Dec. 4, 2017Vol. 48, Issue 3

Spirit of Giving

24-Hour Fundraising Campaign Raises Nearly $260,000 from More Than 2,100 Participants

The final results of Chico State’s first 24-hour fundraising blitz are still being tallied, but they include at least 2,100 gifts of $212,867, plus $46,000 in matching gifts for a grand total of $258,867.

“I care about my students!”

“The Wildcat community shaped me into who I am today.”

 “I know the community at Chico State would do anything to help me.”

The reasons were varied and the causes were plenty as students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends rallied together to show how ‘Cats Give Back on Chico State Giving Day. The final results are still being tallied, but this passion and enthusiasm from our Wildcats resulted in nearly 2,100 gifts of $212,867, plus $46,000 in matching gifts for a grand total of $258,867.

Chico State’s first coordinated 24-hour fundraising blitz was a part of the global Giving Tuesday movement that nonprofit organizations annually participate in the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. Chico State’s goal was to unite the entire Wildcat family to support the University’s community and programs.

“Chico State Giving Day is really about uniting our whole community for causes that make a difference in people’s lives,” said Vice President for University Advancement Ahmad Boura. “Big or small, gifts to any area signal that we all care about the education and programs that benefit our North State community.”

Basketball player Jalen McFerren shared this “un-selfie” on social media saying he gave because "Wildcat Family is worth every dime!" (Courtesy photo)

Basketball player Jalen McFerren shared this “un-selfie” on social media saying he gave because "Wildcat Family is worth every dime!" (Courtesy photo)

During the drive, any gift to any area counted toward the University’s Giving Day totals. In addition to featured funds from all seven colleges, athletics, and the Chico Cares campaign, donors had more than 50 specially created Giving Day projects to choose from, as well as all of the existing designations. By the end of the day, supporters had contributed to nearly 100 areas on campus.

A number of funds surpassed their goals, including Chico Cares, which began campaigning earlier this semester in an effort to eradicate food and housing insecurity at Chico State. The program raised more than $56,000, including a $5,000 gift from a 98-year-old alumna who wanted to pay forward the assistance she received as a student during the recovery from the Great Depression.

The Promoting Achievement Through Hope (PATH) Scholars fund also exceeded its goal of $5,000 to ensure that students who are current and former foster youth and unaccompanied minors thrive, rather than just survive, during their college experience. The program raised $6,320, which will help it expand beyond academic support to provide emergency funds and social and cultural events for the students. Marina Fox, the PATH Scholars program coordinator, said the success, fueled by a generous $5,000 donation, was incredible.

“To get that amount, we were ecstatic! Our grant funding just ended, which meant we were doing a lot of searching for funds for our social activities,” said Fox, noting some of the funds will go to social activities for students who often feel lonely and isolated during breaks from school. “Typically, we do a holiday party for our students, and we didn’t have any money for that this year. Weren’t sure what we’re going to do, but now we’ll be able bring everyone together.”

For many departments and organizations, this first foray into crowdfunding was an experiment in the unknown, and it was difficult to determine an achievable goal target. But even funds that did not quite meet their goal experienced great success. Thanks to nearly 450 supporters and matching gifts, the Athletics department earned $73,054 for its 13 teams. Though short of its $85,000 goal, the amount raised will go a long way in meeting the teams’ greatest needs including scholarships, equipment, travel, and more, said Sports Information Director Luke Reid.

“Scrolling through the donors and seeing the names of current and former student-athletes, their families, friends, coaches, staff, and fans, and seeing their generosity pour in was pure joy,” Reid said.

“I did a lot of smiling thinking about the past and the future,” he added. “The thing that became abundantly clear for me when the dust began to settle is that our Wildcat family is profoundly real and powerful, and that #CatsGiveBack may have started as a catchy hashtag, but I am very proud to say that it is equally true.”

In the spirit of friendly competition, the student-athletes challenged each other to see which team would come out on top. In the end, men’s soccer beat its $10,000 goal with $13,765 raised to be the top-raising team, though women’s cross country and women’s soccer also beat their $5,000 goals. Women’s golf made an impressive showing on social media, with the whole team posting “un-selfies” with the campaign’s “I gave...” messages stating their personal reasons for giving and coach Heather Fegley winning the Giving Day Social Media Challenge to earn an additional $50 gift for the program.

Members of the Student Philanthropy Council hosted a Chico State Giving Day fair in Trinity Commons that included fundraising organizations tabling for their causes, raffle prizes for donors, food, music, and more.

Members of the Student Philanthropy Council hosted a Chico State Giving Day fair in Trinity Commons that included fundraising organizations tabling for their causes, raffle prizes for donors, food, music, and more.

The second challenge winner, senior Maritza Mora, who gave to the Multicultural and Gender Studies (MCGS) “Change the World Award,” shared that she gave because “these students do so much at Chico State, they will go on and do more great things as graduates!” Since MCGS reached its goal, Mora elected to have her donation prize applied to the Hungry Wildcat Food Pantry.

Mora and Fegley also received gift cards to the Wildcat Store to celebrate their Wildcat spirit.

The Meriam Library team was the challenge’s runners-up for its funny, creative, and engaging social media posts championing their crusade to provide coffee and snacks to studying students. It also earned a $50 gift to its program.

In addition to the day’s online activity, the Student Philanthropy Council (SPC) hosted a Chico State Giving Day fair in Trinity Commons featuring fundraising organizations tabling for their causes, raffle prizes for donors, food, music, and more. A large poster boasted the real-time number of donors and dollars raised, regularly updated by SPC members. And enthusiastic volunteers from the Community Legal Information Center to the AS Gender and Sexuality Equity Center and other campus organizations were happy to share with passing students reasons to support their causes.

While Chico State Giving Day may be over for 2017, the chance to participate continues. The Giving Day website will remain open through the end of the year, so donors can still make a gift to the cause of their choice. Final Giving Day tallies will also be posted on the website as they become available. 

Troy Jollimore, Philosophy, had his article, published in the text Melville Among the Philosophers.

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Troy Jollimore, Philosophy, had his article, “‘In Voiceless Visagelessness’: The Disenchanted Landscape of Clarel,” published in the text Melville Among the Philosophers. Read more.

A delegation from the Office of the Prime Minister and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan.

Cultivating Cultural Connections: ‘Walk in US, Talk on Japan’

Chico State’s international students were visited by a delegation from the Office of the Prime Minister and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Read more.