Gail Catlin, executive director of the Nonprofit Resource Center in Sacramento, recently gave a presentation in Woodland on behalf of GiveLocalNow, a campaign aimed at increasing philanthropy in Placer, El Dorado, Sacramento and Yolo County.
“The goal of the event was to encourage organizations and to tell their local impact story,” Catlin said.
The Yolo Community Federation hosted the event.
“We have hosted nonprofit roundtables in the past and it seemed like a good time to do another one,” said Meg Stallard, president of the board for the federation. “We hope to do it again in the fall.”
Stallard explained that GiveLocalNow’s purpose is to help different nonprofit organizations in the county with their own fundraising, and discover and address any other needs they may have.
“The program began five years ago as a conversation between the Nonprofit Resource Center and the Sacramento Regional Community Foundation about how we could best help the nonprofit sector,” Catlin said. “The impulse was to look at philanthropy in the region and support its growth if at all possible.”
GiveLocalNow’s first step was to research and document philanthropy in the region.
“We found that fewer households give – when they do give – they give smaller gifts. Even though 90 percent feel that giving local is important, only 63 percent do,” Catlin said.
Based on this data, a leadership committee was put together to create a marketing campaign aimed to raise public awareness and to connect donors to local causes.
Stallard said there are three basic goals of GiveLocalNow: to increase the number of people giving and the amount they give, as well as to encourage giving locally.
One way this was accomplished was to drive traffic to GiveLocalNow’s website, allowing donors to find participating organizations more easily.
The Nonprofit Resource Center also helps to nurture organizations through capacity building as well as providing workshops and learning environments. This is so that nonprofits can get the latest information.
“We want to help nonprofits tell their stories on the web and be available for the kind of support and donations they are going to receive,” Catlin said.
For Catlin, it’s all about appealing on a personal level and helping nonprofits share their stories to reach more potential donors.
“The organizations need to connect with their donors, and make clear what they do and how. They need to develop trust through transparency and make their guiding values clear so that people of similar values are attracted to what they’re doing,” Catlin said.
Danielle Chonas, executive director at Yolo Arts, attested that having a conduit to help increase philanthropy could be beneficial to the organization.
“It is important for us as an organization to recognize the value we provide in the community,” Chonas said. “We are the only organization in the county that furthers art. We employ people, and artists deserve to work too.”
Not only is GiveLocalNow open to involvement by nonprofits around the county, but Catlin also said that they would like to see nonprofit student-to-student organizations get involved as well.
“We invite student organizations to get involved so we can bring programming to them too,” Catlin said. “We know from our research that the millennial generation is already a very strong philanthropic generation. There is great potential and we want all people to connect with causes they care about.”
EINAT GILBOA can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor’s Note: Gail Catlin’s name was misspelled in this article. It has been updated to reflect the change. The Aggie regrets this error.