Midland, Give Local for Sven
By Ben Tierney
Look at that cat. Just look at his face. His name is Sven, which means young warrior in the original Old Norse language, which probably makes you want to hold him even more.
You caught me. I'm shamelessly using a photo of a cute cat to get you to read about yet another Midland fundraiser. But this isn't just any cat, and Give Local Midland isn't just any fundraiser. Let's start with the cat.
Midland's SOS Animal Rescue helps cats like Sven find loving homes, and Mr. Sven is currently waiting for one. Seriously, contact SOS now and he is all yours. He's neutered, up-to-date on immunizations, and is super good at cuddling. Update: he just found a home. That's how good SOS is!
SOS Animal Rescue also happens to have an endowment fund held at the Midland Area Community Foundation. Give Local Midland is your community foundation's annual effort to raise funds for SOS and 57 other endowment funds representing 49 nonprofit agencies in Midland County.
We do this through a special website that accepts donations to these funds, automatically adding a percentage of the $65k in matching funds and special prizes on top of your donation. It's called crowdfunding, it's one of the coolest ways to raise money around, and it's happening in Midland for 24 hours on May 5, 2015.
The participating nonprofits impact things like arts & culture, education, health, human services and youth development. Anyone can find a cause to support on May 5th.
What's an endowment fund?
So what is an endowment fund anyway, and why should you donate to one (or more) on May 5th, rather than directly to that organization?
First of all, don't think of your donation to your favorite organization's endowment fund as a replacement for your normal gift (assuming you make a monthly/annual contribution), which helps with current operating expenses. Think of an endowment fund as a 401k for someone who could potentially live forever. Or rather, a nonprofit organization that plans to keep doing good in their community in perpetuity. Agencies that open endowment funds are thinking about their future, and that should make you take notice.
When that endowment fund matures, our favorite nonprofits begin to cash in every year. For ever.
In practical terms, the community foundation invests all endowment funds and nonprofits grant themselves a percentage of the earnings each year, helping to fund their many needs. It eventually becomes a steady source of income that never stops growing. The entire community foundation model is based on this idea. In fact, it's right in our tagline: For good. For ever.
I'll admit that I don't get overly excited about seeing a chunk of my paycheck go to my 401k, but Dave over in finance gets really excited when he starts talking about the power of compound interest, so I figure I should listen up.
May 5th: Give where you live
On Tuesday, May 5th, you have a chance to make a donation that impacts the future of our great community. Your gift will directly impact Midland, grow in Midland, and your community foundation will even boost it via a pool of matching funds, but only if you donate on May 5th at www.givelocalmidland.org.
You can also give via cash or check at the community foundation office on 76 Ashman Circle from 8am - 4pm, or at a special Give Local Midland/Cinco de Mayo event at The H Hotel from 5pm - 7pm.
Please join us in supporting nonprofit endowment funds on May 5th. Donate for Sven, or donate for whatever cause means the most to you. It's a donation that's for good, for ever, and benefits Midland County.