by Hilary Zunin
Does lightning ever strike twice? Can the eager debut of a grand idea be sustained in its second year? Will it spark community involvement in 2014 for local nonprofits worthy of your support?
Coming November 1 to a mailbox and website near you, a “portal to the possible.” It’s the 2014 Napa Valley Give!Guide.
A project of Napa Valley CanDo, last year’s debut edition of the Napa Valley Give!Guide started with a bang. From November 1-December 31, generous valley residents donated over $106,000 to 40 fabulous nonprofit organizations, all serving Napa County. The “Fab 40” represented seven categories of service: Animals, arts and culture, community, education, environment, health and wellness, and youth and seniors. A new set of 40 nonprofits is featured in the 2014 edition. They include both organizations whose names are household words and small groups doing big things with whom you may not yet be familiar. Half of the nonprofits in this year’s Give!Guide are participating for the first time.
This novel approach to community funding invites locals to donate to one or more stellar nonprofits. Donations begin at $10 and donors may choose to give to one or more groups in varying amounts. Volunteer Olivia Ervin says “We like to put it this way: You make a choice; you make a difference; the Give!Guide makes it easy.”
The concept consists of two parts: A catalog featuring the 40 nonprofits is distributed as an insert in the November issue of Marketplace Magazine. At the same time, a user-friendly website, in English and Spanish, includes more information, daily incentives, and a real-time ticker showing how much has been donated to each nonprofit. Beginning November 1, visitors to NapaValleyGiveGuide.org may give to one or many organizations with a single click. For those who prefer to write a check, forms are provided to help ease the selection process. Napa Valley CanDo takes no fee for this project. It’s a labor of love.
Nadia Valenzuela is involved with the Give!Guide for the second year. She and a handful of dynamic volunteers came to the project last year from Leadership Napa Valley. “Our practicum group decided to work with CanDo to bring this exciting project to fruition. Along with the fact that all the funds stay in Napa County, we liked the respect the process demonstrates for each donor. With some other charitable groups, a central authority decides where to put your donations. The Give!Guide allows each donor to choose exactly where he or she wants their tax-deductible donation to go.
Who is the audience for CanDo’s Give!Guide? “The Guide! is for everyone,” says Hilary Zunin, co-founder of CanDo and a Give!Guide volunteer. “If you care about the Napa Valley, you’re in the right place: Young people, new donors, folks who’ve never thought of themselves as philanthropists. People who already pledge support with money and time but appreciate that the Give!Guide eases the path from intent to action. Visitors who take away memories and want to leave a little something by way of thanks.”
Along with the concerted efforts of the 40 nonprofits and CanDo volunteers, community partners make it all possible. The Gasser Foundation, Terra Firma, Leadership Napa Valley, Thrive Napa Valley and Napa Valley Marketplace Magazine all provide financial support. Individuals and businesses throughout the Valley offer incentives each day to encourage donors to make that gift: A massage, a dinner for two, a sparkling necklace. Incentives are noted daily on the Give!Guide website and Facebook pages.
The Napa Valley Vintners do as well, by generously sponsoring the CanDo Spirit Award, a $1000 prize to an exceptional young employee committed to the nonprofit sector. In 2014, Ms. Sarahid Rivera Vazquez of Legal Aid Napa Valley, is that worthy individual.
“The rewards in working at a nonprofit are always rewards for the heart, never the wallet,” says Vazquez. And yet the CanDo Spirit is alive and well in her dedication, “I want to continue to be part of change in my community, one family at a time.” Vazquez will be honored at the 2014 Give!Guide’s Kickoff Celebration , open to the public, on November 6 at the Paul Ash Lobby of the Napa Valley College Performing Arts building. See NapaValleyGiveGuide.org for details.
Look for your copy of the 2014 Napa Valley Give!Guide the November issue of Marketplace. Let’s see if, with your generous support, lightning can strike twice.
List of 40 Nonprofits:
Sunrise Horse Rescue
Wildlife Rescue Center
of Napa County
ARTS & CULTURE
Napa Valley Youth Symphony
Church Women United Clothing Center
Habitat for Humanity
Legal Aid of Napa Valley
Napa Valley Community Housing
Puertas Abiertas Community Resource Center
UpValley Family Centers
Girls on the Run Napa Valley
If Given A Chance
Moving Forward Towards Independence
Napa Valley Adult Education
Napa Valley College Child
Napa Valley Education Foundation
Teacher Resource Center
of the North Bay
Napa County Resource Conservation District
HEALTH & WELLNESS
of Napa Valley
Cope Family Center
of Napa Valley
Napa Emergency Women’s Services
Napa Valley Hospice
& Adult Day Services
The Pathway Home
YOUTH & SENIORS
Active 20-30 Club of Napa
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the North Bay
Boys & Girls Clubs of Napa Valley
Enchanted Hills Camp for the Blind
Foster Kids Fund
Girl Scouts – Up Valley
A Voice for Children
Rianda House Senior Activity Center