On the heels of the upcoming super-sized shopping days of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, comes Giving Tuesday. Here at home, the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan (CFNEM) and its affiliate foundations, which includes the Straits Area Community Foundation (SACF) are helping to raise awareness and support for many local nonprofits. Seven nonprofits and two of SACF’s grant programs are participating in this year’s event.
“Last year, we were floored when over $156,000 was raised in just 24 hours,” said CFNEM Executive Director Patrick Heraghty. “2019 marks our fifth year of hosting Giving Tuesday Northeast Michigan. We see every day how generous our entire region is, and we hope they’ll show up online again on December 3rd to make this year another successful year for the nonprofits in our area. We all need it.”
Although this will be CFNEM’s fifth year leading the event here in northeast Michigan, Giving Tuesday as a global day of giving is now in its eighth year. Meant to harness the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to celebrate generosity worldwide, the 24-hour giving event is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.). It follows the widely recognized shopping events, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, to kick-off the holiday giving season. The hope is that people will set aside a few minutes from holiday shopping to give back to their community through the charities and causes they support.
“We are really excited that out of the 60 nonprofits participating this year, 19 of those are organizations that have never participated in Giving Tuesday Northeast Michigan,” said Christine Hitch, CFNEM Marketing Communications Director. “You’ll definitely see many organizations that have participated previously as well, and many of the nonprofits are sharing the specifics of what Giving Tuesday donations will support.”
Straits Area organizations participating in the event include:
Cheboygan County Habitat for Humanity
Cheboygan County United Way
Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association
Mackinaw Area Historical Society
Mackinaw City Area Arts Council
Northern Michigan Animal Rescue Network
Straits Area Services
Straits Area Community Foundation Community Impact Program
Straits Area Youth Advisory Council (YAC)
To help local nonprofits participate in Giving Tuesday, the Community Foundation will provide the technical infrastructure through its website and social media to showcase and manage donations for over 60 nonprofits that meet IRS tax requirements to operate as a nonprofit, all at no cost to the participating organizations. Donors will be able to visit cfnem.org on Giving Tuesday and make donations to any or all of these nonprofits.
Heraghty also noted that in addition to the participating organizations, donors may also make donations to any fund at CFNEM or its affiliate foundations as a Giving Tuesday gift.
“While we have many organizations participating in the campaign, SACF also holds over 35 different charitable funds that support many different causes and organizations,” said Heraghty. “Donations to those funds will be counted on December 3 as Giving Tuesday gifts.”
Two years ago, Grant the Giving Tuesday Golden Goose was introduced as a fun way to bolster some friendly competition between nonprofits. Grant is awarded to the nonprofit raising the most money on Giving Tuesday, and went last year to Thunder Bay Theatre (TBT). After spending nearly a year at TBT, Grant has migrated back to the Community Foundation to await word on his 2019-20 residency.
Giving Tuesday Northeast Michigan begins at 12:00 a.m. on December 3. The public will be able to make donations for a full 24 hours, and monitor the total amount donated online throughout the day. The total amount donated to each organization will be announced at an event shortly after Giving Tuesday with participating nonprofits at the Community Foundation headquarters.
“This is a great opportunity for nonprofits to mobilize their supporters and rally them around their organization,” emphasized Heraghty. “The more enthusiastically they promote their nonprofit for Giving Tuesday and utilize the tools we give them, particularly through social media, the more donations they are likely to receive.”
Heraghty notes that while Giving Tuesday Northeast Michigan is primarily an online giving event, donors are welcome to drop off checks at the CFNEM offices at 100 N. Ripley, Suite F, in Alpena. Checks must be dropped off on December 3 in order to be counted as a Giving Tuesday donation.