This past holiday season, Bethel dug deep into its collective pockets to help the community. The #BethelGives campaign, in its second year, raised $35,000. That’s about $10,000 more than it did the first year.
Lisa Whalen with the Bethel Community Services Foundation coordinated the giving campaign. She says that she is extremely pleased with the effort, noting that in 2016 she and others put the BethelGives campaign together in very little time. In 2017, with both more lead time and experience, the program was expanded. Members of the community told her that they appreciate the opportunity to contribute to a variety of Bethel organizations at once.
The ten partners helped out by #BethelGives are: Bethel Search and Rescue, Bethel Winter House, Tundra Women’s Coalition, KYUK, Yuut Elitnaurviat, Bethel Family Clinic, Bethel Friends of Canines, YK Delta Lifesavers, Bethel Council on the Arts, and Kuskokwim Consortium Library Foundation.
In addition to direct donations, there were many matching contributions from employers, plus in-kind contributions and incentives to encourage staff and customers to participate.
Those employers include the Bethel Community Services Foundation, Bethel Native Corporation, ConocoPhillips, GCI, Donlin Gold, Alaska Commercial, Swanson’s, First National Bank Alaska, Sarah Angstman, Psychologist, Rural Service Solutions, Long House Hotel, Vitus Energy, YPCC Coffee Cart, YPCC Saturday Market, Made With Love, Ed’s Auto, Kusko Cab Company, and Aurora Sushi.