A Rising Tide
By Dan Baldwin and Steve John
In uncertain times, we can help chart a path toward prosperity for our community through local philanthropy.
Each year Monterey County Gives! is launched in a unique economic or cultural environment.
Who knew in 2019 that 10 weeks after the close of the campaign we’d all be sheltering in place?
MCGives! 2020 took place in the thick of the pandemic—pre-vaccines—and uncertainty was the prevailing mood. Families and businesses were suffering. Need was all around us. MCGives! donors responded with a record year.
2021 was burnished with hope—including a robust economy and stock market—and new record numbers for MCGives!, which raised $9.7 million from 7,540 donors, reflected it.
This year offers its own dynamics. It feels counterintuitive that while the public health threat has lessened, and we’re much closer to going about our daily lives as though Covid is gone, we’re facing the highest inflation numbers in decades and a sagging stock market. Economic uncertainty abounds. We must acknowledge that Covid is still with us. Even though infection rates are greatly reduced, and vaccines have largely mitigated symptoms for those who get infected, the mental health after-effects on school-children and their families, employers adjusting to hybrid or remote work schedules, and the ever-increasing cost of living are creating lingering anxiety. This stresses our community and the nonprofits whose work it is to improve the lives of residents in Monterey County.
What to do?
Thankfully, Monterey County Gives! is a remarkable antidote. There is no better remedy for...well, anything, than to support the nonprofits bringing critical services to friends and neighbors, and very likely you and your family.
MCGives! has been on an amazing run. It has grown from $418,000 in 2009 to $9.7 million in 2021. In that time, it has raised and granted an astonishing $44.5 million. It’s very difficult to quantify its impact on an individual basis, but what we know is that your gifts through Monterey County Gives! have fed families, supported cultural events, protected animals, helped children learn to read, preserved land, created access to healthcare, delivered mental health services, and on and on.
2022 Monterey County Gives! is off to a great start. We are starting with a record amount of match money, meaning your gift will leverage even more additional dollars for the nonprofits you support. If you’ve not yet participated in MCGives!, we encourage you to jump on this train that delivers benefits throughout Monterey County, and make a donation in any amount. And if you’re a regular, please remain so; maybe even consider growing your involvement. There’s no better way to insure a better Monterey County for all.
Dan Baldwin is President/CEO of the Community Foundation for Monterey County.
Steve John is CEO and Tournament Director of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation.