Colorado Gives Day

Staff Report

(COLORADO, 11/20/12)–It is billed as “24 Hours to Give Where you Live.” The Community First Foundation and FirstBank have teamed up once again to present Colorado Gives Day, an initiative designed to increase online giving statewide on Dec. 4. Donors throughout Colorado are encouraged to give to their favorite non-profits on that day, through the web site, www.givingfirst.org.

Although more than 1,000 non-profit organizations are set to take part in Colorado Gives Day 2012, only two local organizations are participating this year—Hospice & Palliative Care of Western Colorado and CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates)-Voices for Children.

“Hospice got involved with Colorado Gives Day for the first time last year,” said Nancy Hoganson , Director of Community Relations for Hospice & Palliaitve care of Western Colorado. “We felt that it would be a convenient way for Hospice supporters to contact their friends and family and request support for a cause that was very meaningful to them. This year we have encouraged our boards, volunteers and wonderful donors to reach out again to their contacts. We excited to see new support generated for our programs.”

Although the Montrose Community Foundation is not taking part in Colorado Gives Day 2012, the local philanthropic non-profit will host a similar event of its own next year, according to Executive Director Melanie Hall.     “We are working on a local initiative for the month of February entitled “28 Days of Generosity,” Hall said.       According to a news release issued by CASA, Colorado Gives Day 2012, the third state-wide Colorado Gives Day, will take place during a 24-hour period Dec. 4. The initiative encourages all Coloradans to “give where you live” to increase philanthropy throughout Colorado through online giving to Colorado charities. Colorado Gives Day distributed $8.7 million to Colorado nonprofits in 2010 and $12.8 million in 2011. In addition to fundraising,   Colorado Gives Day raises awareness of the state’s nonprofit sector and educates communities on the benefits of online giving.

“Participating in Colorado Gives Day has proven to be a successful fundraising opportunity for Voices for Children-CASA of the 7th Judicial District,” said Karen Tuttle, executive director. “Our program recruits, trains, and supports community volunteers (or Court Appointed Special Advocates—CASAs) who advocate in court for the best interests of abused and neglected children. Voices for Children has only enough resources to provide volunteers for only 30 percent of open cases of abuse and neglect in the 7th Judicial District. Participating in Colorado Gives Day has increased donations to our program by a substantial amount. That, in turn, provides us the opportunity to advocate for additional child abuse victims. In addition, the publicity that Colorado Gives Day generates assists in introducing our program to a larger community and allows us to highlight the continual need for additional CASA volunteers.”

“We are thrilled to be a part of the third annual Colorado Gives Day. As a local nonprofit, we recognize the value of bringing local communities together in support of the charitable sector – and Colorado Gives Day is an ideal outlet for raising awareness of the need to support organizations like ours,” said Stacey Ryan, development director at Voices for Children.

“We are proud that Colorado Gives Day has served Colorado’s nonprofits so well,” said Marla J. Williams, president and CEO of Community First Foundation. “Last year, 93 percent of the nonprofits acquired new donors and collaboration among nonprofits was at an all-time high. Given the generosity of Colorado’s communities and the excellent work of its nonprofits, we look forward to what 2012 will bring.”

“In only two years, Colorado Gives Day has become a philanthropic institution in our state, bringing together local residents to support the nonprofit organizations that make Colorado such a vibrant place to live and work,” said John Ikard, President and CEO of FirstBank Holding Company. “In addition to our financial support, FirstBank invests time and energy into promoting Colorado Gives Day to local nonprofits and the broader Colorado community. We’re honored to play a role in bringing Colorado Gives Day 2012 to life.”
Once again, credit card and processing fees will be covered by Community First Foundation, FirstBank, and sponsors so that 100 percent of Colorado Gives Day donations go directly to nonprofit organizations.
Community First Foundation added a prize component to last year’s Colorado Gives Day and is currently working on new and exciting ways to get businesses, donors and nonprofits involved in Colorado Gives Day 2012.

“The 2010/2011 comparisons, which can be found in the Colorado Gives Day 2011 Report, are fascinating. For example, the number of online donations increased by 160 percent, with a 73 percent increase in the number of participating nonprofits and a 116 percent increase in the number of donors,” said Marla J. Williams, president and CEO of Community First Foundation. “In 2011, 93 percent of nonprofits acquired new donors and we were pleased to see so many nonprofits collaborate in their marketing and fundraising efforts to make an even greater local impact on Colorado Gives Day 2011. We look forward to seeing what 2012 will bring.”

For more information about Voices for Children-CASA of the 7th Judicial District and how it is supporting Colorado Gives Day, please visit www.CASAnow.org or call 970-249-0337. Visit Hospice & Palliative Care of Western Colorado at www.hospicewco.com. For more information about Colorado Gives Day and other charities involved, please visit ColoradoGivesDay.org.