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‘Bmore Gives More’ surpasses goal in second year

Baltimore-based Give Corps and its partners are calling their second annual Giving Tuesday a success.

Through the “Bmore Gives More” campaign, the organization said it helped raise $5,705,859 throughout the day on Tuesday, as well as recording about 1,100 volunteer hours.

They even got a piano. “That was one of the fun things that came out of yesterday,” said Give Corps founder and President Jamie McDonald.

Give Corps had 300 nonprofits listed on its site. Of those, 158 raised funds through the site and another 80 raised funds directly, said McDonald. The figure Give Corps reported reflects donations made through its own side and direct donations reported by the nonprofits.

The majority of the donations came from within the city, with scattered amounts from surrounding communities.

Give Corps did not track all donations made in the Baltimore metro area, but had set a goal of $5 million for its own reporting partners. It passed the $4 million mark Tuesday night, and as reports continued to come in overnight, the donations well surpassed the goal.

The average donation was $206, but the median was $25.

“We are sort of about the everyday giver,” said McDonald. “We really emphasized that it was about more than the dollars.”

Although this was the second year for Giving Tuesday, it was the first with a real, organized effort, said McDonald. Last year’s campaign grew out of a last-minute movement to give to charity following the consumer holidays of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

On Giving Tuesday 2012, the corps raised about $29,000 for 47 nonprofit projects, with a total of 480 donations. But those numbers are likely incomplete, said McDonald, because the effort was not as well planned that year.

This year, Give Corps and its partners began planning in the summer. One of them was The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, which was the top beneficiary of the day, raising about $1,264,000.

“There was such a wonderful emphasis on the city of Baltimore rallying around this day,” said Leslie Pomerantz, senior vice president of The Associated. “I think that was a huge piece of why we were successful.”

Both this year and last, The Associated had a centralized calling center for donors to call in. This year, they also had volunteer solicitors making calls.

Another top performer was the Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter, which tallied the most individual donors on Giving Tuesday. With no marketing budget, BARCS relied on frequent social media pleas and fundraising updates to spread the word.

About 420 donors gave a total of about $32,300 to BARCS. That won the shelter an extra $2,500 courtesy of Give Corps. Its goal for the day was $100,000, but it was quite pleased with what it got.

“We raised the most money in one day that we ever have at the shelter,” said spokesperson Mary Helfrich.