Unique Utah fundraiser highlights one day of giving around the state.
By: on April 15, 2015

Love Utah, Give Utah is on a roll in only its third year of existence. For one day only, nonprofit organizations from all around Utah rally supporters to donate to their favorite charity.  

“Love Utah, Give Utah is a high profile day of giving,” says Nathan Meason, Best Friends Animal Society development officer for strategic partnerships. “With Utah being our home state, it’s important that we’re seen as an active participant in the local non-profit community and a leader in animal welfare.” Through Love Utah, Give Utah, Best Friends raised a total of $25,500, which includes a prize for gaining more supporters than last year.   

Fueling awareness

Nathan points out that Best Friends was able to engage more than 800 supporters during the special giving day, with many of them new to Best Friends.  While increasing awareness is built into the event for all participants, winning is based on the number of donors who contribute, rather than the amount raised. “I spent the day talking to community members, donors, employees and volunteers,” says Nathan. “The camaraderie and excitement the day created can’t be understated.”

Kim McDaniel, Best Friends Animal Society–Utah communications manager was thrilled with the public’s response online. “Best Friends truly has the most enthusiastic, dedicated supporters,” says Kim. “Not only do they give generously from the heart, but they spread joy and get their family and friends involved, too. Since so much of Love Utah, Give Utah happens on social media, we were able to really share back with supporters, and show them the difference their generosity makes in the lives of the animals.”

By sharing stories from the Best Friends Kitten Nursery, the Best Friends Pet Adoption Center, the Sanctuary, and other areas of Best Friends’ work, Kim found the fundraiser to be a catalyst in educating folks on the many ways Best Friends is helping save thousands of animals around the entire state.

For the love of animals

Love Utah, Give Utah,  is a fitting fundraiser for Best Friends. Through the No-Kill Utah (NKUT) initiative, Best Friends is providing collaborative leadership to get more animals out of harm’s way and into safe homes. Led by Best Friends, NKUT brings together passionate individuals, city shelters, and a coalition of animal welfare organizations to end the killing of dogs and cats in shelters throughout the entire state of Utah by the year 2019.

Love Utah, Give Utah was a rousing success, with approximately 500 organizations across the state raising approximately $1.2 million in just one day. Many of the participating nonprofits who already were members of the NKUT Coalition really rocked the promotion — such as Utah FACES, Community Animal Welfare Society (CAWS) and Friends of Animals Utah. Each of these organizations placed in their categories and earned bonus money for their programs.

Even though Best Friends didn’t win the top prize (won by the Humane Society of Utah), Best Friends supporters responded generously. “Besides the nearly $19,500 we raised in one day, we also received a $5,000 award for coming in second place in the large nonprofit category, and a $1,000 prize for having the highest increase in donors over last year,” says Nathan.

“Utah's animals were undoubtedly the big winner this year during Love Utah, Give Utah,” says Kim. “Among all participating NKUT partners, nearly $100,000 was raised for Utah animals in just a single day, which is truly remarkable.” 

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