Midlands Gives accepting nonprofits for fundraising challenge

BY KAYLA ROBINS
kayla@theitem.com
Posted 1/10/19

Registration is open for an annual online giving challenge that has raised millions for nonprofits throughout the Midlands of South Carolina.

Midlands Gives, hosted by the Central Carolina Community Foundation, is accepting entries through Jan. …

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Midlands Gives accepting nonprofits for fundraising challenge

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Registration is open for an annual online giving challenge that has raised millions for nonprofits throughout the Midlands of South Carolina.

Midlands Gives, hosted by the Central Carolina Community Foundation, is accepting entries through Jan. 15 at www.midlandsgives.org for the regional online charitable giving day on Tuesday, May 7, and registration has been simplified for nonprofits that have participated in the past, according to the foundation.

"Throughout the five years during which our organization has powered Midlands Gives, we have been gathering feedback from participating nonprofits and supporters alike," said JoAnn Turnquist, president and CEO of the foundation.

Nonprofits that were involved in the event last year simply have to opt in to participate this year and do not have to go through training. Nonprofits participating for the first time will have an abbreviated enrollment and training process.

The enrollment aspect is not the only change for this year's event.

"We have been listening, and we are pleased to share that we are shifting to a convenient 18-hour schedule for the Midlands Gives 2019 giving day," Turnquist said.

Donations will be accepted online for hundreds of local nonprofits from 6 a.m. until midnight, allowing the foundation to focus efforts into a shorter and more efficient time period than the former 24-hour schedule.

The event will be headquartered at the South Carolina State Museum again this year in downtown Columbia, where there will be representatives from nonprofits making their case for their organization on social media and activities and giveaways for the public.

The public can participate and donate without going to the headquarters. The online giving challenge will be administered using the CiviCore online platform, a donation website that has run smoothly during the past two years for the foundation.

Since its start in 2014, Midlands Gives has raised more than $7.25 million for local nonprofits. In 2018, the fifth anniversary of the fundraising challenge, more than $1.75 million for 372 organizations was donated by 14,665 individual contributions, exceeding all prior year totals.

Hundreds of nonprofits across the 11 counties in the Midlands have been able to receive much-needed money through the event during the past five years. Five nonprofits in Sumter participated last year, including Sumter County Museum and Sumter Habitat for Humanity.

After a 2.1 percent credit card fee and 2.8 technology fee from CiviCore, 100 percent of each contribution goes to the donor's selected nonprofit. Donors also have the option to cover the fees for their gifts, 71 percent of which were covered last year.

Another aspect of the fundraising challenge is the participation of corporate philanthropy champions, which are community partners that provide matching gifts, prizes, bonus pools and gift amplifiers on the giving day.

The partners help raise extra money for the nonprofits, and the incentives are a way to engage the public.

For more information or to register your nonprofit, go to www.midlandsgives.org.