FAQ

To be honest, most of these questions aren't asked frequently, but we thought they might be helpful to someone. Maybe you?

How it Works

What is WeTheTrees?

WeTheTrees is a platform to help people fund their permaculture, sustainability, and activism projects.

We believe that:

-The ideas already are out there to build a healthy, sustainable world.
-The people are already out there with the money and the motivation to help bring these ideas into fruition.

WeTheTrees has been created to help connect these two wonderful aspects of this world.

WeTheTrees is powered by a all-or-nothing funding method where projects must be fully-funded or the campaign gets nothing.

Who can fund their project on WeTheTrees?

WeTheTrees is focused on permaculture, sustainability, education and activism. This platform is an ideal opportunity for designers, farmers, activists, artists, educators, and not for profit organizations to raise the money they need for a project they would like to do.

WeTheTrees makes the process of fundraising more creative and enjoyable for both the Campaign Creator and for the Contributors. We know that it can be awkward to ask people for money. WeTheTrees makes that a bit more fun.

If you would like to post a Campaign on WeTheTrees.com there are a few important points you should understand. We only take projects that are in some way related to Permaculture, sustainability, education and activism. This can be a loose connection, but must be connected. Each campaign needs to be working toward a project that is finite and measurable. It is very important that the fundraising happening on this site is for real projects will a clear beginning and end, and very clear goals and expectations that everyone can understand.

WeTheTrees is not the place to try to fund an upstart business, to get your day to day expenses paid for or to collect money for ongoing causes. You can create a campaign for something specific related to any of those things. For example, it is great to raise money “to set up 10 bee boxes, complete with bees and frames”, but it is not acceptable to raise money to “get a bee-keeping business going.” To understand if your project fits with WeTheTrees visit our guidelines page.

Why do people contribute to campaigns?

BECAUSE THEY BELIEVE IN WHAT YOU ARE DOING! - At WeTheTrees we are supporting a community of like-minded people who believe in the power of appropriate design. The main reason people contribute to the campaigns is because they believe in the vision. They too want the world to be a better place, and understand that it is through small actions on the part of individuals that the world changes.

REWARDS! Campaign creators inspire people to make contributions by offering tangible rewards (products, benefits, and experiences). Ideally rewards that come directly out of what you are campaigning for.

STORIES! WeTheTrees campaign's are projects of real people, working to enact a vision that is going to bring them and the world a little bit closer to their holistic goals. The stories, struggles, pictures and successes that come out of this process are part of what keeps us going. Have a look around the WeTheTrees site and visit the current campaigns. Discover what people are doing!

My idea only requires a tiny amount of funding. Can I do that on WeTheTrees?

No problem! Small steps to a brighter world! At WeTheTrees.com we regularly have projects that are working to raise under $2000. Minimum campaign amount is only $100! You could post a campaign for a project that could be completed in a weekend, or raise over $100,000 on a project that might last years.

Can I raise equity for my start-up on WeTheTrees?

No. WeTheTrees does not allow campaigns to raise equity for their start-up (or existing) companies. Furthermore, WeTheTrees does not allow a person or company to get loans through the site either. At WeTheTrees, traditional fundraising is practiced, where a person gives money, with only the rewards in return. No equity fundraising, and no loans.

All-or-nothing funding?

The campaigns on WeTheTrees.com must reach their fundraising goal by their campaign deadline or all contributions will be refunded.

Why?

  1. We want to ensure that you are able to complete the project you promised to. How are you ever going to be able to fulfill your promises to your contributors if you only raised $4,000 out of the $10,000 that you needed to complete your project?

  2. It allows people the opportunity to put an idea out there, to test how much interest there is, to even pre-sell the products, without any risk. If you don't reach your fundraising goal, then you don't have to complete the project. This is a big one that provides the permaculture community with a really interesting free testing tool.

  3. Setting a funding goal and having to reach it is a great motivator to encourage people to work hard to achieve their goals. Even the supporters of a campaign know that it will not get any money unless it reaches its goal, so they are also motivated to get the word out there.

Does WeTheTrees take some percentage of ownership or intellectual property of things made through the fundraising platform?

Absolutely not. Campaign creators keep 100% ownership of their work. However, we would love for you to give us props for helping you get it funded!

How do I start a campaign?

It's easy and free to create a campaign.

Scroll to the top and click on "Create your campaign" to get started.

Once you are ready to launch, we'll ask you to approve the terms and conditions and then submit it to us. We will then review your submission to make sure it meets the WeTheTrees campaign criteria. If it does, it will go live. At that point you have 60 days or less to promote your campaign and drum up enough support to meet your fundraising goal.

Account Settings

How can I change my profile name?

Make sure you’re logged in to WeTheTrees and go to your profile page by clicking on your name in the upper right, and selecting profile from the dropdown menu.

How can I change the email address associated with my account?

Make sure you’re logged in to WeTheTrees and go to your profile page by clicking on your name in the upper right, and selecting profile from the dropdown menu. You will be able to change your e-mail address there.

How do I unsubscribe from or adjust which emails I receive?

Make sure you’re logged in to WeTheTrees and go to your profile page by clicking on your name in the upper right, and selecting profile from the dropdown menu. There is a check box there allowing you to opt-in or opt-out of WeTheTrees.com mail. You cannot change the settings about receiving updates from the projects you contributed to.

I forgot my password, how do I log in?

Go to the sign-in pop-up box, and click on the Forgot your Password? link. From there you will be guided through the process.

How can I log in using my Facebook account?

You can sign in with Facebook using the Facebook login button on sign-in pop-up box.

How do I disconnect my Facebook account?

Log in to WeTheTrees through Facebook, then go to your account settings to disconnect from Facebook and set a password on your account page.

How come my Facebook account is showing up as somebody else?

If you are using a computer that is logged in to someone else's Facebook, connecting your WeTheTrees account to Facebook will create a link to that other person's account. Make sure that whichever computer you're working on is either logged out of Facebook or already logged in as yourself.

Do you recommend connecting with Facebook?

Yes! It's an easy way for anyone to log in to WeTheTrees.
If you're a creator, it's a great way to let contributors know a little bit more about you. It doesn't mean you have to accept random friend requests or make your entire profile public, but it's an easy way to show contributors you're a real person. You can also adjust the privacy settings of your Facebook account to better control what new visitors see.

Can I connect my company's Facebook page to my project?

No, Facebook Connect works for personal Facebook profiles only.

How do I delete my account?

As long as you are not currently running a campaign, your account can be deleted from your account page. Warning: this is not reversible!

Site Basics

Do projects have RSS feeds?

The campaigns do not currently have RSS feeds. We may add this feature in the future. If this is something that you feel is valuable, please let us know.

When a person makes a contribution to a campaign, they are automatically signed up to receive update e-mails from the Campaign creator.

Where is WeTheTrees on the web?

You can find WeTheTrees at www.WeTheTrees.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WeTheTrees Follow us!

Who is WeTheTrees?

We are a small team of committed permaculturalists who realized the need for a fundraising platform for permaculture and sustainability projects. The three core operators of the site are: Christian Shearer, Jerry Jones, and Vidar Eldøy.

To learn more about us and what we are after, check out the about page.

How can I contact WeTheTrees?

You can email us using our contact form here.

Can I use the WeTheTrees logo in my project?

Yes! As long as it portrays WeTheTrees in a positive light. If you have any question about this, please contact us and get our permission.

How much does WeTheTrees cost?

WeTheTrees is free to join. We work on a all or nothing system, where if your campaign succeeds in meeting its goals, there will be 8.5% taken in fees. This includes the payment processor fees of about 3.5% and a WeTheTrees platform fee. The only other fee involved is the deliver of the money. This is usually through a wire transfer that costs around $30-50 for international transfers. If you have an account in the US, there is no cost to deliver the money.

Are contributions tax-deductible?

Most contributions are not tax-deductible. Campaigns may offer tax deductions on contributions only if they are set up as a 501(c)3 non-profit and their campaigns are connected to an account that is registered to that non profit organization. It is the responsibility of the campaign creator to make sure that is set up correctly to legally give tax-deductions.

Who do I contact if I have a question about my contribution?

If you have a question about a reward, shipping address or need to provide additional information for your contribution, contact the campaign creator, through their campaign page. For all other questions, refer to the Contributions section below.

How do I get featured on the homepage?

WeTheTrees features different campaigns for a number of different reasons. Some of them are the most exciting to our team, or the campaign creator has done an incredible job at publicizing the campaign. Or we thought that the look and feel of the content was so nicely done that we thought it deserved to be featured.

If you want to be featured on the front page, make sure to post plenty of updates to your social networks and make your campaign page look fabulous.

Can I cancel my account?

You can cancel your account as long as you have not raised any money. Accounts that have raised money must remain active. Contact us to cancel your account or campaign.

Can I cancel my campaign?

You cannot cancel your campaign once it has raised money, but if you would like us to remove it from the site (make it not visible), we can do that for you, just let us know. When the campaign deadline has passed, we will refund all contributions made and end the campaign. If you have submitted your campaign and it has not received any money, please let us know that you would like us to delete it and we will do that for you.

Is anyone in the world able to create a campaign?

WeTheTrees is an international platform, so anyone with a bank account can start a campaign. We do not, however, allow campaigns from countries on the U.S. OFAC sanctions list. Also, some of our payment providers may have their own restrictions concerning which countries they can work with. We are sorry if this excludes you.

What if I don't reach my funding goal?

WeTheTrees operates on an all-or-nothing system, so you must meet your goal to receive any of the funded money. If your campaign does not reach its funding goal, the contributions that were collected are automatically refunded to the contributors. There are no fees, or taxes associated with these refunds. You are then welcome to post another campaign, but it is not recommended to try the same campaign again, as contributors are even less likely to give a second time.

Can I contribute to my own campaign to make sure it makes the funding goal?

Yes and No. You cannot contribute to your own campaign, because this is restricted by law. If you want to use this strategy to help achieve your goal, you must get someone else to do it for you (like your boyfriend, your sister or your mom). Remember, if you meet your goal, you are basically in contract to complete the project that you campaigned for.

How do I create a campaign?

It's easy and free to create a campaign. Scroll to the top and click on "Create your campaign" to get started.

Once you are ready to launch, we'll ask you to approve the terms and conditions and then submit it to us. We will then review your submission to make sure it meets the WeTheTrees campaign criteria. If it does, it will go live. At that point you have 60 days or less to promote your campaign and drum up enough support to meet your fundraising goal.

How do I add a photo to my campaign description, or campaign update?

When you are writing your campaign description or adding an update, you will see a set of tools at the top of the text box. Click on the "Insert Image" icon, which looks like a frame with a green image in it. When you do, a box will appear prompting you to enter the URL of your image.

If you do not already have a URL for your image, then go to tinypic.com, easily upload your image and retrieve your URL.

Upload an image, then copy and paste the "Direct link for layouts." Return to the WeTheTrees page, and paste this url back into the image box.

How do I change my campaign page after it has already been submitted?

Once you submit a campaign, it is no longer possible to change your campaign. This policy is in place to protect the contributors, who once giving to a campaign want to feel sure that it isn't going to change. If you do have a small change that does not significantly change your campaign, please contact us through the "contact us" link below and we will do our best to make the changes for you. If you would like to add another image, please send us the URL, and let us know where you would like the image to go.

What do I need to do to have a successful campaign?

There are many factors that contribute to a successful campaign. The top three would be:

  1. Have an excellent, inspiring idea.
  2. Present your project in a beautiful and exciting way, though video, photos and description.
  3. Promote your campaign far and wide! - This is the single most important.

To learn more about how to have a successful campaign, check out our strategy guide.

Can I raise money or contribute in my currency?

At this time, WeTheTrees only accepts and disburses funds in U.S. Dollars and BitCoin (coming soon).

Contributions

How to Contribute

You may contribute to any live campaign by clicking on the “Contribute Now” button. You’ll be able to enter how much you want to contribute, claim your reward, and pay using wePay. WePay to accepts Visa, MasterCard, and American Express credit or debit cards, or you can choose to pay via your personal WePay account funds. You do not need to open an account with WePay in order to pay with a credit card. All transactions take place in $USD. When you contribute to a campaign, your money is immediately debited from your account, and deposited in a WeTheTrees account. If the campaign is successful, the contributions will then be sent to the campaign creator. If the campaign is not successful, your contribution will be refunded in full.

Your Information is Secure

We’re committed to your safety and security. We have safeguards in place to secure the information we collect online, prevent unauthorized access or disclosure, maintain data accuracy, and ensure the appropriate use of information.

Where is Paypal? Why can't we contribute with Paypal?

At WeTheTrees, we have consciously decided to give Paypal the boot as the company works without ethics and has completely terrible customer support and policies. They have chosen to make their platform very user friendly for people who pay, but a nightmare for people to collect money (and they charge quite a bit more than the industry standard in many cases). When we worked with them, they froze our account on multiple occasions, which means that we had no access to the money in our account for up to six months! One of those times they said that we needed to prove that we were a non profit. I explained to them (and send them the company paperwork) that we are not a non-profit and never claimed to be, but the "service professionals" said that once something like that is in motion, there is nothing they can do to lift the hold until we prove we are a non-profit! So all the money we had in Paypal was held for six months before they would release it.

WePay rose up as one of the responses to Paypal and has an incredible record. We have has nothing but good experiences with them, fees are a bit less, refunds are easy, and customer support has been great.

How to Evaluate a Campaign

We have a comprehensive fraud check system in place to protect our contributors from potentially fraudulent campaigns. You can also help us flag any campaign containing prohibited content by contacting us to inform us of the content.

How Taxes Work

Most campaigns DO NOT offer tax deductions. Contributions are only tax-deductible if the campaign is fiscally sponsored by a 501c(3) nonprofit organization. We recommend that you contact the campaign creator directly to find out if the campaign is eligible for providing tax receipts. Any tax receipts would come directly from the nonprofit organization, not WeTheTrees. Any other tax consequences of your contributions are your own responsibility. WeTheTrees cannot be held responsible.

How Refunds Work

When you contribute to a project, the money is immediately debited from your account and held in a WeTheTrees account until the end of the campaign. If the campaign does not reach its goal, a full refund is issued to the contributors, including all fees.

Once debited, contributions are not refundable for reason other than the failure of a campaign to reach its goal. If you accidentally donated twice, or something else of this nature, please contact us, and we will look into it.

Minimum Contributions

There is a set minimum contribution of $5.00. Please do not attempt to contribute less than this or the transaction will be cancelled. The reason for this is that the fee structure imposed by payment processors makes low-level contributions extrememly expensive on a percentage basis. WePay generally charges $0.30 + 2.9% this means that a contribution of $1 would have almost a 33% fee attached to it, while a contribution of $100 has only a 3% fee. At the $5 level the fee works out to around 8.9%. We would like to keep the fee at that level or lower.

Manage Your Account

To make a contribution, you must first create an account with WeTheTrees. This is as simple as signing in with Facebook or Google. To make changes to your account settings, make sure you are logged in, then click on your name in the upper right hand corner. Select My Profile from the drop down menu, and continue from there.

How to Contribute Anonymously

There is a check-box you can select from the contribution page (after clicking the contribute button from a project page) that will allow you to contribute anonymously. Please note that the campaign creator will still be given your e-mail address to be able to send you updates and contact you about rewards.

How to Edit Your Name

You can adjust the name that shows up on the campaign page for your contribution. Just log in to your WeTheTrees account, then click on your name in the upper right hand corner. Select My Profile from the drop down menu, and continue from there.

Was My Contribution Successful?

We will send you a confirmation email if your contribution is successful. You can also keep track of any successful contributions made by checking your account’s profile page for a complete list.

Can I earn equity with my contribution, or give my contribution as a loan?

No, and No. WeTheTrees does not support either the equity form of crowdfunding or the ability to give loans to the campaigns. When you give a contribution, you get the selected reward and a feeling of joy at helping someone out. You never get a monetary return on your money, or any decision making rights in the project.

I Can’t Find My Country

Because WeTheTrees is a U.S. company, we are not able to send funds to any country on the U.S. Federal Sanction list. If you can’t find your country in the drop-down menu when trying to contribute to a campaign, your country may be one that we are currently unable to support.

What are Rewards?

Many campaigns offer rewards in exchange for different contribution levels. You will need to contribute at least the minimum amount to receive the associated reward. Rewards are offers made and managed solely by campaign creators. If you want to upgrade your reward, change your mailing address, or to inquire about the details of your perk, please contact the campaign creator directly.

Where is My Reward?

Receiving your reward(s) often takes time! Selecting a reward as a part of your contribution is not the same thing as buying something online. Rewards may require much more than just money to develop, manufacture and distribute. Since campaign creators manage rewards, we recommend contacting the campaign creator directly to find out the status of your reward.

Can I Upgrade My Reward?

Every contribution is processed individually. If you’d like to select a different reward, we suggest contacting the campaign creator directly.

Fees and Pricing

Is it Free?

At WeTheTrees, it is free to create an account, to set up a campaign, and to contribute. WeTheTrees only charges a fee for funds that are raised by a successful campaign.

What are the Fees?

If you successfully raise money on WeTheTrees, you will encounter a flat fee of 8.5%. This flat fee includes the payment processing fee (generally about 3.5%) and the WeTheTrees platform fee.

International Money Wiring Fees

In addition to the 8.5% flat fee, there may be a money transfer fee associated with delivering the money to you after your successful campaign. We work with each campaign on a case by case basis to try to minimize this fee. If your project is located in the US, we can send the money without fees.

International Fees

There can be additional charges depending on where a payment is coming from, usually in the range of 1-2%. We only accept payment in US$ so this cuts out some of these charges. We cannot be held responsible for additional fees.