Warren Gives raises over $488,000 in donations

It was another banner year for Warren Gives.

On Wednesday, 1,296 donors gave a total of $488,546 to organizations that serve Warren County in many ways.

The number of organizations on the list was up from 103 to 106.

Unique donors was up from 1,252 to 1,296.

Number of donations — donors could give to multiple organizations — went from 4,094 to 4,162.

And the total giving was up almost 10 percent from $448,330.

“We’re really excited for all of the organizations,” Warren Gives Event Coordinator Mark King said.

“It was a great day,” Community Foundation of Warren County Executive Director John Lasher said. “Exciting. Busy.”

The three new organizations were the Toy Shoppe, Youth Connection, and Women’s Care Center, King said.

“We picked up a few new donors,” he said.

More importantly, donors gave more.

“On average, the people who came donated significantly more,” King said. “The average donation was up 16.5 percent.”

The $488,000 total was a record. “We’re really getting close to that half-million,” Lasher said.

The 2019 event was the seventh Warren Gives. The project brought in about $140,000 in its first year.

“That shows you the growth,” King said.

The seven-year total is about $2.3 million.

Match sponsors provided a fund of $40,000 that will be given out to the 106 organizations in a percentage close to equal to their share of the Warren Gives donations.

That stretching of donation dollars is one way that Warren Gives helps the organizations.

For the smaller groups, their ability to fund-raise is sometimes limited by the size of the infrastructure.

“They’re all volunteers,” Lasher said of one group whose representatives spoke to him about the important role Warren Gives plays. “They don’t have an easy way to raise money. This is an easy way to have a campaign.”

Raising awareness for the groups and encouraging new giving are two of the pillars Warren Gives was built on, King said.

“It really makes it easy for the organizations,” he said. “Every year, the organizations get better and better at how to make it work for them.”

Communities and entities can benefit from the efforts of others. When one entity advertises Warren Gives, it helps bring people to the website.

Providing that website where it is easy to make a donation encourages people who might normally take a check to one group to add a contribution to another, King said.

There were no surprises at the top of the donations board, but the final numbers will not be released for two more weeks.

There will be a check presentation event on June 12. “We’d love to see one to two representatives from each of the organizations,” Lasher said. “Everyone walks out with a check.”