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UW–Madison receives $20 million for Letters & Science building | Philanthropy news



The University of Wisconsin–Madison has announced a $20 million lead gift from brothers and alumni Jeff Levy (’72) and Marv Levy (’68, JD ’71) in support of a new academic building in the College of Letters & Science.

Construction on Irving and Dorothy Levy Hall, named for the parents of Jeff and Marv, is expected to begin in 2023 and be completed in 2025. Once complete, the building will establish a unified home for the Department of History and nine other L&S academic departments, programs, and centers that currently are spread across eight facilities on campus. The five-story building will feature nineteen classrooms as well as a space where students can gather and interact informally with each other and their instructors to maximize collaboration.

The Levy brothers own and operate Phillips Distributing Corporation in Madison. Their commitment was contingent upon the Wisconsin state legislature and governor including the project in the 2021-23 state budget with $60 million in state support, which occurred earlier this year.

“We envision this vital new facility as a highly collaborative and state-of-the-art learning environment for all,” said College of Letters & Science dean Eric Wilcots. “We are immensely grateful to the Levy family for their support of this vision. Our students deserve classroom space that enhances interactive learning and engagement through cutting-edge technology. They also deserve a building that inspires, rather than intimidates. The Levy family’s gift will reverberate through future generations, touching many lives.”

“We are proud to help make this building a reality. We hope it will be a central educational location for the undergraduate experience at UW-Madison,” said Marv Levy. “Our hope is that by honoring our family legacy of charitable giving with this gift, we can offer to future generations some of the opportunity that the UW has provided us.”



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Nearly six in ten Americans prefer a donation in their name to a gift | Philanthropy news



Nearly six in ten (59 percent) Americans say they would rather have a donation made on their behalf to their favorite charity than receive a gift for themselves this year, a report from Fidelity Charitable finds.

Based on a survey of more than fifteen hundred American adults, the report, Year-end charitable giving: A 2021 snapshot of how Americans plan to give (8 pages, PDF), found that 64 percent of respondents said they participate in year-end charitable activities, including giving money (53 percent) or donating goods (46 percent) to charities, donating cash or goods directly to families in need (27 percent), performing random acts of kindness (25 percent), and volunteering (20 percent).

Among respondents who have a minimum of $25,000 in investable assets and donated at least $1,000 to charity in 2020, 35 percent said they plan to give “notably more” in 2021, 57 percent planned to give “about the same,” and 8 percent planned to give “notably less.” Within this group, 87 percent of respondents reported using cash, checks, or credit cards to give, while fewer said they were aware of other giving options and even fewer had ever used options such as donating appreciated assets, including publicly traded securities (55 percent aware, 18 percent used) and privately held or restricted stock (54 percent, 17 percent), making a qualified charitable distribution from an IRA (54 percent, 18 percent), or giving through donor-advised funds (41 percent, 17 percent).

The survey also found that 63 percent of respondents who give said they would “definitely” (31 percent) or “probably” (32 percent) take advantage of a temporary federal law allowing tax deductions for some cash donations even if the taxpayer doesn’t itemize their taxes.

“At such a busy time, it’s easy to put off year-end charitable decisions, but there are advantages to acting early,” said Fidelity Charitable COO Kristen Robinson. “You can maximize your ability to support your favorite causes and your 2021 tax benefits using smart giving strategies. And while we encourage people not to run down the clock for practical reasons, we think it will be particularly meaningful to integrate charitable activity into holiday traditions this year after another challenging year that has reinforced the importance of supporting our communities and each other.”



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Top tips to make your Christmas fundraising campaigns shine!


‘Tis the season of giving and whether it’s snuck up on you this year, or if you’re well underway with your seasonal fundraising, we’re here to help make your appeal a successful one.

As an early Christmas present from us, we wanted to share some examples of interesting Campaigns on JustGiving and simple ideas to maximise your online fundraising this season. We hope these will give you some extra insight and inspiration to help get your campaign noticed and get you ready to hear the jingle of those all-important donations.

1. Choose simple but effective

Campaign: Southwark Foodbank Feed a Family Christmas 2020

Pecan on behalf of Southwark Foodbank made the most of their Campaign Page to encourage both direct donors’ and fundraisers’ support. Sharing stats and insights in both the video embedded on their page and their campaign story, they demonstrate the value of supporters’ donations.

Their big, bold ‘What your donation can do’ image is front and centre of their page, and they follow this with an infographic of great examples of how to fundraise and involve others too.

2. Re-think the Advent Calendar

Campaign: Friends and Families 24/7 Advent Challenge

Reverse advent calendars are growing in popularity and we’re seeing even more charities think outside the [chocolate] box this year. Whilst most reverse advent calendars see supporters set aside money every day of Advent and donate at Christmas, Friends and Families of Special Children did things a little differently last year and encouraged fundraisers to take up activities each day of the month instead.

The example activities would work for all ages and are perfect to get the whole family involved!

3. Remove steps for donors

Campaign: Cross Reach Stand with us this Christmas

Grant your donors their Christmas wish and give them a quick donation journey this year! Add a QR code to your collection bucket at your in-person event, to your printed marketing materials, or add a button to your seasonal newsletter using Giving Checkout.

Create your unique Giving Checkout link, customised QR code and chosen button in your JustGiving account and take donors straight into your tailored donation journey for your festive appeal, and with 0% fees. Cross Reach have already created theirs for their Stand with us this Christmas Appeal.

4. Unite virtually

Campaign: Blue Cross Step into Christmas 25k 2020

Blue Cross, the animal charity encouraged pet lovers to unite together virtually to either walk, jog or run 25km throughout the month of December.

They incentivised their fundraisers by offering a medal to mark their successful completion of the challenge, and an optional extra dog tag medal for any furry friends who took part too!

Challenges like this work perfectly with the JustGiving Strava integration, allowing fundraisers to track their distance covered throughout the month and share updates with their supporters.

5. Bring heart

Campaign: Cosmic Christmas Cracker Appeal

At this time of year social media is saturated and potential supporters are presented with numerous causes to donate to. Adding a personal story and photographs will bring your appeal to life and could resonate with a donor who would have otherwise carried on scrolling.

Adding descriptions of what specific donation amounts could do for your cause adds an even stronger incentive for donors and could encourage a higher donation amount too.

Cosmic did just this for their Christmas Cracker Appeal in 2020 in place of their usual appeal for toys and gifts.

Practical tips for running a successful online appeal at Christmas

If you’d like even more ideas and tips for your seasonal campaign this year, you can re-watch our Christmas 2021: How to run a successful Christmas appeal webinar and hear from Pecan and Blue Cross directly too.



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Helmsley Charitable Trust awards $5.2 million for diabetes self-care | Philanthropy news



The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust has announced a three-year, $5.2 million grant to PATH to increase access to the safe administration of insulin and high-quality self-care for people living with diabetes.

According to the Helmsley Trust, more than 464 million people around the world have diabetes, and the majority of them live in low- and middle-income countries. More than half of people living with diabetes struggle to access the insulin and other medications they need, and an unrecognized segment of this population cannot access the commodities needed to measure their blood glucose or safely administer insulin.

The grant will support expansion of the Diabetes CarePak project, which provides products and consumables along with insulin and oral diabetes medication to people living with diabetes. Already underway in Kenya, the project will expand to Tanzania, Mozambique, and Mali and co-create educational content for people living with diabetes to facilitate their own self-care, as well as associated healthcare worker capacity building strategies and materials. The project will be conducted in partnership with people living with diabetes, healthcare providers, the ministries of health in Tanzania, Mozambique, and Mali, and other key health system stakeholders such as the Coalition for Access to NCD Medicines and Products and Life for a Child.

“As we work to create a sustainable, global movement that supports people living with type 1 diabetes to thrive, regardless of location, PATH is an ideal partner,” said Helmsley Trust Type 1 Diabetes program officer Estefania Palomino. “It is unacceptable that insulin and other lifesaving products necessary to maintain safe levels of blood glucose are unaffordable or inconsistently available in many countries. The innovative Diabetes CarePak project has the potential to drastically reduce or eliminate this disparity for many individuals in need.”

(Photo credit: GettyImages)



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