Facebook will add a “Donate” button to its homepage this week to allow users to combat Ebola with donations to three West African charities dedicated to its treatment, the company said. In addition, Facebook will deploy 100 satellite Internet hotspots to the West African nations affected by the Ebola outbreak to facilitate better phone and Internet communication, according to International Business Times.
“These units will provide connectivity in places where there is no coverage,” the head of spectrum policy and connectivity planning, Facebook, Chris Weasler, told theAssociated Press. “In other cases, [they will be] adding more capacity to networks increasingly strained from the influx of responders.” The Internet terminals will allow quarantined individuals make contact with their families and Ebola health workers to contact home, he said.
Meanwhile, Facebook’s Ebola “Donate” button will allow users to contribute money to the International Medical Corps, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and Save the Children. The Red Cross has raised nearly $3.7m to fight Ebola globally. Facebook stressed that its charity efforts did not have any business motive. “None. No. Really, our intention is to help stop Ebola,” the vice president of product management and Ebola button project lead, Facebook, Naomi Gleit, told Tech Crunch.
The social media company’s charitable efforts came weeks after the founder and the Chief Executive Officer, Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg and his wife donated $25m to the United States Centres for Disease Control and Prevention in a bid to stem Ebola’s spread.