Today Volunteer New York! turned the organization’s premiere annual benefit, the Volunteer Spirit Awards, which is the largest volunteer recognition event in the region, into an interactive digitally streaming event.
The event was held on April 7 and the hour-long benefit broke its fundraising goal, bringing in more than $40,000 to support Volunteer New York!’s mission to connect, manage and inspire local volunteerism. At the outset of the COVID-19 outbreak the organization cancelled its 600 in-person gathering.
“In a time when large gatherings are prohibited, we felt it critical to recognize the honorees of the 40th Annual Volunteer Spirit Awards and to send out this beacon of unity for all the helpers out there in our community that we are all in this together, that we are all connected,” said Alisa H. Kesten, Volunteer New York! Executive Director. “Thank you to Con Edison and to all of our event partners that made it possible for us to make #VSATOGETHER a reality.”
This year along with #VSATOGETHER, Volunteer New York! is using Global Volunteer Month as an opportunity to highlight the role it plays in supporting social infrastructure as well coordinating coronavirus response and recovery opportunities to protect the most vulnerable (volunteernewyork.org/VVC) in the region. Volunteer New York! has received a 158 percent spike in web traffic from volunteers and local nonprofits since mobilizing the Virtual Volunteer Center in mid-March, when compared to the same time period last year. In 2019 the organization inspired more than 26,000 volunteers to give 275,000 hours of service to 500 nonprofits at a value of over $8.7 million.
“Whether it’s adapting how we can most efficiently direct meaningful volunteer action in times of a crisis or finding new ways we can communicate externally and overcome barriers, that is what our community can count on,” said Tony Fasciano, Director of Communications for Volunteer New York!.
For more information about honorees visit volunteernewyork.org/awards for access to the 2020 #VSATOGETHER Digital Benefit Journal.