Local Nonprofits Inspire a Giving Spirit

Months of preparation and hard work paid off for Greater New Haven nonprofits last week during The Great Give® 2017.

Levon, the Great Giver, inspired donors to give to Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven during The Great Give® 2017. Photo credit: Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven
Read Full Press Release

Months of preparation and hard work paid off for Greater New Haven nonprofits during The Great Give® 2017. Nearly $1.3 million was raised during the 36-hour online giving event to a support a broad range of organizations working in the arts, basic needs, education, environment and other sectors in The Community Foundation's 20-town service area.

In addition to money, the event raises awareness about the work of local nonprofits and the people and causes they support.

"As hard as I was working for my organization, I was also working for others. I personally gave to another organization because I care about what they do and what it means," says Ann Tramontana-Veno, Executive Director of Hope After Loss.

By reaching out to past supporters and promoting their mission to new potential donors, Hope After Loss raised $1,660, including a $500 Golden Ticket prize.


Formerly known as the Hygeia Foundation, Hope After Loss provides connections and care to those who have experienced the loss of a baby.

Tramontana-Veno says her highlight was appearing on The New Haven Independent's live radio broadcast of the event on its station, WNHH.

"What a great way to let a lot of people know that there is an organization out there that helps those who grieve the loss of a pregnancy or infant. And I listened to other nonprofits tell me what they do as well," says Tramontana-Veno.

The Animal Haven prepared for the fundraising event with a poster at its shelter and by reaching out to donors via email and Facebook. The work was rewarded with $5,700 to support their mission of providing a temporary, safe, caring and humane refuge for homeless adoptable cats and dogs until they can be placed in permanent homes. The Animal Haven won the $2,500 prize for the most improved number of donors.

The Animal Haven President Linda Marino says the donations will be used to cover some of the shelter's veterinarian fees.

"Some of the animals who come to us are in need of significant veterinarian services. Routine veterinarian services for all of our other animals can add up," says Marino. "We thank all of our donors so much for their generosity."

Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven also had a successful event, raising $5,875, including the $3,000 Liberty Bank Foundation Prize. The nonprofit housing organization took a creative approach to its email marketing campaign by inventing Levon, the Great Giver, a cute dog who convinced his human owner to be a donor.

"We were so excited to receive the Liberty Bank Foundation prize," says Neighborhood Housing Services Resource Development Specialist Jessica Buchanan. "The funds raised will go towards our comprehensive neighborhood revitalization program in Newhallville and The Hill neighborhoods."

The organization r'Kids Family Center, which seeks permanent homes for children in foster care, was excited to deploy the development tools it learned during The Community Foundation workshops leading up to The Great Give® . The nonprofit raised $7,700.

"Our expertise is growing and that was reflected in our donations," says r'Kids founder and CEO, Randi Rubin Rodriguez. "Thanks to all!"

Did you know?

One third of all donors reported making a gift for the first time to 301 participating nonprofits during The Great Give® 2017.

This story is part of the Inspiration Monday story series produced by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.