Donors encouraged to give local

Published 9:54 pm Tuesday, May 2, 2017

A regional push for nonprofit giving will take place next week, and several organizations that serve Suffolk will be participating.

The fourth annual Give Local 757 will be held all day (and night) long on May 9. Dozens of regional nonprofits are participating, and the goal is to raise $1 million collectively for the organizations from midnight to midnight on that date.

Last year’s event raised $610,000, even hampered by technical difficulties.

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“We were on track to hit ($1 million) last year, and we had a technical issue,” said Tammy Flynn, director of philanthropy for Peninsula Community Foundation. “We’ve done everything we could possibly do to make sure everything runs smoothly this year.”

The initiative allows folks to give to the organizations from one central website, There is a minimum donation of $10 but no maximum donation, and gifts can be given to as many charities as a donor wishes.

Individual donations will be amplified by a variety of challenges from a $55,000 prize incentive pool. For example, the organization that gets the most new donors, the organization that receives donations from the most U.S. states and the organization that receives a donation closest to 7:57 a.m. will receive $757 prizes.

Flynn said the event has benefited nonprofits in a variety of ways, and not just in generating donations.

“We really saw a need in the nonprofit sector for agencies to build a presence on social media, and also online fundraising,” she said. “When we started it the first year, I would say about 30 percent of the nonprofits participating actually had social media accounts. Today, it’s 100 percent.”

Flynn said organizations received training on how to establish a social media presence and how to get their message out via social media, which helps them all year long.

“It’s an opportunity for them to get their stories out there and their causes out there,” Flynn said. “I think the most important thing they learned was how to tell those stories succinctly, because you have such a limited time to catch them on social media.”

The importance of having a “donate” button on nonprofit websites also has been emphasized by this event, Flynn said.

Donations made during the event can even lead to new relationships, Flynn said.

“One thing they walk away with that’s really hard to get for nonprofits is new donors,” she said. “Over 40 percent of the donors who participated last year were new. It’s an opportunity for them to establish long-term relationships.”

A couple of changes have been made to the event this year. The first is that donations made now will count toward the final total. The other is that donors can create their own campaigns through the website for their chosen organization.

For more information or to participate, visit

Participating organizations based in Suffolk or that serve Suffolk include:

  • ACCESS College Foundation
  • Boys and Girls Clubs of Southeast Virginia
  • Communities in Schools of Hampton Roads
  • Edmarc Hospice for Children
  • Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore
  • ForKids
  • Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast
  • Habitat for Humanity South Hampton Roads
  • Healthy Suffolk
  • Nansemond-Suffolk Academy
  • Nursing CAP Inc.
  • Paul D. Camp Community College Foundation
  • Senior Services of Southeastern Virginia
  • Sickle Cell Association Inc.
  • Suffolk Literacy Council
  • The Children’s Center
  • Salvation Army Hampton Roads Area Command
  • Walk In It Inc.
  • Western Tidewater Free Clinic