Giving Hearts Day

A youth video contest and sweet deals from a couple of local shops are among ways that eight Minot organizations are working with the community to encourage charitable donations on Giving Hearts Day.

Impact Foundation and Dakota Medical Foundation sponsor the annual, online Giving Hearts Day, which raised $3.6 million for charities in North Dakota and western Minnesota in 2013. The foundations will match donations to local charities of $10 or more made online at (www.impactgiveback.org) on Feb. 13.

As part of participating in the event, each organization separately raises $4,000 in matching funds for its programs. Organizations participating this year from Minot are KALIX, Domestic Violence Crisis Center, Hstfest-Heritage Foundation, Minot Public School Foundation, Trinity Health Foundation, YWCA, Dakota Hope Clinic and Minot Area Council of the Arts.

The Minot organizations also are conducting a contest featuring promotional videos created by area students. Students in grades 6 to 12 were asked to create an up to 60-second video to educate and excite people about Giving Hearts Day. People can go online to the Minot Giving Hearts Day page on Facebook and “like” their favorite video from the five contestants. Prizes are $500 for first place and $150 for second place.

Organizers of the local events say Giving Hearts Day is designed to raise awareness as well as donations for charities. Part of their goal in promoting the event has been to find creative ways to help people understand their charitable missions.

In the Minot community, the participating organizations encompass a variety of services, enabling many different people to be positively impacted by donations, said Sana Keller, representing the YWCA board.

There’s also value to donors in having their contributions matched.

“It allows people to double the value of their money,” she said. “All the money stays locally.”

Each of the organizations will be open that day to accept donations or assist anyone interested in giving online. People may donate in honor or memory of a person.

The Giving Hearts Day project offers incentives for various fundraising achievements by its organizations. Special grants have been awarded in the past in categories such as most creative marketing strategy, donations from the most people, best use of social media and donations from the most North Dakota cities.

“It motivates us to get the word out,” said Terri Aldrich, executive director of the arts council. “It’s a great thing for our community to be promoted in that way and to see the cooperation amongst the organizations. You can see that Minot organizations are working together for the betterment of the community.”

Minot Area Council of the Arts will use donations to support bringing working artists into the schools to educate students.

YWCA used its Giving Hearts Day donations last year for operational expenses for its women’s shelter and will do the same this year.

KALIX is focusing this year on acquiring assistive technology for clients.

Domestic Violence Crisis Center again will put its donations into a building fund.

The Hstfest-Heritage and Trinity Health foundations will add the donations to their foundations to promote various projects, while the Minot Public Schools Foundation is targeting assistance to teachers to fund classroom projects.

Dakota Help Clinic intends to use funds to expand awareness of its pregnancy help and other services.

Event sponsor Impact Foundation is public charity established in 2004 in Fargo. It exists to build the capacity of nonprofits, businesses and individuals to maximize their community impact, according to its website. Impact Foundation has raised about $8.5 million online for more than 510 nonprofits in North Dakota and western Minnesota.