If you’re in Omaha and you’ve checked your email or been on social media at all this week, you’re probably aware that tomorrow is Omaha Gives!, the 24-hour, community-wide event that supports close to 1,000 nonprofits in the Omaha Metro.
As Kali Baker, vice president of community relations at the Omaha Community Foundation, which sponsors Omaha Gives!, explained to us, “This is a day when $10 really does make a difference. Because we award random hourly prizes and participation prizes for nonprofit with the most donors, even a small donation can be extremely meaningful to the organization you’ve chosen to support.”
All of the participating organizations are chosen because they make Omaha a stronger community, but here are some of our staff picks.
I support the Food Bank because they truly make a difference in the lives of hungry children, families and seniors right here where we live. I know my donation, no matter the size, can make an impact, because each dollar can provide three meals to someone in need.
Our whole family has a passion for wildlife. The Nebraska Wildlife Rehab rescues and rehabilitates wild animals from all around our area, and their need is always growing. They are committed to education in order to create a world where wildlife is respected and treated with compassion. Because they do not receive any state or government funding, they rely on donations to support their important work.
Our family member, Penny, a German Shorthair Pointer, was rescued by this wonderful organization, and came to live with us in 2013. We continue to donate to this organization because they find loving and committed homes for all the dogs they rescue. Donations help provide full vet care from minor to major medical issues for dogs in their care as they await their new adopting family.
This organization will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2020. Empowering at-risk youth to follow a successful path is a meaningful endeavor for Omaha kids.
Beth Ostdiek Smith’s initiative to save perishable food and provide it to local shelters is genius. It eliminates food waste and ensures that those in need have a healthy meal.
As an all-women team, we are all about empowering the next generation of women to work hard. That starts with confidence, provided through the programming and outreach at Girls Inc.
In the years that we’ve worked with the Omaha Zoo Foundation, I’ve been fortunate to speak to so many employees of Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium – not only about the world-class animal care and exhibits at our zoo, but also their education program and wildlife conservation efforts that the zoo supports (and often spearheads) worldwide. A donation to the Omaha Zoo Foundation has a ripple effect that could reach all over the globe and well into the future.
I’ve gotten to know the Boys and Girls Club better through being on the Family Guild and I’m blown away by how many families this organization serves, the incredible programming and opportunities it offers students aged 6-18, and (maybe most of all) the dedication of the staff, some of whom have been working with the clubs for more than 30 years. They’re currently building and expanding several clubs in the Omaha area because the need is ever-growing, so it’s a great time to give.
Together, Inc. works to provide families and veterans in the Metro with the tools they need to achieve housing stability. Their approach is one of respect and collaboration to ensure that the people they serve have safe, affordable housing, food security, health and wellness. Right now in Omaha, it takes an annual income of $43,000 for a family of three to get by without any public assistance. To me, that’s an urgent reminder that any one of us, our family members, friends or neighbors, may now or one day need the services Together, Inc. provides.
YES is the only organization in Omaha dedicated to helping the homeless and at-risk youth in our community. Having interned at YES during college, I have a special love for the hard work that they do to keep the youth in our community safe and to ensure they have the support and care that they need to succeed.
Ensuring the humane society is equipped to shelter our lost and stray animals, to rehabilitate them, and give them a second chance is so important. Our pets are oftentimes an extension of our families, so knowing there is an organization out there that is dedicated to reuniting lost pets, or finding strays a forever home is comforting and vital.
Giving to the foundation ensures that our first responders are always taken care of so they can continue their hard work of keeping our communities safe.
Mosaic is important to me because they have been tremendous support systems for my two intellectually disable brothers. Both of my brothers were born with disabilities and are unable to live on their own. Mosaic has coordinated housing in a single home environment and employment/daily activities for them so they can lead as normal a life as possible.