CoronavirusNewsThe SouthSider

Upcoming Give STL Day lets donors give at home

ST. LOUIS – For those looking for a good cause to support, but not sure what it might be, GiveSTLDay.org. might be the answer.

Organized by the St. Louis Community Foundation, the online event on May 6 will offer links to more than 800 worthy nonprofits that deserve support. Those who can’t wait can go to the GiveSTLDay.org website right now, but they can win prizes and see their gifts increased by matching donors by waiting until May 6.

Since the annual virtual event started in 2014, donors have given $17.5 million to worthy causes in the Gateway City. This year, the event is presented by the Berges Family Foundation.

Amelia Bond, president and CEO of the St. Louis Community Foundation

“Last year, we broke through all kinds of records,” said Amelia Bond, president and CEO of the St. Louis Community Foundation. “We raised $4.5 million dollars. It was a 50 percent increase over and above what we had done in 2019.”

Give STL Day was especially important last year, because the pandemic forced many groups to cancel fundraisers.  

“Give STL Day actually set the stage of giving some community support during the beginning of a tough time,” Bond said. “We hope that that momentum continues into this year.”

Officials of nonprofit organizations who wish to register and participate in Give STL Day should visit https://www.givestlday.org/index.php?action=login_inquiry. Registration will be open until April 26. 

“The Community Foundation screens registered organizations with Guidestar.org, an organization that tracks nonprofit data, and makes sure the organization is in good standing and in compliance with the IRS,” a spokeswoman said.

Those wanting to give to a group through Give STL Day may contribute to something cute and fuzzy such as groups that help dogs and cats.

They also can give to Black-led and Black-benefitting organizations or those that focus on community development, education and the environment. Other groups getting help from Give STL Day concentrate on health, human services, religion, education and social justice.

They range from the Missouri Botanical Garden to the St. Lou[s Zoo to libraries. Smaller groups do such things as benefit the arts and give free piano lessons.

People can contribute to the Jefferson Barracks Telephone Museum or the Be Well Café and Market, a commercial incubator kitchen and artisan marketplace that supports Black and Brown culinary entrepreneurs.

Through Give STL Day, small nonprofits also receive training meant to improve their contribution.

“Back in 2014, we were teaching the nonprofits how to use Facebook, how to use social media,” Bond explained. “This year, we actually have a number of them throughout ever since we’ve continued to do trainings and educate nonprofits on messaging to their donors.”

The St. Louis Community Foundation is made up of more than 800 individual funds and donors that make grants to the community. It includes living donors who give every day to nonprofits throughout the St. Louis area. It also has endowed funds.   

It has about a half billion dollars in assets. Last year, donors gave $75 million to their funds at the St. Louis Community Foundation, and donors granted $117 million to nonprofits.

Jim Merkel

southsidemerkel@gmail.com Born and raised in the St. Louis area, Jim Merkel covered communities throughout the area from 1991 to 2013 for the old Suburban Journals of Greater St. Louis. He is the author of five books about the Gateway City published by Reedy Press. The latest is Growing Up St. Louis: Looking Back Through the Decades. He and his wife, Lorraine, live in the Bevo Mill neighborhood of south St. Louis with Miss Jenny the Cat. For more about Jim, visit www.jimmerkelthewriter.com.

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