Articles by

Mike Berkowitz

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    Photo: Silicon Valley Gives 2015, from the Giving Day Playbook. At a time when charitable organizations are vigorously competing to gain the attention—and ultimately the support—of individual donors, giving days offer a powerful tool to drive community philanthropy. In fact, the amount raised through these days is impressive – including more than $116.3 million alone for 18 communities studied by Knight Foundation since 2012. But these online fundraising campaigns are about much more than the dollars, a new Knight report, the culmination of a three-year initiative, found: Over time, when organizers purposefully align the campaigns with their missions, giving days have helped to strengthen community foundations that organize them. 
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    Photo credit: Flickr user: Communities Foundation of Texas Knight Foundation just published a new Giving Day Playbook offering tips on organizing a 24-hour fundraising campaign. Here, one of the authors Mike Berkowitz, offers insights on how community foundations can think strategically about Giving Days. Online Giving Days are an effective way for community foundations and other organizations to raise money and create excitement for local nonprofits. RELATED LINKs  Join us for a free webinar with CommA on planning Giving Days at 2 p.m. ET on Sept. 12. Register now. "New Giving Day Playbook provides step-by-step guide to online giving campaigns" Giving Days can generate a significant amount of money for local causes and create a buzz about community needs. However, these campaigns don’t automatically raise funds for the organizers. In fact, some community foundations operate Giving Days at a net financial loss. To get value out of Giving Days, organizers must be thoughtful about setting goals and create a plan for how the Giving Day will explicitly benefit the foundation, as well as the participating nonprofits and the community. This may feel self-interested, but the organization behind the 24-hour event central to the Giving Day’s success, and to keeping these campaigns going strong into the future. Below are three distinct ways community foundations can benefit from hosting a Giving Day: