Nonprofit organizations across Georgia were the real winners Thursday as the third annual Georgia Gives Day saw another increase in donations from the inaugural event in 2012.
The Georgia Center for Nonprofits collaborates with over 1,200 organizations to raise money for local communities.
Many Hall County organizations take part in the event and benefit from the generous donations from Georgia residents. Julie Edwards, executive director of Hall County Humane Society of Northeast Georgia, had nothing but good things to say about the statewide event that raised almost $700 for the shelter Thursday.
“We have several different fundraising avenues and that certainly is one that’s a great thing they’ve started with Georgia Gives,” Edwards said. “People give through different avenues so it certainly gives folks that are online savvy a way to give to organizations to as well.”
The money raised will help with the growing costs for maintaining the local shelter, while Saturday’s Pet Photos with Santa Claws event offers another opportunity for the community to support the nonprofit.
“It’s one of our favorite fundraisers,” Edwards said. “We don’t raise a lot of money like at some of our other fundraisers, but it’s a great community event for people to come out with their pets and enjoy the holiday season.”
Every November for the last 20 years, photos with Santa Claws has given residents a chance to have their pets’ photos taken with Santa.
“We are very grateful because we have a lot of people volunteer for this event,” Edwards said. “We have professional photographer Fox Gradin with Celestial Studios who comes in and donates her time and talent to spend two days taking photos of people with their pets, or just their pets, or just the people sometimes. Some folks just bring their kids because our Santa’s great. He’s very laid back and just great with the animals and does a wonderful job.”
In addition to the Santa Claws fundraiser, the Humane Society also holds other events throughout the year including a 5K marathon over the summer, a golf tournament in the fall and an art auction in February.
“Every dollar counts, especially when you are a nonprofit but it goes to our general care for animals and the day-to-day care for the animals,” Edwards said.
All the money raised and donated goes toward feeding the animals, making sure they are vaccinated, having them spayed or neutered and getting every animal microchipped before they are put up for adoption.