entirely by volunteers, built to help those battling cancer. Each month we take money raised through ads sold on the site, as well as your donations, and give that to a cancer charity.
“Our mission is to be the most entertaining and fun charity on the planet. We will do this by curating the most hilarious, adorable, and captivating cat-things from around the web for your enjoyment and viewing pleasure.”
The startup charity organization follows two models for generating funds. First, it raises ad revenues by attracting enough website visitors to attract advertisers. Currently, the website serves ads from Google AdSense and Amazon Associates. The second model involves direct donation coursed through Network For Good, an online payment processing service designed for online non-profit organization.
Each month, the funds raised through ads or donations are channeled towards a particular cancer organization chosen by Cats vs Cancer.
The website also features feline celebrities and polls alongside its cat-related contents that largely revolve around videos, pictures, and memes to further increase user engagement.
Since its inception, Cats vs Cancer has partnered with several cancer organisations to include Brent’s Place, a housing facility for immune-compromised children and their families; First Descent, an organisation dedicated to providing life-changing outdoor adventures for young adults with cancer; and Bringing Hope Home, an organisation that provides counselling and financial support to families impacted by cancer.
Cats vs Cancer is an affiliate of GuideStar USA, Inc., an organisation that promotes transparency and monitors IRS-registered nonprofit organisation in the United States.