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Mass shooting survivors bring issue with the Colorado Healing Fund

Organizers from the Orlando and Las Vegas shootings say victims should get 100% of all donations
Posted at 8:30 PM, Nov 28, 2022

COLORADO SPRINGS — Survivors from mass shootings in Las Vegas, Orlando, and Aurora visited victims and their families who suffered in the Club Q shooting. They also came with concerns about nonprofits that don't donate 100% of their funds to victims.

"We have one message. Give the Club Q victims 100% of the funds donated to them. After the shooting in Orlando, we received 100% of what was collected for us because grieving people from other mass shootings fought for us," said Tiara Parker, a survivor of the Orlando Pulse shooting.

Specifically, they hold issues against the Colorado Healing Fund. They disagree with the 10% administration fee that is taken from donations, withholding donations from victims for long-term needs, and not giving gifts solely to victims, but to local community organizations supporting victims.

“There's nothing wrong with administration fees but when millions are made and 10% of millions should not go… that's not what's required. Nonprofits all the time, they deserve to be paid for their work, of course, but not millions," said Mark Grimmie, whose sister died from gun violence during her concert in Florida.

The Colorado Healing Fund was created by a group of individuals who have seen mass shooting incidents. "We recognized that there was a gap in terms of responding after a mass tragedy, and it took time for a secure place to donate funds," said Colorado Healing Fund Board President Cynthia Coffman.

After hearing from the survivors this weekend, Coffman told me that the organization is working to eliminate their administration fee after they have met operating costs for the 2022 year.

"That's something that we are exploring: to get to a point where we don't have to collect anything for an administration," said Coffman.

As for giving money to organizations instead of directly to individuals, Coffman says the Healing Fund made a conscious effort to avoid those who would lie about being victims.

"We take the money and give it to those who are responding on the ground level, actually working with victims and identifying needs," she said.

Charity Navigator is a nonprofit organization that monitors the standing of other nonprofits across the country. Their Chief Relationship Officer Kevin Scally says that most reputable organizations are within the range of giving at least 70% of funds to victims and 30% to administration fees. However, he says, that's only one small aspect when considering the validity of a nonprofit.

"It's one metric that people typically focus on, but obviously you have to look at the whole organization, and their track record, and how they deliver on their mission and model," says Scally.

For full transparency, our parent company E.W. Scripps has started a donation page with the Scripps Howard Fund that goes to the Colorado Healing Fund.

If you are uncomfortable donating to them, here is a list of verified GoFundMe campaigns below.

  • Support for the Club Q Families and Survivors
    • Faith Haug of Good Judy Garage, a small business in Denver, launched the fundraiser to raise funds for the families of the victims killed in the tragic shooting, as well as to help those injured with medical expenses. 
  • Victims of Club Q Colorado Springs Mass Shooting
    • Greg Resha of Colorado Springs, a former employee of Club Q, launched the fundraiser to help the families of the victims, as well as those who were injured.
  • Classroom of Compassion in Colorado Springs, CO
    • Classroom of Compassion is a nonprofit organization aimed at creating public mourning spaces for communities following a tragedy. The fundraiser is meant to help the Colorado Springs community heal. They will be traveling to Colorado Springs this week to create five public altars honoring the victims killed in the shooting. 
  • Fundraiser for Tara (DJ T-Beatz) injured @Club Q
    • Crys Lucero, a friend of Tara's, organized this fundraiser with permission from her family. The money raised will go directly toward Tara's family. Tara DJ'd frequently at Club Q.
  • Support Slaugh family, victims of Club Q shooting
    • Summer Westerbur is hosting this fundraiser on behalf of a friend of Mark Slaugh, whose siblings Charlene and James Slaugh were injured during the Club Q shooting. The siblings were at Club Q for a fun night of dancing.
  • Club Q Victims Fund
    • Victims First, Inc. is a nonprofit organization. The fund is for the victims and survivors of the Club Q shooting, and 100% of the proceeds go towards victims.
  • Colorado Springs LGBTQIA Q Club Shooting Relief
    • Jacob Cohen has organized this fundraiser to benefit the Colorado Healing Fund, which assists local communities with the needs of victims of mass tragedies.
  • Pride Center for Colorado Springs - Club Q
    • Summer Westerbur is a queer business owner who is in partnership with Sunserve Florida, a nonprofit, and local LBTQ leaders. Donations will go towards helping build a Pride Center in Colorado Springs. The original Colorado Springs Pride Center closed in 2015.
  • Family expenses for the loss of Derrick Rump
    • Derrick Rump is one of the victims of the Club Q shooting. Rump was a bartender at Club Q, and the nightclub was a second home to him. His sister, Julia Kissling is organizing this fundraiser to help with family expenses.
  • Club Q Victim
    • Cassandra Marlow is organizing this fundraiser on behalf of Jericho Loveall. Loveall was shot at Club Q, and all proceeds will go to Jericho's wife, Christina, and the Loveall family.
  • Medical Expenses for Colorado Springs Survivor
    • Aurora Carlisle Nicole is organizing this fundraiser on behalf of Barrett Hudson. Hudson requested this GoFundMe to assist with medical bills. Hudson, who recently moved to Colorado Springs from Charlotte, North Carolina, was shot 9 times at Club Q.
  • Raymond Green Vance
    • Adriana Vance, the mother of Raymond Green Vance, is organizing the fundraiser. Raymond Green Vance was one of the victims of the Club Q shooting. Proceeds will go towards bringing the family together during this time.
  • Kelly Loving Legacy Fund
    • Robert Coleman, Kelly Loving's sister, is organizing this fundraiser. Kelly Loving was a victim of the Club Q shooting. This GoFundMe will support organizations and charities that make a difference for nonbinary individuals.
  • Club Q family Fundraiser
    • Tiara Kelley, a producer at Club Q, organized this GoFundMe for the staff at Club Q.
  • Ryleigh Paugh College Fund
    • Ryleigh Paugh is the daughter of the late Ashley Paugh. Donations will go towards Riley Paugh's college fund. Ashley Paugh was a victim in the Club Q shooting.
  • Official Club Q Fundraiser
    • Matthew Haynes, one of the owners of Club Q, is organizing this fundraiser to ensure that funds will go towards Club Q's staff and entertainers. Any remaining funds will go towards remodeling the club, and creating an official Club Q memorial for the victims of the shooting.

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