Reddit Post Leads to Hundreds of Donations, Crashing the Website

The website has received over $200,000 for kids in foster care.
Ameya Paleja
Reddit is known as the front page of the internetBrett Jordan/Pexels

Reddit is a tricky place. Sometimes you spend years trying to build your karma on the site or a random post in some subreddit can make you create a Reddit account so that you can thank everyone for sharing and supporting your real-life karma. That's exactly what happened to Danielle Gletow, after a post on a forum sent hundreds of visitors to her website, to the point of crashing it.

Gletow is the founder of One Simple Wish, a website that aims to address the needs and wishes of foster kids by sharing them with the world. Wishes are segregated across various categories ranging from essentials to experiences, education and employment needs, or health and wellness requirements. The website's visitors can donate money in part or in full to complete the wish.  

On June 21st, 2021, Gletow was grieving her friend, whom she lost to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a neurodegenerative disease. She woke up the next morning to receive hundreds of donations on her website that fulfilled most of the listed wishes.

Unprepared to receive so many visitors, the website crashed. Gletow and her team had to redirect the traffic. The massive inflow of visitors came after a Reddit user, DartDoug, replied to a question that sought details of good deeds that people had not shared with anyone. 

By the end of the day, most of the 200 wishes on the website were fulfilled. Those who had donated on the website came back to Reddit to share how they had helped someone get art supplies, LED lights, or scooters, fueling the comments section and sending more people to the website. 

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Gletow, who had never used Reddit before, eventually created an account to thank all the Redditors who had donated and helped support One Simple Wish. The event was also picked up by the media prompting more visitors, and the website has completed over 1500 wishes since then and received over $200,000 to support wishes in the future. 

According to its website, One Simple Wish works with 782 community partners in 48 states and has reached over 20,000 foster kids so far. Apart from user-specific wishes, the program also offers scholarships and aims to reach the 500,000 plus children that spend time in foster care every year. Now, that's what we call a heartwarming initiative.

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