Fresno State’s second annual Day of Giving was a resounding success, experiencing almost 90 percent more unique donors than in the first year of the 24-hour online giving campaign. Individual donors included alumni, faculty, staff, students, parents and friends of the University.
At the end of the day at midnight on Nov. 1, a total of 2,120 individual donors contributed from 42 states (compared to 29 last year) and 18 countries, including Norway, Hong Kong, Iraq, Australia, South Africa and Mongolia. Last year, the campaign inspired 1,123 individual donors.
“We were overwhelmed by the sheer number of donors who contributed,” said Paula Castadio, vice president of University Advancement. “Fresno State’s Day of Giving inspired 2,120 individual donors who together raised significant support for scholarships, research, programs and student experiences. This participation signals the value of higher education and an interest in supporting our talented students. We are so grateful for the generosity of so many.”
With the theme “Time to Feed the D.O.G.,” the digital fundraising campaign encouraged donors to make a gift to one of Fresno State’s eight schools and colleges or the program of their choice.
Many donors gave multiple times to support what they are passionate about, resulting in 2,710 gifts across various colleges, departments and program areas of Fresno State — an increase of 101.93 percent over last year.
Even the dollars raised exceeded last year. Preliminary estimates show the amount contributed was $455,215, a 7.17 percent increase over last year.
All funds raised will be used for programs and initiatives to help fulfill Fresno State’s mission “to boldly educate and empower our students for success.” Donations to the campaign will make possible benefits for students such as scholarships, internship programs, research and improved learning spaces.
A live leaderboard tracked the money raised throughout the day, providing minute-by-minute updates on the campaign’s website, https://dayofgiving.fresnostate.edu.
Day of Giving digital ambassadors — volunteers who helped push out the campaign’s message to their own networks via personal social media posts and emails to secure donors — created their own unique URLs to track their progress throughout the campaign.
Students also were involved in events held throughout the day, including a rally along Shaw Avenue outside the Save Mart Center to increase awareness of the campaign and express gratitude to the community. Students, faculty and staff also signed a large thank you note reinforcing an understanding of philanthropy. These appreciation messages will culminate into a thank you video shared with all the donors who participated.
The campaign was trending on social media all 24 hours. “Day of Giving” posts on official Fresno State accounts received over a million impressions on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram combined. The hashtags #FresnoStateDOG and #FeedTheDOG were used almost 4,000 times and received more than 33 million impressions, thanks to the excitement of fans, friends and ambassadors of the University posting on their own accounts to make this day a success.
Fresno State’s Day of Giving was a part of a growing national trend for dedicated giving days that have become popular at many universities across the nation.