Registration opened yesterday and will last through Nov. 5 for the 225 GIVES fundraising campaign, a one-day fundraising event benefiting local nonprofits to be held later this year.
The campaign, launched by the Capital Area United Way and Baton Rouge Area Foundation, will take place Dec. 1. The organizations hope to raise $4.2 million that day for area nonprofits. Already, the campaign has raised $500,000 that will be used for incentive gifts, says John Spain, executive vice president for BRAF.
“This new program comes at a time when our needs are great for our nonprofits. We’ve identified a vehicle that will raise more money for nonprofits than any other time, and the need has never been greater,” Spain says. “They need our help this year. All of the normal fundraising activities that we normally go to each year have been canceled because of COVID so we have to find a new vehicle, a new way, to raise money for these entities.”
While similar “giving day” events have been held in other areas of the state, this is the first event like this in Baton Rouge. Spain emphasized during a news conference for the event this morning that 225 GIVES will not be a one-time event and that BRAF plans to host it annually.
Renee Chatelain, who leads the Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge, says campaigns like this help keep Baton Rouge’s cultural identity intact during tough times.
“It is vital for the Arts Council to receive funds like this so we can support all these art organizations whose seasons have been shuttered, who are prevented from performing and making their living as artists,” Chatelain says. “How do we keep our cultural identity? We do it by supporting artists so they don’t move away and they stay here. … At a time when people are so emotionally distraught, as well as economically challenged, the arts are a healing and invigorating way to deal with that kind of stress.”
Dec. 1 is known as Giving Tuesday internationally. Following Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving has developed into a global generosity movement, unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities. 225 GIVES hopes to capitalize on the movement through a centralized online donation platform to be managed by Capital Area United Way.
All 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations in the Capital Region are invited to participate in 225 GIVES. Nonprofits must officially register, complete an online profile through the giving site, and participate in at least one training seminar. Read the full announcement here, and check out the 225 GIVES website here.