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Smart Giving: Giving Days Are a Growing Trend

Giving days are an increasing trend across the nation. In 2011, The Amazing Raise on GiveRichmond was one of four giving days administered by Kimbia, a national technology company that has since garnered more giving day expertise than any other vendor. This year they will manage over 60 giving days, many of them occurring on May 6th as part of Give Local America, a national day of giving hosted by community foundations throughout the country.

We will be watching the event closely and we hope you will tune in as well. (Click here to search for participating communities) as it promises to be an unprecedented celebration of philanthropy and the good work carried out by nonprofits everywhere. Even as we support this event, we look forward to continuing the celebration when our region showcases its own generosity during the 4th Annual Amazing Raise on September 17th and 18th.

Before Give Local America was planned, giving days had already begun to pick up speed. As the number the of giving events has grown, the philanthropic field has been gathering data and studying trends from which we can learn important lessons. In 2012, the Case Foundation released a study of Give to the Max: Greater Washington (D.C.), a giving day that produced results similar to last year’s Amazing Raise. 

Strategies common to successful organizations for giving days:

  • Organizations that invested between 10-30 hours of staff time to the event did better on average than those that invested less.
  • Organizations that developed goals beyond financial measurements were winners too.
  • First-year donor retention rates nearly doubled when multi-channel methods (from personal outreach to mobile and social technologies) are employed through the year and across all age groups. 

Furthermore, nonprofits familiar with social fundraising are more likely to achieve their goals than those who are not. Locally, our survey results revealed that nearly half of the total donations for The Amazing Raise came after a donor heard about the giving day through word-of-mouth and social media. Nationally, Network for Good reports that peer-to-peer fundraising was up 53% in 2013. This tells us that:

  • people trust recommendations from people they know 
  • social media is an increasingly popular and efficient way to rally support for their cause. 
  • even a small amount of time and money invested in social media can provide significant returns. 

We hope you find this information useful as you prepare for The Amazing Raise this fall, and don’t forget the following dates!

May 6 ? Give Local America

Follow the event by tracking nonprofits similar to yours.

June ? Amazing Raise “Strategies for Success” trainings

Learn how to make the most of this unique online fundraising opportunity. Register for training sessions now.

August 1 ? Give Portrait deadline

Only organizations with published portraits on GiveRichmond.org are eligible to participate in The Amazing Raise. See eligibility criteria.

September 16 ? The Amazing Raise 5K at the Boulders

September 17-18 ? The 4th Annual Amazing Raise


GiveRichmond/GiveSouthsideVA is a program of The Community Foundation Serving Richmond & Central Virginia (TCF). As strategic partners with ConnectVA, TCF and GiveRichmond/GiveSouthsdeVA encourage smart giving by identifying trends and success stories in local philanthropy through their Giving Smart blog series. If you have ideas about topics you would like to have covered, please comment below!

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