In August of 2019 members of Business Roundtable, an association of chief executive officers representing America’s largest companies, adopted a new Statement on the Purpose of a Corporation for the first time in 22-years.
Rather than defining a corporation’s principal purpose as maximizing shareholder return, the new statement declared “that companies should serve not only their shareholders, but also deliver value to their customers, invest in employees, deal fairly with suppliers and support the communities in which they operate.”
Right here in Fairfield County our local business community, which includes a variety of companies represented in the Business Roundtable, including Bank of America, has lived up to this new promise and risen to the challenge to help alleviate the extraordinary needs of so many people — needs that continue to be magnified by the ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 8th annual Fairfield County’s Giving Day on Thursday, February 25th, powered by Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, offers businesses of all sizes and any individual 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.
Now more than ever, nonprofits need the support of our local business community to help spread awareness and to encourage those who can give to “give where you live.” As we continue to deal with the existing and ongoing impacts of the pandemic, Fairfield County’s Giving Day, which begins at midnight on Thursday, February 25th and ends at 11:59pm, may be more important than ever.
In 2020, Fairfield County’s Giving Day took place just two weeks prior to state shutdowns due to COVID-19. The nearly $1.7 million that was raised during those 24-hours of online giving for nearly 400 local nonprofits served as a lifeline for many organizations, giving them time to adapt plans and helping to sustain them financially as traditional fundraising events were canceled.
Last year, the top five categories by dollars raised on Giving Day were Education, Youth, Arts & Culture, Health & Wellness, and Community Advocacy with participating nonprofit organizations serving every town in Fairfield County. Since Giving Day was established in 2014 by Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, over $9.3 million has been raised for more than 1,550 local nonprofits serving a wide array of program service areas. More than 97,000 individual donations have been made on Giving Day in its first seven years.
An array of corporate partners and individuals have already joined forces to help meet the urgent needs of nonprofits on Giving Day, contributing bonus prize pool monies of $140,000, an increase of 40% vs. last year. Business partners are also leveraging a new Business Fundraiser option and tools to engage their employees in support of Giving Day. Engage your company at FCGives.org.
Fairfield County’s Community Foundation (FCCF) is proud to partner with Giving Day Champion Sponsor, Bank of America, for the eighth year in a row. Bank of America holds a commitment to supporting economic mobility in our communities, and this past year has underscored the importance of partnership. Giving Day works to sustain our nonprofits who not only provide critical assistance to achieve this, but who also contribute to the vibrancy of our communities.
Additional support comes from County Sponsor Hearst Connecticut Media Group; Neighborhood Sponsors Altice, Back to You Fund at FCCF, Barbara Denton Davis Fund at FCCF, and Haddad & Partners; Power Hour Sponsors Bridgewater, Bridgeport Sound Tigers, The Jeniam Foundation, Target OnStar, The Fund for Women & Girls at FCCF; Gellar-Conarck Memorial Fund at FCCF, Herb B. West Award Fund at FCCF, and the Immigrant Success Fund; and Town Square Sponsors Albourne Partners, Band Central Fund at FCCF, Bridgeport Regional Business Council, Greater Norwalk Chamber of Commerce, Webster Bank, and Yale New Haven Health / Bridgeport Hospital Foundation.
We are also grateful to our Premiere Regional Magazine Sponsor, Moffly Media, and our Media Partners from Connoisseur Media and 95.9 The Fox, STAR 99.9, WEBE108, and WICC600.
Fairfield County’s Giving Day is a day of hope for nonprofits throughout our region. Collectively we can continue to improve 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 on February 25th, we ask all of our neighbors across Fairfield County and their friends, colleagues and families to give generously from the heart.
We hope you’ll join us on February 25th at FCGives.org to support hundreds of our region’s most vital and valuable nonprofits. We look forward to “seeing” you there!
Juanita T. James is President and CEO of Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. Bill Tommins is Southern Connecticut Market President of Bank of America.