New things in store for this year's Give Local York

Anthony Maenza
York Dispatch

New things are happening with the largest day of giving for York County’s nonprofit community. 

Give Local York returns Thursday night with a record 328 nonprofit organizations participating. 

Last year, more than 11,000 donors came together to raise a record $4.17 million for just under 300 local organizations.

Give Local York's Give Day coordinator Kate Harmon said the goal this year is to get 12,000 donors. 

Among the record number of nonprofits participating in 2023 are more than 40 that are either brand new or new to Give Local York. 

“It’s really exciting that in our sixth year we have this many new people coming to be a part the efforts that we’re doing for the whole county,” she said. 

New time frame: The biggest change for the 24-hour event, Harmon said, is the start and finish times, going from the previous midnight-to-midnight time frame to a 9 p.m. to 9 p.m. time frame for the first time. 

“We are going to be starting on Thursday at 9 and going until Friday at 9,” Harmon said. “Staying up from 12 to 12 was a fun gimmick, but a lot of people weren’t staying up that long. 

Give Local York logo

She said most people would go to bed and get up the next morning to see how things turned out. 

“This also becomes a way for us to engage our nonprofits into two days of activities,” Harmon said. “So, a lot of them will be doing things on Thursday and then also on Friday. That’s really great for them.” 

The new timeframe is also a way to make the event a little more friendly toward those who have children and work. 

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“I’m not a parent, but I couldn’t imagine being a parent and running a Give Local campaign,” Harmon said. “They would stay up until 2 a.m. to win prizes and then go to bed and then get up, deal with their kids, take them to school, go to work and then still stay up until midnight. So, this new model is going to be really great for everybody.” 

Give Local York on First Friday in downtown York City, Friday, May 7, 2021. Dawn J. Sagert photo

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Something else new for the nonprofits participating this year is the way Stretch Pool funds will be distributed. Stretch Pool funds are pre-collected funds that are distributed to all the nonprofits participating. Harmon said this year’s funds total $250,000. 

“The Stretch Pool used to be allocated based on the amount of dollars that you raised,” Harmon said. “Now, it is going to be based on the number of unique donors you have. For us, it’s really putting our actual money where our mouth is because we have always said that every donation matters, whether you can give the minimum of $5 or write a check for $10,000. Your donation matters the same to these nonprofits.” 

The amount received will be proportional to each organization’s number of unique donors during the event. For example, if an organization has 2% of the total donors during Give Local York, they will receive 2% of the available bonus funds. 

“We’re really excited for that change as well. We think it’s going to make things more equitable. Over half of our nonprofits are extra small to small, so it gives them a little more umph to compete against the big guys,” Harmon said. 

Numerous events will be conducted by the participating nonprofits during the Day of Giving.  

“We always say that we want Give Local York to be so big and in your face that you’re annoyed hearing about us,” Harmon said. 

Give Local York will take over First Friday on May 5, which will be loaded with entertainment and fun. As part of its Give Local York campaign, the Downtown Inc team will be distributing white roses to the community in Continental Square, beginning at 7:30 a.m. 

There will be nonprofits on the square and on Beaver Street, as well as at WellSpan Park as the York Revolution prepare for Friday's home opener. Give Local York will be giving out yellow fanny packs to the first 1,000 fans going to the Revs game.

Harmon said there will be a concert on the square as well.  

Give Local York's Big Give Party from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday in Continental Square will the grand finale to the event.  

Music will be provided throughout the night by Weary Arts Group, including Peter Bottros, Before The End, Scarlet Rose and DJ CSmoke. 

Give Local board member (and performer) Britney Walker will hop on stage Friday to announce the final totals for the evening. 

Events countywide: Events are happening around the county as well, Harmon said, like a block party in Stewartstown from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, and the Give Local York Party for the River at John Wright Restaurant in Wrightsville from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, featuring eight local organizations that protect and care for York’s streams and rivers.   

A full list of nonprofit events can be found at www.givelocalyork.org and on Give Local York’s Facebook page.  

There also will be several livestreams from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday. Harmon said they will be meeting with 40 nonprofits throughout the day on those livestreams, where they can use the platform to talk about their organizations. 

Donors can visit www.givelocalyork.org to make their gift starting at 9 p.m. Thursday until 9 p.m. Friday. 

“They can give as little as $5,” Harmon said. “Anybody can be philanthropic that day.” 

In the five years since its founding, Give Local York has raised more than $15 million for local nonprofits from more than 20,000 donors.