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CaringBridge, the social network that keeps families and loved ones connected during any type of health event, is launching a new look and new services that will help even more people support their loved ones during times of need.

New services include the SupportPlanner, which helps family and friends coordinate care and organize tasks, and the Amplifier Hub, which gives volunteers the opportunity to spread the word about CaringBridge and its mission while connecting with volunteers and other supporters.

The new look of CaringBridge features a revised logo, new colors and an updated appearance that reflects the organization's broader reach. More than ever, CaringBridge is dedicated to serving people during any health event, big or small, acute or long-term.

"For 15 years, we've been committed to helping make each health journey easier," said Sona Mehring, the founder and CEO of CaringBridge. "Our new services and new look will help us fulfill that mission."

The SupportPlanner grew out of requests from users for a tool to centralize and organize the helpful activities of family, friends and neighbors during a health event. Families can use the SupportPlanner to coordinate taking care of children and pets, grocery shopping, yard work and other tasks.

"When someone is going through a health event, people want to help," Mehring said. "The SupportPlanner gives caregivers a great way to manage the outpouring of support."

CaringBridge marked the launch of the new services, its new look and the 15th anniversary of the service's founding with an exciting celebration at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn. The event featured the world's largest greeting card, a joyous monument to caring and support that stood 30 feet tall and 40 feet wide. CaringBridge collected more than 2,400 messages of love from all over the world to mark the occasion and break the world record for most signatures on a greeting card.

The expansion and growth of CaringBridge are remarkable achievements for a nonprofit social network. As a charitable organization, CaringBridge relies mainly on individual donors to fund its operations. This approach allows CaringBridge to stay true to its mission - amplifying love, hope and compassion in the world, making each health journey easier - while protecting users' personal data.

CaringBridge is truly a "caring social network." It is free to use. CaringBridge does not accept advertising and does not sell users' information. CaringBridge is social network providing a social good - with a funding model that allows the organization to put its focus squarely on users and their privacy.

More than 500,000 people connect through CaringBridge every day. Users have created more than 320,000 CaringBridge sites since the service started in 1997. The new services will enable CaringBridge to serve more people in more ways.

CaringBridge Services

CaringBridge services are available online to anyone, anywhere at no cost. CaringBridge offers protected online spaces with multiple privacy settings.

CaringBridge Sites (CaringBridge.org)

CaringBridge provides sites where people can post health updates. People are able to stay connected and leave supportive messages during any health event, big or small, acute or long-term.

SupportPlanner (SupportPlanner.caringbridge.org)

The CaringBridge SupportPlanner helps family and friends coordinate care and organize tasks, such as bringing a meal, taking care of pets and other needs.

Amplifier Hub (AmplifierHub.CaringBridge.org)

The Amplifier Hub gives volunteers the opportunity to spread the word about CaringBridge and its mission, as well as connect with volunteers and other supporters.

About CaringBridge

  • CaringBridge is available online 24/7, accessible to anyone, anywhere
  • 43 million people visited CaringBridge.org in 2011
  • More than 323,000 personal sites have been created since the organization was founded in 1997
  • More than 500,000 people connect through CaringBridge every day
  • More than 125,000 families and individuals made a charitable gift to CaringBridge in 2011
  • Headquartered in Eagan, Minn., CaringBridge has 65 employees

CaringBridge History

In 1997, founder Sona Mehring's close friend had a premature baby. The family asked Sona to let everyone know what was happening. Instead of making numerous phone calls, she created a website. The night baby Brighid was born, the first CaringBridge site was started.

CaringBridge instantly became a connection point that allowed family members to communicate information to a wide circle of people. They posted daily journal entries and the guestbook enabled visitors to send the family messages of love and encouragement. It was obvious that CaringBridge could help any family going through a health event by letting everyone know what was happening and by bringing a supportive community together.

About Sona Mehring

CaringBridge, Founder & CEO

Sona Mehring created the first CaringBridge website in 1997. Based upon the idea of keeping friends and family informed when someone faces a health event, Mehring's vision was to create a service available for everyone that is a personal and powerful connection point. That first site allowed family members to communicate information to a wide circle of people by posting regular updates. Visitors could use the site to send messages of love and encouragement. Mehring was named one of 2011's "Most Influential Women in Technology" by Fast Company. In 2010 she received the Health Care Heroes Award from Twin Cities Business magazine.

Last modified on Sunday, 19 May 2013
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