The third year proved to be the charm for Washington County Gives, a one-day fundraising event for area nonprofit organizations held Dec. 3.

In its first two years, the joint venture between the Blair Area Community Foundation (BACF) and the Blair Area Chamber of Commerce (BACC), raised $51,000 and $43,000, respectively.

It's third year, the event raised an estimated $67,000.

“The generosity of the people in this community and this county is really something,” said Bob Coffey, director of development for the BACF.

And he's right.

There is a well-known quote that starts, “It takes a village ...” and it can certainly apply here.

Washington County Gives began as a collaboration between the BACF and BACC to grow awareness of the county's nearly 100 nonprofits and showcase the spirit of giving. Giving days had become a trend in communities across the state, like Fremont and Omaha, and across the country.

Washington County has benefitted from the national awareness of Giving Tuesday, the day on which Washington County Gives takes place.

But in its first three years, the event has grown thanks to a grassroots effort by those nonprofits involved. They've spoken out in their communities and used social media to promote the giving day.

And the community has stepped up.

At first, organizers had to contact corporate sponsors. In its first year, there were six. This year, there were 14 and some of those corporate sponsors reached out to organizers, clamoring for the opportunity to be a part of Washington County Gives.

Residents of all ages donated. Families and children donated what they could to help. The generosity was amazing. Once again, the residents of this county prove why its one of the best counties in the state to live and work.

Thank you, Washington County.

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