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Friday, November 14, 2014

Chamber asks businesses to help nonprofits on Day of Giving

By Jerry Wolffe, The Macomb Daily
POSTED: 11/14/14, 2:39 PM EST |
The Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce & Industry has reached out to hundreds of businesses to make the National Day of Giving one that will help nonprofits throughout Macomb and Oakland counties.
The chamber sent emails to its 1,400 members, asking them to give gifts directly to nonprofits in celebration of Dec. 2, the “National Day of Giving,” said William Griffith, manager of the chamber’s Business Reliance Groups (BRAG).
Each nonprofit gets to list “five of its greatest needs” they would like to be fulfilled by chamber members, he said.
Nonprofits are to put their needs in written form, or a wish list, and hopefully send them to the chamber by Nov. 21, he said. Each nonprofit is to give contact information such as a name of a person and a telephone number that a business can contact to find out what a nonprofit desires.
“We will then send the responses to the businesses,” Griffith said. The businesses will buy what the nonprofits request and then arrange to deliver the gifts to the nonprofits.
Some of the nonprofits to be helped among the 70 include Kiwanis Clubs, MCREST, an association of churches that open its doors to give shelter to the needy; Shelby Community Foundation of Shelby Township which channels donations to needy businesses and families; the Macomb-Oakland Regional Center, Inc., of Clinton Township which provides services to those with disabilities and mental illness; Trinity Community Care of Shelby Township, a human services organization, and Families Against Narcotics of Macomb and Oakland counties, Griffith said in naming a few of the nonprofits.
The chamber met with a focus group of nonprofits in mid-November to figure out the details of how the businesses could help the nonprofits on the National Day of Giving, Griffith said.
“As many local businesses are looking for ways to give back during the holidays, this initiative will help to raise awareness of the many nonprofits in the area and their most critical needs to make the giving process easier,” said Lindsay Calcatera, MORC’s Manager, Development and Communication.
Griffith said it was fine if there were duplicate requests from nonprofits for the same item because “nonprofits have needs and we’re helping to fulfill them.”
“Companies can donate whatever they want,” he added. “They can even go to their employees and take up a collection for some of the requests so we really can make it a day of giving.”
Jerry Wolffe is the writer-in-residence, advocate-at-large at the Macomb-Oakland Regional Center. He can be reached at 586-263-8950.

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