2011 ‘Give!’ Campaigns Raise Nearly $3 Million for Non-Profits

Colorado Springs Independent, Monterey County Weekly and Willamette Week have raised a combined $2.95 million for local non-profits as part of the year-end “Give!” campaigns organized by the papers.

Last week Willamette Week announced that it’s “Give!Guide” raised $1,588,689 for over 100 non-profits in the Portland, Oregon area — a 37 percent increase from last year’s effort.

“The Give!Guide is our way to develop the year-end giving habit in our readers, especially those under the age of 36,” explained publisher Richard Meeker. “We also give out four Skidmore Prizes each year ($4,000 each) to honor good works by young employees of local nonprofits.”

In California, the “Monterey County Gives!” campaign raised $572,172 from readers and an additional $100,000 in matching funds to be divided among area non-profits.

Colorado Springs Independent associate publisher Carrie Simison-Bitz reports that the “Give! 2011” program expects to tally over $690,000 in donations after the final count is in.

“Our awards ceremony is Jan. 31 where we’ll give out checks to 49 local nonprofits totaling that amount!” she said in an email. “Our goal this year was $555,555 so I must say we’re quite thrilled.”

The combined total of $2.95 million is a 47 percent increase from last year’s effort, in which the three publications raised $2 million.

In addition to the AAN member effort, Smiley Pete Publishing in Lexington, Ky. raised $204,439 in it’s first ever “GoodGiving Guide” — doubling it’s goal of $100K.