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Philanthropists at Greater Milwaukee Foundation Raise Big Bucks
5,000 donors fork over for the Greater Milwaukee Foundation.

Yesterday’s first online Match Day donations – $25 to Sojourner Family Peace Center and $10 to Salvation Army – came in at 12:05 a.m. Twenty-four hours later, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation’s special giving event had raised $2,802,003 to support 21 southeastern Wisconsin food and shelter agencies. That’s a million dollars or so more than the total from last year’s inaugural Match Day.

More than 5,000 unique online donors contributed $1,879,653 yesterday through 7,282 donations. That total, as well as the $164,350 contributed by foundation donors (not included in the total on the website), was matched proportionately with money from a $750,000 pool funded by local organizations such as the Brewers Community Foundation, United Way of Greater Milwaukee and the Faye McBeath Foundation. The Brewers Community Foundation also contributed $8,000 through its Golden Ticket promotion, which tacked on $1,000 to eight randomly selected donations, lifting the Match Day total above the $2.8 million mark.

Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin finished atop the list of participating agencies, receiving $345,945 from 603 individual donors. Hunger Task Force, Inc., however, won the popularity contest, receiving gifts from 1362 individual donors resulting in the third-highest cash total. The Milwaukee Rescue Mission, which took second place in both total amount received and number of donors, raised $290,459 from 874 supporters.

None of the 21 participating agencies finished the day with less than $10,000. The median dollar amount raised was nearly $50,000 and the average was more than $130,000. The Basic Needs Fund, created in 2008 by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation to support area nonprofits, received 47 general donations totaling $4,340. That money will be used to assist food and shelter agencies in need.

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