Southwest Riverside County nonprofits ignite the #ValleyGIVES Movement to encourage spending with a purpose

Courtesy Photo
Courtesy Photo

TEMECULA – Nonprofits from throughout the southwest Riverside County region will participate in the first #ValleyGIVESday event. Nov. 28, on the annual national day of giving known as #GivingTuesday, which focuses on charitable giving after the huge consumer spending days of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The Promenade Temecula will host 25 area nonprofits outside the Regal Cinemas theater Nov. 28. The event will feature nonprofits from throughout southwest Riverside County, live music, food, raffles, activities and the giving spirit.

“#ValleyGIVES is a first of its kind in the local region that will harness the collective power of a unique blend of partners – charities, families, businesses and individuals – from our corner of Riverside County that will transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season,” event organizer Ashlee Collins said. Collins is the communications director for Michelle’s Place Breast Cancer Resource Center. She has been planning to localize the nationwide #GivingTuesday for the past two years.

“Coinciding with the Thanksgiving holiday and the kickoff of the holiday shopping season, #ValleyGIVESday on #GivingTuesday will inspire people to take collaborative action to improve their local communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they support and help create a better world,” Collins said. “#ValleyGIVESday will harness the power of social media to create a local movement around the holidays dedicated to giving, similar to how Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become days that are synonymous with holiday shopping.”

“Our #ValleyGIVESday is a counter narrative to Black Friday and Cyber Monday because it reminds us that the spirit of the holiday giving season should be about community and giving and not just consumerism,” Collins said. “#ValleyGIVES is more than just an online giving movement, we want to bring our local nonprofits out into the spotlight so the community can interact with them and get to know what they have to offer to the community.”

The executives at Michelle’s Place, in conjunction with the Southwest Riverside County Nonprofit Cooperative, recognized an opportunity to channel the generous spirit of the holiday season and to inspire action around charitable giving. As thought leaders in philanthropy, social media and grassroots organizing, these nonprofit organizations explored what is working in modern philanthropy and how to expand these innovations throughout the philanthropic sector in the southwest Riverside County region.

The concept gained steam, and with the help of the city of Temecula, Promenade Temecula, Valley Young Professions and Helping Young Professionals Exceed, local nonprofit organizations have joined the movement and are providing creative ways for the community to embrace #ValleyGIVESday on #GivingTuesday and collaborate in their giving efforts to create more meaningful results.

Participating nonprofits include, but are not limited to: Rancho Damacitas, Safe Alternatives for Everyone, Sale Ranch Sanctuary, Temecula Valley People Helping People, Santa Rosa Plateau Nature Education Foundation, Dorland Mountain Arts Colony, Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley, Hole Hearted, Jacob’s House, Project TOUCH, New Generations Rotary Club, Alzheimer’s Association, Michelle’s Place Breast Cancer Resource Center, Rose Again Foundation, Hospice of the Valleys, Phoenix Patriot Foundation, Boys & Girls Club Southwest County, Our Nicholas Foundation, Animal Friends of the Valleys , the Temecula Education Foundation, Operation Silver Star, Trauma Intervention Programs (TIP), Reality Rally, Assistance League Temecula and Foundation for Senior Care.

Although there are only 25 spots available at the Promenade Mall, the list of participating nonprofits continues to grow and is not limited. Participating nonprofits will have online exposure. Strategic Fundraising Solutions has provided an online app, “GivingByTXT.com,” that allows donors to easily select the nonprofit they wish to support.

“It’s been a privilege to work with remarkable organizations from our region in building this #ValleyGIVESday movement,” Kim Gerrish, executive director of Michelle’s Place and co-founder of the SWRC Nonprofit Cooperative, said. “This initiative will bring some much needed attention to our local nonprofit sector to show the community who we are and what amazing programs are offered for those in need. There are many nonprofits within southwest Riverside County that many people don’t know about. We are hoping #ValleyGIVESday will help change that.”

In the spirit of the “Community Pride” campaign, #ValleyGIVES provides a framework and ideas for people to choose their own best way to contribute to their community. As a way to enhance this monumental giving day, the city of Temecula will formally proclaim Nov. 28, 2017, as #ValleyGIVESday, a day of giving in Temecula. The city of Murrieta will issue a similar proclamation.

For more details about the #ValleyGIVES movement, visit www.thevalleygives.org.

Contact Ashlee and Darren Diess (darrendiess@gmail.com) for any high-value donations that might qualify for the live auction (like the 8-day, 7-night Cabo San Lucas trip)

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