On a typical Thursday night on January 19th, the Arvada Center roared with hundreds of non-profit representatives and sponsors in celebration of the success of Colorado Gives Day 2011. Kicking it off with live entertainment by Swallow Hill Music’s Executive Director Tom Scharf’s six-man band Penguin Rodeo and some delightful appetizers, Community First Foundation announced $12.4 million were raised for 928 Colorado charities with 12 organizations winning the FirstBank High Five prize of $5,000 processed through their GivingFirst.org accounts.
“FirstBank High Five prizes were created to stimulate giving and reward nonprofits for best results on Colorado Gives Day,” said Marla J. Williams, president and CEO of the Community First Foundation. “Thanks to FirstBank’s generosity, we are able to recognize the effort and innovation that exemplifies Colorado’s nonprofit community.”
Prizes were broken down into four categories and within each category were three winners:
Most Donors on Colorado Gives Day
- Tier 1: Colorado Animal Rescue Express (C.A.R.E.)
- Tier 2: Colorado Environmental Coalition
- Tier 3: Denver Rescue Mission
Most Dollars Raised on Colorado Gives Day
- Tier 1: Littleton Public Schools Foundation
- Tier 2: Advocates for Children
- Tier 3: Tennyson Center for Children at Colorado Christian Home
Largest Percent Increase in Dollars over Colorado Gives Day 2010
- Tier 1: Progressive Health Center
- Tier 2: Vail Valley Salvation Army
- Tier 3: YMCA of the Pikes Peak Region
Most Dollars Raised Through GivingFirst Fundraising Pages on Colorado Gives Day
- Tier 1: Buntport Theater
- Tier 2: Child Advocates – Denver CASA
- Tier 3: Colorado Public Television (CPT12)
“Due to the generous support from 199 donors, Colorado Animal Rescue Express (C.A.R.E.) raised $21,500 on Colorado Gives Day, which will help sponsor our programs for homeless animals in 2012,” said Lisa Mendelsberg, co-founder of C.A.R.E. “We are thrilled to have won the $5,000 FirstBank High Five prize for the most donors in our revenue category! We plan to use 25 percent of the funds for transporting shelter animals to rescues, 25 percent for veterinary care, 25 percent for sponsoring spay/neuter programs in Colorado, and 25 percent to provide additional resources to small rural shelters that are in desperate need of vaccines and other supplies for the animals.”
“This was our first year participating in Colorado Gives Day” Brian Colonna with Buntport Theatre expressed “The day was an amazing success; winning the $5,000 prize is much appreciated icing on the cake. We are a small theater company that relies very much on the support of our community… With this breathing room, we can stay focused on our mission: creating new theater that we can offer at affordable, inclusive prices.”
Fueled by Community First Foundation and FirstBank, Colorado Gives Day is an initiative to increase philanthropy in Colorado. Last year, Colorado Gives Day took place in a 36-hour period beginning on December 6th, 2011. Community First Foundation, FirstBank and 10 other Colorado foundations covered all processing fees making 100 percent of donations go directly to the participating nonprofits. For the nonprofits across Colorado that would like to participate, you can create a profile on GivingFirst.org starting in March 2012 to receive the year-round fundraising benefits.
Concluding the marvelous event were performances by the Christian Youth Theater Denver Performers and once again, Penguin Rodeo. If you did not get the chance to participate in this phenomenon then stay tuned for the next Colorado Gives Day!
Watch this heart-warming montage of Colorado Gives Day.