Time for a quiz: What do the following numbers mean for Alexandria? 24 — 9 — 7,516 — 9,969 — 121 — 1,031,282.
No, they are not the winning numbers for a recent Mega Millions draw. These figures represent a remarkable milestone for our community. During the 24 hours of Spring2ACTion — Alexandria’s day of online giving held April 9 — 7,516 donors made 9,969 donations to 121 charities and raised $1,031,282 in total.
That sentence bears repeating. Read it again and soak it in.
Entering Spring2ACTion’s fourth year, we set an ambitious goal of raising $1 million for worthy causes throughout the community. This marks a 64 percent increase in donations from 2013 and is almost 10 times as much as was raised in 2011, the online fundraising event’s inaugural year.
Consider what kind of difference your generosity will make in the year ahead. For example, the funds raised by Tail’s High, a local cat rescue organization, will provide three months of veterinarian visits for the animals in its care. The Alexandria Police Youth Camp will fund scholarships for deserving kids to attend camp in Kilmarnock, Va., this summer. More students in Alexandria City Public Schools will benefit from the services provided by the Alexandria Tutoring Consortium. And Matthew Maury Elementary School is well on its way to refurbishing and remodeling its playground and field spaces — much needed improvements.
RunningBrooke, a group organized to make sure kids come to school healthy and ready to learn, received enough donations to build a new playground in a to-be-determined neighborhood while Space of Her Own, a middle school mentoring program, will expand its efforts to include male students. More kids will get the opportunity to learn and play soccer through the Alexandria Soccer Association. The Arcadia Center, an organization designed to create a more equitable and sustainable local food system, will expand the availability of fresh produce to families in need of quality meal options while immigrant, low income and at-risk women will receive training and support through Empowered Women International.
And there are another 112 nonprofits that will provide more services to their varied constituencies than they would have without Spring2ACTion. What a great day for Alexandria’s nonprofits — what a great day for Alexandria.
The benefits for the participating nonprofits go beyond the dollars received during Spring2ACTion. These nonprofits have been provided with additional tools to more effectively serve the community and connect supporters. Many are improving their operations and engaging the community in new and innovative ways as a result.
All of these efforts — and all of your generous support — add up to something special for Alexandria. Thanks to you, our nonprofits have the resources to get the job done for families in need through new programs that expand their client base.
Alexandrians most certainly showed their caring and concern for others on April 9 and demonstrated why we’re a great city.
The writer is the executive director of ACT for Alexandria.