Colorado Gives Day was established 10 years ago by the Community First Foundation and FirstBank as a non-profit charitable giving event held in the month of December every year. In the ensuing decade, millions of dollars have been raised for Colorado-based non-profits, culminating in a record-breaking year in 2019 of more than $39.6 million, in just 24 hours. Since 2010, the organization has raised more than $360 million. In short, it’s a popular and hugely beneficial campaign for Coloradans to get behind. As we careen through the financial impact of the pandemic-fueled recession, now more than ever is the time these non-profits need the support from those who can give it. Here are just a handful of organizations you can give to through the Colorado Gives Day website at ColoradoGives.org (or via their individual websites).
Youth On Record
Their mission: Youth on Record empowers Colorado’s underserved youth to achieve their academic, artistic, and personal best by employing local, professional artists as their educators.
Their programs empower 1,400 teens in some of Denver’s most vulnerable communities to make life choices that positively impact their future by teaching them to develop the coping tools, inspiration, and wherewithal to succeed in today’s world and to become leaders of tomorrow.
Longmont Theatre Company
Their mission: To provide high quality entertainment with a strong educational component for and by the citizens of the Greater Boulder County area and to successfully manage a self-sufficient performing arts center.
The longest-operating community theatre company north of 104th, the Longmont Theatre Company’s humble beginnings trace back as far as 1957, where the auxiliary for the Longmont United Hospital put on a show in order to raise funds to furnish the rooms. Since then, the company’s established itself as a model for others throughout the state for putting on quality productions with frugal budgets and an emphasis on educational theatre.
City Park Jazz
Their mission: To provide 10 free concerts throughout the summer featuring local musicians as a celebration of community
2021 marks the 35th annual season of City Park Jazz, who saw its in-person events shuttered in 2020, thanks to necessary social distancing protocols amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In a show of incredibly good faith, the organization paid out ALL of the bands they had booked to play the season, and then set up special live streams from various venues around town, including Mighty Fine Productions studios and The Oriental Theater in North Denver. As a “celebration of community,” the crowds come from all over the state – Ft. Collins to Colorado Springs — and represent the vibrant diversity of City Park and Park Hill neighborhoods like no other event in Colorado. And we could all use a little something to bring us together these days.
Their mission: To provide stimulating performances, expand common perceptions of both contemporary music and the chamber ensemble, and nurture a community around this music that we love.
In addition to concert seasons that feature the work of recognized composers, they work to cultivate a thriving local composition community, with outreach programs like their innovative Young Composers Playground. Collaboration is at the heart of the Playground’s artistic vision. They commission new works by living composers, perform in support of touring improvisors, and perform regularly, working with dancers, poets, spoken word artists, visual artists, and multi-media artists as they find inspiration across disciplines and explore new, hybrid artistic forms.