Advertisement
  1. Things to Do

Do-gooders unite in Give Day Tampa Bay 24-hour fundraising event

At last year's Give Day Tampa Bay, Wheels of Success, a nonprofit that provides refurbished cars to the working poor, gave away a car at Elder Ford. On Tuesday, 595 nonprofit organizations from all over the Tampa Bay area poised for the 24-hour fundraising event that benefits a wide range of local nonprofit charities at givedaytampabay.org.
Published May 2, 2016

Tuesday is Give Day Tampa Bay, a 24-hour fundraising event that benefits a wide range of local nonprofit charities. It's also a competition of sorts, with charities vying for added bonuses from corporate sponsors and foundations.

The online giving challenge at giveday.org, presented by the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, aims to make it easy to find your favorite cause and give it a boost. Now in its third year, it has a roster of 595 nonprofit organizations from all over the Tampa Bay area. Join in on social media using #GiveDayTampaBay, #LiveHere and #GiveHere.

It's like one-stop shopping for do-gooders, and even the smallest charities are finding that this day can catch the eyes of the generous.

At 2015's Give Day, the relatively new charity NOMADstudio, which stands for Neighborhood-Oriented Mobile Art and Design, was looking for money to buy supplies. The art bus heads to places like foster homes and inner-city schools.

Carrie Boucher, 41, an artist and former art teacher who founded NOMAD in 2014, raised $2,200 that day and was thrilled. Then she got an email a few months later from the Community Foundation. An anonymous donor was interested in her mission and wanted to know what they would do with a big gift.

She was used to donors dropping, at most, $20 in a donation bucket.

"You mean, like, $50, or really big like $500?" Boucher asked.

Just before Christmas, the anonymous donor sent $20,000.

Now NOMAD can make monthly visits to a group foster home of 50 kids in St. Petersburg. It also replaced the generator on the bus and created after-school art enrichment programs in some of Pinellas County's toughest schools.

Give Day, Boucher said, "was an opportunity for us to ask."

"A lot of people who start nonprofits are the helpers," she said. "They don't feel comfortable asking for help and asking for money. For donors, you have an opportunity to make a difference in your local community."

It's heartwarming to see hundreds of charities lay out their work, said Wilma Norton, vice president of marketing and communications for the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, which has vetted all the nonprofits to verify their tax status and standing with the IRS.

There are small organizations doing big things, like Computer Mentors, teaching coding and robotics to at-risk kids. There's Wheels of Success, providing refurbished cars for the working poor, Frankie's Friends, helping pet owners who cannot afford special medical care and Boards for Bros, giving out free skateboards and lessons.

"This is an easy way for people who may not necessarily have regular causes to find out what groups are in our area that are doing the work that is meaningful to them," Norton said.

Give Day's website lists all the charities and divides them by mission, from animal rescues to food pantries to education to arts and veterans services.

The minimum donation is $25. In the 2015 Give Day campaign, almost $1.75 million was raised in 24 hours for 550 organizations. And this year, Sykes, TECO, the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Tampa Bay Rays and other foundations are adding incentives, such as an extra $1,000 to a charity that has the most donors in a particular hour.

"People think you need to be wealthy to be a philanthropist," Norton said. "But your $25 and my $25, and $25 coming from 100 other people can do something that's really meaningful. We want people to know the nonprofit sector is a large part of our economy and the backbone of a society filled with people who care about their community."

Contact Sharon Kennedy Wynne at swynne@tampabay.com. Follow @SharonKWn.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Washington Nationals' Trea Turner, right, steals second with Houston Astros' Carlos Correa covering during the first inning of Game 1 of the baseball World Series Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2019, in Houston. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum) MATT SLOCUM  |  AP
    It’s part of Taco Bell’s, “Steal a base, Steal a Taco” promotion.
  2. The 53rd-annual Rattlesnake Festival will be held Oct. 19-20 at the Pasco County Fairgrounds in Dade City. The weekend event, kicks off with a prelude concert featuring the Bellamy Brothers on Friday, and raises money for the Thomas Promise Foundation. The foundation provides meals for Pasco County school children who do not have regular access to nutritional meals on weekends when school is not in session. "LUIS SANTANA  |  TIMES"  |  Tampa Bay Times
    The annual festival offers a family-friendly outing while raising money to feed school children in need.
  3. Kathleen Hudak, historian with the Brooksville Cemetery, tells the story of William Henry, son of Mr. and Mrs. Quitman Varn during a walking tour of the historic Brooksville Cemetery on Tuesday as part of Brooksville's Founders' Week celebration. The boy died from appendicitis in 1913 at the  age of 9. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Tampa Bay Times
  4. MICHELE MILLER | Times 2018
Thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts will roll into downtown New Port Richey for the Cotee River Bike Fest held Oct. 11-13. Times (2018)
    The weekend event brings thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts to town while benefiting local charities.
  5. Bigger. Taller. Glitzier. A $720 million expansion of the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa has added a 14-story hotel, right, next to the casino's original hotel on the left. Richard Danielson
    Nicole Kidman and Christie Brinkley walked the red carpet, and two members of the Wallenda family walked a high wire strung between the casino’s two hotel towers.
  6. The Cotee River Bike Fest will be held Oct. 11-13 in downtown New Port Richey. Times
    Local offerings abound for those wanting to get out and about.
  7. The African American Heritage Trail in St. Petersburg begins at the Carter G. Woodson African American Museum. MARTHA ASENCIO-RHINE  |  Tampa Bay Times
    It has been five years since the historic trail celebrated its grand opening, but many still don’t know it’s there.
  8. The Distinguished Gentleman's Ride combines dapper duds and vintage-inspired bikes on a ride to raise money for men's health charities. Mari Sabra
    The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride returns to Tampa Bay as local motorcyclists join a worldwide run to raise money for men’s health charities.
  9. Natalie D'Alessandro and Izaac Deal break out into dance during the inaugural Pride Festival in 2018 in downtown New Port Richey. MICHELE MILLER  |  Times (2018)
    New Port Richey gathering will feature a week of lead-up events.
  10. Suzanne Natzke, an artist and teacher with the Pasco Fine Arts Council, arranges her watercolor paintings for an upcoming exhibit, 'Moments in Time.' The exhibit will be held through Oct. 21 at the council's new gallery at Avalon Park West in Wesley Chapel. MICHELE MILLER  |  Michele Miller
    The countywide Council will exhibit work at the Avalon Park West community.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement