RSS feed of this blog

Big Give offers new approach to fundraising


Throughout the region, hundreds of nonprofits rely on donations as they struggle to stay afloat and continue their mission of helping homeless families, sick children, abandoned pets, historic preservation, education and more.

On Tuesday, 114 of those groups will get an online megaphone to ask for donations during a 24-hour crowdfunding event sponsored by the Community Foundation.

The Big Give will start at midnight Tuesday and run until midnight Wednesday. During that time, donors can log on to and donate to any of the 114 participating nonprofits, which include the Rappahannock YMCA, homeless shelters, libraries, parent–teacher organizations and many other groups.

And those agencies will be able to leverage the donated dollars by competing for cash prizes throughout the Big Give. These prizes have been donated to the Community Foundation, and include three awards for the agencies that get the most donations: First place will bring $10,000; second $5,000; and third $2,500. Each donation of $25 or more will count toward the total number of donations tallied for the prize.

There will be three Small But Mighty awards given to groups with an all-volunteer staff or only one full-time staff person; hourly raffles for any agency that has earned $25 or more in that hour; and awards based on donations received from various localities (for example, one will be given to the agency that has the most donors from a Caroline County ZIP code).

The local event is part of the national effort, Give Local America, which includes more than 7,000 nonprofits. The effort is aimed at increasing the nonprofits’ recognition—and at showing organizations how to market themselves online.

As part of the local initiative, area nonprofits received training in social media and online marketing. Within days of the training, many nonprofits took to Twitter, YouTube and Facebook to call for donations during the Big Give, using the hashtag #give14.

Amy Flowers Umble: 540/735-1973



Go to and choose one or more nonprofits—you can give to as many groups as you’d like. Nonprofits will be listed alphabetically, and you’ll also be able to search based on topic—such as hunger, literacy, animals, etc. Then choose how much you want to donate.

All donations must be made through a debit or credit card to count. Donations are tax deductible. More details are available on the website.