The Power of Community and Peer-to-Peer Fundraisers

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Since October 7, Anera has seen an unprecedented increase in peer-to-peer (P2P) fundraising campaigns from around the world. These campaigns have been instrumental in raising funds and awareness for Gaza while demonstrating diverse ways in which communities worldwide can unite to make a meaningful impact.

We have been amazed by the ability of our P2P fundraisers to craft unique campaigns that increase support for Anera’s programs. These dedicated people have galvanized their own local communities in support of communities in Palestine, raising nearly a quarter of a million dollars since the start of the war. Here are some standout examples.

Zach came up with his fundraiser idea by combining his love of running and his desire to help the humanitarian situation in Gaza. He decided to run a marathon as a fundraiser for Anera, and in doing so, successfully ran the entire 42 kilometers (26 miles) in the south of England in 3 hours and 29 minutes.

Zach was overjoyed when his original fundraising goal was tripled by the time his campaign ended. Although he has no direct connection to the people of Gaza, Zach felt as though nobody in the world should experience what they are going through, and that is why he decided to create this campaign.


Jess, an avid swimmer from Australia, challenged herself to swim 41 kilometers (or about 25 miles), the length of the Gaza Strip, to raise money and awareness. She accomplished this feat in just 50 days.

“I felt very proud by people’s willingness to donate,” Jess said.

Jess often felt tired, fighting fatigue and the daily struggles of pushing her body to the limit, but she remained steadfast and committed to her cause, using the support of those who gave donations as fuel to keep her going. Her story inspired others, and she soon had people reach out to her and ask to swim alongside her.

Jess chose to support Anera because of the constant reassurance and proof that supplies were getting to the people of Gaza. She used social media to promote her campaign and provide updates on her progress.


Kara and Shira ran into each other at a demonstration for Palestine, and they agreed that they both felt powerless in their ability to support Gaza. As nurses, they understand the value of medicine and healthcare, especially in an active war zone.

Kara and Shira’s fundraising event was a night of local Palestinian food, mingling, and learning about Anera’s programs. Haley Gerlofs, the events and stewardship manager at Anera, was in attendance and spoke about the organization’s impact on the ground. They handed out information about Anera to everyone and watched as donations poured in before, during, and after the event. By the end of their event, Kara and Shira’s fundraiser raised five times their initial goal.

“We were so uplifted by [Haley’s] resourcefulness and ability to stay hopeful. The talk was honest and real,” Kara and Shira said.


Bears for Palestine, a student organization from UC Berkeley (the name is a reference to the school mascot), was among the first to create a P2P campaign in response to the conflict that began on October 7. The students leveraged their position as a prominent group on campus to support a trustworthy organization through their various events and fundraising initiatives. Bears for Palestine chose Anera because of the transparency and assurance that funds raised would be sent directly to Gaza.

The students were deeply moved to see the outpouring of support. “It made us want to work harder to raise money for Gaza and all of Palestine. We sold keffiyehs and hosted a charity gala to raise money for Gaza through Anera,” said a representative from Bears for Palestine.

Bears for Palestine consists of many Palestinian members of the UC Berkeley community. Many students are the children of refugees and have heard stories of the pain and struggle that Palestinians have endured for decades. Not only do these students have relatives in Palestine, but they also share a comradery with all Palestinians around the world.


Khushali is one of our fundraisers who, for her birthday, asked her family and friends to donate to Anera in lieu of gifts. After seeing the devastation occurring in Palestine and supporting the cause independently in many different ways, she decided she wanted to mobilize her community to help address the immediate needs of Palestinians in Gaza.

Khushali’s friends and family took advantage of matching funds through their employers to increase their impact. Her partner matched all gifts as well. Khushali was amazed by the generosity of her family and friends, and the amount she raised far exceeded her expectations.

As an Indian-American whose family suffered under British colonial rule, she relates to the Palestinian struggle and feels very close to this cause.

“I am so impressed with Anera’s transparency,” she said. “It’s great to see the frequent updates on Anera’s website and social media on how the money raised is enabling them to deliver meals, aid, and supplies to people in urgent need in Gaza.”

Anera’s P2P fundraisers demonstrate the power of community, and how one person can be a ripple effect to inspire others to get involved. If you are interested in joining this movement and creating a fundraiser in your community, please visit anera.org/how-to-help/fundraise to get started.

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