Giving Day 2023: The Legacy of Generosity Guides the Future

Feb 22, 2023

By Mendi Blue Paca and Bill Tommins

Originally published by Hearst CT Media Group, February 23, 2023.

Ours is a community that cares.

We’re reminded of this sentiment each year as we prepare for Fairfield County’s Giving Day, the 24-hour online giving marathon that is set for Thursday, February 23, 2023.

Mendi Blue Paca, President & CEO of Fairfield County’s Community Foundation

Over the past decade, the community response to Giving Day has been phenomenal, raising nearly $14 million for area nonprofits.

In 2022 alone, over 400 nonprofits raised almost $2.2 million thanks to more than 17,000 gifts by nearly 13,000 individuals and families – with most of those contributions under $100.

Since that very first Giving Day 10 years ago, the partnership among Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, Bank of America and other longtime sponsors such as Moffly Media and CT Hearst Media Group has served as an inspiration and model for how a community foundation and the business community can align behind a shared mission to make a difference.

On February 23, we invite you to help continue our county’s track record of generosity by donating to a local nonprofit of your choice. With a few simple clicks, your online gift can add to a ripple effect of goodwill in our community.

Hosting a Giving Day has many benefits beyond the vitally important fundraising. It helps make philanthropy accessible to everyone and opens the door to learn about and support local nonprofits that are making a difference in our county. We learned some lessons along the way.

Bill Tommins, President of Bank of America Southern Connecticut

We will be applying those lessons in the development of new approaches to help our nonprofit sector, including moving beyond a one-day fundraising event. We envision strategies and initiatives that have potential to amplify impact all-year long and in ways that can benefit the range of nonprofits in our community focused on changing the systems that hinder racial equity – be that education, housing, health care, or income and asset-building.

The tenure of Giving Day, along with other initiatives, has underscored the importance of listening to our community stakeholders – nonprofit partners, business leaders and residents from all parts of our region. Our future efforts will continue to be fueled by these insights as we seek a fuller understanding of the challenges we face as a community and the role we can each play in addressing them.

We’re excited about the direction we are headed and its potential to create a more promising future for everyone who calls Fairfield County home.

When you donate on February 23, we urge you to view it as the beginning of new momentum – a catalyst to an even more engaged, active and equitable community where all of us can thrive.

Together, this one final Giving Day can demonstrate the power of shared commitment that can set us on a path where every day moves our community closer to reaching its full potential.

Mendi Blue Paca is president and CEO of Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. Bill Tommins is president, Bank of America Southern Connecticut.