CCTLA Fundraiser - June 16, 2016

This June, Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS) partnered with the Capitol City Trial Lawyers Association (CCTLA) for its 14th year to host the CCTLA fundraiser. Over the course of several months, a dedicated committee met to discuss logistics and fundraising tactics to raise money for the 135,000 served every month through SFBFS’ 15 diverse services. CCTLA is the voice of and for Sacramento Trial Attorneys and has a vested interest in the community they work for. After months of hard work from the committee, 66 individuals agreed to sponsor $1,000 each for the fundraiser. That’s $66,000 for families in need! What an incredible gift!


The initial sponsorship opportunity was followed by a beautiful silent auction and evening at the home of Parker White and Noël Ferris. Their East Sacramento backyard garden was the perfect location to host an evening dedicated to giving back to the community. More than 100 people attended the event to enjoy wine, food and bid on several dozen auction items. While many of the attendees were aware of the beneficiary of their generous donations, the evening took an emotional turn when we heard a heartwarming speech from Gricelda Valencia. Gricelda is a former SFBFS client who struggled to give her children the life she dreamed for them after she and her husband found themselves without work. Now, Gricelda gives back to families going through similar struggles as SFBFS’ CalFresh Outreach Coordinator. Many attendees were brought to tears as Gricelda shared her story and SFBFS’ mission suddenly had a face.

I could not believe the generosity of this group. At one point, a challenge was posed to all attendees to give an additional $50 donation to SFBFS. Many individuals stepped up to the plate and donated. While the final donation count is still being tallied, I know that the money raised at this wonderful event will serve well in the 15 programs and services offered at SFBFS. 

Submitted by:

Elise Hawkins, SFBFS Communications Officer

BIGDOG2016: Tribulations to Triumph

Most people in the Sacramento area are familiar with the 24-hour giving drive dedicated to making money for area nonprofits known as the Big Day of Giving (BIGDOG). This year’s drive was hosted on May 3 through Give Local America.  Although I’ve participated in BIGDOG in previous years as a donor, this was my first time participating as a benefiting nonprofit. I had no idea how much preparation was needed for just one day! From developing an 8-week work plan to creating a social media strategy to preparing memes and videos for the prize challenges, this was a fun but daunting task for a two person team! But, Courtney (my colleague and I) were determined to make this BIGDOG the best one yet for Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS)!

After months of preparation, the day had come. Facebook was scheduled with fun and engaging posts to encourage people to donate, SFBFS staff were on-hand ready to make thank you calls to donors, e-blasts were ready and waiting to be dispatched with updates, board members and staff had credit cards in hands ready to give…and then…we got the notice.

The BIGDOG giving platform is currently down. Please stay tuned as we work to correct the problem.

What?! You’re telling me our donors aren’t able to give through the ONLY giving portal available for BIGDOG? Surely this is a small glitch that will be resolved soon. No problem. Put a hold on all posts, eblast, phone calls etc, until we hear more. Three hours went by…then four. After six hours of a non-responsive giving platform, Sacramento area non-profits decided to encourage donors to use their own personal giving platforms to give to their respective organizations. Even though the rules of BIGDOG only allowed donations through the KIMBIA platform, we certainly didn’t want to be missing out on critical donations that help to support the 135,000 men, women and children SFBFS serves monthly.

Our incredible team worked so well under pressure and did a fantastic job of keeping our donors up to date on the status of the giving platform. At the end of the day, the show must go on. With or without the designated giving platform (KIMBIA), we knew that our donors look forward to giving on this special day each year and didn’t want to deter anyone from giving where their heart is because of a technical difficulty.

After lots of backlash from the community, as well as local nonprofits, BIGDOG had come to an end. While the KIMBIA platform NEVER got fixed, our donors pulled through and were able to donate more than $70,000 to SFBFS. Our goal for the day was $55,000, so we were ecstatic to be able to far exceed our goals even with the technical challenges thrown our way. I know we say this over and over, but it could not be more true. SFBFS supporters are simply the best! Through their support, we are able to provide food, clothing and educational resources to thousands of families in need. This is the first step to #EndHungerSacramento and move people to self-sufficiency and financial independence. Again, great work, Sacramento! Can’t wait to see what we can accomplish together next year!

Submitted by:

Elise Hawkins, SFBFS' Communications Officer