Give charity a chance
By fraser nelson
and devin thorpe
Utah is the most charitable state in the nation, by far. Utahns give on average 10.6 percent of their income to charity and consistently are number one in hours of volunteer service. While much of that goes to faith organizations, it creates a culture of giving. We are the youngest state, among the most "wired" and are heavy users of social media.
On March 22, Utahns will be called upon to give to their favorite local nonprofit as part of the Love UT Give UT campaign organized by the Community Foundation of Utah. Some of Utah's largest employers, including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, UBS, Mountain America Credit Union and many others have signed on as sponsors.
In addition, nearly 400 Utah nonprofits have signed up to participate. This means that all Utahns can find a cause from among that group from AAA Fair Credit Foundation to the Utah Zoological Society that they are eager to support.
Minnesota, with twice the population of Utah, holds the record for single-day, community-wide fundraising campaigns, having raised $16.3 million in November 2012. While Utahns may not eclipse that mark, we are confident they will rally around this event to help our nonprofit community raise more in a single day from more people than we've ever seen in this state.
Those wishing to explore the list of participating nonprofits can visit loveutgiveut.org at any time before March 22.
Many of the state's universities are participating, including several programs at the University of Utah, Southern Utah University, Weber State University and Utah State University.
This is a great opportunity for donors to leverage their donations; many of the nonprofits have committed more than $200,000 worth of matching grants. Those that have can be found on the website. There will also be cash prizes for the nonprofits that attract the highest number of donors.
As Utah attracts new companies, we are hearing that they want an easy way to express their commitment to the community without dictating to their employees where they should give. In all these ways Love UT Give UT makes particular sense for Utah.
Fraser Nelson is executive director of the Community Foundation of Utah. Devin Thorpe speaks and writes about social entrepreneurship, philanthropy and finance.