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New for Midlands Gives 2017: Early “Scheduled Giving” Now Open for 336 Charities Across the Midlands

March 18, 2017 (COLUMBIA, S.C.) – There’s a new way to make an impact this year with Midlands Gives, one of the nation’s top-ranking 24-hour online giving challenges. Starting now and leading up to the May 2 event, Central Carolina Community Foundation has enabled early, pre-scheduled online giving, allowing everyday philanthropists to start making donations immediately to their favorite nonprofits at www.midlandsgives.org.

Now in its fourth year, the Midlands Gives giving challenge is hosted by Central Carolina Community Foundation and will run from midnight to midnight on Tuesday, May 2, 2017, with its headquarters at South Carolina State Museum.

With the new advance donation option, supporters who would like to make their contributions early can do so now by selecting the “Scheduled Giving” option on the Midlands Gives website. Notably, scheduled gifts will not count toward the 100+ prizes available for nonprofits on May 2; those donors who wish to help their nonprofits of choice attain special prizes, such as Power Hours and more, will want to hold their giving until May 2.

Gifts can be a minimum of $20 and give donors an easy, convenient option for ensuring their participation in the region’s largest day of giving. Scheduled gifts will be processed beginning at 12am on May 2, allowing the giving challenge’s leaderboard to start with a solid base of donations.

CiviCore, the new web-based donations platform selected by the Foundation, offers two payment options for giving this year in addition to a more user-friendly interface. The first option processes credit card payments and includes a 4.9% fee, which goes directly to the credit card and web platform companies. The fee is low compared to fees required by many giving days nationwide. The second option is an ACH debit from a checking account and includes a 2.8% web platform fee plus $0.30 donation fee. Donors can opt to help cover these fees, sending more dollars to the causes they support.

“Donors have the option to help cover processing fees when they check out, allowing more of their donation to go straight to the nonprofits they are supporting,” notes JoAnn Turnquist, President and CEO of Central Carolina Community Foundation. “In 2016, almost half of the donors who gave during Midlands Gives opted to cover their processing fees, resulting in an additional $200,000 donated to participating nonprofits.”

The total amount raised during Midlands Gives in 2016, including the additional processing fee donations, totaled more than $1.6 million for hundreds of nonprofits across the Midlands. This year, 336 nonprofits are participating and corporate incentive prizes, available on Midlands Gives day, will provide close to $100,000 for participating nonprofits. View participating nonprofits and their expanded, more detailed profiles at www.midlandsgives.org.

“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. “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.”

Although scheduled gifts are not counted towards prize incentives, gifts given ahead of time lay the foundation for the remainder of the donations made throughout May 2. The prizes and incentives offered for day-of giving add an additional element of excitement to the challenge.

Local Corporations Have Donated 97,000 in Incentive Prizes

This year, more than 100 prizes have been 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.

To drive giving, SCE&G will award $1,000 each to 30 randomly drawn nonprofits for a total of $30,000 if $1.5 million is raised by 5:00 P.M. Additionally, Aflac is motivating 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 are sponsoring bonus pools 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).

New Online Platform Creates a More Interactive Way to Give

Central Carolina Community Foundation has contracted CiviCore as its new online platform for Midlands Gives. The system is designed to manage a high volume of website visitors and creates a seamless user experience similar to online shopping, complete with recommendations and an advanced shopping cart interface. Search through nonprofits based on category, interest or keywords and see more detailed descriptions with photos and even videos.

CiviCore limits the number of giving days that can use its secure platform on a specific day and provides dedicated staff as well as multiple backup systems. CiviCore has helped organizations raise more than $200 million for more than 10,000 nonprofits since its creation in 2000.

336 Nonprofit Organizations to Participate

Participating nonprofits have gone through even more training this year, preparing them to garner support and donations during the Midlands Gives event and help build skills and best practices for year-round implementation. With 335 nonprofits, there is a wide range of categories – from community improvement to human services to youth development, animal rescue and more.

Cheer for Your Favorite Nonprofit at Midlands Gives Headquarters

Midlands Gives headquarters is a central location for the community to celebrate giving on May 2. Nonprofits and community members are invited to come to headquarters at the South Carolina State Museum on giving day to cheer during local television broadcasts. SCE&G will host the Parking Lot Picnic, a free event open to the public from 4:30 to 7:00 PM to celebrate our community’s giving. More details about this event and a schedule of broadcast times can be found at www.midlandsgives.org

Midlands Gives will be held from midnight to midnight on Tuesday, May 2, 2017. With a minimum $20 donation and a wide variety of nonprofits, it is easy for everyone to become a philanthropist. Discover participating nonprofit organizations at http://midlandsgives.org.

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