McWhortor and Theisen: Arizona Gives Day is April 9 - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Opinion

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McWhortor and Theisen: Arizona Gives Day is April 9

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Posted: Tuesday, April 8, 2014 8:25 am

Last year, more than 8,500 Arizonans joined together and donated nearly $1 million to more than 800 local nonprofit organizations in just 24 hours.

And you know what?

Arizona can do better.

Presented by First Bank, Arizona Gives Day — a 24-hour online initiative encouraging residents from all 15 Arizona counties to recognize and financially support the efforts of various nonprofits — is back.

Starting at midnight on April 9, and continuing until 11:59 p.m., each and every one of the 6.5 million people living in this great state can go online at AZGives.org and make a donation to the nonprofit of their choice.

Financial contributions made on Arizona Gives Day help Arizona’s nonprofits change lives, build leaders and champion community causes.

We’ve partnered with nearly 1,000 nonprofits this year and are setting our sights at more than a $1 million in donations — but we need your help and donations, no “buts” about it.

But I don’t have that much to spare.

Consider this — if you simply eat in this weekend, you might save as much as $50, a donation that can provide sports equipment to a team of at-risk youth.

Or, by watching a movie at home rather than visiting the movie theater this week, you will save at least $30, a donation that can provide 40 pounds of food to your local animal shelter.

And, by skipping the coffee shop for a week, you will save an estimated $15, a donation that can fund a neonatal care manual for new parents of a premature baby.

Every little bit truly does help. Minimum donations start at just $10, and as cliché as it sounds — you really will make a difference in your community.

But I am just one person.

So why not share Arizona Gives Day with your friends?

Last year, every time a member of this community shared the initiative via social media, it generated, on average, $18 more in donations!

But I don’t know any local nonprofits or what they need.

With nearly 1,000 nonprofits representing every single county across the state taking part in Arizona Gives Day, there are organizations supporting animals, the arts, education, family services, health and more in need just miles from your house. Each organization seeking financial support is not only listed at AZGives.org right now, but you have the ability to search by county, city or even keyword to find the nonprofit or group of nonprofits that best match your own personal passions and values.

But I don’t know how to do it.

Giving is as easy is 1-2-3:

1. On April 9, visit AZGives.org.

2. Click on “Donate.”

3. Choose your nonprofit of choice and give away.

But I am busy April 9.

Not a problem. Simply visit azgives.org and click “schedule my donation,” where you will be able to choose which organization you wish to support right now.

No matter why or when you give on April 9 — just give!

Every single penny raised on Arizona Gives Day will impact us all.

• Patrick McWhortor is president and CEO of the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits, and Marissa Theisen is president and CEO of the Arizona Grantmakers Forum. Together, their organizations have partnered to present Arizona Gives Day on April 9.

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