About The Author

David Grabitske

David Grabitske is the manager of outreach services at the Minnesota Historical Society in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Many Minnesota historical organizations participated in an online/social media-fueled fundraising event dubbed “Give to the Max” through GiveMN.org on Tuesday November 17, 2009, which raised approximately $14 million for charities across the state. The St. Paul Pioneer Press reports on Washington County Historical Society, which then prompts the question of how well did others do? Any new donors? Any big surprises? What did you and your organization learn from participating in the event? If you did not participate, can you share your reasons?

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9 Responses to Give to the Max for History

  1. Dustin Heckman says:

    Our organization participated in the day with better than expected results. We received $235 from mostly donors that were associated with our organization already and one anonymous donor. For really not having to do much, this was a pretty easy fundraiser for us. Some may say that amount isn’t very significant but from my vantage point, it was money I didn’t have the day before the event! Like Brent mentions in the Pioneer Press article, we too have been looking for an inexpensive way to raise funds online. I think giveMN.org is one of the best things to happen to nonprofits in this current climate.

    Most of our advertising of this event was through our latest newsletter in early November which may have kept us from getting more donations. I think if another Give to the Max Day is organized, our efforts would be stepped up to get the word out and get even better results!


  2. Mary Warner says:

    We have been looking for a way to take donations online and GiveMN makes it easy for us and for donors. Like Dustin, Give to the Max Day brought in donations we didn’t have the day before (around $250, I think – haven’t been in the office for a week, so don’t have the exact amount).

    As I was setting up the profile for the Morrison County Historical Society, I realized that most of the nonprofits listed for Little Falls and Morrison County had not done anything with their profiles. We had plenty of notices about the launching of GiveMN because of our association with one of the sponsoring organizations, but I figured most of our local nonprofits hadn’t heard about it yet. I wrote a guest editorial about GiveMN for our local paper, urging nonprofits to sign up and fill in their profiles.

    Give to the Max Day was a great push for GiveMN, but now we have to convince people that they can use GiveMN anytime they want, night and day. It’s that convenient.


  3. Mary Warner says:

    Back to the office today. Turns out we got $265 in donations, which was matched with $10.71 out of the $500,000 of match provided.

    I wrote a blog post about our results, which links to an MPR story on the event and GiveMN.org’s results page.



  4. Joe Hoover says:

    The Richfield Historical Society had receved a total of $220.00 in donations. Very good given that we acted on it on the last minute. We might had received more if we had set up our profile so it didn’t look so much like a phishing scam.

    We also had a little problem with two accounts being set up for us by Givemn and confusing both board members and donors.
    Not ours:

    We intend to use this more in the future. While many are uncomfortable making donations online the same can be said for a growing group of people that will only make donations online and are reluctant to donate any other way.


  5. Char Henn says:

    With year-end fundraising coming, I pushed Give to the Max Day through emails, promising not to send a fund drive letter if people gave. We received $1,355 in donations (19 donors) and cut down on mail.


  6. We have a very successful day on November 17. We raised $470.00. We didn’t have much notice to get the word out to our members, but the ones we reached gave. I think it is great to have a way for our donors to give online without it costing us.


  7. June Lynne says:

    We received $1,375.00 on this day! I was very pleased!


  8. We raised $2060 by 22 donors! It was a lot of fun introducing the program to our members and friends. We had members and non-members make donations that have never donated before. It was a great day and I’m looking forward to using it year-round.


  9. We did great, getting $3125 in contributions, mostly for our year-end appeal, but also for our capital campaign. I sent out the info in our year-end appeal letter, and in two e-mails to members the week of the event. Everyone who donated seemed to find it easy to do (although some were concerned that they would end up “following” the museum through giving, which is something I’m going to have to figure out so I can give them a heads up next time. I’ve even had some donations at GiveMN.org since, which is also great. As long as the sponsoring foundations are picking up the transaction costs, it would be mad to use any other kind of online giving portal–we’ll have to see what happens when they decide it’s pretty costly to do so.

    Loved it!


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