#BigDog2016: Big Day of Giving May 3rd

May 3rd is the Sacramento-area’s annual “Big Day of Giving” – aka #BigDog2016. The Sacramento region will come together tomorrow to donate to deserving non-profits across the region.

Starting at midnight, you can go to www.bigdayofgiving.org and give to the local non-profit of your choice, or multiple if you’re feeling generous. BONUS: This year there are all sorts of prize challenges that offer exciting and fun ways  for organizations to win extra money. There are over 100 challenges for participating organizations in different categories – details HERE.


If you’re looking for a place to give, the Girls on the Grid have compiled a list of organizations that are near and dear to our hearts:

Amy Thoma: The GreenHouse is a non-profit organization based in a neighborhood with more children living under the federal poverty line than anywhere else in the state. We provide tutoring, leadership development and support to under-resourced youth in Natomas. I’ve been involved with the GreenHouse for nearly ten years. Please consider giving to the GreenHouse! More than 70% of Greenhouse kids go to college! 

Chantel Elder: Homelessness is a very real issue in Sacramento. Sacramento Steps Forward is the lead agency working to end homelessness in the Sacramento region and gets my love this year. As a lover of the arts and furry friends I also urge people to consider the Crocker Art Museum and Front Street Animal Shelter.

Laura Braden: As much as I love BDOG, it’s almost intimidating by the sheer volume of deserving nonprofits in our community. How do you choose? I think the best way is to really focus on your personal interests, rather than marquee names. I’m a cray dog mom so I’m investing in Front Street Animal Shelter ,which always goes above and beyond in saving/caring for local animals. I’m also a proud Board Member of the Food Literacy Center, which works tirelessly on a scrappy budget to ensure local children have education and access to healthy food. Considering a lot of the kids we service have never tried broccoli or beets, it’s greatly needed. And lastly, since I believe every woman should be given the opportunity to empower herself, I’m supporting WEAVE, Inc. Happy giving!

Kelly Conroy: 916 Ink is an incredible organization providing an outlet for youth to explore creativity, emotion, literacy, community, and so much more. Sacramento Tree Foundation is also a favorite of mine, especially since we’re the City of Trees and this year they kicked off some super innovative programs ensuring that everyone can benefit from our trees. Lastly, I’ll round out my donations with some love for our animal friends at Performing Animal Welfare Society. I just love to know that these wild animals have a loving and friendly place to retire after an oftentimes difficult lifetime of performances and captivity.

Laine Himmelmann:  I’m a big fan of nonprofits centered around empowerment and a “hand up, not hand out” mentality, so my donations this year will be going towards Habitat for Humanity and Cristo Rey.  With so many challenges and contest prizes this year, I’m not only going to be repping and donating to Cristo Rey and Habitat for Humanity , but I’m going to keep my finger on the refresh button and shoot for the first gift at midnight called the “Blast Off Prize” where the non-profit with the first donation will receive an additional $3,000, and the “Landing Prize”/last gift of the day where the winning nonprofit receives $2,500.  

Leia Ostermann: Artists drive the creativity and community in Sacramento. Donate to Sacramento Ballet.

Kearsten Shepherd: Front Street Animal Shelter – City of Sacramento. As an animal lover, this one is near and dear to my heart. Your donation to Front Street Animal Shelter helps provide quality care for thousands of animals that come into the shelter each year – including emergency and advanced veterinary care. Donations to the shelter also go to support adoption and outreach programs. There is nothing better than helping a pet find their forever home.

Lisa Murphy: I have a special place in my heart for the Sacramento Ballet. This year, all donations to Sac Ballet will be matched and go towards their educational outreach programs sponsored by Raley’s. Donate before noon tomorrow and Sac Ballet could win a prize challenge from the Sacramento Kings! The ‪#‎DoGood‬ challenge awards the non-profit with the highest number of donors by noon on May 3rd! 

Meghan Sullivan:  Powerhouse Science Center. The Powerhouse Science Center is a children and family focused educational institution dedicated to providing additional STEM education through hands-on activities and experiments. As a scientist, I feel it’s crucial to couple STEM education with fun and provide innovative ways to enhance discovery.  The Powerhouse Science Center serves students from numerous counties and can truly use more support, especially as they work to transition to the a new facility housed within the historic PG&E Power Station on the Sacramento River. 

Kellie Edson: Yoga Moves Us  is the non-profit that provides free yoga in the park in the greater Sacramento Area, now providing FREE weekly yoga to five different parks! I found my way to yoga through Yoga in the Park and I am so grateful that this organization exists to provide yoga to individuals who may not otherwise get the benefits from the practice. Plus it’s just wonderful to do yoga in our many beautiful Sacramento parks!

In addition, Welcome Home Doula Services http://www.whdoulaservices.com is a nonprofit community doula program dedicated to improving birth outcomes by offering affordable labor support and childbirth education to underserved families in the greater Sacramento area. As a childbirth educator and doula myself, I am of the strong belief that EVERY woman deserves a doula. I am not affiliated with WHDS, but I am SO happy an organization like this exists in our area to allow more women access to birth and doula care. 

Megan Macnee: Girl Scouts Heart of Central California. When I was growing up there was nowhere that offered me a chance to get to know myself, step outside of my comfort zone, and give leadership a try, like the Girl Scouts. From camp to sales, to STEM education, the Girl Scouts is empowering girls and young women to explore who they are and who they want to become. They changed me for the better and now I hope to give back to the organization to help empower the next generation of women and encourage you to consider donating to them on Big Day of Giving.

Michelle Sweezey: I love giving back in every way I can; with my time, with my assistance, with my presence, and with my money. This year, I’m donating to something that has helped me become the person I am today— Yoga. The Yoga Seed Collective is the only non-profit Yoga Studio in Sacramento and is dedicated to sharing and promoting the practice of yoga in and beyond our community. Funds are used to make yoga accessible for all, enrich underserved populations and in Outreach Programs. Change your breath, and change your mind. Change your mind, and change your life. Change your life, and the whole world changes with you.


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