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Midlands Gives Raises more than $1.6 million for nonprofits

Preliminary results show a total of $1,638,531 raised via Midlands Gives, the 24-hour online giving challenge hosted by Central Carolina Community Foundation from midnight to midnight on May 2.

Midlands Gives is one of the nation’s top-ranking 24-hour online giving challenges. Nonprofits and their fans were encouraged to come and cheer during live TV news broadcasts at headquarters at South Carolina State Museum.

Central Carolina Community Foundation enabled early, prescheduled online giving, a first for the annual event, allowing everyday philanthropists to start making donations two weeks in advance of Midlands Gives day to their favorite nonprofits.

In its fourth year, Midlands Gives serves as a hub for donors to give online to hundreds of local nonprofits in the 11 Midlands counties served by the Foundation. 335 local nonprofit organizations accepted donations via one central website.

In 2016, Midlands Gives raised $1.6 million via 12,536 individual gifts, toward 382 charities. In 2015, Midlands Gives raised an astonishing $1,543,032.65, via 11,372 individual gifts, toward 251 charities. In 2014, the event’s inaugural year, $704,932.23 was raised, via 5,186 individual gifts, toward 150 charities. Midlands Gives is one of almost 100 giving days that take place in cities across America throughout the year. In 2015 and 2016, Midlands Gives ranked 7th in the nation in number of individual gifts.

Midlands mayors and council chairs competed in the Nephron Hoops Challenge at 11:45 a.m., and SCE&G hosted the Parking Lot Picnic, a free event open to the public with DJ Prince Ice, BBQ, an ice cream bar and regional Indian dance performances in conjunction with the South Carolina State Museum’s Beyond Bollywood exhibit.

This year, more than 100 prizes were donated by Corporate Philanthropy Champions – accumulating a total of $97,000 in prize incentives for Midlands Gives. Prizes are awarded to nonprofits through challenge matching funds and giver-generated milestones. Some incentives are Power Hours, during which a small-budget nonprofit and a large-budget nonprofit with the highest number of unique donors during that hour will receive an additional $1,000 prize.

SCE&G awarded $1,000 each to 30 randomly drawn nonprofits for a total of $30,000. Additionally, Aflac motivated nonprofits to engage their board members by awarding $500 to 60 nonprofits with 100% board participation, totaling $30,000 as well. Other major donors include Nephron Pharmaceuticals, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, BB&T and First Citizens Bank.

The Community Foundation’s regional affiliates sponsored bonus pools to add to nonprofit results located in the areas they serve, including Chapin ($6,000 bonus pool), Kershaw ($2,500 bonus pool), Sumter ($5,000 bonus pool) and Orangeburg and Calhoun ($12,500 bonus pool).

“For the past two years, Midlands Gives has ranked #7 among 90+ ‘giving days’ across the country for the number of individual gifts given,” said JoAnn Turnquist, President and CEO of Central Carolina Community Foundation. “Midlands Gives provides everyone with the opportunity to make a tremendous difference in our community and demonstrates that everyone, no matter how large or small their gift, can be a philanthropist.”

Nonprofits serve a wide range of needs across our region – from community improvement to human services to youth programs, animal rescue, the arts and more. Nearly every person will be touched by a nonprofit at some point in their lives. One may be born in a nonprofit hospital, receive afterschool tutoring, attend a theater performance or use senior day care services. Our local nonprofits participating in Midlands Gives are rallying together on this one day to encourage everyone to join in and make our community stronger through giving.

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