Friday, August 18th, 2017

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Summertime’s the right time for your favorite charitable destinations

 

By SARAH JAQUAY

 

It’s common knowledge that charitable donations spike around the holidays. In fact, the National Center for Charitable Statistics reports that “The Center on Philanthropy (COP) at Indiana University found survey respondents reported giving about 24 percent of their annual total between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. A more recent COP study focused on high-net-worth donors (defined as households with income greater than $200,000 and net worth over $1,000,000) found that 42.7 percent of those surveyed gave more during the holidays than the rest of the year.” A GuideStar Survey yielded a more pronounced conclusion: 50.5 percent of the nonprofit organizations surveyed said they received the majority of their contributions between October and December.

There’s no fighting the seasons, but Currents wants to remind its munificent readership that many Northeast Ohio nonprofits spend a significant portion of their budgets during the summer months. Often these charities deliver services to children and families. Whether it’s summer camps for the differently-abled (Camp Cheerful) or camps committed to ensuring children play and learn in a racially, ethnically and socio-economically diverse environment (Hiram House Camp), YMCA activities or simply offering more outdoor programs during warm-weather months (think Metroparks, Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP), Holden Arboretum and others), donations are welcome any time.

Summertime is also the season for events combining fitness and fundraising.

Charity walks may start in springtime and continue through autumn; but a couple of standout cycling events provide opportunities for Northeast Ohioans to get fit, enjoy summer landscapes and raise money for good causes (think VeloSano, July 21-23, see page ______for more information; and Bike MS: Buckeye Breakaway, August 5-6.) The gift of time is welcome too; legions of volunteers deliver summer services from CVNP volunteers to the flower fanatics who keep the gardens at Sarah Benedict House (home of the Cleveland Restoration Society) and Dunham Tavern looking lush and colorful—Thank you Botanical Garden affiliates and Key Bank!

The CVNP’s next volunteer orientation will be from 6:30p.m. to 8:30p.m. on August 10, 2017. The program will provide prospective volunteers with information about the park’s mission, vision and partners. Attendees will learn about the CVNP’s expectations for volunteers and will gain knowledge and confidence about the park. The program also introduces attendees to more than 100 volunteer positions the park offers. Location will be provided upon registration.

Some area nonprofits host major fundraisers in summer to take advantage of our Great Lake views. The Cleveland Kids in Need Resource Center is no exception. Kids In Need is a local, independent nonprofit that helps ensure every child is prepared to learn by providing free school supplies to teachers of those students most in need. . After all, the chance to watch a blazing sun dip slowly beneath the waves of Lake Erie and support a worthy cause at the same time is why we live, work and play in Northeast Ohio.

So whatever your favorite charitable destinations are, this summer is a good time to re-visit them and ask, “How can I help?”

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