Working Together: Our Inspiring Goal for a Thriving Fairfield County

Feb 19, 2019

by Mike Rosen, Chief Revenue and Business Development Officer
Fairfield County’s Community Foundation
As published in Hearst Connecticut Media Group’s daily newspapers

Consider these words from American poet, educator and civil rights activist, Dr. Maya Angelou: “I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.”

mike rosen Fairfield County's Community foundation

For those in the business world – where it can feel as if there’s never enough time, money or people – it can be easy to relate. It can be daunting to determine how a company can find the time to, in the words of Dr. Angelou, “throw something back.”

The 6th annual Fairfield County’s Giving Day, on Thursday, Feb. 28, offers businesses of all sizes an easy way to make a difference in the lives of people who live and work in the 23 towns and cities that comprise Fairfield County.

Fairfield County’s Giving Day was initiated in 2014 by Fairfield County’s Community Foundation to empower the nonprofit community and provide anyone the ability to participate in local philanthropy. In its first five years, nearly $6 million has been raised for 746 nonprofits. In just 24-hours last year, Fairfield County’s Giving Day raised $1.4 million for 416 nonprofits with 16,593 total gifts from 13,137 individual donors.

Each year, Giving Day provides an opportunity for many other nonprofits to join in the momentum and challenge their donors, new and old, to give as little as $10 to make a difference in the Fairfield County community. We’re thrilled to share that 430 local nonprofits have registered to participate in Giving Day 2019 and we’re asking you to help us also break a giving record!

Business support Giving Day because giving back to local communities is good business. According to Double the Donation, corporations gave $17.8 billion to charities last year, while 65 percent of Fortune 500 companies offered matching gift programs, essentially doubling the contributions their employees are giving to eligible nonprofits. Today’s employees want to find meaning, purpose and a sense of belonging at work. And consumers are rewarding philanthropically-minded businesses with 55 percent of customers willing to pay more for products from socially responsible companies.

Companies that provide giving and volunteering opportunities can play a key role in supporting the impact of nonprofit organizations. A recent story from Benevity states, “45 percent of first-time donors get involved through a specific giving opportunity or campaign, helping them make the leap from ambition to action.” Fairfield County’s Giving Day is one of those vital moments.

Fairfield County’s Giving Day is made possible through generous contributions from locally based businesses and individuals. In 2019, area businesses have provided more than $100,000 in cash prizes for local nonprofits, ranging from $1,000 to $20,000.

Fairfield County’s Community Foundation is proud to partner with champion sponsor, Bank of America, for the sixth year in a row. Additional sponsors include Newman’s Own Foundation; Stop & Shop; The Jeniam Foundation; Neuberger Berman; Webster Private Bank; Day Pitney; First County Bank, Insperity and The Klein Memorial Auditorium. We’re also fortunate to have the support of an array of local media organizations, including Giving Day’s Media Partner, Hearst Connecticut Media Group, along with Moffly Media, Star 99.9 and 95.9 the Fox, Hamlet Hub, Barrett Outdoor, and News12 Connecticut.

Fairfield County’s Giving Day is a day of hope for nonprofits throughout our region. Collectively we can continue to change the lives of our neighbors and our community. The need is greater than ever before, and the financial resources available to our nonprofit partners are fragile. As we approach Giving Day 2019 on February 28th, we ask all of our neighbors across Fairfield County and their friends, colleagues and families to give generously from the heart.

Learn more and donate at