May 23, 2017 (COLUMBIA, S.C.) — Midlands Gives 2017, hosted by Central Carolina Community Foundation, has broken its own records once again thanks to thousands of everyday philanthropists who gave a total of $1,672,118 to 337 nonprofits around the Midlands. Remarkably, the number of individual gifts given this year jumped by a significant amount, from 12,536 donations – which had ranked Midlands Gives 7th in the nation for number of gifts in 2016 – to 13,765 individual donations in 2017, showing clearly that the Midlands is one of the most generous regions in the country.
Watch the official Midlands Gives recap video here: https://vimeo.com/216852174.
Notably, the percentage of first-time donors increased to 46% in 2017. At Midlands Gives’ inception in 2014, 22% of donors were first-time givers; the percentage of first-time donors in 2015 was 43% and in 2016 was 41%; these are donors who had never before given to the particular nonprofit they chose to support via Midlands Gives. View donations per nonprofit here: http://www.midlandsgives.org/leaderboards.
“We thought it was phenomenal in 2015 and 2016 that our region ranked seventh in the nation in the number of individual gifts given on Midlands Gives day,” says JoAnn Turnquist, President and CEO of Central Carolina Community Foundation. “We are thrilled to share that this year, the number of gifts donated in 24 hours jumped by well over 1,200, which is a strong indicator that the spirit of everyday philanthropy has continued to spread throughout our region.”
Midlands Gives has raised a collective $5,523,721 since its inception in 2014, igniting the community’s efforts and translating them into support for hundreds of nonprofits in the region. In 2016, Midlands Gives raised $1,603,647. This year, all 337 participating nonprofit organizations received a donation.
This year, Midlands Gives was headquartered at the South Carolina State Museum, where local nonprofits and community members were invited to cheer on their favorite nonprofits during the 24-hour day of giving. Friendly competition in the Nephron Hoops Challenge gave Midlands mayors and council chairs, with coaching from alumnae of the USC Women’s Basketball Team, the opportunity to win prizes for nonprofits in their communities.
During the Parking Lot Picnic, a free even open to the public and hosted by SCE&G, the crowd celebrated giving at the end of the day with food and fun, from BBQ sliders and a hand-scooped ice cream bar to DJ sets by DJ Prince Ice and “Beyond Bollywood” dance performances. SCE&G and Aflac each sponsored $30,000 in prize money for nonprofits, and many other local companies joined in to bring this year’s prize incentives totals to $97,000. A complete list of prizes and the organization who won can be found at http://www.midlandsgives.org/leaderboards.
A year of firsts, Midlands Gives 2017 implemented scheduled giving, which enabled donors to pre-schedule their online giving up to two weeks in advance. This allowed for convenient, advance participation in the region’s largest day of giving, allowing the leaderboard to total more than $160,000 when the clock struck midnight to commence the 24-hour giving event.
“We invited the community to embrace their inner philanthropist this year,” says Turnquist. “In our most successful Midlands Gives day of giving thus far, we welcomed more new donors than ever before and truly demonstrated that everyone, no matter the size of their gift, can make a tremendous difference in this community.”
In order to provide donors with a seamless online giving experience, Midlands Gives selected CiviCore as its new online platform. The platform has been specially designed for giving days, with tools like prize tracking and leaderboards. Capable and efficient in managing a high volume of website visitors, CiviCore created a user experience similar to online shopping, complete with recommendations and an advanced shopping cart interface. Everyday philanthropists were able to search through the list of nonprofits by category, interest or keywords and digitally thumb through detailed descriptions that often included photos and videos, before making their giving decisions.
“Technology is a key component to the success of Midlands Gives. Our platform provided a delightful user experience, and the robust and engaging social media messages provided a huge exposure boost for our participants, donors, nonprofits and sponsors.” notes Turnquist. “We were very excited to see the #MidlandsGives hashtag trending online all day in the Midlands.”
Midlands Gives Background
Midlands Gives, an annual 24-hour online giving challenge for local nonprofits, has raised more than $5.5 million dollars for organizations in 11 counties in the Midlands since its inception in 2014. With a minimum donation of only $20, Midlands Gives is an opportunity for all to be a philanthropist. It provides opportunities throughout the day for sponsored prizes that increase the overall fundraised amount for nonprofit winners. The day of giving brings the local community together as one, creating a sense of regional pride and community collaboration.
In 2016, Midlands Gives raised $1.6 million via 12,536 individual gifts, toward 362 charities. In 2015, Midlands Gives raised $1,543,032.65, via 11,372 individual gifts, toward 251 charities. In 2014, the event’s inaugural year, $704,932.23 was raised, via 5,186 individual gifts, toward 150 charities. Midlands Gives is one of almost 100 giving days that take place in cities across America throughout the year. In 2015 and 2016, Midlands Gives ranked 7th in the nation in number of individual gifts.
About Midlands Gives:
Midlands Gives is an annual 24-hour online giving challenge for local nonprofits, presented by Central Carolina Community Foundation. This year’s event took place on May 2, 2017. For more information about Midlands Gives, visithttp://www.midlandsgives.org or call 803-254-5601.