Organizers have labeled it as "rocket fuel" for a nonprofit's end-of-year giving campaign—and if the past two years of the Central Oregon Gives program are any indication, that's pretty dang accurate.
This week, the Central Oregon Gives campaign—a project born and fostered right here at the Source Weekly—kicked off the 2021 edition of the fundraising effort by putting out a call to nonprofits to join. Over the past two years, the project has raised loads of cash for area nonprofits. In its first year, in 2019, Central Oregon Gives had a modest goal of raising around $50,000. That goal was magnified 10 times, with the end result of the campaign bringing in $500,000. Last year—even amid the stress of the pandemic—the campaign leveled up again and raised $750,000. Its goal this year is another level-up, aiming to raise $1 million. Last year, over 75 nonprofits took part.
- Central Oregon Gives
Nonprofits can sign up to take part in the program by visiting the project's new website at centraloregongives.com. Once all of the nonprofits are assembled, the Central Oregon Gives team publishes a profile of each participating nonprofit on its website, giving people a one-stop-shop for finding organizations to support and donate to ahead of the end of the year. Those profiles go live in November.
Central Oregon Gives' success has been largely attributed to the perks offered to people who take part. Contributors browse the Central Oregon Gives website, choose a nonprofit (or two or three) to donate to and then receive a perk like a pint of beer or a cup of coffee from a local coffee shop in exchange for their donation.
"With Central Oregon Gives we want to be the link between open-hearted community members and nonprofits doing deeply meaningful work such as providing affordable housing, serving at-risk youth, or supporting vulnerable seniors," said Aaron Switzer, publisher of the fine publication you're reading right now, and the founder of the Central Oregon Gives campaign. "This project is about transforming regular people into powerful forces for good—and offering them something fun and valuable in return."
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Nonprofits have an incentive, too. The organization that raises the most money overall through the campaign will earn an additional $15,000 gift from an anonymous donor. The nonprofit earning the highest number of donations under $25 also gets a $2,500 gift. And the top-earning nonprofit in each of five categories— Education, Family & Children; Basic Needs; Arts & Culture; Animal Welfare and Health & Environment—also earn a $2,500 gift.
"We've designed Central Oregon Gives to provide nonprofits with a big boost in exposure and donations through this creative campaign," said Switzer. "We encourage all organizations to take advantage of this rocket fuel for their end-of-year giving promotions by signing up today."
Nonprofits can head over to centraloregongives.com to sign up. The site will accept nonprofit signups through Oct. 13. Then, each one will be added to the site, which launches with all the nonprofit profiles in November. People who want to donate can do so from November through Dec. 31, offering an easy way to make those end-of-year tax-deductible donations that so many people look for.
Here at the Source Weekly, we'll publish each nonprofit's profile in the Nov. 11 issue, allowing readers to read more about each organization in print, encouraging everyone to donate through the Central Oregon Gives website. With a revamped logo, a new website and a new online donation platform, it's going to be easier than ever to give.
Central Oregon Gives
Nonprofits sign up through Oct. 13
Donate to nonprofits starting mid-November through Dec. 31