SHELTON — The Housatonic Community College Foundation got an early gift to support its participation in Fairfield County’s Giving Day campaign this year.

Connecticut commercial real estate giant R.D. Scinto Inc. has agreed to fund a $5,000 challenge grant to support students in need.

Giving Day, hosted by Fairfield County’s Community Foundation with sponsored by Bank of America among other groups, is designed to inspire the region to raise money for local nonprofit organizations in 24 hours through online donations.

“We have a longstanding culture of giving back to our community, and that includes creating opportunities for students to expand their horizons through education,” said Rob Scinto, president and COO of R.D. Scinto Inc. “We are committed to helping HCC students succeed and are excited to play a role in encouraging others to do the same.”

The HCC Foundation, which helps low-income, high-achieving Housatonic Community College students seeking a college education, will participate in the one-day campaign on Feb. 27. Funds raised from Giving Day will allow the foundation to continue providing financial assistance, including tuition and textbooks, to financially struggling students.

R.D. Scinto said it would matched, dollar for dollar, any gift up to $5,000.

Scinto is a member of the Housatonic Community College Foundation’s board of directors. He has also annually acknowledged HCC’s top students for their commitment to academic excellence through grant awards.

“We are grateful to R.D. Scinto for this generous gift,” said Kristy Jelenik, executive director of HCCF. “This challenge grant will expand our ability to provide scholarships that often determine whether students will attend college at all.”

Visit on Feb. 27 to make a tax-deductible contribution.