Tradition is a big part of the holiday season. Among the most cherished traditions are colorfully lit trees and buildings, festive and familiar songs, comforting foods, and generosity toward others.
Some say the holidays are the best time of the year. They certainly are for large and small nonprofit organizations that count on end-of-year donations to continue their good work in the coming year.
There are lots of ways to donate to worthy causes, and of course it can be done at any time of year. But fundraisers know people are creatures of habit, so turning generosity into a habit by tying it to the holidays is a smart approach.
So, here comes your opportunity to chip in this holiday season and make a difference close to home.
Tuesday, Dec. 10 is Colorado Gives Day. It’s a day set aside annually to raise money for nonprofits statewide through online donations. Participants may log in to ColoradoGives.org and easily give to the charities and fundraising efforts of their choice.
ColoradoGives.org, which is accessible all year, has been active since 2007, when 173 nonprofits participated. Last year, 2,631 nonprofits participated.
Colorado Gives Day began in 2010. Since its start, donations on the special day have raised $217.2 million for nonprofits, including $35.3 million in 2018. More than 161,000 donations were made on the day last year, according to the organization’s website.
That’s some serious generosity, and a good reason for nonprofits to participate in the program.
Larimer County nonprofits are well-represented among participants. A search of ColoradoGives.org came up with hundreds of organizations with connections to the county, ranging from 3Hopeful Hearts, which supports families who have experienced the death of a child, to the YMCA of the Rockies.
The entities with ties to Larimer County and Fort Collins numbers too many to list. But there are a lot of familiar names and causes from the worlds of medicine, youth sports, outdoor recreation, conservation, the arts, animals, affordable housing, sustainability and philanthropy.
Various filters may be applied to a search to match whatever cause or locale might interest a donor. Each nonprofit has a story; each is trying to make Colorado a better place.
Colorado Gives Day is presented each year by the Community First Foundation. Donations that come in that day will be boosted through a $1.5 million incentive fund supported by the foundation and FirstBank.
Colorado Gives Day is not to be confused with Giving Tuesday, which is an international effort aimed at generating financial donations to any number of good causes.
Giving Tuesday falls on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving and is becoming its own tradition. Think Black Friday, Cyber Monday and so on. If you are like me, you received many email reminders and pitches to make donations.
But that was last Tuesday. This Tuesday is another chance to make a difference and enjoy a worthwhile holiday tradition.
Kevin Duggan is a senior columnist and reporter. This column may contain his opinions.
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