To all Give!Guide supporters: This time you really outdid yourselves.
In the face of a federal tax bill that is gutting charitable giving across the nation, especially for local nonprofits, and in the midst of the worst December stock market performance in nearly a century, you nevertheless stepped up to donate more than $4.1 million to local nonprofits. An astounding $705,495 moved through the website on Dec. 31 alone. Overall, you've given nearly $13 million in the past three years— and your donations now total nearly $30 million since Give!Guide's inception in 2004.
If you're curious to see how participating nonprofits did this year, click on giving stats at giveguide.org. The website, though now closed to giving, also lists our sponsors and business partners, without whom this annual effort could not exist.
From our perspective, this year's most important achievement is breaking the 10,000-donor barrier. That has been an elusive goal for three years now and was finally reached on Dec. 31. Altogether, 10,379 of you participated this year.
Better yet, 28 percent of you are under the age of 36. Give!Guide's most important reason for being is to further the giving habit and build a culture of active citizenship in young Portlanders. 2,914 of you were in that age group—11 percent more than last year. This is a real testament to your commitment to the vitality of our city.
We had a few issues of our own. Most notably, our website was sluggish part of the time. The worst problems occurred on Giving Tuesday, Nov. 27, when it took too long to make even a single donation. You have our apologies for the delays you experienced—and our undying appreciation for your patience, as you made this the biggest Giving Tuesday ever. To Roundhouse Agency, who ran our website this year, our gratitude for all the work you did to get the site back up to speed (and then some) for the final giving stretch.
We will soon begin delivering your incentives packages. For me, this is one of the best parts of this entire adventure, as I get to meet a number of you in person to hear about your Give!Guide experiences. It really is a joy to visit with you on your doorsteps.
As with everything else in Give!Guide, organizing the incentives is done by G!G's executive director, Mahala Ray, with an assist from Ben Stone. Working with Mahala regularly fills me with awe, given the steady way she handles the many responsibilities this effort entails. Mahala has been especially effective in making the Give!Guide real for those of you who are under 36. A number of other WWers, from Kim Engelke and Shawn Wolf in administration to Kat Topaz and her production team to copy editor Matt Buckingham and circulation director Spencer Winans, do their part to make this happen.
Early each new year, we meet among ourselves and with participating nonprofits to recap the previous year's campaign. We also survey donors. We do so because we're always looking for ways to make this experience better and more rewarding for you. If you have suggestions for how we can improve any facet of this effort, please don't hesitate to let me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Mahala (email@example.com) know.
As George Saunders said in a Literary Arts interview on Oregon Public Broadcasting a little over a year ago, "Kindness is that which causes benefit." That means you are among the kindest of Portlanders, and we can't thank you enough for your great generosity. Together, we can make Portland an ever-better place in which to live, work and play.
Richard H. Meeker, Give!Guide Founder
PS: Next week's Willamette Week will publish our annual Volunteer Guide. This is your chance to donate sweat equity, which is every bit as valuable as cash, to dozens of great local nonprofits. If you couldn't give money to support Portland's nonprofits, this is an excellent alternative for giving back. Please give it a look.
PPS: A campaign celebration will be held Feb. 5 at Revolution Hall from 6 to 9 pm. Please join us.
Give!Guide 2018 Stats
Total Donated: $4,137,013
(In 2017: $4,209,824)
Total Donors: 10,379
Donors Under 36: 2,914
Total Donations: 33,449
Average Donation: $124
Median Donation: $50
Nonprofit with the most donors under 36: Campus Compact of Oregon
Quadrant of Portland giving the most: Northeast
2018's Big Give Days raised: $1,127,802
Winners of the Tandem Property Management 35 & Under Competition:
-Cat Adoption Team
-Portland Women in Technology
-Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA)
-Friends of Noise
-Campus Compact of Oregon
-Friends of Trees
-Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette
-Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization
Top Donation Recipients:
1. Oregon Cultural Trust $385,624
2. The Pongo Pet Food Fund $167,089
3. Oregon Food Bank $145,320
4. Planned Parenthood $143,143
5. Friends of the Columbia Gorge $129,635
6. Habitat for Humanity Portland/Metro East $81,183
7. Outside In $74,767
8. America Civil Liberties Union
Foundation of Oregon $73,522
9. Central City Concern $71,511
10. Immigrant and Refugee
Community Organization $65,946
2018 marked the first year of Give!Guide as an editorial magazine, featuring inspiring interviews with Portland do-gooders like Damian Lillard, Portugal. The Man, Cheryl Strayed, Rukaiyah Adams and Emma McIlroy.
More than 400 Portlanders attended our kickoff party, where Zach Carothers of Portugal. The Man DJed and we raised $1,585 for Portland's nonprofits.
We partnered with Cymaspace for our December G!G Presents show at Mississippi Studios to make the show inclusive for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community, using cutting-edge Audiolux and open-captioning technology. It was such a rad show!
322 more young people gave than last year, with a median donation of $20—meaning more people are giving at least a little bit, which adds up to a whole lot for our community.