December 3, 2015
On Tuesday, St. Benilde School participated in the first #iGiveCatholic Day of Giving, sponsored by the Catholic Foundation for the Archdiocese of New Orleans. The Day of Giving goes like this:
- Donations began through the iGiveCatholic.org website starting at midnight on December 1, 2015. Donors were able to chose their preferred charity and give their gift electronically. Donors also indicated whether this was their first time making a gift.
- The total number of donations and the total amount donated to each individual school/parish/Archdiocesan non-profit was tracked on a leaderboard through the #iGiveCatholic website.
- A competition was held to see who could get the most new donations in three categories: Parishes, Schools, and Non-Profits. The winner in each category will receive a $5,000 bonus from Catholic Charities.
- To make the competition even more exciting, the Whitman Family Foundation made a challenge gift to the school... the Foundation would match each gift up to a total of $20,000.
- To get people involved early, the school also promised that the first twenty donors would receive a free school car magnet from Ms. Betty Adams.
The first overall gift given to #iGiveCatholic was made by St. Benilde School just two minutes after the compeition started... and the SBS community kept St. Benilde School FIRST on the leaderboard all day, though St. Ann School and St. Paul School kept challenging the school throughout the day and into the night.
At the end of the school day Tuesday, SBS was not only in the lead, but we were only $7,000 away from matching the Whitman Family Foundation's challenge! So Mr. Downey gave a new challenge to the students: If the school raised $20,000 by the end of the #iGiveCatholic Day of Giving, the students will have a fun day!
The community responded above and beyond anybody's expectations! At 6:00 PM, the school received its 100th donation through #iGiveCatholic. Over the next six hours, the school would nearly double that amount... receiving 197 individual donations by the time the competition ended at midnight! Even more important, with a flurry of gifts in the last three minutes before midnight, SBS blew through the $20,000 goal, ending the day with $21,285 in total gifts! So at midnight... SBS had the most money raised out of all Archdiocese of New Orleans schools, and the most individual donations of ANY PARISH, SCHOOL, AND NON-PROFIT IN THE ARCHDIOCESE!!!
Today (December 4), SBS received official word from the Catholic Foundation that we did indeed place first in the school competition, and we will receive our $5,000 award at the upcoming Catholic Foundation's Board Mass and Dinner on Tuesday December 8!
St. Benilde Parish & School has the smallest geographical parish boundaries of the entire Archdiocese of New Orleans, and while our enrollment is seeing significant growth, we remain one of the smaller schools in the Archdiocese. Yet we raised more money in 24 hours than schools that are nearly four times larger than us. Words simply cannot express how great this accomplishment is, and our gratitude to our many benefactors and supporters in our community. We may be small, but we are mighty.
So on behalf of our entire student body, faculty, and staff, THANK YOU! Your generosity has set a new standard for giving not only in our school, but in the Archdiocese of New Orleans.
Oh... and Mr. Downey is working to set the Student Fun Day! Details to follow soon.