Are you among the thousands of people in Washington County who have September 15 saved on their calendars? If so, it is likely that you are counting down the days until WCCF Gives.
It began as an idea – a community-wide charitable giving event. But, these past ten years WCCF Gives has become a sensation for donors and charities alike, with some participants completely restructuring their annual giving campaigns to align with the day.
If you have not yet heard of it, WCCF Gives is an annual fundraising event hosted by the Washington County Community Foundation. It encourages gifts of $25 or more to local 501(c)(3) charities that register to participate in the event. To add to the excitement, the Community Foundation raises a $100,000 bonus pool to help increase the value of each gift made.
The WCCF Gives sponsors include: Chapman Corporation, Washington Financial Charitable Foundation, Alex E. Paris Contracting, the Observer-Reporter, South Hills Toyota, as well as the Foundation’s own Acorn Fund.
This event’s popularity has grown with each passing year, which has cumulatively resulted in more than $8.2 million in WCCF Gives grants – perfectly illustrating the Community Foundation’s focus on giving “close to home.”
In addition to the excitement the day provides, donors are passionate about WCCF Gives because it makes giving to all of their favorite charitable causes so convenient.
Donor Jarol DeVoge remarked, “I enthusiastically participate in WCCF Gives because it provides an effective and efficient opportunity to support multiple local charities.”
An essential component of a charity’s success in the day is its ability to promote the event to its supporters, and the participants have improved year after year. Quite a few of these registrants are grassroots, volunteer-led charities, making their WCCF Gives results all the more impressive.
One volunteer-based charity that has proven to be “small but mighty” is the National Duncan Glass Society. Last year, the NDGS positioned itself in the top ten of both the contributions and donor rankings. In addition to being the curator of a stunning collection of glassware in its Ridge Avenue museum, the NDGS has also been working to broaden its presence through unique programming, such as etiquette classes for students at the LeMoyne Community Center.
Another charity that has been committed to the promotion of Gives is the Washington County Watershed Alliance, which monitors the water quality throughout the county in partnership with the local Watershed Associations and works to educate the community about simple ways to help protect our natural resources. Knowing the importance of creating awareness, the Watershed Alliance is always one of the first participants to begin social media promotions. For those efforts, it raised nearly 20 percent of its annual revenue through WCCF Gives last year.
Meanwhile, the Monongahela Area Library recorded nearly 100 donors through its 2021 Gives day campaign, the highest of all the Mon Valley-based participants. The library has developed a reputation for its innovative programming and commitment to serving as a 21st century community center. Its new director, Amanda Gabeletto, took the helm this past March and is looking forward to maintaining that momentum this September.
Washington County charities have faced many unusual and unanticipated challenges as a result of the pandemic, and understandably some are still struggling to recover. But no matter the circumstances, their services remain vital to maintaining our community’s quality of life, and these charities remain steadfast in their dedication to those they serve.
WCCF Gives has become a day that our entire community looks forward to with anticipation and optimism. But, in order to make this special milestone a record-breaking event, the Gives charities need your help.
The minimum gift is set at just $25 in an attempt to make the day as inclusive as possible, and donors can make a gift by either credit card or check. Visit www.wccfgives.org to see the list of 115 participants or learn more about making a contribution.
Whether you need to set a reminder, make a note, or circle the date, remember that Thursday, September 15 is your chance to help us to celebrate “a decade of giving” through WCCF Gives!