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Who Will You Donate To on Colorado Gives Day?

By Dana Rinderknecht, GivingFirst Manager

I can’t believe that it is almost here. After over a year of planning, we are working on reviewing new participant profiles and ensuring that current participant profiles are up to date for Colorado Gives Day. What an amazing, amazing group of nonprofits we have on GivingFirst.org.

As I have been reviewing and updating profiles, I have started the thought process on how I will donate on Colorado Gives Day. First, of course, I will donate to the three main nonprofits who I give to on at least an annual basis. My old favorites! These are the ones that have impacted my life and I will always love and support.
But who else can I support? This is a great time to look at the impact of other nonprofits  in our community. Who else speaks to my heart but whom I have not personally been involved?
Since I have the unique pleasure of reviewing nonprofit information for my job, I always start with looking at their mission. What do they do in the community? Th…

Dining, Dancing, Singing...What Nonprofits Will Do for CO Gives Day

By Angela Bevacqua, Communications Specialist


It’s just over a month until Colorado Gives Day, and things are really heating up. On November 1, more than 120 nonprofits submitted profiles, and Dana is hunkered down to make sure they are all thoroughly reviewed before going live.
It’s been inspiring to see all of the energy and creative ideas that nonprofits are putting into Colorado Gives Day. Here is a sampling:

Work Options for Women
Want to dine and donate at the same time? Head down to Café Options at 1650 Curtis Street in downtown Denver. This café, run by Work Options for Women (WOW), will have computer kiosks set up to take your donation during breakfast and lunch on December 8. What’s more, the café’s staff will serve special treats for donors. More information about the day’s activities will be posted at http://workoptions.org/colorado-gives-day.html.

Café Options is a fast casual restaurant serving breakfast and lunch from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. 100 perc…

Evergreen Bands Together for Colorado Gives Day

By Angela Bevacqua
Now that’s community spirit!
Word reached my desk this morning that the Evergreen Chamber of Commerce and 14 nonprofits in the area are partnering together for Colorado Gives Day. Several Evergreen, Colorado, businesses are also showing their support by offering discounts and thank you gifts to donors on December 8.
Michelle Mohnhaupt, who oversees the Evergreen Chamber’s nonprofit members, explained that the idea developed at a recent meeting for the group. And the concept has been steam-rolling ever since.
Summer is busy in Evergreen, Michelle explained, but it really drops off in the winter. Both for-profits and nonprofits hurt at the end of the year. But by collaborating to support local giving on Colorado Gives Day, the chamber, nonprofits and businesses will be infusing energy into their town during the dead of winter.

Here’s what will be happening in Evergreen this December 8:
Four businesses will host online giving at their locations, including Colorado Gives Day

Online Fundraising in MN and Pittsburgh: How Did They Do It?

By Angela Bevacqua, communications specialist at Community First Foundation

One year ago, when the team at Community First Foundation began germinating the idea of a Colorado Gives Day, we knew we were fortunate: we weren’t re-creating the wheel. In fact, six regions in the U.S. had successfully launched an online giving day.

We were especially intrigued by Give to the Max Day in Minnesota and Match Day in Pittsburgh. What we learned helped us shape Colorado Gives Day.

We wanted to bring the advantage of learning from experience to Colorado nonprofits, too. So in August we conducted a webinar called “Giving Days: Fundraising Techniques That Work.” It featured nonprofits in Minnesota and Pittsburgh that successfully raised money during their states’ online giving day. It was a chance for Colorado nonprofits to ask questions and start thinking about their own plans for Colorado Gives Day.

An All-In-One Campaign
Betsy McDermott Altheimer, development program director for Springboard for th…

Remember the Whys and Hows of Giving

Why do you give?
By Bryce Wilkinson,  project coordinator at Community First Foundation
It’s a simple question, but the answers tend to be more complicated. Sometimes it’s because you heard a story which moved you to action. Other times the connection isn’t with the cause itself but a person you know; your friend asked you to donate or your uncle works at this nonprofit, so you donate to it. Personal reasons – your wife is a breast cancer survivor or you enjoy gardening – can also prompt you to donate Often, though, there is some combination of factors swirled together in just the right way at just the right time that compels you to give.
A recent donation I made had a number of contributing factors behind it. I served as a Peace Corps volunteer for two years in Niger, West Africa. During that time, I had my fair share of parasites from contaminated water. The other day I read an article about illnesses resulting from contaminated water which made me remember how difficult it is to live …

Colorado Businesses: Tooting their Horns!

By Mike Jackson


I love Colorado! I’ve lived in this state more than 30 years and appreciate the gift we all share of living in this beautiful place.
As the director of nonprofit relations and services, I help nonprofit organizations look for funding, invest for their future, and prepare for tomorrow. I regularly meet with nonprofit professionals who work day-in-and-day-out to tell their organization’s story and recruit charitable support from the public.

What always stands out to me is both the good work being done and the amount of work there is to do. From feeding the hungry to protecting the environment, the need is out there. But the resources just aren’t keeping up.

With the launch of Colorado Gives Day—our initiative to help Colorado nonprofits through online giving—we are reaching out to local businesses for support. I’m especially impressed with FirstBank, our presenting partner.
FirstBank is a local Colorado company. Their investment in the nonprofit sector over the years has …

Create a GivingFirst Profile that Glistens!

By Dana Rinderknecht, GivingFirst Manager
We all hear it over and over again – you need to craft a clear, concise, compelling message about your organization. At the same time, the Internet is overwhelming with the amount of information that you can find, let alone try to digest. I know that when I am searching for information, if I don’t find it immediately, I am on to the next place. If it is really important to me and I think I’m on the right track, I may click a couple more times, but it has to be something I really need or want. My attention span can be that of an infant or a gnat.
So, my nonprofit friends, as you start to work on your GivingFirst profile for the first time, or if you are looking at it again after some time, put on your donor internet-user glasses. Open up your profile or that of an organization you know and click around. What do you look at first? What catches your eye? What do you wish was included? As a donor, the items I tend to look for most often are: number…

Do you know how to donate on YOUR Web site?

By Dana Rinderknecht

Can you believe it is almost the end of July? For those of us in the nonprofit world, that means plans are under way for annual campaigns and year-end giving. It is time to get ready for the Giving Season.
Are you ready?
You probably have your direct mail/annual letter campaign designs started. Perhaps you even have it at the printers or even the mail house. Hours have been spent making sure that everything looks just right and that you are sending a message that will resonate with your donors and those who support you and care for your organization (or at least joined your database at one point!). But what happens once that campaign drops and gets into the hands of those supporters?
The Nonprofit Times did a study that found that more and more people are heading to the web for information before they make a donation. In fact, according to their research, 44% of respondents are looking on the Internet, up from 25% just three years ago. So that means your website must…

Colorado Gives Day Q&A

By Angela Bevacqua

We hope that many of you have heard about Colorado Gives Day—a new initiative we launched in May. As the name implies, Colorado Gives Day is a specific day of the year—December 8—that we will be asking residents to support the work of Colorado nonprofits that is so important to our quality of life.

Here’s more about Colorado Gives Day directly from our president and CEO, Kenneth Eggeman, Ph.D.
AB: Why does Colorado need a special “giving day”?
KE: To spur interest, to spur excitement, to really help people become aware of the condition of philanthropy in Colorado. A “giving” day creates an opportunity for as many people as possible to become aware of the situation and do something about it.

AB: What is the condition of giving in our state?
KE: Based on the Colorado Nonprofit Association’s State of Giving study, Colorado ranks 38th in charitable contributions compared to other states. I know we can do better, especially given the fact that we have high earning power in th…

Studies Show Growth in Online Giving

By Angela Bevacqua

Welcome to our new blog! We plan to discuss topics related to philanthropy, online giving, and GivingFirst in particular. We also hope to share perspectives from a variety of people here at the Foundation.
But what’s on our minds right now are the results from recent giving studies.
The bad news is that the Giving USA Foundation and Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University reported that charitable giving from individuals, corporations and foundations was down 3.6% in 2009 over 2008. The hardest hit areas were religion, arts/culture/humanities, education, and public-society benefit. Individual giving in particular was down .4%
But the good news is that online giving continues to climb. A study by the software firm Convio indicates that online giving was up 14% in 2009 among the charities they reviewed. In fact, 92% received more donations online in 2009 than 2008.
This comes as no surprise to us. In fact, our data through GivingFirst.org is showing more dramatic resu…