2018 Giving Challenge

Reflecting on a Bright Giving Challenge

Posted on June 11, 2018 by Debra Jacobs, president and CEO of The Patterson Foundation


In a region renowned the world over for a wide range of arts and culture, natural beauty, and low taxes, our nonprofit community is one of our greatest assets. Spanning a diverse range of passions and focus areas, each organization’s work is invaluable in the creation of a vibrant future for Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties. They are truly gems against an already striking backdrop. Still more striking is the glow each of them create when viewed in unison — a living mosaic of our hopes, aspirations, and benevolence. Together the light shines brighter than any one stone possibly could, illuminating all in its vicinity.

The Patterson Foundation knows the power that lies within this mosaic. It’s the inspiration behind six years and more than $16 million of support for The Giving Partner and the Giving Challenge, two assets that enable regional nonprofits to join a resounding, amplified voice to current supporters and those who have yet to learn about their invaluable work.

Throughout that span, the hundreds of nonprofits that have participated in both have built organizational muscle through imaginative planning and joyful execution by engaging their boards, staff, and volunteers. They have implemented the Giving Challenge into their overall development plans while exploring innovative partnerships with collaborators from businesses to other nonprofits. They have strengthened their communications capabilities to connect with current and prospective supporters.

The Giving Partner and the Giving Challenge afford nonprofits an unprecedented opportunity to connect with and grow their donor base — a group that is not limited to the affluent. From the child whose parents ask them which organization deserves their hard-earned allowance, to the donor who researched and ultimately contributed to 87 different organizations during this year’s Giving Challenge, everyone can be a philanthropist. Beyond providing 24 hours for nonprofits to leverage an uncapped amount of matching dollars from The Patterson Foundation, the connections made with each new and existing donor can fuel nonprofit missions into the future.

By providing this uncapped match, The Patterson Foundation’s Governing Board took an informed risk with the understanding that each organization knows best how to use the unrestricted dollars raised and matched during the Giving Challenge. It’s up to each organization to imagine the possibilities inherent in this gift — and I encourage them to dream big when doing so.

Leave a comment

You are commenting as guest.