Center Stage in Shelton raises most money of all nonprofits in Great Give

Center Stage Theatre in Shelton raised the most money in the 2014 Great Give, leading to an incentive gift of $15,000 from the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.

Center Stage raised $27,400 in donations from 279 contributors during the allotted donation period.

In addition, the number of donors from Shelton giving to all participating charities was the second highest of any community. There were 359 people from Shelton that made donations, compared to 1,268 from New Haven and 307 from Hamden (third most), and 243 from Guilford (fourth most).

More than 300 nonprofits participated

The Great Give was a 36-hour online donation event for the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, which includes the Valley Community Foundation (VCF). It took place on May 6 and 7, with more than 300 nonprofit organizations participating.

According to the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, more than $767,000 in gifts and matching funds will be distributed to nonprofits serving greater New Haven thanks to the generosity of thousands of individuals who gave during the Great Give.

Money raised for nonprofits by category indicated a strong community interest in arts and culture organizations ($169,207), followed by nonprofits providing basic needs ($90,674), youth development ($85,735), health ($85,205) and education ($77,439) services.

Matching funds and incentives

As in years past, pro-rated matching funds and special grant prizes offered by the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven for the Great Give were used to encourage donations.

Grand prizes were awarded to the nonprofits in the following categories:

— Raised the most money (Center Stage, $15,000 prize).

— Attracted the most number of donors (Music Haven, $5,000 prize).

— Had the greatest number of new donors (Elm City Internationals, $15,000 prize; Greater New Haven Community Chorus, $5,000 prize; and Elm City ChamberFest, $3,000 prize).

Other incentive prize winners

New this year was a grand prize category for monthly gifts (Solar Youth, $5,000 prize), designed to help organizations keep the donors they attract during this event.

Early bird prizes of $500 were awarded to the first five organizations to raise $1,000. The winners were:

— Ansonia Public Schools, Human Relations Club

— Elm City ChamberFest

— Elm Shakespeare Company

— LEAP (Leadership Education and Athletics in Partnership)

— New Haven Symphony Orchestra

Valley prize winners to be announced

Results of the VCF grand prize winners will be announced on May 15 at a VCF ice cream social; learn more by contacting the VCF at 203-751-9162.

Additional prizes were offered by the VCF, Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Higher One CARES (Community Action for Resources Education and Service).

A list of all prize winners is available at

Part of the local philanthropic landscape

“The Great Give has become a key part of the local philanthropic landscape, creating once again a huge community-wide ‘buzz’ and putting community nonprofit organizations foremost in the local consciousness for an intense 36-hour period,” said William W. Ginsberg, the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven president and CEO.

Ginsberg said the event attracted 5,800 donations, with 32% of donors reporting that they made a gift to an organization for the first time.

The Great Give 2014 was held in conjunction with Give Local America, a national effort to create a community-wide giving day in celebration of 100 years of local philanthropy through the work of community foundations. More than $53 million was raised as a result of Give Local America events occurring across the country.

About the foundation

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven provided about $22 million in grants and distributions in 2013 from an endowment of approximately $430 million. It serves 20 communities, including Shelton.

In addition to its grant-making, the foundation focuses on improving student achievement, reducing New Haven’s infant mortality rate, promoting local philanthropy and encouraging community awareness.

Learn more at