What started in 2012 as a small movement to celebrate and promote charitable giving has today morphed into a tremendous global campaign in which the School Nutrition Foundation is proud to take part. We hope you will join us again this year to recognize and celebrate Giving Tuesday on Tuesday, December 1, 2015. Whenever you Tweet or share with us on Facebook, please use both #GivingTuesday and #SNFTuesday to mark your #UNSelfies and posts so we can add you to our streams.
About Giving Tuesday
Just three years ago Giving Tuesday was launched by the 92nd Street Y in New York City. Noting the holiday shopping frenzies of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the idea was to do just a little bit more to celebrate the “giving” part of the holiday season. Thus, a movement—and a hashtag (#GivingTuesday)—were born. Today Giving Tuesday is a global event, sparking charitable giving and raising the profile for many organizations and fundraising campaigns—including the School Nutrition Foundation’s Annual Fund.
“Last year was the first year the Foundation participated in Giving Tuesday in earnest, although we did dip our toes in a little [previously] and receive a few small gifts,” explained SNF’s Director of Fundraising Janet Hedrick. “We planned ahead [in 2014] with a six-week fundraising timeline and did so well, we want to surpass that this year. What’s nice about [Giving Tuesday] is that people come together and share not just their support of an organization, but why they support that organization.”
Growing the Annual Fund
You probably remember that we were talking about the Annual Fund over the summer, after ANC in Salt Lake City. We had a great time at the conference spreading the word and raising the profile of the Fund, as well as the scholarship opportunities it provides to SNA members. Last year was a record-breaking fundraising year for SNF and the Annual Fund, and we’ve set an ambitious $35,000 goal for this year in hopes of repeating that success.
“Last year was amazing. We had no idea what to expect, and we had an outpouring of support,” said Janet. “About a third of the people who gave last year for Giving Tuesday had never given before, and that was one of the most wonderful things about it.”
Donating to the Annual Fund is an opportunity for SNA members to give back to the profession, the organization, and their colleagues, says Hedrick.
“Our scholarship stories highlight how important it is for us to provide education for our members, because whether they are pursuing an associate’s, a bachelor’s, or an advanced degree, each and every one of them has a passion for what they do—for feeding kids,” explained Janet, who believes when it comes to school nutrition gaining respect as a true profession for passionate individuals—“the time has come”.
“We have to remember that one in five children in America are hungry. The school nutrition program plays a vital role in making sure those kids have healthy, nutritious food every day, and that they are ready to learn,” explained Janet. “It’s part of education, that we give them what they need in order to be ready to learn, and the people who do that are dedicated.”
More than a Career—a Calling
It’s the Foundation’s job to make sure our members have the skills and experiences they need to do their job well, which is why growing the Annual Fund is so crucial. Your donation—whether it’s five or fifty or five hundred dollars—means giving as many SNA members the opportunity to pursue higher education as possible. With the new professional standards, providing members with the means to help earn their degree will raise the profile and prestige of the profession across the board.
“These professional standards are, in many ways, a recognition,” explained Hedrick. “These people are professionals, and this education is so important to them because we have given them a very important task—feeding children. I think that as far as the importance of the Foundation helping these members—well, there has never been a more important time than now.”
Donating to the Annual Fund & Giving Tuesday with SNF
Here is information on donating, at a glance:
- You don’t have to wait for Giving Tuesday to donate to the Annual Fund! You can make a donation directly through the School Nutrition Foundation’s Facebook page—just click on the Donate Now! button that displays on our cover photo. You can also donate directly through our SNF Network for Good link.
- If you’re an SNA member who wants to help your state win for highest percentage of participation, remember that to qualify your donation must be $10 or more. The number of contributors is more important than the amount of the gifts! You’re only competing within your membership divisions (to level the playing field) and you’ll be entered into a drawing to win two reserved seats for the entertainment event at ANC 2016 in San Antonio. You can even set up your own fundraising page to help spread the word!
- Industry members are also encouraged to donate and participate! So many of you are already working to help us spread the word about the Annual Fund and Giving Tuesday—thank you for your ongoing support of the School Nutrition Foundation!
Please consider helping us spread the word about school nutrition by participating in Giving Tuesday! Even if you’ve already donated, you can share your #UNselfie photo with SNF via Facebook and Twitter, or email it to us at email@example.com.