The Great(est) Give: Over $1.7 Million Raised for Local Nonprofits

The Great Give® 2018 far surpasses previous years, raising over $1.7 million for local nonprofits spanning Greater New Haven and the Valley.

New Haven, Conn. (May 4, 2018) –The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven (The Foundation) is excited to announce the results of The Great Give® 2018, the region's ninth community-wide online fundraising event for nonprofits serving The Foundation's 20-town region. In 36 hours, the community raised over $1.7 million, far surpassing previous years, for Greater New Haven's nonprofits. Nearly 11,000 donors gave to 406 nonprofits, once again proving their commitment to our community.

"The Great Give® 2018 was a triumph, in large part to the tremendous efforts made by the nonprofits to engage our community," said Will Ginsberg, president and CEO of The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, the creator of The Great Give®. "It far eclipsed all our previous giving events by every measure: donors, gifts, nonprofits supported and money raised. Throughout the last several days, it certainly felt as though the community 'buzz' reached new heights."

With $240,000 in matching funds and 63 prizes at stake, nonprofits rallied donors through events held across the region and both long-time nonprofit participants and newcomers came out on top. As in prior years, many prize winners were smaller organizations.

Grand prizes were awarded in tiers to the nonprofits that attracted the greatest number of donors (Music Haven [$15,000], New Haven Land Trust [$7,500], Neighborhood Music School [$5,000], Best Video [$3,000] and Whitney Players [$2,000]) and the greatest number of new donors (Elm City Internationals [$10,000], Elm City Montessori [$5,000], Greater New Haven Community Chorus [$4,000], Booker T. Washington Academy [$2,500] and Solar Youth [$1,500]).

Several new prizes were offered this year including a 90th Anniversary Grand Prize Challenge in recognition of The Foundation's 90th anniversary (Center Stage [$9,000]).

Other new prizes were awarded for the most money raised by an all-volunteer organization (New Haven Chorale [$3,000]), most money raised by an organization with a professional staff size of five or less (Creative Arts Workshop [$3,000]) and most money raised by an organization with a staff size of five or more (Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services [($3,000]).

IRIS raised the most money overall at $61,906 by rallying both long-time supporters and people giving to the organization for the first time.

"They came out in droves," said IRIS Executive Director Chris George. "This is not only money to fuel our programs. It boosts our spirits as well. The fact that a resettlement agency raised more money than any other nonprofit tells refugees that they are welcome here."

Many smaller organizations ended at the top of the leaderboard, having taken advantage of the new platform, GiveGab's peer-to-peer fundraising feature. Elm City Montessori parents set up friendly competitions between classrooms to see which one could raise the most money, a strategy that helped them win a grand prize. Pantochino Productions, a small Milford-based theatre company, also used the peer-to-peer functionality and doubled its fundraising total over last year.

"Our closest friends and supporters were able to rally support," said Bert Bernardi Co-Producer of the Milford theater company. "Everyone who fundraised on our behalf met their fundraising goals."

The Grand prize for the greatest number of Valley donors was split among the Valley Independent Sentinel and St. Mary/St. Michael School. The Grand prize for the greatest number of new Valley donors was awarded to Shelton High School Robotics Team. Both prizes were made possible through sponsorship dollars provided by the Valley Community Foundation.

Prorated matching funds and prizes were provided by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and presenting sponsor the Valley Community Foundation (VCF), along with veteran sponsors Alexion Pharmaceuticals and Liberty Bank Foundation. Garnering new support from community institutions, new sponsors BAD SONS Beer Co., Bank of America Charitable Foundation, Key Bank Foundation, Newtown Savings Bank and Pirie Architects also provided matching incentives and prizes for organizations that inspire them across The Foundation's issue areas. The Foundation also increased The Lillian and Henry Konopacke Fund Matching Pool this year, providing $10,000 in matching funds for local nonprofit animal shelters.


The Great Give® is the annual online giving event through®, a local resource for learning and giving created in 2010 by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven to increase philanthropy in the Greater New Haven region of South Central Connecticut. Since its beginning,® has distributed more than $7.7 Million to local nonprofits as a result of direct contributions on the site and giving day challenges, like The Great Give® 2018. Donors wishing to support their favorite cause or charity can visit® to find information on nonprofits serving Greater New Haven and the Valley, including their mission, governance, programs, financials and community impact. Donors can also stay connected by visiting and following @givegreater on Twitter.

About The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven

Thanks to the generosity of three generations of donors, The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven has awarded over $28.5 million in grants and distributions in 2017. The endowment is valued at more than $620 million and composed of hundreds of individually named funds. In addition to its grantmaking, The Community Foundation helps build a stronger community by taking measures to improve student achievement, create healthy families in New Haven, promote local philanthropy through® and encourage better understanding of the region. The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven's 20 town service area includes: Ansonia, Bethany, Branford, Cheshire, Derby, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Milford, New Haven, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Oxford, Seymour, Shelton, Wallingford, West Haven, Woodbridge. For more information about The Community Foundation, visit, find us on Facebook at or follow us on Twitter at

About the Valley Community Foundation

Established in 2004, the Valley Community Foundation distributes hundreds of thousands of grant dollars each year to support the local nonprofit sector and the people it serves. In addition to grantmaking, VCF works in strong partnership with The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven (TCF), to promote philanthropy in Ansonia, Derby, Oxford, Seymour and Shelton and receives funding from The Gates Fund and other preference funds at TCF.

Media Contact:
Ratasha Smith
Communications Officer