Our view: A celebration of giving | SteamboatToday.com

Our view: A celebration of giving

At issue:

Yampa Valley Gives Day — a local offshoot of Colorado Gives Day — is Tuesday, Dec. 6.

Our view:

Make plans now to participate in this extraordinary 24 hours of giving that benefits local nonprofits.

Winston Churchill said, “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give,” and on Dec. 6, our community has an opportunity to live out that philosophy by participating in Yampa Valley Gives Day — a 24-hour of philanthropic giving that is celebrated locally in conjunction with the statewide Colorado Gives Day.

At issue:

Yampa Valley Gives Day — a local offshoot of Colorado Gives Day — is Tuesday, Dec. 6.

On Tuesday, citizens can make donations to their favorite local nonprofits through the Yampa Valley Gives, which serves as the platform for donors to learn about participating local nonprofits and make online donations to those nonprofits on Colorado Gives Day and throughout the year.

Yampa Valley Gives was launched as a project of the 2014 Leadership Steamboat class, and over the past three years, the effort has grown significantly. Before the local program existed, only 12 nonprofits in Routt County participated in Colorado Gives Day. The number of participating nonprofits more than doubled to 40 in Yampa Valley Gives’ inaugural year, and donations to those local organizations totaled $371,000. Last year, there were 60 nonprofits involved in the program and donations rose to $463,879.

We believe this growth and success can be attributed to an inventive program that connects donors and nonprofits through a simple, easy-to-use online-giving model that appeals to both traditional and nontraditional philanthropists.

Prospective donors can go to yampavalleygives.org and peruse the site, which is easy to navigate and includes profiles on participating nonprofits. The site lets people search by cause or the nonprofit’s name. Each nonprofit has a profile on the website, which offers detailed information about the organization.

Just like any online shopping site, donors create a shopping cart for their giving and divvy up their donations between the various nonprofits they want to support. All of the information is contained in one place, and giving can be done from the convenience of one’s home with the click of a keyboard key.

Since Yampa Valley Gives was formed, we’ve watched as local nonprofits have become more and more adept at using social media to promote their organizations and creatively solicit donations on Colorado’s annual day of giving. And the Yampa Valley Gives board and volunteers have done an excellent job of working with local nonprofits to help them maximize charitable giving opportunities through shared marketing and training opportunities.

This year, Yampa Valley Gives will host a rally on the Historic Routt County Courthouse lawn to promote the annual day of giving. This event will be held from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Friday, and over 50 local nonprofits will be represented. The community is invited to attend and support the effort, and we hope anyone who is not familiar with Yampa Valley Gives Day comes out and learns more about the program.

It’s amazing to think that in just two 24-hour giving cycles almost $900,000 was raised for Routt County nonprofits in 2014 and 2015. This level of fundraising is a testament to our community’s generosity, and we think it’s pretty fantastic to live in place where giving is a way of life.

We encourage Routt County residents to go online and check out yampavalleygives.org in advance of Yampa Valley Gives Day on Dec. 6. There’s no better time to focus on giving during the holiday season, and there’s no better gift to give than making a donation to a family member’s or friend’s favorite charity in their name. Check it out; we hope you’ll give generously.

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