To our readers:
You continue to amaze and overwhelm us with your generosity.
We began this effort in 2004 with modest ambitions. More than anything, we wanted to try to instill in younger Portlanders a healthy year-end giving habit.
That first year, when WW's G!G raised $25,252.50 for 28 local nonprofits, we considered it a rousing success. Never in our wildest imaginings could we have anticipated that a dozen years later, 9,325 of you would have donated $4,248,928—168 times as much.
Altogether, you made some 33,000 individual gifts this year, averaging $125 each, with a median donation of $50.
To put this in perspective, the gold standard for this sort of newspaper-inspired giving is The New York Times' Neediest-Cases Fund. It raises about $6 million each year. Think of how many more readers the Times has—and how much more wealth is to be found in New York City. Portlanders' outsized performance emphasizes the depth and breadth of your generosity and, ultimately, your commitment to our community.
For now, the most important thing we can do is thank you with everything we've got.
On this page are many more interesting G!G data points. At giveguide.org, you can discover how each of our 141 participating nonprofits did this year, as well as see the identities of the many truly wonderful businesses who help make this annual effort possible.
We plan to keep this going. So mark your calendars: Applications for participating in WW's 2017 Give!Guide and nomination forms for our 2017 Skidmore Prizes will be available at giveguide.org during the month of June.
Also: Next week, and the week after, WW will be publishing its annual Volunteer Guide. This is your chance to donate sweat equity—every bit as valuable as cash—to dozens of great local nonprofits.
I need to close this note with a farewell—and the biggest thank you of all. Nick Johnson, who has served as G!G's executive director these past five years and under whose direction giving has more than doubled, has taken a job with Mercy Corps. We can't thank him enough for the multitude of ways he's nurtured, coaxed and strategized WW's G!G into its current place in Portland. He will be a great asset to his new nonprofit.
Congratulations also are in order to Mahala Ray, who interned with G!G in 2015, and now becomes our new executive director.
Thank you all again—nine thousand three hundred and twenty-five times over,
Richard H. Meeker
Founder, Willamette Week's Give!Guide
President, City of Roses Media Company
DONATIONS SINCE G!G's INCEPTION IN 2004
2016's Big Give! Days raised $1,145,100 in donations (compared to $887,650 in 2015).
DONATIONS BY PART OF TOWN
2016 Top 10 Recipients
Oregon Cultural Trust: $396,787
Planned Parenthood: $188,761
The Pongo Fund Pet Food Bank: $180,836
Oregon Food Bank: $138,702
Friends of the Columbia Gorge: $95,765
Sisters of the Road: $85,130
Outside In: $82,362
Cat Adoption Team: $66,433
Habitat for Humanity Portland Metro East: $66,047
Transition Projects: $61,995
35 & Under Winners (by # of donors)
Animals The Pongo Fund: 150
Civil & Human Rights Voz Workers' Rights: 94
Community Bicycle Transportation Alliance: 118
Creative Expression XRAY.FM: 5
Education College Possible: 111
Environment Ecology in Classrooms and Outdoors: 100
Health Planned Parenthood: 260
Human Services Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization: 188
$50 was the median donation
33,808 donations made
9,325 unique donors
2,497 unique donors, 35 & under
Nearly 300 participating businesses
82% of groups raised more than their previous time participating in G!G (63% in 2015 and 78% in 2014).
Over $1 million of the funds raised in the past 12 years has gone to Planned Parenthood and another $2 million to the Oregon Cultural Trust.
"I'm most excited by the fact that the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization raised over $60,000 after bringing in less than $10,000 in 2014."