With four matching gifts already contributed by The Patterson Foundation, gifts made now will help fellow neighbors through New Year.
SARASOTA, FL – In a holiday season marked by heightened needs as well as heightened charitable giving, an inspiring marker of hope for our community has been reached ahead of schedule. Six weeks into the Community Foundation of Sarasota County’s annual 12-week Season of Sharing campaign, grassroots donors and local foundations have raised more than $2.1 million to alleviate immediate basic needs and restore stability for our most vulnerable in Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties.
Combined with four matching gifts of $400,000 total by The Patterson Foundation, Season of Sharing has raised more than $2.5 million. The funds raised will be used throughout 2021 to help neighbors in need with rental assistance, utility bills, child care, transportation, and other crucial expenses that help families restore a sense of security when it is needed most urgently, all year long.
Significantly, these gifts bring Season of Sharing’s two-decade total to more than $29 million, with over 35,000 households served by this vital safety network. There are no administrative fees and 100 percent of gifts goes to supporting people and families with timely assistance.
“While this time of year often brings presents of all shapes and sizes, I cannot imagine a better way to finish the year and celebrate the holiday spirit than to unwrap the gift of hope for so many still in crisis,” says Roxie Jerde, President and CEO of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County. “What joy and relief there is in knowing that our fellow neighbors are looking out for one another, and paying forward what they can to make someone’s season bright through Season of Sharing. As our community knows well, the best gifts are the ones that come directly from the heart and we’re seeing that spirit really shine right now, especially with the need being so great.”
Upon reaching this milestone in generosity, a notable gift comes from the William G. and Marie Selby Foundation, a longtime supporter of Season of Sharing which has provided $1,232,807 since the campaign’s inception in 2000.
“William and Marie Selby cared deeply about the community and always invested in people who needed just a little help to make their lives better, and we are proud to continue in their tradition by supporting Season of Sharing year after year," said Carol Butera, President and CEO of the William G. and Marie Selby Foundation.
Contributions to Season of Sharing made between now and January 31, 2021 bring with them matching opportunities from The Patterson Foundation. As a way to incentivize giving through the New Year and beyond, The Patterson Foundation will continue to contribute $100,000 for every $500,000 donated by the community — with no cap on the number of $100,000 contributions donors can activate throughout the campaign.
“As COVID-19 continues to discombobulate lives, the heartbeat of generosity is more vibrant than ever,” said Debra Jacobs, President and CEO of The Patterson Foundation. “When The Patterson Foundation offered to donate $100,000 each time the community donates $500,000, we had no idea how many times that would happen. We are thrilled to join with so many others to boost Season of Sharing, knowing that the needs are increasing, often from people who never before faced income insecurity. There is no limit to the number of times The Patterson Foundation will contribute $100,000, so we encourage givers to keep their donations coming through January.”
Donations to Season of Sharing can be made throughout the year at any level. Gifts can be made online at any level at www.cfsarasota.org/season-of-sharing or by sending a check (payable to Community Foundation of Sarasota County) to Attn: Season of Sharing, 2635 Fruitville Road, Sarasota, FL 34237. All donations are tax-deductible.
For 20 years, Season of Sharing has empowered neighbors to help neighbors, whatever the crisis, be it hurricanes, Red Tide, economic downturns, or even global pandemics. Built on collaboration and trust, the community-wide campaign is a partnership between the Community Foundation of Sarasota County and the Herald-Tribune Media Group, with giving strengthened by The Patterson Foundation. To read stories from families and individuals who have been helped throughout this year by Season of Sharing, visit www.heraldtribune.com.
About the Community Foundation of Sarasota County: The Community Foundation of Sarasota County is a public charity founded in 1979 by the Southwest Florida Estate Planning Council as a resource for caring individuals and the causes they support, enabling them to make a charitable impact on the community. With assets of $421 million in more than 1,500 charitable funds, the Community Foundation awarded grants and scholarships totaling $48.9 million dollars last year in the areas of education, the arts, health and human services, civic engagement, animal welfare and the environment. Since its founding, the Community Foundation has been able to grant more than $323 million to area nonprofit organizations to our community thanks to the generosity of charitable individuals, families, and businesses. For more information, visit www.CFSarasota.org or call (941) 955-3000.