The Great Give® 2021 Finishes Strong for Second Year in a Row

$3.35 Million Raised for Greater New Haven Nonprofits

New Haven, Conn. (May 7, 2021) –Nearly on pace with last year’s success, The Great Give® 2021 brought together Greater New Haven’s community to raise an impressive $3.35 million online for a record number of 431 local nonprofits.

The Great Give® is Greater New Haven’s annual 36-hour online giving event created in 2010 by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven to increase philanthropy in the Greater New Haven region of South Central Connecticut. By 8:00 p.m. on May 5, $3,350,721 was raised by 14,621 donors giving to organizations of all sizes serving residents across the region; the website thegreatgive.org accepted donations through the end of day on May 7.

View the final totals and leaderboard.

Spanish Community of Wallingford Cinco de Mayo
Spanish Community of Wallingford incorporated Cinco de Mayo celebrations with their fundraising. The organization received a match sponsorship from the Progreso Latino Fund. Contributed photo.

“The Greater New Haven community has once again demonstrated tremendous generosity in a time when it is needed most. The results are a testament to how highly we value the good work of our local nonprofits and all they have done this past year for our community as it has dealt with the impacts of COVID. To the thousands of donors and hundreds of nonprofits who participated, we thank you and offer a profound appreciation for all you did to make The Great Give a success,” says William W. Ginsberg, president and CEO of The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.

“The giving spirit is strong in Greater New Haven and is so needed at this critical time as we build toward the future,” says Honorable Flemming L. Norcott, retired Connecticut Supreme Court Justice and Chair of The Community Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Support for youth-serving organizations was strong, providing a needed boost as summer programs are ramping up and have the added cost of new pandemic-related guidelines.

The Boys and Girls of Club of New Haven placed at the top of the leaderboard, raising $100,773 with the help of an active peer-to-peer fundraiser network and matching funds offered by generous donors. The success marks a dramatic turnaround for the 150-year old chapter, which was at risk of closing in late 2019. Heading into this summer, the club has packed its schedule with programming both on-site and through partnerships with other youth-serving nonprofits across the area.

“Everyone recognizes we are back on our feet,” said Interim Executive Director Barbara Chesler. I am so thrilled for our club and for our children and families that we get to serve this summer.”

Other top-raising youth-serving organizations included Leadership Education and Athletics in Partnership ($40,750), Solar Youth ($38,469), and Boys & Girls Club of the Lower Naugatuck Valley ($52,212).

Shaye Roscoe, Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of the Lower Naugatuck Valley, said the funds would allow the club to better meet the COVID-related cost increases to their summer and workforce programming.

“I’m really humbled. People are taking time out of their days to invest in a great cause. It is very telling about the community we live in. The Valley does rally behind the organizations in our community,” said Roscoe.

Youth Continuum, which serves youth who are homeless and in crisis, secured a match sponsorship from H. Pearce Real Estate and rallied to raise $46,550 from 66 donors, the majority which were new to the organization, according to CEO Paul Kosowsky.

“These funds will allow us to go the extra mile for the young people we serve. The new relationships we’ve built will continue to advance the organization for years to come,” Kosowsky said.

While 2021’s total was slightly below the $3.5 million raised in 2020, a record number of nonprofits received donations and the results allayed fears that last year’s overwhelming success (doubling the 2019 total) would not be repeated.

“I didn’t think the momentum would last. The pandemic has continued, the economy is still sluggish, and our community is still hurting . . . It’s good to know you’ve still got our back, New Haven. Thank you,” Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen Executive Director Steve Werlin wrote supporters after the organization raised $54,359, far exceeding its $25,000 goal.

A total of $237,700 in matching funds and prizes were available for donors to unlock for their favorite nonprofits. The Community Foundation provided a $100,000 matching funds pool; for every gift received during The Great Give® 2021, participating nonprofits got an additional pro-rated portion of the pool. The Valley Community Foundation provided a $20,000 matching pool to gifts made by Valley donors and the Progreso Latino Fund offered a $10,000 match pool to selected Latino serving organizations.

Other sponsors included: Griswold Home Care, providing a matching pool of $20,000 to inspire giving to organizations that serve Greater New Haven’s elder population; NewAlliance Foundation with a $10,000 match for organizations supporting literacy; the Bank of America Charitable Foundation with a $10,000 match to inspire giving to visual and performing arts organizations.

Two returning prize sponsors, the Guilford Foundation and Branford Community Foundation also offered match incentives for participating organizations based in Guilford and Branford that received donations from residents of the two towns.

The 2021 event officially kicked off at 8:00 a.m. on May 4 and ran through 8:00 p.m. on May 5; advance giving opened on April 23 to further aid nonprofits in this unprecedented time.

Several arts nonprofits hosted events and shared works to inspire giving. Neighborhood Music School live-streamed a jazz concert featuring two members who perform with the Tonight Show’s house band, The Roots. New Haven Ballet distributed a recent performance by the company that was filmed in the studio and Artspace shared visual art pieces by local artists.

Hourly prizes kept the momentum going over the 36-hour event, as well as seven prize awards ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 in a category called You’ve Got Friends, designed to support individual donor efforts to attract gifts for their favorite nonprofits. This peer-to-peer fundraising paid off for many participating nonprofits, including two of the category prize winners Hamden’s Best Video Film and Cultural Center, which also attracted the top number of donors overall at 520.

Gifts totaling $12,751 to The Community Foundation were directed by The Foundation to the Greater New Haven COVID-19 Community Fund. The COVID-19 Community Fund was created from a partnership between The Community Foundation and United Way of Greater New Haven in March 2020 and has distributed $4.4 million to area nonprofits since it was established.

View the Full List of Prizes

The Great Give® 2021 Prize Winners

$1000 Early Bird, May 4: Apple Pi Robotics/CT 4-H Foundation, FIRST Team 2067

$1000 Early Bird, May 4: Jewish Family Service of Greater New Haven

$1000 Early Bird, May 4: CitySeed

$1000 Early Bird, May 4: Nu Haven Kapelye

$1000 *Valley Early Bird, May 4: St. Mary-St. Michael School

$ 500 *Golden Ticket: St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Shop & Food Bank

$ 500 Golden Ticket: ACES Education Foundation

$ 500 Golden Ticket: Read to Grow

$ 500 Golden Ticket: Christian Community Action

$ 500 Golden Ticket: Sankofa Learning Center

$500 Golden Ticket: All Our Kin

$1000 Lunch Hour Double Draw: Ulbrich Boys & Girls Club

$1000 Lunch Hour Double Draw: Mary Wade Home

$1,500 May the Fourth: Eli Whitney Museum & Workshop

$1,500 May the Fourth: Shubert Theatre

$1,500 *Valley May the Fourth: Valley Independent Sentinel

$ 500 Midnight Snack: Calvin Hill Day Care Center

$1000 Insomnia Prize: New Haven Preservation Trust

$1000 Early Bird, May 5: Branford Early Learning Center Inc.

$1000 Early Bird, May 5: Gaylord Hospital

$1000 Early Bird, May 5: America VetDogs – The Veteran’s K-9 Corps.

$1000 Early Bird, May 5: Yoga4Change

$1000 *Valley Early Bird, May 5: Friends of the Ansonia Nature Center

$1500 Lunch Hour, May 5: Hannah Gray Home

$1500 Lunch Hour, May 5: Cornell Scott-Hill Health Center

$ 250 *Valley Lunch Hour: Derby Historical Society

$ 2000 Last Call: Pantochino Productions

$ 1000 Last Call: Fix and Feed North Haven

$5000 You’ve Got Friends: 1st Best Video & Cultural Center

$4000 You’ve Got Friends: 2nd Greater New Haven Community Chorus

$3000 You’ve Got Friends: 3rd Elm City Internationals

$2000 You’ve Got Friends: 4th New Haven Chorale

$1000 You’ve Got Friends: 5th Havenly Treats

$1500 *You’ve Got Friends: Valley 1st Center Stage

$1000 *You’ve Got Friends: Valley 2nd Adam’s House

$500 Branford Community Foundation: James Blackstone Memorial Library

$500 Branford Community Foundation: Community Dining Room

$500 Guilford Foundation: Women & Family Life Center

$500 Guilford Foundation: Guilford Center for Children

*Prizes awarded by the Valley Community Foundation or to Valley-serving organizations; for more read the Valley Community Foundation’s release at valleyfoundation.org.

About The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in Connecticut is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the U.S. and was established in 1928 as the permanent charitable endowment for New Haven and its surrounding communities of Ansonia, Bethany, Branford, Cheshire, Derby, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Milford, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Oxford, Seymour, Shelton, Wallingford, West Haven, and Woodbridge. In 2020, The Foundation began implementing a 5-year strategic plan and enacted new mission and vision statements toward expanding opportunity and equity in Greater New Haven. Its mission is to inspire, support, inform, listen to and collaborate with the people and organizations of Greater New Haven to build an ever more connected, inclusive, equitable, and philanthropic community.

For more than three generations, generous local donors have built The Community Foundation’s endowment by establishing permanent funds or making gifts to existing funds that distribute grants to a broad variety of issues and organizations. These donors, past and present, make their gifts to ensure that programs and causes that matter most to them will be supported today and forever. As of December 31, 2020, The Foundation’s assets were valued at more than $720 million. Visit cfgnh.org or follow The Foundation on Facebook and Twitter @cfgnh.