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Crowdfunding: A Way to Pay Employee Medical Bills?

A New York City bar raised $17,500 via crowdfunding to cover the cost of an employee's facial reconstructive surgery.

Crowdfunding has been a popular method for entrepreneurs looking to kickstart their projects. But could it also be a place for small businesses to raise money for employee healthcare? One New York City bar thinks so. 

Rebecca Kahikina, manager of Manhattan lounge Employees Only, launched a crowdfunding campaign on GoFundMe to help pay for barback Uros Miljkovic's facial reconstructive surgery, the Huffington Post reports.

"I got the idea from one of our former servers, who raised $20,000 to buy a van to tour with her band," Kahikina told the outlet.

The "Save Uros' Face" campaign, posted on September 12, has now received $17,500, exceeding its original goal of $15,000. 

Miljkovic, who had the surgery at the beginning of the month, has an $8,000 bill to pay and health insurance that only covers general check-ups and common illnesses, Kahikina says. Miljkovic suffered suffered multiple face fractures after he says he was struck by cargo hanging from a truck on August 15.

Kahikina says the excess money raised will be used to help with his living expenses while he is unable to work and medical costs for follow-up appointments. Kahikina says Miljkovic is walking around, but still recovering from the surgery and she is unsure when he will start work again. 


Last updated: Sep 17, 2012


John McDermott is a business and culture reporter whose work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune and Playboy and on He recently moved from Chicago to Brooklyn, New York, to work for

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