StoriesEvents GivingEveryTuesday

Leading and Learning: Perspectives from the US Community Leaders’ Summit

12 Jun 2018 by GivingTuesday

#GivingTuesday Community Leaders from across the US came together in Dallas on May 22-23 for the second annual Community Leaders’ Summit. The Summit is a new annual convening for the leaders who raise their hands to bring #GivingTuesday to their cities, states and towns. Community campaigns take place across the US from Alaska, to New England, to Florida, to the Southwest. The number of campaigns has grown from just 2 in 2013 to 106 in 2017.

Driving the movement learning

Leaders of #GivingTuesday campaigns come from a wide range of organizations, including community foundations, United Ways, giving groups, and nonprofits. Despite their diverse platforms, they have much in common. They are passionate about their communities, they are motivated by the opportunity to bring people together, they work well across networks, and they are generally low-ego leaders who make their partners feel important. These are the same qualities we see in their global leader counterparts who represent 46 country campaigns across the globe. As a group, the community and global leaders are the “scientists” of the #GivingTuesday generosity learning lab, leading the experimentation and learning that are hallmarks of the movement.

Learning from one another

During the Summit, leaders from more than 60 communities shared best practices, data, case studies and ideas for #GivingTuesday 2018. One of the most exciting aspects of community campaigns is there diversity in approach. Campaigns focus on fundraising, volunteerism, advocacy, celebrating innovation and other goals on #GivingTuesday.

While we will always celebrate nonprofit fundraising on #GivingTuesday, we are proud of the way #GT community leaders embrace the deeper themes of the movement:

  • Working toward a strengthened social sector worldwide
  • Giving together/collective impact
  • The value of all forms of Giving: time, skills, voice, money
  • Local impact. Global movement.
  • Inclusive of all kinds of partners
  • Emphasis on experimentation, creativity and collaboration
  • It’s not a day, it’s a movement

These are just a few examples of the wide-ranging campaigns in communities across the country:

  • In South Carolina, #YorkCountyGives (York County, SC), organized by Hospice & Community Care, led Dine Out, Do Good in 2017. 20 local nonprofits partnered with over 24 restaurants that donated a portion of their profits to the partnering organization.
  • In New Milford, Hypelite leads a campaign to engage high school students and their families in collecting supplies and delivering toiletry kits to local homeless residences and service organizations.
  • In Charlotte, North Carolina, #GivingTuesdayCLT is a collaboration of over 230 Charlotte nonprofits as well as corporations, local businesses, professional sports teams and community organizations working together to rally the Charlotte community around doing good. The campaign raised $7 million for participating nonprofits from 14,000 donors.
  • In Georgia, after several years of hosting a giving day earlier in the year, #GaGives moved to #GivingTuesday. The state came together in an overwhelming show of generosity and community spirit, raising a grand total of $6.8 million for Georgia nonprofits in the state’s first unified #GivingTuesday campaign.
  • In North Port, Florida, WKDW Community Radio opened the doors for community members to share stories on air. The City of North Port proclaimed #GivingTuesday an official day of celebration, and North Port was named the first #KindnessCommunity in the nation. In addition to giving community members and organizations a platform and voice on #GivingTuesday, WKDW rallied 20 nonprofits together to raise more than $20,000.
  • In Amador, California, a county of only 37,000 people in Northern California, the Amador Community Foundation led a campaign to rally the community for their third #GivingTuesday celebration, raising more than $168,000 in 2017.

A special highlight of the Summit was a presentation by #GivingTuesday founder Henry Timms on his book, New Power, which launched this past month. Asha Curran, Chief Innovation Officer of the Belfer Center at 92Y, the home of #GivingTuesday, led an important discussion about the future of #GivingTuesday, seeking ideas from leaders about long-term goals and continued innovation.

Our incredible hosts from the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas not only provided a great venue for the Summit, but also introduced us to their partner, Momentum Café, a social enterprise that is also one of Dallas’ most acclaimed restaurants – it was a dinner that was both delicious and inspiring!

To learn more about leading a community campaign or other ways to get involved in #GivingTuesday, visit our website or email info@givingtuesday.org.

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