New Online Platform Offers Ways to Help Those in Need

Photography Provided

Inspiration for a business takes many forms. With Aimee Kandrac, it was a close family friend in her 20s with brain cancer. 

“My family wanted to do so much to help,” recalls Kandrac, founder of WhatFriendsDo. “We could not find an app that met our friend’s needs, so we created one.”

WhatFriendsDo was born from love for a friend, and since its inception more than a decade ago, the online platform has provided compassionate care for over 35,000 individuals experiencing a life-changing event such as a health crisis. This number does not include the vast number of volunteers, known as teams, who rally around a loved one through the WhatFriendsDo concept.

WhatFriendsDo enables users to post real-time updates, including photos and videos, and offers a way for individuals to request help they need. Whether it is rides to physician appointments, meal preparation, help with walking a dog or house cleaning, the application’s calendar feature helps individuals specify their needs. The WhatFriendsDo platform is integrated with Amazon Wish List, and users can purchase gift cards through the app. There is also an in-app feature for group video chats, and the ability to sell team gear.

The pandemic has underscored the need for connection in new ways. A virtual hug isn’t the same as in-person, so the WhatFriendsDo platform creates unique opportunities to help loved ones, even at a distance.

“Cancer and other illnesses do not care that there is a pandemic going on,” Kandrac says. “Traveling safely has created some obstacles for loved ones to visit one another during this time, and our app offers a creative solution to meet some of their needs.”

The company has expanded in other areas as well. Organizations like American Health Network and Athenex Oncology see the opportunity for connection for clients. Leaders at Athenex sought a solution to help metastatic breast cancer (MBC) patients. MBC is treatable but incurable, and there is a high risk of isolation for those diagnosed with it. Athenex was exploring how to create a solution for isolation before the pandemic hit. They found their answer with WhatFriendsDo. 

“Athenex uses our platform with their own branding,” says Kandrac, who licenses WhatFriendsDo to other organizations in a business-to-business model. “Anything we can do to help others is a win-win.”

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