By Dawn Robinson, Donor Services Associate at East Bay Community Foundation

On May 5, the East Bay Community Foundation is hosting East Bay Gives, a 24-hour online giving day for donations to registered nonprofits in the East Bay region, and a part of Give Local America. The communities of the East Bay rely on us as one of the largest sources of philanthropic support for the region. Our donors turn to us for strategic counsel and advice, and also for administrative help with their grant-making.

The East Bay Community Foundation sits right beside Oakland City Hall, in Frank H. Ogawa Plaza. We are one of the oldest charitable institutions in northern California, powered by innovation for more than 85 years.

What does an online fundraising event like East Bay Gives have to do with this spirit of the East Bay?

Those of us who live in the East Bay choose to because of the glorious gaggle of people, events, natural beauty and politics. We know how to take the bitter with the sweet. We grasp that living here is an incredible gift, so much so that we’re willing and eager to embrace all that the East Bay has to offer.

During East Bay Gives, you give to your favorite nonprofits right here in our community with one click. It’s EBCF’s second year presenting this digital platform, and we are on track to exceed the $200,000 we raised in 2014. We were thrilled to have connected more than 800 donors with the great work of 140 nonprofits last year.

So many blogs, op-eds, and online commentaries detailing how the East Bay is the new this or that cannot comprehend the intangibles of East Bay living. It’s hard to describe the quality of the sunlight on a Saturday morning, our ever-changing blends of colors and cultures, or the curve of a road along the bay shoreline. Lake Chabot or Lake Merritt — just drink in that spectacular lack of sameness in the walkers and runners and babies and dogs as you walk, run or bike along.

We want the East Bay Gives website to be flooded with donations, starting at 12:01 a.m and ending at 11:59 p.m. on May 5th. You can give to one or more nonprofits — it’s up to you. Last year, we saw the competitive impulse rise up, and donors contributed so that their favorite nonprofit could win one of the hourly prizes. We saw donors who had no prior affiliation or relationship with an organization donate over $5,000. What an accomplishment to achieve in just 24 hours!

Pour some of your own personal sense of wonder into a donation for East Bay Gives. Give where you live, and watch it all glow.

Editor’s Note: This piece reflects an individual opinion and is not a reported story from Oakland Local. Oakland Local invites community residents to share their views about events and issues in Oakland. For guidelines, see:

For more information on posting to Community Voices, see The word on Oakland Local’s Community Voices posts.

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