It’s a simple fact of life: non-profits need to raise money to keep doing what they do. Some fundraising approaches are better than others, and in recent years, social media has taken a large role in raising awareness as well as funds.
That’s one of the driving forces behind Giving Is Gorges, a 24-hour online challenge, now in its third year, that organizers hope will help dozens of local non-profits reach potential donors, as well as remind their existing supporters.
For 24 hours, from 6pm until 6pm this Tuesday evening through Wednesday afternoon, the Giving is Gorges web site will accept donations from anyone for any of the Ithaca and Tompkins County area 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations who’ve registered. Donors will have the option to cover credit card transaction processing fees so they needn’t be deducted from the amount donated to the organizations.
Some familiar organizations are among the roughly 120 participants, including the Ithaca Children’s Garden, the SPCA of Tompkins County, and the Friends of Bound for Glory, which hopes to raise money to help preserve and digitize recordings from its 50 seasons of live concerts. The Ballet Guild of Ithaca is raising money for summer camp scholarships, and the Lansing Community Library is raising funds to purchase an After School Edge computer.
Organizations are being challenged to try for a number of “prizes,” bonus donations that will be given to the non-profit who gets donations from the most unique donations in the first hour from 6-7pm, for example, or the organization who gets a donation from the donor who lives farthest from Ithaca. The organization raising the most in total over the 24 hours will get an additional $500.
“As a small non-profit, we spend lots of our time fundraising solo,” says Shannon MacCarrick, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Tompkins and Cortland Counties. Similar day-long efforts at Ithaca College and Cornell University have been very successful. “The act of pulling together the Tompkins non-profit community toward one day of support will allow our missions to shine,” MacCarrick says, “showing the collective impact that we have on the community. Individually we all do great work, but together, we are an even more powerful force for good.”
Giving Is Gorges organizers include the Community Foundation of Tompkins County, the Association of Fundraising Professionals of the Finger Lakes, and the United Way of Tompkins County. The fundraiser is being hosted online by GiveGab, a non-profit organizing platform that provides fundraising tools and volunteer-matching opportunities.
The site accepts donations at any time, but donations between 6pm tonight and 6pm tomorrow count for all of the Giving Is Gorges challenges.
Chances are, an organization you’d like to support is one of the non-profits participating in the first Giving Is Gorges day. Visit givingisgorges.org sometime in the next 24 hours and chip in!