Tag Archives: giving

The Big Give 2019

September 9, 2019 by

Omaha Magazine’s “Big Give” is our annual directory of charitable causes. We are proud to help connect volunteers and philanthropists to the many area nonprofits. Each page in this sponsored special section is devoted to a different organization. Read on to learn more about their mission statements, organizational backgrounds, points of pride, upcoming events, and ways that you can make a difference. 

Aksarben Foundation

Aksarben Foundation volunteers

Mission statement: To sustain a unified network of business and community leaders that seek to influence change in heartland communities for the betterment of education, workforce development and growth of the economy.

AKSARBEN Foundation
7101 Mercy Road,
Suite 320
Omaha, NE 68106

Established in 1895, the Aksarben Foundation networks with premier employers to influence change for the betterment of youth, the economy, and heartland communities. The Aksarben Foundation recognizes and celebrates the philanthropy and volunteerism of heartland families, funds scholarships and community grants throughout Nebraska and western Iowa, and celebrates the dedication of Nebraska’s agricultural families with the Aksarben Farm Family Awards, given to families who have maintained family ownership of their farmland for 100 or 150 years.

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The Aksarben Foundation focuses on the betterment of Nebraska and western Iowa. For nearly 75 years, the Aksarben Foundation has awarded scholarships to Nebraska youth so that they can realize their dreams and give back to the heartland. Aksarben awards over $1 million in scholarships annually and has long been known for the Aksarben Ball and the Aksarben Stock Show. These events recognize, promote, and celebrate volunteerism, philanthropy, and community pride while helping raise funds.

Pay it forward
Aksarben supporters make several programs possible. The Aksarben | Horatio Alger State Scholarships are for students throughout Nebraska and western Iowa who plan to attend four-year colleges within Nebraska. Aksarben awards 50 of these scholarships each year. Aksarben annually awards 100 Aksarben Career Promise Scholarships to students attending MCC. Ag Leaders Scholarships are awarded to 4-H student exhibitors during the Aksarben Stock Show, and Aksarben Community Grants help communities throughout Nebraska and western Iowa realize their goals.

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Support of the Aksarben Foundation initiatives help further the betterment of the heartland in areas of education, community, and workforce development—the most important issue facing Nebraska today. By working together, we can continue to help improve the condition of the heartland economy and strengthen communities across the state for a better, more prosperous tomorrow.

Upcoming events:
Aksarben Stock Show
Sept. 27-29, 2019
Aksarben Purple
Ribbon Auction
Sept. 28, 2019
Aksarben Ball
Oct. 19, 2019

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American Heart AssociationAmerican-Heart-Association-survivors

Mission statement:
The American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s mission is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives.

American Heart Association
9900 Nicholas St.
Suite 200
Omaha, NE 68114

The American Heart Association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease. Founded by six cardiologists in 1924, the organization now includes more than 40 million volunteers and supporters. They fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide critical tools and information to save and improve lives.

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In Nebraska in the last five years alone, the AHA has funded 21 studies, funding $2.9 million in new research. Since 1949,  the AHA has invested more than $4.3 billion in studies that have led to medical advances such as artificial heart valves, CPR, pacemakers, cholesterol drugs, microsurgery and drug-coated stents. Health care providers learn about medical advances and new treatment guidelines though AHA journals, conferences, and online courses. In the 13-state affiliate, AHA is currently supporting 481 multi-year studies at a cost of more than $110 million.

Pay it forward
The American Heart Association wants everyone to know that cardiovascular diseases are largely preventable. Risks can be lowered by adhering to what they call Life’s Simple 7: not smoking, being physically active, maintaining a healthy body weight, eating a healthy diet, controlling blood pressure, controlling cholesterol, and controlling blood sugar. People can assess their cardiovascular health by visiting MyLifeCheck.org and answering a few questions.

Wish list
Corporate Event Sponsors
Financial contributions to support research
Auction items
Survivor stories
Heart Walk teams
Red yarn for the Little Hats, Big Hearts project
Volunteers for upcoming events

Upcoming events:
Go Red for Women Expo
Sept. 24, 2019
Omaha Heart Ball
Feb. 29, 2020
Workplace Health
Omaha-Council Bluffs Heart Walk
May 2020

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American Midwest BalletAmerican-Midwest-Ballet-dancer

Mission statement:
Celebrating 10 years of professional dance, American Midwest Ballet provides artistic and cultural enrichment through programs of the highest quality: professional dance performances, educational programs, and community outreach.

P.O. Box 6413
Omaha, NE 68106

American Midwest Ballet (AMB) plays a key role in the cultural vitality of our region. The region’s professional ballet company inspires people through a talented roster of 30 dancers from around the nation and abroad, acclaimed choreographers, and stunning productions.

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As the region’s professional dance company, their work is truly beyond words.
Founded in 2009 by visionary artistic director, Erika Overturff
Professional dance productions that uplift, inspire, and make people think
Over 30,000 people reached in the community and on tour
Outreach to over 7,500 students and over 1,000 underserved persons
Partnerships with over 20 social service agencies
Collaborations with fellow arts organizations
Three main stage productions each season

Pay it forward
Attend a performance
Become a season subscriber
Support the ballet as a sponsor
Support the ballet an individual donor
Participate in and support AMB School
Join the ballet guild
Partner with AMB to bring dance to your audience
Follow AMB on social media  
AMB is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization

Wish list
Season sponsorships
Production sponsorships
Education and outreach sponsorships
Artist, costume, and scenic sponsorships
Individual donations
In-kind donations
Guild volunteers

Upcoming events
Momentum: Habaneras
Oct. 11 and 13, 2019
The Nutcracker
Nov. 24, and
Dec. 7-8, 2019
Swing, Swing, Swing!
April 4 and 11, 2020

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American Red Cross


Mission statement: The American Red Cross prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors.

American Red Cross
2912 S. 80th Ave.
Omaha, NE 68124

American Red Cross, serving the Omaha Council Bluffs Metro area turns compassion into action through its strong network of volunteers, donors, and partners in times of need. They ensure that all members of the armed forces and their families find support and comfort when needed, and that in an emergency there are trained individuals nearby ready to use Red Cross skills to save lives. Red Cross also ensures that people have access to lifesaving blood and blood products.

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American Red Cross provides about 40 percent of the U.S. blood supply, making them the single largest supplier of blood in the nation. Last year, Red Cross volunteers in the Omaha metro area responded to 150 disasters, mostly home fires, providing help, hope, and comfort to individuals and families affected. Area Red Cross volunteers assisted with the response to flooding the impacted Nebraska and Iowa in the spring of 2019, helping to provide shelter, food, relief supplies and emotional support to impacted residents.

Pay it forward
Become a volunteer. Help us provide relief and hope to those affected by disasters.
Go to the website and click
on “Volunteer.”
Donate blood. Each blood donation can save up to three lives. To make an appointment visit the website and click on “Give Blood.”
Make a donation. An average of 90 cents of each dollar is invested in humanitarian services and programs.  Go to the website and click on “Donate.” To make a $10 donation text REDCROSS
to 90999.

Wish list
Blood and
platelet donors
Financial support

Upcoming events
Heroes in the Heartland
March 3, 2020

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Angels Among Us


Mission statement: Angels Among Us exists to provide financial and emotional support to families battling pediatric cancer who are living-in or being treated in Nebraska.

Angels Among Us
3858 Jones St., Suite A
Omaha, NE 68105

Angels Among Us was started in 2006 by two women who wanted to give back after their own childhood cancer experience. In the last thirteen years, Angels Among Us has assisted over 400 families with nearly $2 million in support. Families are identified through the social work offices of Children’s Hospital & Medical Center and Nebraska Medicine. Bills are paid directly to the identified creditor ensuring that funds are used for their intended purpose. Angels Among Us has assisted with mortgage and rent payment, car payments, utility bills, and more.

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Yes, Angels Among Us supports families financially, but more importantly, Angels Among Us has helped these families read bedtime stories and play board games without the all-consuming worry of paying rent, insurance or utility bills. We are a community of people helping people. There is strength in numbers. There is also hope, help and monetary relief.

Pay it forward
There are so many good causes that could use your help.We understand that. But if you could give a cancer family just a little relief and allow them to worry less about where their mortgage, rent or utility money will come from – well then, would that tip the scale?  Life isn’t fair. If you could give your help, life just got a little fairer. Doing good is, good. Doing good for others…well that makes you an angel.

Wish list
Fuzzy socks with grips on bottom (ages 3-19)
Gift cards for fast food and travel
Travel sized germ ex and Kleenex
To-go wipes
Find our full wish list on ShareOmaha.org

Upcoming events
Artists and Angels Gala
Sep. 20, 2019
Giving Tuesday
Dec. 3, 2019
Wing in the New Year
January 2020
Uncorked Wine Event
February 2020
Bland Cares/Angels Among Us Golf Outing
July 2020
2020 Gala
Oct. 2, 2020

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Assistance LeagueAssistance League, Operation Teen Parent grads

Mission statement: Assistance League volunteers  transforming the lives of children and adults through community programs.

Assistance League® of Omaha
3569 Leavenworth St.
Omaha, NE 68105-1907

Assistance League® of Omaha (ALO) is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) nonprofit service organization whose members identify, develop, implement and fund ongoing philanthropic programs to serve specific needs of local children and adults in the Greater Omaha Area. Assistance League of Omaha receives no federal, state or city funding.

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Assistance League of Omaha has achieved Platinum status with GUIDESTAR, is a 2019 Top-Rated GREATNONPROFITS NONPROFIT and is a Best Practices organization of the Nonprofit Association of the Midlands.

Pay it forward
3760 children were provided clothing through Operation School Bell®. The Emergency Response Team clothed an additional 109 students
70 teen parents graduated and 4 scholarships were awarded through Operation Teen Parent
361 Assault Survivor Kits® were delivered to victims of abuse or assault
593 teddy bears were given to comfort children through Operation Bear Hug
143 high school students participated in ACT/PSAT Review Sessions
4230 new/nearly new books were collected from ALO members, Pi Beta Phi and business partners to be distributed among less fortunate children within our community through Operation Literacy
Operation Recovery encourages residents of Santa Monica House to succeed during their substance abuse recovery programs and transition back into the community.

Wish list
Monetary donations
Tax deductible donations of housewares, adult clothing, and accessories to the Thrift Shop
Books for young children
Printing services
Donations and Grants

Upcoming events
Operation School Bell
Oct. 1-13, 2019
Christmas Caravan
Preview Party
Nov. 6, 2019
Christmas Caravan
Nov. 7, 2019
Style Show
April 7, 2020

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Autism Action PartnershipAutism Action Partnership kids

Mission statement: To improve the quality of life of persons on the autism spectrum and their families through education, advocacy and support, thereby enabling them to be an integral part of the community.

Autism Action Partnership
10110 Nicholas St.,
Suite 202
Omaha, NE 68114

Autism Action Partnership has served the needs of the Nebraska autism community for over a decade.  AAP offers programming focused in three core areas: education, workforce development, and enrichment and inclusion. The diagnosis of autism continues to grow significantly, worldwide and locally. Autism Action Partnership provides an array of services for individuals with autism and their families and remains dedicated to working with all partners to create a more inclusive  environment for those affected by autism to thrive.

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In 2018, Autism Action Partnership expanded Circle of Friends to over 220 schools across Nebraska for over 3000 students to improve social skills and reduce bullying of classmates on the autism spectrum. AAP hosted numerous sensory friendly “Making Memories” events, allowing families affected by autism to enjoy Werner Park, Rose Theater, Omaha Children’s Museum, and Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium. AAP’s PACE program also expanded to place more job seekers (with autism) and serve more employers seeking qualified employees.

Pay it forward
The world has begun to embrace autism like never before. Communities and businesses are turning their focus to the unique abilities possessed by individuals with autism and the significant contributions they can make in all areas of life. Autism Action Partnership is regularly seeking support in all forms to help harness and sustain these opportunities…and fulfill our mission. Contact us today to learn more about how your time, talent and/or treasure can help change lives!

Wish list
Corporate Partners
Employment opportunities for PACE participants
Inclusion event opportunities
Guild members

Upcoming events
“Making Memories” at the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium
Sept. 14, 2019
11th Annual A Vintage Affaire Gala
Oct. 5, 2019
Omaha Children’s Museum Sensory Santa
Dec. 15, 2019

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Avenue ScholarsAvenue-Scholars

Mission statement: Avenue Scholars strives to ensure careers for committed students of hope and need through education/training and supportive relationships.

Avenue Scholars Foundation
7101 Mercy Road
Suite 240
Omaha, NE  68106

Avenue Scholars provides comprehensive, individualized support and resources to help students from low-income families identify, persist toward, and enter financially sustaining careers. Students are selected on financial need (eligibility for free or reduced-priced school lunches or a federal Pell grant) and interest in pursuing a career requiring an associate degree or less in one of these high-demand industry sectors: Health, Information Technology, Automotive Technology/Transportation, Trades/Manufacturing/Builders, or Business/Office Processes.

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Avenue Scholars has supported the career development of 2,618 students since its inception in 2008. Thanks to the generosity of the Suzanne and Walter Scott Foundation and the ongoing support of Metropolitan Community College, the organization is able to offer all students who successfully complete their high school program an $8,000 scholarship to continue education/training at MCC, in addition to the career-focused support services provided by Avenue Scholars’ dedicated staff.

Pay it forward
Businesses are encouraged to join Avenue Scholars’ effort by providing career exploration and employment opportunities for students in the five targeted industry sectors. Please contact the organizations to discuss ways to can partner in providing internships to students at both the high school and postsecondary level.

Wish list
Business partners to participate with Avenue Scholars students in career-building opportunities such as career exploration events, mock interviews, job fairs, career consultations, job shadowing, internships, apprenticeships, part-time employment, and full-time employment.
Financial contributions

Upcoming events
Avenue Scholars Wine Tasting and Vintner Dinner
Nov. 21, 2019
Avenue Scholars Foundation Celebration Luncheon
Late April/early May 2020

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Benson Plant Rescue

Mission statement: The Benson Plant Rescue (BPR) engages in organic recycling to combat global warming.   Proceeds from plant sales fund the Community Produce Rescue’s (CPR’s) mission of food reclamation and assist the Omaha Public Library with children’s books and computers.

Benson Plant Rescue / Community Produce Rescue (BPR-CPR, Inc.)
7224 Maple St.
Omaha, NE 68134

Since 1999, BPR-CPR has rescued plants and produce from area retailers and gardeners. This  North Omaha effort to improve the community with low cost plants (BPR) and FREE produce (CPR)  has expanded into a nationally recognized model of environmental innovation. BPR’s all-volunteer staff not only sells plants but dispenses knowledge about their care and culture, making this more like a neighborhood club than a garden center.  The organization’s motto says it all: “Growing Community, Not Just Plants.”

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2,000+ dues-paying members.
5,000+  Facebook friends
$70,000+ donated to library since 1999.
2018’s  $10k gift largest ever to library by a local nonprofit.
40+ tons of produce reclaimed annually.
2017 Neighborhoods USA (NUSA),
First Place, Physical
2018 Garden Club of America,
Club Civic Improvement Commendation
2015 Earth Day Omaha’s
Friend of the Environment Award
2015 (Dr. D) + 2018 (Judy)
Sertoma Club of Omaha’s Service to Mankind Award

Pay it forward
In October, 2018, BPR-CPR’s landlord announced plans to sell the building. To avoid losing seven years of investment, BPR-CPR negotiated a lease-purchase agreement through April 2020.
To date they’ve raised about $100,000, but need another $300,000 to complete the purchase and fund necessary improvements. A contribution to the building fund will allow BPR-CPR to continue the past 20 years of organic recycling into the next 20 years. Thank you for your kind assistance.

Wish list
Contributions to our building fund
Anything Garden:
Garden Decor
Pots / Planters
Hand Tools
Garden Machinery
Landscaping Material

Upcoming events:
Spring Into Spring Sale
May 2-3, 2020
Free Plants for Vets, Military, First Responders
July 4-5, 2020
Midsummer Madness Perennial MegaSale
July 18-19, 2020
Free Plants for Teachers & Schools
Aug. 1-2, 2020

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Bethlehem HouseJude-Bethlehem_House

Mission statement: To provide pregnant and parenting women in crisis, regardless of their faith preference, with a home, hope, and empowerment through life-affirming services rooted in the Catholic tradition.

The Humble Lily
10730 Pacific St.
Omaha, NE 68114
Bethlehem House
2301 S. 15th St.
Omaha, NE 68108

Founded in 2005, Bethlehem House provides emergency housing for women, infants, and youth. It is a community-funded, faith-based nonprofit organization providing social services, at no cost, to families. Structured programming and case management by a trauma-informed staff helps women develop life skills, build accountability, gain financial literacy, and set goals through a 12-course Family Life program.

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Thanks to Bethlehem House, more than 350 mothers have received shelter and love, allowing them to choose life and a healthy re-direction. During 2018, 90 percent of graduates went on to maintain stable, independent living. The Humble Lily Boutique directly supports the mission of Bethlehem House, serving as the hub for volunteers and donations. In 2018, more than 30,000 shoppers experienced the store’s eclectic blend of high-end women’s fashions. There is a new store location: 10730 Pacific St. in Shaker Place

Pay it forward
Mentor MoMMs. Foster relationships and help strengthen family support systems.
Donate. In-kind donations provide material items for the women and babies they serve. Current needs include: baby wipes, baby monitors, and gift cards for grocery stores and gas stations.
Monetary gifts. Monetary donations fund critical programing for expecting moms.
Shop. Visit the Humble Lily, Bethlehem House’s high-end women’s clothing boutique, where all proceeds support women and children.

Wish list
Mentors, mentors, mentors.

Program funding
Aftercare healthy independency
Merit scholarships
Financial literacy
On-site service volunteers
Donations (accepted online)
Diapers: Sizes 4, 5, 6, and pull-ups
Gas and grocery cards: $25 increments

Upcoming events
Bethlehem House
Annual Fall Fundraiser—
Born to Shine
Oct. 18, 2019
Dec. 3, 2019
Schedule a campus tour

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Boys TownBoys Town Big Give Graduation 2019

Mission statement: Changing the way America cares for children and families.

Boys Town
14100 Crawford St., Mod 1
Boys Town, NE 68010

For over 100 years, Boys Town has given thousands of at-risk girls and boys the love, support, and education they need to succeed. Every day, abused and neglected children, and broken and struggling families, find help at Boys Town. The care Boys Town provides is uniquely effective because it is driven by the unwavering belief that every child and every family has the potential to succeed, regardless of their circumstances. When Boys Town saves a child, the positive effects ripple through the community, contributing to greater progress for society as a whole.

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Boys Town is celebrating over 100 years as a leader in child and family care.
In 2018, Boys Town served 522,000 children across the country.
In recent years, Crisis Counselors at the Boys Town National Hotline® (800-448-3000) prevented more than 2,700 active suicides in progress.
Boys Town programs and services touch the lives of more than 2 million people nationwide every year.
Boys Town conducts applied research that focuses on understanding the problems children and families face in today’s world and identifying the most effective ways to help them.

Pay it forward
Help a child break free from the cycle of abuse and neglect and enter adulthood prepared to succeed. Get involved and help spread the word—Boys Town kids and families are everywhere. They are teachers, parents, engineers, and artists. Given a second chance, they have triumphed. Boys Town needs your support to continue the amazing work the organization does every day—and has been doing for over 100 years.

Wish list
Monetary donations
National Hotline support (suicide prevention)
Career readiness (vocational training)
School supplies

Upcoming events
Boys Town
National Hotline:
Fine Wine and Hors D’oeuvres Fundraiser
Oct. 3, 2019
Boys Town National Research Hospital®:
Pure Inspiration Art Exhibit & Food-Wine Pairing Event
Oct. 10, 2019
Youth Athletic Program: Booster Banquet
April 28, 2020

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Business Ethics AllianceBusiness-Ethics-Alliance-panel

Mission statement: To build leadership, strengthen organizations, and elevate Greater Omaha through positive, practical business ethics.

Business Ethics Alliance
523 N. 20th St.
Suite 104
Omaha, NE 68178

The Business Ethics Alliance started in 2005 after the Enron scandal rocked Omaha. In 2006, in collaboration with Creighton’s Heider College of Business, the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, and the Better Business Bureau, it grew from local business leaders’ interest in creating a more ethical business environment for our community. In 2008, the Alliance officially became a stand-alone nonprofit led by Dr. Bev Kracher, professor in Business Ethics and Society at Creighton University. Since then, the Alliance has grown to a staff of six and joined forces with over 350 “Trustees” committed to leading ethical for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. It is for, and by, the community.

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The Business Ethics Alliance is the voice that helps Omaha create space for tough, but needed, conversations. Its programming is renowned throughout the community; and all the ethics products and services offered focus on the positive and the practical. People who attend the Alliance events elevate their personal leadership, their organization’s financial vitality, and ultimately the entire community.

Pay it forward
Businesses need help in how to navigate important, complex topics, or potentially controversial current events with their workforce, their customers, and within their community. The alliance provides solutions to companies of all sizes and for employees across all levels, from C-suite to entry-level, to conduct their businesses and professional lives with accountability, integrity, and moral courage. Contact the Business Ethics Alliance to learn more about training and growth opportunities.

Wish list
Attend an upcoming event or program
Book a workshop or training for your company
Corporate sponsorships
Individual donations
Follow on social media
Subscribe to monthly eNewsletter

Upcoming events
Fall Executive Breakfast
Sept. 10, 2019
EthicSpace Conference
Oct. 22, 2019
Fall Mind Candy Dialogue
Nov. 19, 2019
Spring Ethics Luncheon
Feb. 6, 2020

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Mission statement: CenterPointe helps the people we serve get better, sooner, for longer.

CenterPointe Campus for Hope
1490 N. 16th St.
Omaha, NE 68102

Open since 1973, CenterPointe provides care and treatment options for individuals in communities who are experiencing mental illness and substance use disorders, with a focus on low-income and homeless populations. With 37 programs covering a range of services, including treatment, rehabilitation, housing and crisis response, CenterPointe believes in empowering people to discover their own path to well-being and that the people using their services should receive the highest quality care.

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In the 1980s, CenterPointe was one of the first in the nation to offer integrated care for substance use and mental health disorders, and began its “housing-first” model in 1991 to meet basic needs so treatment can succeed.
Every night, CenterPointe provides 240 units of safe and supportive housing.
Last year, CenterPointe provided services to more than 3,000 individuals.
Charitable gifts support basic needs for people in services and bridge the gap in public funding.

Pay it forward
Attend CenterPointe’s
Annual Gala
Donate as an Individual or a Corporation
Follow CenterPointe on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn
Shop for our clients’ basic needs on our Amazon Wish Lists
Name CenterPointe in your Planned Giving strategy

Wish list
Hygiene and personal care products
Art Supplies
Jigsaw Puzzles
Board Games
Monetary Donations

Upcoming events
CenterPointe’s Annual Gala
Oct. 17, 2019

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Completely KIDSCompletely-Kids

Mission statement: Completely KIDS educates and empowers kids and families to create a safe, healthy, successful, and connected community.

2566 St. Mary’s Ave.
Omaha, NE 68105


When we think about our community, we imagine one that is safe, healthy, successful, and connected. That’s why Completely KIDS has a mission to empower kids and families with the skills necessary to break the cycle of poverty and overcome barriers to their success. Each year, Completely KIDS serves more than 2,000 Omaha-area kids, primarily between the ages of 4 and 14, and their families in working toward this mission.The organization’s work takes place after the school day and during the summer with kids. Completely KIDS provides a safe, academically supportive, and enriching environment via partnerships with area schools, homeless shelters, and other local agencies. Additionally, Completely KIDS provides expanded services to the families of kids in the form of literacy, educational support, mental health services, and referrals to other agencies as needed.

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Completely KIDS recently completed an $11 million renovation and expansion of its headquarters. The expansion allows the agency to increase the number of kids and families served through educational and enrichment activities in its afterschool program and family services like therapy and adult education. Completely KIDS will also increase the number of kids receiving weekend food from 460 to 930 over the next several years. Historically, Completely KIDS was the first Omaha nonprofit to provide afterschool services for children in homeless shelters and a weekend food program. In 2020, Completely KIDS will celebrate 100 years of serving children and families in our community.

Pay it forward
Completely KIDS offers many ways to get involved through time or financial contributions, including:
Working directly with children
Weekend food program
Fundraising and supply drives
There are always more kids and families in Omaha who need the help of Completely KIDS.
The organization can’t do it without the backing of donors and volunteers—people just like you. Please contact them to find out more information about giving opportunities.

Wish list
New school supplies:
Pencils (No. 2)
Colored pencils
Lined paper
Glue sticks/bottles of school glue
Always in need:
Volunteer support
Weekend food items
Grocery store gift cards
New board games/puzzles/sports equipment
New/gently used books
New coats/gloves/hats
Reading glasses
Diapers/baby wipes
Feminine products
New socks/underwear sizes preschool-young adult
Please call or visit the website for a full list.

Upcoming events
Night in the Neighborhood
Sept. 27, 2019
Author Luncheon
Spring 2020
Pinot, Pigs & Poets
May 13, 2020

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Cross Training CenterCross-Training-Center-store

Mission statement: To equip disadvantaged and under-educated adults through vocational training and job experience so they can attain employment and become financially successful.

Cross Training Center
5030 N. 72nd St.
Omaha, NE 68134

Cross Training Center provides vocational training and job experience for those who are not able to attain a job due to challenging backgrounds and circumstances. CTC empowers and equips those who have been incarcerated or homeless, involved in gangs or substance abuse, have mental or emotional disorders, have been a victim of human trafficking or domestic violence, or live in poverty for numerous reasons. They receive life-changing training and experiences in order to gain employment on a career path that breaks the cycle of poverty for generations to come.

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Students receive work experience while providing valuable services and products that benefit our community.
Cross Electronic Recycling kept over 300,000 pounds of electronics out of the landfills last year.
Redeemed Computers and Electronics refurbished over 500 computers, laptops,
and appliances.
Cross Automotive provided 58 donated vehicles to those in need last year.
Cross Social Hall hosted over 40 events while helping students learn hospitality services.

Pay it forward
Donate automobiles, electronics, and other out-of-service equipment. Everything collected is used to provide vocational training and job experience.
Utilize CTC’s services when a need arises. Find out more online.
Financial contributions are needed to build a recycling warehouse and a commercial kitchen, and to meet the annual operating budget.
People are encouraged to hold collection drives at workplaces, churches, or civic groups.

Wish list
Corporate partnerships
Monetary donations
Community speaking engagements
Collection drives for needed items

Upcoming events
Invite CTC to speak about solutions to poverty at a civic, church, or workplace event.

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CUES School SystemCUES School System-kids

Mission statement: The CUES School System consists of three urban schools: Sacred Heart, All Saints, and Holy Name. CUES-supported schools provide academic excellence, blended learning, and support for students and families beyond the classroom. The CUES Fund raises money through private donations to fully support the schools.

CUES School System
2207 Wirt St.
Omaha, NE 68110

Founded in 1975, CUES began by providing financial support and operational guidance to Sacred Heart School. In 2012, CUES expanded its mission to welcome two additional schools–All Saints and Holy Name. The CUES School System was created in 2017, a first of its kind in the region. The CUES School System is fully funded through The CUES Fund. The CUES Fund ensures all three schools are fully supported through private donations. The CUES School System is governed by a board of academic experts who ensure that each school is following a standard of excellence that will best support the student.

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CUES School System provides quality education, innovative programming, strategic partnerships, and support services for students and families beyond the classroom. They served 560 urban students in the 2018-19 school year. More than 70% of the CUES School System Class of 2019 will be heading to private school in the fall and all the graduates are planning to continue their education in high school. The CUES School System is overseen by a Board of Governors made up of a team of academic experts that ensure that the school system is adhering to the new initiatives to better serve the whole student:
Blended Learning
Student and family support services
Community partnerships

Pay it forward
By supporting the CUES Fund you allow the CUES School System to provide the education and opportunities that will prepare our students for a successful future
How can you help?
Individual donations
Corporate donations
Foundation support
Join one of CUES volunteer groups:
Hearts of CUES
The CUES Young
Professionals Group
Please visit the website for more information.

Wish list
Donations to support the tuition assistance fund

Upcoming events
CUES School System Neighborhood Fun Run
Sept. 28, 2019
Holy Name Event
Oct. 4, 2019
Oct. 11, 2019
The Gathering
March 28, 2020

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D2 CenterD2 Center-teacher-and-students

Mission statement: D2 Center connects out-of-school and disengaged youths age 15-21 into an educational pathway with other resources and supports needed to earn a high school diploma and prepare for post-secondary opportunities and a career.

D2 Center
1941 S. 42nd St., Suite 503
Omaha, NE 68105

The D2 Center works with youth who are not in school, are in an alternative program, or are at risk of dropping out. D2 Center Youth Academic Navigators are education-focused case managers who help their students with issues as they emerge to ensure they are making progress in school. Summer elective credit classes and tutoring during the school year are available as well as career navigators to assist with postsecondary planning (jobs, career, or college).

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Since 2011, the D2 Center has served 800-plus students. There are 340 students who have earned diplomas, and more than 250 in the program. Through a re-enrollment partnership with Omaha Public Schools, 250 students who had dropped out of school were contacted this year. Dozens re-enrolled, including 18 who have now graduated. Career navigators assist D2 Center students with postsecondary planning and connections, and students in alternative educational settings.

Pay it forward
D2 Center students have various reasons for disengaging from school, and face multiple obstacles to completing their high school education. A high school diploma is a crucial step towards better postsecondary opportunities and higher earnings. These students are an important part of the community, and the D2 Center needs community support to continue their mission. Please consider a gift today and visit the website to donate and learn more.

Wish list
Monetary donations
Various supplies, as noted on Share Omaha’s wish list

Upcoming events
Five-Year Anniversary Party
Nov. 15, 2019

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Do SpaceDO-Space-class

Mission statement: To empower the Omaha community through access to technology and innovative learning experiences.

Do Space
7205 Dodge St.
Omaha, NE 68114

Do Space is a one-of-a-kind technology space, digital workshop, and innovation playground. It was designed to tackle the digital divide in Omaha, as well as to boost digital skills and drive innovation, creativity, and invention in the region. Free to the public, Do Space is a place where community members can interact with cutting-edge technology and receive assistance and instruction in its use. It’s more than just a building—it’s a community technology movement.

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Located at 72nd and Dodge Streets
Open 90 hours a week
Average of 474 visits per day
Over 75,000 members
Membership, programs, and services are free
At Do Space, Omahans have access to powerful fiber Wi-Fi internet, high-end computer stations and devices, 3D printers, and technology-focused learning opportunities. Do Space has a little something for everyone, but aims to make a significant impact on two key groups: underconnected, low-income individuals; and creators, entrepreneurs, and inventors.

Pay it forward
Every day, Do Space works with hundreds of Omahans to help them achieve their technology education goals. With help from the community, Do Space hopes to host over 700 free programs and events this year, welcoming 13,000 new members to the space. The future belongs to those who understand technology. Help make Omaha future-ready with a gift today.

Wish list
Program and equipment sponsorships
Monetary donations

Upcoming events
Littles Lab
Tuesdays and Saturdays
Cyber Seniors
Tech Help Saturdays
Do Space offers around 60 tech programs and events every month. Register for free on the website.

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Gesu Housing, Inc.Gesu-House

Mission statement: The mission of Gesu Housing Inc. is to provide economical, energy-efficient housing to North Omaha families. Our hope is that building these homes will continue the efforts of other non-profit organizations that seek to stabilize and restore neighborhoods throughout the city.

Since 2002, Gesu Housing, founded by the Br. Mike Wilmot, S.J., and directed by Dale Barr Jr., has built 69 Energy Star 3.0-certified homes in the Clifton Hills South/Girls Inc. neighborhood of North Omaha. The area is racially diverse and economically challenged. The goal of Gesu Housing is to address the issues of poverty and neighborhood decline in North Omaha by turning renters into first-time homebuyers with affordable mortgage payments as well is filling vacant lots with new three-bedroom homes.

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Gesu Housing was given the 2016 Community Excellence Award from the State of Nebraska as well as from the City of Omaha. Studies have shown that the best way to stabilize a neighborhood is to provide families with quality, energy-efficient homes in a neighborhood that is racially and economically diverse. Removing vacant lots and blighted houses and replacing them with new homes impacts the stabilization of neighborhoods with permanent residents.

Pay it forward
The need for these services is great—and Gesu Housing needs help to make sure they can continue to help worthy families within our communities. While other initiatives regarding community redevelopment and jobs are beginning to successfully take hold in North Omaha, affordable housing is the foundation without which other North Omaha economic recovery projects cannot succeed.

Wish list
Financial donations can easily be made online on our website or Facebook

Upcoming events
Help Build a House at Champions Run Golf Event
July 27, 2020

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Heartland Family ServiceHeartland Family Services photo collage

Mission statement: Heartland Family Service’s mission is to strengthen individuals and families in the community through education, counseling, and support services.

2101 S. 42nd St.
Omaha, NE 68105

Since 1875, Heartland Family Service (HFS) connects with over 54,000 individuals and families each year through direct services, education, and outreach from over 15 locations in east central Nebraska and southwest Iowa. This includes everyone from infants in their Family Works program to seniors in their Generations Community Center. The agency’s 50-plus programs fall into the following focus areas: Child & Family Well-Being; Counseling & Prevention; Housing, Safety, & Financial Stability.

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Of HFS’s clients, 80 percent have annual incomes of $20,000 or less. Heartland Family Service believes in, and practices, trauma-informed care. They ask, “What has happened to you?” and not, “What is wrong with you?” to each and every client that walks through their doors. Their expert staff and licensed therapists work with individuals and their families to help break damaging intergenerational cycles in order to become more self-sufficient.

Pay it forward
Help improve the lives of children and families through the gift of your time, in-kind donations, or financial support:
Join volunteer groups: To learn more, contact Volunteer@HeartlandFamilyservice.org or (402)552.7418
Purchase holiday gifts for the Adopt-a-Family program
Host a monthly Good Works 101 Lunch and Learn session
Follow HFS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube
Attend annual events
Donate Today! Visit HeartlandFamilyService.org or contact Donations@HeartlandFamilyService.org
or (402)552-7443.

Wish list
New underwear and socks
Scarves, gloves, winter hats
Diapers, formula, baby items
Suitcases and duffle bags
New pillows
Bottled water/sports drinks
Non-perishable food
Single-serving snacks
Craft supplies
Bus passes
Gift cards
Tickets to events and activities

Upcoming events
26th Annual Safe Haven Golf Tournament
Sept. 23, 2019
Eagle Hills Golf Course
Salute to Families
Nov. 21, 2019
Happy Hollow Club
“Carnival of Love” Gala
Feb. 29, 2020
Embassy Suites – La Vista
Omaha Gives!–Pottawattamie Gives!
May 20, 2020
24-Hour Online Giving
“Strike a Chord” Gala in Council Bluffs
June 26, 2020
Location: TBD

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Humanities NebraskaHumanities Nebraska, Prime Time Family Reading

Mission statement: Humanities Nebraska inspires and enriches personal and public life by delivering opportunities to engage thoughtfully with history and culture.

Humanities Nebraska
215 Centennial Mall South, Suite 330
Lincoln, NE 68508

Since 1973, HN has offered free and accessible programming throughout the state, amounting to an annual average of 500-plus opportunities to learn, discuss, and grow. Their programming includes literacy sessions that help underserved families break the poverty cycle, a summer Chautauqua history festival, high school civics curriculum and forum, writing workshops for veterans, a speakers bureau, traveling exhibitions from the Smithsonian Museum, grant funding for local programs, and the annual Governor’s Lecture in the Humanities.

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In 2018, HN presented or funded 579 programs, reaching 329,000-plus people in 155 different communities. “Now my son asks me to read and likes to go to school,” one parent said. A student at Capitol Forum on America’s Future said “I now have a greater understanding of what is going on in the world.” One of the Nebraska Warrior Writers wrote “The level of healing through writing has been immense…Thank you for giving me my life back.”

Pay it forward
No matter who someone is or what they enjoy, HN has programs that will enrich people’s lives in so many ways. Supporting HN with a monthly, quarterly, or annual gift will: enable more at-risk kids to gain literacy so they succeed in school, help high school students become life-long engaged and informed citizens, encourage communities to come together to celebrate and learn about history and diverse cultures, assist veterans, and much more.

Wish list
Award-winning children’s books for underserved families
Transportation costs for high schools participating in Capitol Forum on America’s Future
Writing textbooks, pens, and notebooks for veterans in Nebraska Warrior Writers
Travel cost reimbursement for members of the HN Speakers Bureau, including Nebraska State Poet Matt Mason
Shipping cost reimbursement for communities hosting Smithsonian traveling exhibitions as part of Museum on Main Street
Hotel accommodations for Chautauqua history festival speakers and scholars
Table sponsorships for the annual Governor’s Lecture in the Humanities

Upcoming events
Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival in Seward
Sept. 20-22, 2019
24th Annual Governor’s Lecture in the Humanities in Omaha
Oct. 24, 2019
Prime Time Family Reading Time, locations in Fremont, Grand Island, Lexington, Lincoln, Norfolk, and Omaha
September-November 2019
Nebraska Warrior Writers, locations in Grand Island, Lincoln, and Omaha
September-November 2019

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The Jewish Federation of OmahaThe Jewish Foundation, two girls

Mission statement: JFO’s vision is that every person in Omaha feels welcome on the campus and is inspired to have a meaningful and relevant relationship with the Jewish Federation of Omaha and its agencies.

The Jewish Federation of Omaha
Staenberg Kooper Fellman Campus
333 S. 132nd St.
Omaha, NE 68154

The Jewish Federation of Omaha is a full-service organization serving the Jewish and Omaha community. They provide services and programs for all ages from early childhood education to a long-term, skilled care nursing home. They also have one of the finest fitness centers in Omaha that features a brand-new, outdoor aquatic complex; youth programming; a 300-seat theater; a public art gallery; a weekly newspaper; meals on wheels; counseling services; and community advocacy.

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1,800-plus people of all faiths visit the campus daily.
$405,000 in scholarships for education, summer camps, and Israel experiences.
4,800 meals delivered to local Jewish seniors in need.
165 clients sought counseling in 2018-2019–89% of whom are non-Jewish.
Provided funding to social welfare programs for vulnerable communities.
10,000-plus students participated in Institute for Holocaust Education programs and Anti-Defamation League workshops.
JCC membership and youth camps are open to everyone.

Pay it forward
The JFO is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and greatly appreciates individual and corporate donations, which benefit people in Omaha, in Israel, and around the world.
Other ways to support the JFO:
Visit the campus for the many community events and programs, educational programs and classes, backyard concert series,  film festival, Israel’s Independence Day, cultural arts, camps, and youth services.
Become a JCC member
Subscribe to the Jewish Press
Choose RBJH for rehabilitation needs

Upcoming events
Backyard Concert Series
Sept. 8, 15, and 22
Exploring Judaism: Tuesday nights starting
Sept. 3, 2019
Parenting the Love & Logic Way®
Sept. 9-30, 2019
2020 Annual Campaign Community Event
Sept. 16, 2019
PEW – Promoting Empowerment in our World
October 2019
Jewish Film Festival
November 2019
Institute for Holocaust Education Week of Understanding
March 23-27, 2020
Yom HaShoah Community Commemoration
April 22, 2020

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KANEKOKANEKO performance

Mission statement: Creativity begins with an idea—seeing things differently. KANEKO’s purpose is exploring the creative process—how a new idea is born into the arts, sciences, and philosophy. Supporting and promoting freedom in creativity is KANEKO’s mission.

1111 Jones Street
Omaha, NE 68102

Established in 1998 by international artist Jun Kaneko and his wife, Ree, KANEKO is headquartered in three turn-of-the-century warehouses in the Old Market. KANEKO is an institution with a vision to celebrate creativity, and began programming in 2009, officially opening as a public gallery in 2010. Since then, KANEKO has hosted a wide range of artists, writers, scientists, educators, and speakers to share their gifts of creativity with the community of Omaha.

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With over 60,000 visitors annually, KANEKO is one of the most attended visual arts organizations in the state. Recently, KANEKO has been able to expand its core creative programming to include the Generator, Movement, and Passages Series as an outlet for local and national artists to showcase their innovation in music, performance art, dance, and writing to the creative community in Omaha. KANEKO’s educational programs serve youth and adult learners alike around the Omaha metro.

Pay it forward
Visit KANEKO. Explore the creative process through an exhibition or program at KANEKO.
Become a Volunteer. Volunteers at KANEKO monitor the gallery, help give exhibition tours, and assist with programs and educational workshops.
Become a Member. KANEKO members help make KANEKO a creative resource for the Omaha community and beyond.
Make a Donation. Help make KANEKO a place where ideas are born and visitors are inspired to explore the creative process. Donate online.

Wish list
Volunteers and docents
Corporate partnerships
Annual fund contributions
In-kind donations
Art supplies

Upcoming events
The Sixth Annual KANEKO Open Space Soirée
Sept. 27, 2019
Opera Omaha + KANEKO Evening with Madama Butterfly
October 17, 2019
PASSAGES Series: MCC Creative Writing Forum
October 25, 2019
TedxOmaha Salons
Every Third Monday of the Month

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KIOS 91.5KIOS-b&w photo-man-and-equipment

Mission statement: KIOS’s mission is to empower our community with quality local, national, and global content that challenges and connects people, and furthers a deeper understanding of events, ideas, and cultures.

KIOS 91.5, Omaha Public Radio
3230 Burt St.
Omaha, NE 68131

KIOS is Omaha Public Radio. Started at Omaha Central High School in September 1969, KIOS was the educational extension of Omaha Public Schools and became a charter member of National Public Radio in 1971. KIOS continues to provide the best in news, information, jazz, and entertainment programming to an audience of around 60,000 listeners each week. KIOS broadcasts programs from National Public Radio, American Public Media, and Public Radio International, along with locally produced shows.

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This year, KIOS celebrates its 50th anniversary. As part of the year’s festivities, KIOS hosted “An Evening With Susan Stamberg.” Stamberg was the first woman to anchor a nightly newscast and one of NPR’s “founding mothers.” KIOS is committed to excellence in programming and continuous improvement in its operations.  With a complete renovation of its studios in 2019, KIOS has laid the groundwork for podcasting along with an expansion of our digital presence and features reporting.

Pay it forward
Listener support and corporate sponsorships make it possible for all in our community to stay informed of important news events, hear great music, and stay connected to the local community and the world. KIOS needs to increase this support to expand our range of services and on-air programming as well as perform vital maintenance on aging transmission equipment. Monetary contributions from individuals, businesses and organizations will help fund KIOS’s Wish List items.

Wish list
More individual Sustaining Members
Vehicle donations through the CARS Program, which generate operating funds for KIOS
Needed transmitter and tower upgrades
Studio equipment upgrades for enhanced on-air and streaming station identification
Radio journalist field kits, enabling KIOS to work out in the community
Upgrades to online streaming, expansion and support
Corporate sponsorship of air studio
Volunteers for fund drives and special events

Upcoming events
Fall On-Air Pledge Drive
Oct. 16-19, 2019
Spring On-Air Pledge Drive
April 2020

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MerrymakersMerrymakers performers and listener

Merrymakers Association
12020 Shamrock Plaza Suite 200
Omaha, NE 68154

The Merrymakers Association consists of 24 professional musicians who serve more than 50,000 seniors each year, traveling to 146 nursing homes, hospice houses, veteran homes and other senior communities each month.
play music geared to the seniors’ age group, sparking fond memories
create a comfortable environment where expression is encouraged
provide an opportunity for socialization
offer a genuine personal connection
Executive Director Sandy Lemke is supported by an enthusiastic and dedicated board of directors, along with Friends Group president Jill Goldstein.

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Merrymakers consistently achieves a high level of success with its programs. Its results are quantified through annual surveys of partner facility activity directors. These surveys show that Merrymakers music: improves quality of life, decreases feelings of anxiety and/or depression,
decreases feelings of loneliness and/or isolation, gives an overall increase of enjoyment and happiness, gives a chance to express feelings, and gives an opportunity for social engagement.

Pay it forward
Individuals can serve on event planning committees throughout the year or make monetary donations of any size. A contribution to Merrymakers is a meaningful way to support culture and socialization for senior citizens. Merrymakers has a waiting list of facilities who would like to receive our services. Merrymakers can’t achieve its mission without the support of donors and volunteers. Please contact them to find out more information about ways to help!

Wish list
Monetary donations of any size
Volunteers to serve on event  planning committees

Upcoming events
Toast to Eldora and Jack Vetter
Nov. 14, 2019
Omaha Gives!
May 27, 2020

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Metropolitan Community College FoundationMetro Community College grads

Mission statement: The Metropolitan Community College Foundation advances the college’s mission by creating community awareness, building and nurturing meaningful relationships, and connecting community partners with giving opportunities that fulfill their philanthropic objectives.

Metropolitan Community College

Metropolitan Community College has nine locations in the surrounding four-county area that provide students the chance to earn high-demand technical skills, industry credentials, and credits to help them reach their academic goals. Others use MCC to engage in lifelong learning through English-language instruction, GED or college prep courses, career training and continuing education. The foundation connects students with scholarships, helps fund new facilities, and supports programs and initiatives through partnerships with generous community donors.

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Metropolitan Community College has always been responsive to industry and community needs. Two industries—automotive and manufacturing—need more skilled workers to fill the jobs of today and tomorrow. MCC plans to answer this need with a new Automotive Training Center and renovated Center for Advanced Manufacturing with embedded veterans services at its South Omaha Campus. To learn more visit, mccneb.edu/advancingthepromise.

Pay it forward
People can help MCC through the foundation by giving to what aligns with their philanthropic goals, such as:
Giving to an educational program, helps grow programming, purchase equipment and
support student learning
Establishing professional development funds that help to keep faculty abreast of technology and curricular advances in their fields
Creating or contributing to an existing scholarship fund of your choice to help fulfill the college’s mission by bridging financial gaps for students

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Nebraska Humane SocietyNebraska Humane Society black cat

Mission statement: The Nebraska Humane Society protects, enriches, and saves the lives of animals in the communities we serve.

Nebraska Humane Society
8929 Fort St.
Omaha, NE 68134

The Nebraska Humane Society offers safety and care for animals. NHS provides animal control services to Omaha and all of Sarpy County, upholding laws that protect animals and the people who love them. They provide education, encourage adoptions, and promote responsible pet care for the communities they serve.

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In 2018 NHS: Adopted out 11,268 pets, performed 1,474 specialized surgeries, fostered 2,147 fragile animals in 288 foster homes, and provided behavior help to 4,729 callers. NHS also returned more than 2,500 pets to their homes, offered training classes, low-cost spay and neuter services, and a free pet food pantry. They provided a safe haven for animals of domestic violence, offered pet safety and animal care presentations for groups across the metro, and hosted pet-friendly events. 

Pay it forward
NHS is a private nonprofit corporation. Animal Control is funded through the cities who contract for those services, but all shelter programs including rehabilitating and rehoming of animals are funded through private donations. Our volunteers donate time and talent to walk dogs, enrich cats, counsel for adoptions, help market pets, and foster those needing TLC in their homes! Your help becomes hope when you donate: In honor or memory; Monthly; Planned giving; Corporate sponsorships.
Details at nehumanesociety.org

Wish list
Canned cat food
Vienna sausages
Canned chicken
Canned Tuna
Soft dog treats
Kong Toys
Peanut Butter
Kitty Wand Toys

Upcoming events
Walk for the Animals and 5K Run
Sept. 29, 2019
Come Wine With Us
Dec. 7, 2019
Black Tie and Tails
April 25, 2020

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New Visions Homeless Services

New-Visions Homeless Services














Mission statement: To provide help, hope, and opportunity to our neighbors who are experiencing homelessness and hunger in the Omaha and Council Bluffs communities.

New Visions Homeless Services
1435 N. 15th St.
Council Bluffs, IA 51501

New Visions Homeless Services was founded in 1995 in Council Bluffs as MOHM’S Place to provide meals to the hungry. In September 2008, the New Visions Complex in Council Bluffs was built. This facility houses southwest Iowa’s only emergency men’s shelter, community meal site, and permanent supportive housing. In 2012, New Visions Omaha Campus was built to address the specific needs of veterans that are experiencing homelessness. These services include 40 fully furnished apartments to street-level veterans, transportation, daily meals, and access to on-site mental health and substance abuse therapists.

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In 2018, New Visions provided 43,800 nights of shelter to 810 men in the emergency shelter, Joshua House; served over 140,000 meals to 3,400 hungry men, women, and children in their community meal site, MOHM’S Place; and provided 9,360 nights of housing to 32 chronically homeless men and women through their permanent supportive housing facility, Timothy House. New Visions’ veteran-specific Omaha Campus expanded their programs to provide safe housing and wrap around services to 54 veterans at a time. Last year alone this program provided  29,600 nights of transitional/permanent supportive housing to 107 veterans that would have found themselves living in a shelter or on the streets instead of their own fully furnished apartment.

Pay it forward
New Visions depends upon the community’s generosity and are grateful for all who pay it forward, and invest in those who are experiencing homelessness and hunger. People can partner with New Visions to provide over 100,000 meals a year to the hungry; hope to over 800 seeking a safe place of refuge from the harsh conditions of the streets; a home to 94 men, women, and veterans who found safe housing in one of New Visions’ apartments, and Christmas gifts to over 2,000 children in the Metro Area.

Wish list
Cleaning supplies
Disinfectant cleaners
Hygiene supplies
Household goods
Laundry soap
MAT bus tickets
Monetary donations
Paper towels
Salt, pepper, and other seasonings
Socks and underwear
Toilet paper
Household goods

Upcoming events
Homeless Services’ 25th Anniversary Celebration
Aug. 15, 2019
Community-Wide Christmas Celebration
Dec. 17, 2019

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Omaha Home for BoysOmaha-Home-for-Boys 100 years

Mission statement: The mission of Omaha Home for Boys is to support and strengthen youth, young adults and families through services that inspire and equip them to lead independent and productive lives.

4343 N. 52nd St.
Omaha, NE 68104

Omaha Home for Boys is celebrating 100 years of service to youth, young adults and families in 2020. Omaha Home for Boys empowers its clients with the skills needed to be self-sufficient through programs focusing on employment, education, housing, transportation, basic life skills, and mental and behavioral health. Because of their supporters, at-risk youth in our community are connected with the life changing programs and mentors at Omaha Home for Boys.

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For 100 years, Omaha Home for Boys has served as a pillar of hope for youth, young adults, and families in Nebraska. What started as an orphanage for young boys in 1920 has evolved to a continuum of care that serves young adults ages 14 to 26. Most recently, their programs expanded to include clinical services and supportive housing, both of which meet critical needs in the community.

Pay it forward
Supporting Omaha Home for Boys is an investment in this community.
Funds—a gift to Omaha Home for Boys will help change the lives of at-risk youth.
Friendship—become a friend of the Home by attending or sponsoring an event.
Voice—share the reasons to support Omaha Home for Boys and ask others to do the same.
Volunteerismpeople can use their time and talents to give back through volunteering.

Wish list
Books for the high school library
New or gently used furniture and household items
Gift cards for clothes, shoes, backpacks, or school supplies
Ticket donations for youth to attend sporting events, concerts, or theater performances
Nonperishable household items such as hygiene products, cleaning supplies, or kitchen wares
New mattresses
Household essentials such as vacuums, bedding, and towels
Clothes for young adults ages 14 to 26
Essentials for children ages newborn to 5

Upcoming events
Roaring 20s Gala
Nov. 8, 2019
Project Christmas Joy
December 2019
OHB Golf Classic
June 10, 2020
OHB 5K and Family fFun Run
Aug. 8, 2020

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Omaha Public Library FoundationOmaha-Public-Library-event

Mission statement: The Omaha Public Library Foundation raises funds and advocates for Omaha Public Library.

Omaha Public Library Foundation
215 S. 15th St.
Omaha, NE 68102

Since 1985, the Omaha Public Library Foundation (OPLF) has provided significant private funding totaling nearly $10 million for one purpose: enhancing Omaha Public Library. The Omaha Public Library Foundation believes a healthy and vibrant public library system contributes to the betterment of our community, aids in economic development, provides public gathering spaces, and creates a sense of community pride.

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OPL’s 12 library branches are among the most frequently visited destinations in Nebraska, with 1.8 million visits last year alone. Omaha Public Library boasts more than 300,000 members. And those patrons borrowed more than 3 million items from Omaha Public Library in 2018.

Pay it forward
As an organization wholly separate from Omaha Public Library and the City of Omaha, OPLF seeks private support for improvements and enhancements which cannot be provided through local government funding. Designations are always welcome, but a gift given wherever most needed provides Omaha Public Library the flexibility to respond to critical needs or special opportunities that arise. OPLF provides funds for remarkable programs and projects thanks to general or unrestricted donations. Giving categories include: Childhood literacy, programming, and services; Teen literacy, programming, and services; Adult literacy, programming, and services; Technology; Community outreach; Summer Reading Program; Genealogy; Library branch improvements; Partnerships with local organizations; Community services and outreach; Subject librarians; Collections; Community book clubs

Wish list
An unrestricted gift to the Omaha Public Library Foundation is the best way to demonstrate your support. The Omaha Public Library Foundation accepts cash donations, bequests, memorials, stock transfers, and planned gifts. For more information , please call the Omaha Public
Library Foundation.

Upcoming events
Omaha Reads featuring “This Blessed Earth: A Year in the Life of an America Family Farm” by Ted Genoways
Sept. 1-30, 2019
Between the Lines with Angie Thomas, author of “The Hate U Give,” at the Institute for the Culinary Arts at Metropolitan Community College’s Fort Omaha Campus
Oct. 1, 2019
Food for Fines, when Omaha Public Library cardholders donate canned goods and non-perishable foods in exchange for credit toward overdue library fines
Oct. 6-13
Read It & Eat, Omaha Public Library’s annual culinary conference, at W. Dale Clark Main Library
Nov. 2, 2019

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Omaha Public Schools FoundationOmaha Public Schools Foundation

Mission statement: Omaha Public Schools Foundation enriches students’ lives by funding learning experiences that inspire hope, open doors, and help students to achieve their dreams.

Omaha Public Schools Foundation
3861 Farnam St.
Omaha, NE 68131

Omaha Public Schools Foundation is dedicated to serving the students, families, and teachers
of the Omaha Public Schools District. By raising funds from individual donors, corporate sponsors, and foundations as well as through parent-paid programs, OPSF is able to invest resources back into the district that encourage the development and success of all students. The funds they administer have no associated fees so every dollar goes directly to the teachers and students served.

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OPSF Kids Club is in 42 schools and serves approximately 5000 OPS elementary students, K-6, per year. OPSF funded $192,000 in teacher classroom and community grants this past year. OPSF awarded over $400,000 in scholarships to OPS high school seniors. They provide parent-paid early childhood classrooms in select OPS elementary schools throughout the district. OPSF offers a unique fundraising platform for principals and teachers within the district called “Invest in Success,” connecting educators with interested donors to fund classroom projects.

Pay it forward
Through secure online donation forms, donors can contribute to memorials, scholarships, classroom grants, and teacher requests. Donations can be made directly by contacting Executive Director Toba Cohen-Dunning. Follow OPSF through their social media channels on Facebook and Twitter to learn about opportunities to give, and sign up for their newsletter at our website on the “Contact Us” page.

Wish list
Funding for OPS Capital Campaigns:
Burke High stadium renovations and facilities upgrade
South High addition for visual and performing arts
Bryan High Urban Ag Career Academy
Benson High Career Academies
District Career Center
Funding for Programs:
Kids Club
Early childhood education programs
Classroom field trips
Student transportation
Grants and Scholarships:
Teacher classroom grants
Educator scholarships
Individual scholarships
Honors and memorials
Student MAT Bus Tickets
Assistance for student lunches

Upcoming events
vinNEBRASKA Wine Event
March 27-28, 2020

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Omaha Rapid ResponseOmaha-Rapid-Response-team-at-work

Mission statement: Omaha Rapid Response (ORR) is committed to bringing Hope to the hopeless by meeting the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of those suffering in the midst of crisis and disaster.

RAPID RESPONSE: Omaha’s Disaster Relief Team
P.O. BOX 24052
Omaha, NE 68124


Omaha Rapid Response is a non-profit organization founded by members of the churches of Omaha in 2000 in response to the increasing number of natural and man-made disasters around the world. The impact of a disaster is immediate and long term. The effects of loss, destruction and hardship do not end when the disaster no longer makes the news. After the shock subsides, the reality and depression of the ’new-normal’ for the victims sets in.

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ORR continues to send teams to the victims of disaster as long as they feel they can be of assistance.  Since the recent historic flooding, they have helped hundreds of victims in ten regional communities. They build relationships with those they serve in order to meet their immediate and future needs. God has called them to use relief work as a tool to bring Hope and Love to those hurting the most.

Pay it forward
Omaha Rapid Response deploys volunteers trained in medical, construction, chaplaincy and many other disciplines. They welcome all volunteers, whether skilled or unskilled. If you have a heart to help those suffering in the midst of crisis, you are qualified to be deployed. Do you want to bless others in their time of need? Do you want to be blessed beyond words? Are you  called to be a volunteer, to pray or to give?

Wish list

Volunteers – skilled & unskilled
Team Leaders
Financial Support
Administrative Support
Corporate Partnerships
Church Partners
Prayer Partners

Upcoming events

Visit the Omaha Rapid Response website and Facebook page for the latest news.

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Omaha Sports CommissionOlympic Swim Trials in Omaha

Mission statement: OSC fosters a positive, socio-economic impact on, and a heightened awareness and image of, Omaha by attracting, hosting, and supporting amateur sporting events.

Omaha Sports Commission
1004 Farnam St., Suite 102
Omaha, NE 68102 402.502.2216

Created in 2003, the Omaha Sports Commission is a non-profit entity dedicated to making Omaha a premier sports community in the United States. The commission works closely with area businesses and community leaders to help recruit and promote amateur sporting events. The OSC is a “total service event team,” meaning that it is involved in all aspects of event management—from bid selection and preparation, to event hosting and event enhancement, to post- event evaluation.

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From 2008-2018, Omaha Sports Commission events generated $326 million in economic impact for the city. With every event, a goal of the OSC is to give back to the community. During the 2018 Curling World Cup, the OSC reached 11,000 students in the Learn to Curl Program where students were taught the sport of curling. The OSC has been responsible for bringing the U.S. Olympic Team Trials-Swimming to Omaha for the last four trials years.

Pay it forward
Become a volunteer: Events aren’t successful without the help of amazing volunteers. Visit the website and find out how to be added to our volunteer database.
Make a donation: As a non-profit, the OSC operates off the support of grants, event sponsorships, and donors. Visit the website and donate today.

Wish list
Sponsorships for events
In-kind donations
Tent/awning for trade shows and events
Folding table for trade shows and events

Upcoming events
May 28, 2020
U.S. Olympic Team Trials-Swimming
June 21-28, 2020
Women with Drive
Summer 2020

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Open Door MissionOpen Door Mission volunteer

Mission statement: Open Door Mission is a Gospel Rescue Mission that meets the basic needs of individuals and families while inspiring hope for lasting change.

Open Door Mission
2828 N. 23rd St. E.
Omaha, NE 68110

Open Door Mission meets the basic needs of individuals and families while inspiring hope for lasting change. They are a bridge for people trying to reclaim basic necessities, restore dignity and hope, and rejoin the community. President/CEO Candace L. Gregory uses her extensive experience in community prevention programs to break the cycles of homelessness and poverty. She works to bring hope to others and develops innovative ways to make this happen through partnerships and collaborations.

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Daily, Open Door Mission’s campus offers 917 safe shelter beds to homeless people; serves over 3,500 hot, nutritious meals to the hungry; and provides homeless preventive measures to over 1,000 people living in poverty so they can remain in their homes. Open Door Mission monthly partners with more than 1,200 volunteers who make a difference right here in their community. Please visit the website to learn how to have a life-changing volunteer experience.

Pay it forward
This holiday season, Open Door Mission expects to provide more than 213,500 hot, nutritious meals to the Heartland. We invite individuals, churches, or businesses to organize a Hope for the Hungry food drive to help stock ODM’s pantry shelves for the holidays with canned vegetables, fruits, and meats; instant potatoes; and boxed meals. Please visit the website for more information.

Wish list
Men’s socks and underwear
Toddler toys
$10.00 gift cards to Walmart or Target
Matchbox and Hot Wheels car sets
Play-Doh sets
Board games and puzzles (especially for children 8 and older or families)
Sports balls
Small and medium Lego sets
Hair dryers
Shaving kits
Makeup kits

Upcoming events
Love Your Neighbor Gala
Sept. 26, 2019
Hy-Vee Turkey ‘N’ Fixin’s
Nov. 1, 2019
KFAB Hope for the
Hungry Radiothon
Nov. 14, 2019

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Opera OmahaOpera-Omaha-Elixir

Mission statement: Opera Omaha’s mission is to enrich the quality of life in our community by creating professional opera and music theater, which uniquely combine the visual and performing arts to express humanity’s deepest emotions and highest aspirations.

Opera Omaha
1850 Farnam St.
Omaha, NE 68102

The only professional opera company in the state of Nebraska, Opera Omaha produces shows from the earliest operas to those composed by current artists. In addition to a season of dynamic and compelling productions presented at the Orpheum Theater, the multi-faceted ONE Festival exemplifies innovation within opera. The company is internationally known for its productions of eight world premieres and four American premieres. It is also highly regarded for an extensive community engagement program.

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The Holland Community Opera Fellowship offers the opportunity to expand Opera Omaha’s education and community engagement work by bringing opera to new environments, and illustrating and promoting the value of creativity in the arts and non-arts sectors. In collaboration with community partners, Opera Omaha can identify and address partner needs with co-created programming and engagement. Last season, Opera Omaha partnered with 50 community organizations, engaging nearly 19,000 participants across the metro area.

Pay it forward
Supporting Opera Omaha brings many rewards. Whether purchasing a ticket to a performance, becoming a community sponsor, or giving a monetary gift, every dollar given helps deliver excellent artistic products and implement exciting new initiatives, such as the Holland Community Opera Fellowship and the ONE Festival. These transformational programs are helping give people of all backgrounds and ages access to the arts.

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Gifts to Opera Omaha benefit our entire region. Donations to Opera Omaha provide the resources needed to deliver world class productions that activate a culturally vibrant community and provide free community education and engagement programming, including the Holland Community Opera Fellowship, that engage over 33,000 adults, students and children each year.

Upcoming events
Madama Butterfly
Nov. 1 and 3, 2019
The Abduction from the Seraglio
Feb. 7 and 9, 2020
St. John the Baptist
March 25, 27, and 29; April 4 and 5, 2020
The Capulets and the Montagues
April 3 and 5, 2020

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Parkinson’s NebraskaParkinson's-Nebraska_exercise

Mission statement: Parkinson’s Nebraska is on a mission to be the primary source of education, support, and services for those whose lives are touched by Parkinson’s Disease in Nebraska.

Parkinson’s Nebraska
16811 Burdette St. Suite 1
Omaha, NE 68116

Parkinson’s Nebraska began as a small organization with the big goal to increase access to specialized classes for people with Parkinson’s. It has since evolved into a broader vision of empowering individuals with Parkinson’s, their families, and professionals, and strengthening the community state-wide. Parkinson’s Nebraska was built on a strong foundation and is still dedicated to providing quality services, like Parkinson’s exercise classes, and increasing access to these services across the state.

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This year, Parkinson’s Nebraska is showing its commitment to rural and underserved communities by sponsoring a Delay the Disease training in Grand Island to teach health care and exercise professionals how to design and implement a community-based Parkinson’s exercise program.
With the help of a $7,000 community grant from the Parkinson’s Foundation, Parkinson’s Nebraska is able to provide the training, hotel accommodations, meals, and a mileage stipend to 55 Nebraska professionals. The goal is to increase the number of Parkinson’s exercise classes offered across the state. As a result, 21 new Parkinson’s exercise classes will begin by Oct. 1, 2019, with 14 of these classes in rural and underserved communities. The Delay the Disease training is more than a training, it is the first step towards reaching the goal of expanding Parkinson’s programming and creating a true statewide network of resources.

Wish list
Charitable, tax-deducible donations to help provide education, support, and services to Parkinson’s Nebraska
Help spread the word. Share resources with Parkinson’s patients and caregivers alike
Volunteers for events, fundraising, and office help
Partnerships with professionals, resource providers, and other organizations who are dedicated to serving people with Parkinson’s

Upcoming events
Walk the Park for Parkinson’s and the 2nd Annual Shake-a-Leg 5K
Sept. 29, 2019
Home Instead Senior Care Foundation #GivingTuesday Event
Dec. 3, 2019
UNMC Skate-a-thon for Parkinson’s
January 2020

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Partnership 4 KidsPartnership 4 Kids Book Buddy program

Mission statement: P4K’s mission is to mentor youth for college today and careers tomorrow using their four pillars of goal setting, mentoring, college access, and career exploration. Through curriculum-based learning, P4K breaks the cycle of generational poverty by launching students into family-supporting careers.

Partnership 4 Kids
1004 Farnam St., Suite 200
Omaha, NE 68102

P4K’s origins go back 30 years to two local couples wanting to make a difference in the community. “Yanney’s Kids,” started by Gail and Mike Yanney, mentored middle school students, while “Winners Circle,” started by Jerry and Cookie Hoberman, was an elementary goal-setting achievement program. In 2007, these two groups joined to become Partnership 4 Kids, which now impacts over 3,000 underserved students in Northeast and Southeast Omaha.

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P4K is the only youth-serving organization that begins with literacy and attendance in pre-kindergarten and continues with curriculum-based after-school programs in middle and high school, followed by case management support for their college students. In 2018, 98% of P4K’s students graduated high school, and 94% of P4K students remained enrolled in college, compared to Nebraska’s 77% average. Their 2019 graduating class included 66 high school and 21 college graduates. This fall 46 more students begin college.

Pay it forward
Most people had someone in their life who supported, encouraged, and motivated them to set and achieve academic and career goals. P4K asks others to pay it forward and do the same for the next generation of young people in Northeast and Southeast Omaha. Be a P4K mentor for any of their students from pre-kindergarten through high school, and forever change that student’s belief in themselves, their world view and help instill in them hope for a future filled with opportunities.

Wish list
Beverages—bottled juice/water for students participating in after school activities/college tours/career tours
Nonperishable snacks—protein bars/breakfast bars/crackers/fruit snacks for students participating in after school activities/college tours/career tours
Gifts cards—any value—for student community outings and fundraising events
Semester Celebration sponsors—$250 for each of their 32 celebrations from pre-kindergarten through high school for the 2019-20 school year. Sponsorship pays for food, beverages, activities, craft projects, and/or small gifts/game prizes.
Office supplies: copy paper, stamps
Basic calculators
Advanced calculators for high school students
Alarm clocks, electric with battery backup (batteries included)
$100 for a bike, helmet, and lock for elementary incentives for students who reach their literacy goals (24 needed for 2019-20 school year)
Quality backpacks for high school and college students

Upcoming events
Omaha Marathon & P4K 5K
Sept. 15, 2019
Hops & Grapes Fall Festival
Oct. 25, 2019
Partnership 4 Kids’ 30th Anniversary Gala
Nov. 13, 2019

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PTI NebraskaParent Training and Information

Mission statement: To provide training, information and support to Nebraska families whose children need special education or health related services, thus increasing their capacity to improve the educational and healthcare outcomes for their children.

PTI Nebraska
1941 S. 42nd St., Suite 205
Omaha, NE 68105
402. 346.0525
402.934.1479 – Fax

PTI Nebraska (Parent Training and Information) is a statewide resource for families of children with disabilities and special health care needs. PTI Nebraska’s professional staff are parent-professionals and are available to speak to other parents and professionals about special education and disability specific information. PTI Nebraska’s expert staff also provide this current and relevant information through workshops statewide, at no cost. PTI Nebraska also encourages, trains and supports parents for leadership roles.

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During the 2017-2018 fiscal year PTI Nebraska:
Provided information on individualized education/health services to 2,443 parents and professionals
Attended 53 IEP meetings
Responded to 1,827 calls, letter and emails from parents
Distributed 8,800 materials
Supported over 15 parents through mediation & resolution hearings
Parents contact us each day for information on their child’s special education program or health related service, to schedule a workshop in their community, or to talk with a parent of a child with a disability.

Pay it forward
Each year, PTI Nebraska’s small staff of eight employees touches over 2,000 families in Nebraska through in-person visits, calls, letters and emails. In addition, through our workshops and webinars we distributed  more than 8,800 materials. At community events and trainings PTI distributed more than 31,000 pieces of information, materials and resources.

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PTI Nebraska is a small but mighty non-profit organization developed under a grant from the US Department of Education. However, grant funding only pays for a portion of the services that Nebraskan’s need. Outreach to the nearly 45,000 children ages birth to 21 in Nebraska on Special Education is funded through private donations. You can help us when you donate at

Upcoming events
Medics At Home Golf Tournament for PTI
Sept. 19, 2019 at Tiburon Golf Course
Family Employment Awareness Training (FEAT)
-Summer 2019 Omaha
-Fall 2019 Columbus
-Winter 2019 Lincoln
-Spring 2020 Kearney

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Ronald McDonald House CharitiesRonald-McDonald-House-Charities

Mission statement: Ronald McDonald House Charities in Omaha creates and operates programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children. They provide opportunities that strengthen children and families during their most difficult and challenging times.

Ronald McDonald House Charities in Omaha
620 S. 38th Ave.
Omaha, NE 68105

With the ability to host up to 40 families per night, Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) in Omaha helps establish normalcy by providing a comprehensive healing community inclusive of: beds, showers, meals, laundry facilities, a family-friendly kitchen, playrooms, and a playground—all the basic essentials of home. It also provides educational and artistic programs for all family members. Additionally, the RMHC environment includes a built-in support system where families are able to connect with each other, forming an interdependent network of resources and collaboration.

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The staff and volunteers of Ronald McDonald House Charities in Omaha focus on keeping things as ordinary as possible. The families they serve have kids diagnosed with rare and/or chronic medical conditions who are often hundreds of miles from their home. RMHC is a made-to-order home that is all-inclusive.
In 2018, 154 families (438 individuals) stayed at RMHC
Through the first 6 months of 2019, 176 families (492 individuals) stayed at RMHC
Roughly 40% of the families come from Nebraska.

Pay it forward
Meals That Heal: Shop, cook, and serve dinner for the families staying at RMHC.
Events: Sponsor or volunteer at signature events and third-party fundraisers.
Annual fund: Support a family for one night for just $120. Donations of all amounts accepted online.
In-kind gifts: Various professional services, household supplies, and food items are necessary to care for the families and maintain RMHC.
Pop tabs: Collect pop tabs that are recycled to help pay for the House electric bill.

Wish list
Front desk volunteers
Keurig K-cups
On-the-go snack items
Breakfast bars
Ground coffee
Non-dairy creamer
Paper plates and plastic utensils
Trash bags (30-gallon)
Box meals
Macaroni and cheese
Hand soap
Non-latex gloves
White copy paper
13-watt CFL light bulbs
Disinfectant spray
Bathroom cleaner
Heavy duty serving utensils
Gas cards
Gift cards to Target, Walmart, CVS, Walgreens, Baker’s,
Hy-Vee, Family Fare, etc.
Travel-size toiletries
Feminine hygiene products
Adult and youth winter coats

Upcoming events
Wings & Wheels Gala
Sept. 6, 2019
Kids & Clays Sporting Clays Tournament
Oct. 18-20, 2019
Annual Golf Tournament
May 2020
Big Red Friday
August 2020

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The Salvation ArmySalvation-Army-Big-Give

Mission statement: The Salvation Army is an evangelical part of the universal Christian church. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.

The Salvation Army
Western Divisional Headquarters
10755 Burt St.
Omaha, NE 68114

The Salvation  Army of Omaha is a faith-based nonprofit organization. Its three community centers—Omaha Citadel Corps, Omaha North Corps, and the Omaha Kroc Center—as well as the Burrows Center and Renaissance Village, are uniquely situated to meet the diverse needs of our metro-area neighborhoods. From after-school programs and summer camps to food pantries to behavioral health programs that support those struggling with mental illness,
The Salvation Army of Omaha sustains the bodies, minds, and
spirits of the community’s most vulnerable neighbors.

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The Salvation Army of Omaha helped those in need more than 200,000 times in 2018, providing food, housing, material assistance, youth development, older adult services, behavioral health, anti-human trafficking, and emergency disaster services. During the devastating floods of 2019, The Salvation Army raised more than $2.8 million, 100% of which directly supported flood-relief efforts. They also provided more than 72,000 clean-up kits, 40,000 meals, 48,000 beverages and 41,000 snacks to flood survivors.

Pay it forward
Monetary donations are appreciated and support the thousands in Omaha whose lives are improved by The Salvation Army’s social services programs annually. In Omaha, 87 cents of every donated dollar is spent on programs that help those most in need. They also have volunteer opportunities, including tutoring, coaching, serving meals, disaster relief, ringing bells during the Christmas season and more. For volunteer information, call 402.898.6000 or visit the website and click on “Volunteer in
This Community.”

Wish list
Monetary donations
Corporate partnerships
Planned gifts
Toys and gifts (for Adopt-A-Family Radiothon)
Non-perishable food
New K-12 school supplies

Upcoming events
Tree of Lights Kickoff
Nov. 8, 2019
2019-2020 Winter Night Watch Season
Starting Nov. 25, 2019
D.J.’s Hero Awards Luncheon
May 5, 2020

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Siena/Francis House Homeless ShelterSiena-Francis-House-Dining-room-woman

Mission statement: The Siena/Francis House welcomes, shelters, and empowers individuals experiencing homelessness to navigate their own path to safe and appropriate housing.

Siena/Francis House Homeless Shelter
1702 Nicholas St.
Omaha, NE 68102

The Siena/Francis House—located in north downtown Omaha, Nebraska—is a 501(c)(3) independent, nondenominational, non-profit charitable organization. The Siena/Francis House provides three levels of housing: emergency overnight shelter, transitional housing, and permanent supportive housing. In addition, case management is available to help individuals achieve housing in the community. The Siena/Francis House also provides meals to people staying in our residential programs, as well as to anyone in the community who is hungry.

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Food and shelter needs are always met first, then programs have one ultimate goal in mind: to assist every guest with a housing plan.
In 2018, Siena/Francis House provided 181,828 overnight stays to 3,579 individuals through their three housing programs and served
431,553 meals.
Individuals stayed at, and left, the emergency shelter in an average of 9 days.
Of the approximately 5,600 people who experienced homelessness in the metro area in 2018, over 60% were provided services by Siena/Francis House.

Pay it forward
Siena/Francis House relies on the generosity of the community. Below are ways to get involved:
Make a monetary donation online.
Sponsor a drive for food, clothing, or personal care items.
Serve the evening dinner meal from 4:30 to 7 p.m. (served every evening) or brunch from 8:30 to 11 a.m. (served every Sunday morning). Volunteers must schedule in advance. Contact Volunteer Services Manager Silvia Rodriguez at srodriguez@sienafrancis.org.

Wish list
Canned fruits
Canned vegetables
Cold-weather clothing (used)
Individually wrapped, pre-packaged food items (for sack lunches)
Toilet paper
Powdered  laundry detergent
Cooking oil
Tennis shoes (for men, all sizes)
Tennis shoes (for women, sizes 5 to 8)
Salad dressing (all flavors)
Razors (for men and women)
Shaving cream
Bar soap
Disinfectant cleaners (e.g. Pine Sol)
Styrofoam cups
Paper towels
“Zip-Lock” bags (all sizes)
Pain relievers
Hair brushes
Socks (for men)
Underwear for men (sizes 28, 30 and 32)
Underwear for women (sizes 5 and 6)
Work boots (for men)

Upcoming events
25th Annual 5k Walk or Run
Sept. 7, 2019

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The Society of St. Vincent de PaulSt-Vincent-De-Paul_snow-girl

Mission statement: The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is dedicated to bringing volunteers together to grow spiritually by offering person-to-person services to the community’s most vulnerable neighbors in need, without discrimination.

Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha
P.O. Box 241201
Omaha NE 68124-5201
Executive Director: Marty Smith

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Omaha is a Catholic, parish-based, direct-aid organization that brings together women and men to grow in their spirituality through service to neighbors in need. Serving Omaha neighborhoods since 1868, we are part of an international organization linked by the common mission of our patron St. Vincent de Paul. The primary goal of the Society is the spiritual growth of its members, which allows us to more fully reflect God’s love to all the neighbors we encounter; our ultimate call is growing community.

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Responding to need. Sharing in hope. In 2018:
115,688 people received emergency aid of rent or utilities.
$20,255 impacted 64 people with emergency relief through Ozanam Outreach, a program for non-conferences areas.
25 years in operation, the SVdP Choice Pantry through 133 volunteers served
11,014 households
Our thrift store offered quality goods at reasonable prices to thousands of patrons. Over 4,830 individuals were assisted with over $86,090 in assistance of clothing and household goods.
Our annual coat drive equipped 2,380 men, women and children with warm necessities.

Pay it forward
Respond to the call to serve the most vulnerable.Visit the website for volunteer opportunities:
Helpline responder
Ozanam Outreach worker
Special events
Food pantry team
Garden Angels
Thrift store or warehouse sorters
Support the mission and programs financially. The Society of SVdP is
a 501(c)(3) organization, relying entirely on financial donations to respond to the increasing community needs.
Shop SVdP Thrift Stores.
21st & Leavenworth
24th & Q St.
807 Tara Plaza- Papillion
90th and Fort by Baker’s
Attend to the needs of the community. Follow facebook.com/svdpomaha 

Wish list
Pantry and garden volunteers
Event volunteers
Event sponsors
$25 monthly, Disciple of Charity membership
$100 monthly, Apostle of Charity membership
A $300 donation covers one month’s utilities
A $500 donation provides one month’s rent to avoid a family eviction
Non-perishable, nonexpired pantry items
New or gently used thrift store items
Winter coats, all sizes
Monetary donations of any size support the mission

Upcoming events
15th Annual Free Coat Giveaway
November 2019
1st Tuesdays Eat at Baileys, Dundee Dell, Shuck’s and Give!
April 2020
USPS Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive
May 2020
11h Annual Strawberry Brunch
June 2020

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Stephen CenterStephen-Center-building

Mission statement: Stephen Center partners with the community, families and individuals
to overcome homelessness, addiction and poverty.

Stephen Center, Inc.
2723 Q St.
Omaha, NE 68107

Stephen Center has served homeless and low-income individuals in Omaha since 1984. The organization was founded by Sharon and Dick McNeil, who recognized a distinct need to assist those living in poverty in south Omaha. In partnership with the McNeil family, the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Omaha’s Holy Ghost Church purchased a 103-year-old building on Q Street for $10,000. From those humble beginnings in a rundown former pool hall and bar, Stephen Center has grown to include a multi-facility campus designed to support vulnerable men, women, and children as they seek to overcome homelessness, addiction, and poverty.

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Stephen Center is the only substance-free homeless shelter in the metro, providing a safe environment for individuals and families. Meals are available three times per day/seven days a week. Clients meet with a case manager within 72 hours of arrival to define barriers and set goals. The center runs a background check on all residents who request shelter. Residents shop at NO COST at their thrift store, located at 24th and Q streets. Stephen Center is grateful to receive over 33,000 volunteer hours annually. Administrative costs are 7.5 percent of operating budget.

Pay it forward
Whether it’s serving meals, working the front desk, or even lending marketing talents to the agency, Stephen Center can always use more help and volunteers. They believe that together we can end homelessness, addiction, and poverty one parent, one child, one person at a time. Like Stephen Center on Facebook to stay in the loop on all the ways to help.

Wish list
Bottled water
Pillows/blankets (gently used or new)
Razors (shaving)
Toilet paper
Paper towels
Monetary donations

Upcoming events
Gobble 4 Good Turkey Drive
Nov. 1, 2019
Cruise Away Fundraiser
March 2020

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Tri-Faith InitiativeTri-Faith Initiative gathering

Mission statement: The Tri-Faith Initiative fosters empathy, invites understanding, and advances common action between people of diverse faiths through the shared efforts of intentionally co-located congregations of the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim faiths and an interfaith center on one campus.

Tri-Faith Initiative
Pacific St. & S. 132nd St.
Omaha, NE 68154

The Tri-Faith Initiative is an ambitious project of interfaith relations. It brings together a synagogue, church, mosque, and interfaith center on one 38-acre campus in the middle of America’s heartland. It challenges people of faith and goodwill to be conscious and proactive about the assets of faith in civil life in a religiously pluralistic society. The Tri-Faith Initiative aims to create an inclusive culture in which religious pluralism is socially normative.

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Tri-Faith Initiative works for a world in which religious differences are seen as an asset to be celebrated, where people realize the ability to overcome fear and stereotypes and embrace one another.  Tri-Faith invites people of all religions to visit and interact. Our programming focuses on interfaith cooperation and religious literacy to fight bigotry and foster empathy. In creating meaningful experiences for exposure, Tri-Faith advances co-existence and religious freedom for all.

Pay it forward
Visit the Commons and stroll the iconic Abraham’s Circle Bridge
Schedule a tour and visit Tri-Faith partner congregations: Temple Israel, Countryside Community Church, and the American Muslim Institute
Join the mailing list to keep up-to date on Tri-Faith events and programs
Join Tri-Faith for any or all informative and social events
Volunteer to work in the Tri-Faith Community Garden and Orchard

Wish list
Garden tools
Corporate sponsorships
Community speaking engagements

Upcoming events
More Than a Joke Symposium
Weekly from Sept 3, 2019 – March 31, 2020
Women and Wisdom
Jan. 14, 2020
Tri-Faith Gala
March 14, 2020

“The Big Give” was published in the September 2019 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

June 2019 Giving Calendar

May 20, 2019 by
Photography by provided

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

June 1 2019
JAMA Gala: The Art of Seating
This annual black-tie affair will be held June 1 from 6-9 p.m. in conjunction with the opening of the exhibition The Art of Seating: 200 Years of American Design. The evening opens with a cocktail reception and private exhibition viewing followed by a gourmet dinner in a tent outside on the museum grounds. The evening also includes an oral auction and an after-hours party.

June 1 (8 a.m.-noon)
2019 Walk to Cure Arthritis
Benefiting: Arthritis Foundation
Location: Werner Park

June 1 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Over the Edge
Benefiting: Youth for Christ
Location: Highline Apartments

June 1 (12:30-7 p.m.)
Doolin Classic
Benefiting: Grief’s Journey
Location: Eagle Hills Golf Course

June 1 (6:30-10 p.m.)
Ollie’s Dream Gala 2019
Benefiting: Ollie Webb Center
Location: Downtown Hilton

June 1 (10-11:30 p.m.)
Summertime Sadness, a Heartland Pride Benefit
Benefiting: Heartland Pride
Location: Omaha Mining Company

June 2 (7:30 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Tee Off and Support Wheelchair Sports Annual Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Paralyzed Veterans of America Great Plains Chapter
Location: Tiburon Golf Club

June 2 (2-6 p.m.)
Omaha North High School Annual Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Omaha North High School Foundation
Location: Shoreline Golf Course

June 3 (7:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m.)
Central High Foundation Golf Outing
Benefiting: Central High School Foundation
Location: Field Club of Omaha

June 3 (8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.)
2019 ABIDE Golf Fundraiser
Benefiting: ABIDE
Location: The Players Club at Deer Creek

June 3 (11 a.m.-4 p.m.)
2019 Golf Fore Grants
Benefiting: Elkhorn Public Schools Foundation
Location: Champions Run Golf Course

June 5 (10:30 a.m.-6 p.m.)
2019 Omaha Home for Boys Golf Classic
Benefiting: Omaha Home for Boys
Location: Tiburon Golf Club

June 6 (10:30 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Tee It Up Fore Sight Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Outlook Nebraska
Location: Indian Creek Golf Course

June 6 (7-9 p.m.)
2019 SPICE Dinner
Benefiting: Christ the King Educational Trust
Location: Christ the King Parish Center

two guys holding large check

SPICE Dinner

June 7 (11 a.m.-7 p.m.)
Eighth Annual Council Bluffs Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Crossroads of Western Iowa
Location: Bent Tree Golf Course

June 7-8 (5-10 p.m. Friday, 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday)
2019 Cattlemen’s Ball
Benefiting: Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center
Location: Wauneta, NE

group at the Cattlemen’s Ball

Cattlemen’s Ball

June 8 (8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.)
Health Walk for Education
Benefiting: Gifford Farm Education Center
Location: Gifford Farm Education Center

June 8 (11 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Wine & Howl Fundraising Event
Benefiting: Lincoln Animal Ambassadors
Location: Deer Springs Winery

June 8 (11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.)
Bowling for Families
Benefiting: Gift of Adoption Fund—Nebraska & Iowa Chapter
Location: Thunderbowl of Council Bluffs

June 8 (9:30 a.m.-9 p.m.)
ArchOmaha Unite
Benefiting: Archdiocese of Omaha
Location: CHI Health Center

June 9 (9 a.m.-4 p.m.)
51st Annual Munroe-Meyer Guild Garden Walk
Benefiting: Munroe-Meyer Institute
Location: locations vary

June 10 (noon-7 p.m.)
17th Annual Golf Classic
Benefiting: The Hope Center for Kids
Location: Champions Run Omaha

June 10 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
CHANCE Luncheon 20th Anniversary Celebration
Benefiting: Children’s Scholarship Fund of Omaha
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

June 11 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)
Golf Invitational
Benefiting: Project Harmony
Location: Indian Creek Golf Course

June 12 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)
18th Annual Hops for Harmony
Benefiting: Project Harmony
Location: Werner Park

Annual Hops for Harmony

Annual Hops for Harmony

June 13 (noon-1 p.m.)
The Tribute to Women Luncheon
Benefiting: Women’s Center for Advancement
Location: Marriott Downtown at the Capitol District

June 13 (noon-8 p.m.)
Good Grief Golf Open
Benefiting: EveryStep and Hospice with Heart
Location: Echo Valley Golf Course

June 14 (10 a.m.-7 p.m.)
29th Annual Golf Classic
Benefiting: Millard Public Schools Foundation
Location: Tiburon Golf Club

June 14 (6-9 p.m.)
Iowa “Strike a Chord” Gala
Benefiting: Heartland Family Service
Location: Mid-America Center

June 15 (6-9 p.m.)
Mini Golf Fore Good
Benefiting: Nebraska Chapter of the National Hemophilia Foundation
Location: Papio Greens Golf Center

June 15-16 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.)
SAC Museum Car Show
Benefiting: Strategic Air Command & Space Museum
Location: Strategic Air Command & Space Museum

June 18 (5:30-9 p.m.)
Fremont Family Friends 2019
Benefiting: Lutheran Family Services
Location: Fremont Golf Club

June 20 (8 a.m.-2 p.m.)
20th Annual Release Ministries Bill Ellett Memorial Golf Classic
Benefiting: Release Ministries
Location: Iron Horse Golf Club

June 21 (all day)
The Longest Day, an individualized fundraiser
Benefiting: Alzheimer’s Association
Location: donor’s choice

June 22 (9 a.m.-noon)
Take Steps for Crohn’s & Colitis
Benefiting: Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America
Location: Werner Park

June 22 (11 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Wheels of Courage Car Show
Benefiting: Jennie Edmundson Foundation
Location: Quaker Steak & Lube, Council Bluffs

Wheels of Courage Car Show

Wheels of Courage Car Show

June 22 (noon- 2 p.m.)
Woof & Whiskers Meet & Greet
Benefiting: Golden Retriever Rescue in Nebraska
Location: Woof & Whiskers

June 23 (10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.)
WalkRite for RiteCare
Benefiting: UNMC Munroe-Meyer Institute’s RiteCare Speech & Language Clinic
Location: Lake Zorinsky Picnic Pavilion

June 23 (3 p.m.-5 p.m.)
I Be Black Girl Presents: Ain’t I A Woman Celebration
Benefiting: I Be Black Girl Giving Circle, Women’s Fund of Omaha
Location: Seventy Five North

June 23 (5-8 p.m.)
Full Cycle Supper
Benefiting: Big Muddy Urban Farm and Community Bike Project Omaha
Location: Big Muddy Urban Farm

June 28 (11 a.m.-4 p.m.)
2019 Golf Classic
Benefiting: ALS in the Heartland
Location: Tiburon Golf Club

June 28 (noon-6 p.m.)
2019 Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Habitat for Humanity of Sarpy County
Location: Tara Hills Golf Course

June 28 (6-11 p.m.)
First Responders Night I-80 Speedway
Benefiting: Victory Riding Academy
Location: Greenwood, Nebraska

This calendar was printed in the June 2019 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

March/April 2019 Giving Calendar

February 14, 2019 by

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

March 1 (7-10:30 p.m.)
An Evening on the Italian Riviera
Benefiting: Diabetes-related causes
Location: il Palazo

March 1-2 (times vary)
Restore Nebraska Conference featuring Daniel G. Carey
Benefiting: Restoration Exchange
Location: Fort Omaha Campus at Metropolitan Community College

March 2 (noon-4 p.m.)
Omaha Barstool Open
Benefiting: United Cerebral Palsy of Nebraska
Location: the Old Market

March 2 (1-4 p.m.)
Benefiting: Angels Among Us
Location: Fleming’s

March 2 (5:30 p.m.-midnight)
Cruise Away to the Emerald Isle
Benefiting: Stephen Center
Location: Champions Run

March 3 (7 a.m.)
Heat the Streets Run & Walk for Warmth
Benefiting: Common Fund of the Heartland
Location: Midtown Crossing

March 3 (10:30 a.m.)
15th Annual Walk and Roll for Disabilities
Benefiting: Meyer Foundation for Disabilities
Location: Oak View Mall

March 3 (noon-6 p.m.)
Benefiting: Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians
Location: Firefighters Union Hall

March 5 (all day)
Spread the Word to End the Word
Benefiting: Goodwill Industries
Location: Goodwill Corporate Headquarters

March 7 (11:45 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Heroes in the Heartland Luncheon
Benefiting: American Red Cross
Location: Hilton Omaha

March 7 (6-9 p.m.)
Comedy for Change
Benefiting: Set Me Free Project
Location: A View on State

March 8 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)
Voices of Dignity
Benefiting: Table Grace
Location: St. Thomas Lutheran Church

March 9 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)
Celebrity Chef 2019: An Evening with Chef Tyler Florence
Benefiting: Food Bank of the Heartland
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

Chef Tyler Florence

Chef Tyler Florence

March 9 (7-11 p.m.)
Perfect Pour
Benefiting: Nebraska Children and Families Foundation
Location: Scoular Ballroom

March 13 (11:30-1 p.m.)
Silver Ribbon Event with Dr. Christopher Willard
Benefiting: Children’s Respite Care Center
Location: Marriott Regency

March 16 (5:30-11 p.m.)
Holt International Gala
Benefiting: Holt International
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

March 16 (5:30-11 p.m.)
Irish Fest 2019
Benefiting: Catholic Charities Omaha
Location: Marriott Capitol District

March 17 (11 a.m.-7 p.m.)
Corned Beef and Cabbage Feed
Benefiting: Tangier Shrine
Location: Tangier Shrine Center

March 21-23 (times vary)
Imana Kids Gala & Fundraiser Series
Benefiting: Imana Kids
Locations: various

March 23 (noon-2 p.m.)
From Pillboxes to Headbands, Fashion from the 1960s
Benefiting: Douglas County Historical Society
Location: Institute of Culinary Arts

March 23 (7-10 p.m.)
15th annual artVenture
Benefiting: Girl Scouts Spirit of Nebraska
Location: Mammel Hall at UNO

March 23 (6-10 p.m.)
Heritage Awards
Benefiting: CHI Health Foundation
Location: Mid-America Center

March 24 (4 p.m.)
25th annual Celebration of Spirit Dinner
Benefiting: Notre Dame Sisters
Location: Mainelli Hall at St. Robert Bellarmine

March 24 (5:30-9 p.m.)
Rock the Nest Trivia Night
Benefiting: Central High School
Location: Omaha Design Center

March 29 (noon)
Table Art 2019: Prepping for Spring with Mackenzie Childs
Benefiting: Omaha Symphony Guild
Location: Champions Run

Artistic checkered teapot on decorative table

March 29, 2019 (5-10 p.m.)
March Madness
Benefiting: Boys and Girls Clubs of the Midlands
Location: The Grass Wagon

March 29 (6:30-9:30 p.m.)
Spring Benefit: Spotlight on Education
Benefiting: Omaha Community Playhouse
Location: Omaha Community Playhouse

March 30 (9 a.m.)
Quarter Mania
Benefiting: Open Door Mission
Location: Garland Thompson Men’s Center Chapel

March 30 (4-9 p.m.)
Release Ministries Annual Banquet and 25-Year Celebration
Benefiting: Release Ministries
Location: Scott Conference Center at UNO

March 30 (4-11 p.m.)
Knights on the Fairway—Going for the Green
Benefiting: Mount Michael Benedictine
Location: SAC Museum

March 30 (4 p.m.-2 a.m.)
Relay for Life of Creighton University
Benfitting: American Cancer Society
Location: Kiewit Fitness Center

March 30 (5-9 p.m.)
vinNebraska Public Wine Tasting and Grand Auction
Benefiting: Omaha Public Schools Foundation
Location: Ramada Plaza

March 30 (5:30-9 p.m.)
The Gathering
Benefiting: CUES Supported Schools
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

March 30 (6 p.m.)
2019 Barrister’s Ball: The Wonderful World of Wonka
Benefiting: Nebraska Lawyers Foundation programs
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

March 30 (6-9 p.m.)
Fourth Annual Gala Fundraiser: Vegas Nights
Benefiting: Bennington Schools Foundation
Location: A View on State Street

March 31 (noon)
2019 Walk & Rally for Hope
Benefiting: ALS in the Heartland
Location: Baxter Arena

April 3 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Speaking of Children Luncheon with Sasha Joseph Neulinger
Benefiting: Project Harmony
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

April 4 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Spring Luncheon featuring Laura Dowling
Benefiting: Lauritzen Gardens Guild
Location: Lauritzen Gardens

April 5 (6-9 p.m.)
Circle of Dreams
Benefiting: St. Augustine Mission School
Location: St. Robert Bellarmine’s Mainelli Center

April 5 (6:30-10 p.m.)
Wine Women and Shoes
Benefiting: Carolyn Scott Rainbow House
Location: Omaha Design Center

April 6 (10 a.m.)
Strengthen Our Survivors brunch
Benefiting: Heartland Family Service
Location: Oak Hills Country Club

April 6 (4 p.m.)
Big Basketball Bash
Benefiting: Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Midlands
Location: Scott Conference Center at UNO

April 6 (5-9 p.m.)
Heart of Camp Gala
Benefiting: Carol Joy Holling Camp
Location: La Vista Conference Center

April 6 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)
Comedy and Cuisine
Benefiting: St. Cecilia Cathedral School
Location: St. Cecilia Cathedral School

April 6 (5:30-10 p.m.)
Fifth Annual Pink Ribbon Affair
Benefiting: Susan G. Komen Foundation
Location: Hilton Omaha

April 7 (noon-2:30 p.m.)
Humanitarian Brunch featuring Vu Le
Benefiting: Inclusive Communities
Location: Scott Conference Center

April 10 (10:30 a.m.-2 p.m.)
Assistance League of Omaha Luncheon and Style Show
Benefiting: Assistance League of Omaha
Location: Champions Run

April 10 (11:30-1:30 p.m.)
2019 Author Luncheon, featuring Jessica Lahey
Benefiting: Completely Kids
Location: Hilton Omaha

April 11 (6-10 p.m.)
Evening with Friends
Benefiting: CHI Midlands
Location: CHI Midlands Hospital

April 12 (5-10 p.m.)
Kicks for a Cure Annual Dinner
Benefiting: Kicks for a Cure
Location: Marriott Capitol District

April 12 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)
14th Annual Men of Honor featuring Frederick Douglas Haynes III
Benefiting: 100 Black Men of Omaha
Location: Hilton Downtown

Frederick Douglas Haynes III

Frederick Douglas Haynes III

April 12-13 (times vary)
Big DREAM Weekend with bowling, tailgating, and more
Benefiting: DREAM
Locations: various

April 13 (all day)
Scouting for Food
Benefiting: local food banks
Location: donors’ homes

April 13 (9 a.m.-noon)
Benefiting: Autism Society of Nebraska
Location: Ralston Arena

April 13 (times vary)
Kicks for a Cure Soccer Exhibition
Benefiting: Kicks for a Cure
Location: Caniglia Field at UNO and Morrison Stadium at Creighton University

April 13 (5 p.m.)
Feather Our Nest Golden Jubilee
Benefiting: Fontenelle Forest Guild
Location: Marriott Capitol District

April 13 (5:30-9 p.m.)
Festa del Leone
Benefiting: Roncalli Catholic High School
Location: Roncalli Catholic High School

April 13 (5:30-10 p.m.)
Omaha Symphony Gala featuring Wayne Brady
Benefiting: Omaha Symphony
Location: Holland Performing Arts Center

Wayne Brady

Wayne Brady

April 13 (6-9:30 p.m.)
10th Annual Celebrating Community
Benefiting: Omaha Together One Community
Location: KANEKO

April 14 (3 p.m.)
Pops and Pie
Benefiting: Intergeneration Orchestra of Omaha
Location: Witherspoon Concert Hall at Joslyn Art Museum

April 17 (6-9 p.m.)
Omaha Business Hall of Fame
Benefiting: Greater Omaha Chamber
Location: Holland Performing Arts Center

April 18 (7-8:30 a.m.)
Community Breakfast
Benefiting: Bellevue Public Schools Foundation
Location: Lied Activity Center

April 18 (8:30-11 a.m.)
Claussen-Leahy Maverick Run
Benefiting: UNO Athletics
Location: Baxter Arena

April 18 (11:30-1 p.m.)
Can Do Luncheon
Benefiting: Kids Can
Location: Marriott Capitol District

April 19 (6-10 p.m.)
Hope Brews
Benefiting: Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
Location: Founders One-Nine

April 19 (7-10 p.m.)
RivALZ—Blondes vs. Brunettes
Benefiting: Alheimer’s Association
Location: Omaha Sports Complex

April 24 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Fusion 2019 Featuring Elin Hilderbrand
Benefiting: Nebraska Medicine Guild
Location: Omaha Design Center

Elin Hilderbrand

Elin Hilderbrand

April 26 (6:30-10 p.m.)
Night of Celebration
Benefiting: CHI Health Immanuel
Location: Omaha Design Center

April 26 (7 p.m.)
Guns ’N’ Hoses
Benefiting: First Responders Foundation
Location: Baxter Arena

April 26 and 27 (times vary)
Bowl for Kids’ Sake
Benefiting: Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Midlands
Location: Maplewood Lanes

April 27 (9 a.m.)
March for Babies
Benefiting: March of Dimes
Location: Lewis & Clark Landing

April 27 (9 a.m.-noon)
Nebraska Lymphoma Walk
Benefiting: Lymphoma Research Foundation
Location: Mahoney State Park

April 27 (10 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Eighth Annual Spring Luncheon
Benefiting: Santa Monica House
Location: DC Centre

April 27 (2-4 p.m.)
Walk for Infertility Awareness
Benefiting: Conceive Nebraska
Location: Midtown Crossing

April 27 (5-8 p.m.)
Beach Bash 2019: Riding the Waves for 140 Years
Benefiting: Creighton Prep
Location: Heider Center at Creighton Prep

April 27 (5-11 p.m.)
Blue Jeans & Dreams
Benefiting: Heartland Equine Therapeutic Riding Academy
Location: HETRA barn

April 27 (6 p.m.)
Blue Jeans Ball
Benefiting: Make-A-Wish of Nebraska
Location: Hilton Omaha

April 27 (6-9 p.m.)
Dining With Dogs
Benefiting: Nebraska Humane Society
Location: Baxter Subaru

April 28 (11 a.m.-2 p.m.)
Ladle of Love Festival
Benefiting: Open Door Mission
Location: Garland Thompson Men’s Center

April 30 (5:30-9 p.m.)
Boys Town Booster Banquet featuring Bruce Bowen
Benefiting: Boys Town
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

This calendar was printed in the March/April 2019 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

January/February 2019 Giving Calendar

December 21, 2018 by , and

This calendar was printed in the January/February 2019 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

Jan. 1 (10 a.m.-noon)
life time commitment day 5k
Benefiting: Omaha Running Club
Location: 17007 Elm St.

Jan. 5 (6:30 p.m.)
Winter Theater Camp
Benefiting: Munroe-Meyer Institute & WhyArts?
Location: Scottish Rite Masonic Center

Jan. 9 (7 p.m.)
Outland Trophy Award Dinner
Benefiting: National Foundation for Infectious Diseases
Location: Double Tree Hotel by Hilton

Jan. 19 (6 p.m.)
Midlands Community Foundation Reflection Ball
Benefiting: Midlands Community Foundation
Location: Embassy Suites La Vista

Jan. 21 (9 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Second Annual Liberation Summit
Benefiting: Disrupting Traffick
Location: The Pella at Blackstone

Jan. 25 (6 p.m.)
Celebration of Life Banquet
Benefiting: Nebraskans Embracing Life
Location: DC Centre Banquet Facility

Jan. 26 (6-9 p.m.)
Nebraska Scottish Society’s Robert Burns Dinner
Benefiting: Scottish Society of Nebraska
Location: Scottish Rite Masonic Center

Jan. 26 & 27 (2 p.m.)
UNMC Skate-a-thon for Parkinson’s
Benefiting: Parkinson’s Nebraska
Location: UNMC Ice Rink

Jan. 27 (5 p.m.)
Annual Benefit Dinner
Benefiting: Essential Pregnancy Services
Location: Embassy Suites La Vista

Feb. 2 (9 a.m.-3 p.m.)
Ultra Chic Boutique and The Dress Flip
Benefiting: The Alzheimer’s Association
Location: A View on State

Feb. 8 (6-9:30 p.m.)
Carnival of Love Gala
Benefiting: Heartland Family Service
Location: Hilton Omaha

Feb. 8 (5:30-10:30 p.m.)
MarianFEST 2019: The Big shinDIG
Benefiting: Omaha Marian High School
Location: Omaha Marriott Downtown

Feb. 9 (10 a.m.-6 p.m.)
Omaha Rings! Handbell Festival & Worship
Benefiting: Nebraska Synod
Location: St. Thomas Lutheran Church

Feb. 9 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Omaha Polar Plunge
Benefiting: Special Olympics Nebraska
Location: TBD

Feb. 9 (5 p.m.)
Omaha Heart & Stroke Ball
Benefiting: American Heart Association
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

Feb. 9 (6-11 p.m.)
Swing Under the Wings
Benefiting: Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum
Location: Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum

Feb. 10 (2-4 p.m.)
Thankful Hearts
Benefiting: Nebraska Children’s Home Society
Location: Nebraskaland National Bank

Feb. 16 (TBD)
Heart Bombing
Benefiting: Restoration Exchange Omaha
Location: TBA

Feb. 16 (6:30-10 p.m.)
Wings of Hope Winter Fundraiser
Benefiting: Wings of Hope
Location: Mid-America Center

Feb. 16 (7 p.m.)
Concordia String Trio
Benefiting: Omaha Conservatory of Music
Location: Omaha Conservatory of Music

Feb. 16 (4:30 p.m.)
Benefiting: Mercy High School
Location: Omaha Marriott Downtown

Feb. 16 (7 a.m.)
Trek Up the Tower
Benefiting: WELLCOM
Location: First National Bank Tower

Feb. 16 (noon-4 p.m.)
Barstool Open
Benefiting: United Cerebral Palsy
Location: The Old Market

Feb. 23 (6 p.m.)
22nd Annual JDRF Promise Gala
Benefiting: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

Feb. 24 (1-5 p.m.)
Art & Soup
Benefiting: Visiting Nurse Association
Location: Embassy Suites La Vista

Feb. 28 (6 p.m.)
Rally for Kids 2019
Benefiting: Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska
Location: Embassy Suites Downtown Omaha

Top of page

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

November/December 2018 Giving Calendar

October 29, 2018 by , and

This calendar was printed in the November/December 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

Nov. 1 (starts at 8:30 a.m.)
12th Annual Nonprofit Summit of the Midlands
Benefiting: Nonprofit Association of the Midlands
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Nov. 1 (6-9 p.m.)
Toast to Dr. Stephanie and Jack Koraleski
Benefiting: Merrymakers
Location: Omaha Design Center

Nov. 2 (8 a.m.-3 p.m.)
Nebraska Leadership Diversity and Inclusion Conference
Benefiting: Nebraska Hispanic Chamber Foundation
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

Nov. 2 (6-9 p.m.)
Vision Beyond Sight
Benefiting: Outlook Nebraska
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

Nov. 2 (6-8:30 p.m.)
Let’s Grow Here Gala
Benefiting: Big Muddy Urban Farm
Location: Creighton University Harper Ballroom

Nov. 2 (6-9 p.m.)
Third Annual Dinner & Auction
Benefiting: p4:13 Ministries
Location: Embassy Suites Downtown Omaha

Nov. 2 (6:30-9 p.m.)
Big Red Block Party
Benefiting: Junior League of Omaha
Location: Scott Conference Center

Nov. 3 (6-11 p.m.)
2018 Children’s Hospital & Medical Center Gala
Benefiting: Children’s Hospital & Medical Center Foundation
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

Nov. 4 (noon-4 p.m.)
Honey Sunday
Benefiting: Ollie Webb Center, Inc.
Location: multiple locations

Nov. 7 (4-10 p.m.)
2018 Christmas Caravan Preview Gala
Benefiting: Assistance League of Omaha
Location: Champions Run Country Club

Nov. 8 (10 a.m.-8 p.m.)
2018 Christmas Caravan Tour of Homes
Benefiting: Assistance League of Omaha
Location: Various homes in Omaha

Nov. 8 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)
OneWorld 2018 Milagro Dinner
Benefiting: OneWorld Community Health Centers
Location: Hilton Omaha

Nov. 8 (5-8:30 p.m.)
Salute to Veterans Dinner
Benefiting: La Vista Community Foundation
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista

Nov. 8 (6-10 p.m.)
The Jason Awards
Benefiting: Children’s Square USA
Location: Mid-America Center, Council Bluffs

Nov. 8 (5:30-7 p.m.)
Tree of Lights Campaign Kickoff
Benefiting: Salvation Army
Location: American National Bank, 90th and Dodge streets

Nov. 9 (5-8 p.m.)
Patron Party for Historic Home Tour and Boutique
Benefiting: Joslyn Castle
Location: Joslyn Castle

Nov. 10 (8 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Hoops 4 Life 3 On 3 Basketball Tournament
Benefiting: Nebraska Urban Indian Health Coalition
Location: NorthStar Foundation campus

Nov. 10-11 (10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday
and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday)
Historic Home Tour and Boutique
Benefiting: Joslyn Castle
Location: Various locations

Nov. 10 (7-11:30 p.m.)
Rock to Raise
Benefiting: The John Atkinson Lung Cancer Foundation
Location: St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church hall

Nov. 15 (5-9 p.m.)
Nurse of the Year Awards
Benefiting: March of Dimes
Location: Hilton Omaha

Nov. 15 (6-9 p.m.)
Salute to Families
Benefiting: Heartland Family Service
Location: Happy Hollow Club

Nov. 16 (6 p.m.)
Sentimental Journey: With Honor
Benefiting: The Durham Museum
Location: The Durham Museum

Nov. 17 (8 p.m.-midnight)
Night of a Thousand Stars
Benefiting: Nebraska AIDS Project
Location: Omaha Design Center

Nov. 17-24 (hours vary)
Feztival of Trees
Benefiting: Tangier Shrine Center
Location: Tangier Shrine Center

Nov. 22 (7:30 a.m.-11 a.m.)
2018 Turkey Trot
Benefiting: Make-a-Wish Nebraska
Location: Lewis & Clark Landing

Nov. 27 (all day)
Giving Tuesday
Benefiting: Various Omaha organizations
Location: Online

Nov. 29-30 (6 a.m.-6 p.m.)
Adopt a Family Radiothon
Benefiting: Salvation Army
Location: Star 104.5 FM

Dec. 1 (2-4:30 p.m.)
Spin4 Crohn’s & Colitis Cures
Benefiting: Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation
Location: Sweat Cycle Strength

Dec. 1 (6-8 p.m.)
Christmas Enchantment
Benefiting: Children’s Square USA
Location: Hoy-Kilnoski Funeral Home

Dec. 1 (time TBA)
Hoops for Hope
Benefiting: Catholic Charities
Location: Hilton Omaha

Dec. 5-7 (8 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Substitute Santa 2018
Benefiting: Child Saving Institute
Location: Child Saving Institute building and website

Dec. 6 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Lauritzen Gardens Guild Holiday Luncheon
Benefiting: Lauritzen Gardens
Location: Lauritzen Gardens

Dec. 7 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
2018 Equal Opportunity Awards Luncheon
Benefiting: Urban League of Nebraska
Location: Hilton Omaha

Dec. 7 (7-10 p.m.)
Taste of Pride Wine Event
Benefiting: Roncalli Catholic
Location: Roncalli Catholic Student Center

Dec. 8 (7:30 a.m.-noon)
2018 Nebraska Jingle Bell Run
Benefiting: Arthritis Foundation Nebraska
Location: Strategic Air Command & Space Museum

Dec. 8 (5-9 p.m.)
Joslyn Castle Unlocked
Benefiting: Joslyn Castle Trust
Location: Joslyn Castle

Dec. 9
Ruth Sokolof Christmas Party
Benefiting: Nebraska Foundation for Visually Impaired Children
Location: Westroads Mall

Dec. 24 (10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.)
Castle at Christmas Tours
Benefiting: Joslyn Castle
Location: Joslyn Castle

Dec. 27 (6-11 p.m.)
Omaha Symphony Debutante Ball
Benefiting: Omaha Symphony
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Top of page

Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

Apartments for the Homeless

October 24, 2018 by
Photography by provided

Once a month, Tiffany Le Colst teaches RentWise, an eight-hour class that educates new renters about the responsibilities of being good tenants.

“We go over scenarios that might come up and help clients decide how to best handle them. We ask, ‘Do you take the issue to the landlord? Do you deal with your neighbor directly? Or do you rectify the problem yourself?’”

For example: “Say there’s a music disturbance. We’d recommend they first approach their neighbor calmly about their concerns and try to come to an agreement. Ultimately, we want clients to build relationships with their neighbors and landlords so that they can keep their rental housing,” Le Colst says.

Her classes also teach renters their rights. “We make clients aware of what discrimination looks like, for example, and what to do if they find they are being discriminated against,” she says.

Le Colst’s role as teacher is one of her many duties as a landlord liaison for Together, a nonprofit dedicated to preventing and ending homelessness in the Omaha community. The organization was founded in 1975 to help the hundreds of Omaha tornado victims left without food and shelter. Today, it provides case management, financial assistance, employment assistance, financial education, and other resources to nearly 22,000 individuals and families struggling with housing each year.

According to the Open Door Mission, approximately 2,000 people are homeless in Omaha every night.

Le Colst’s primary objective is to help the homeless find and maintain affordable, safe housing through Together’s Horizons program. She spends much of her time conducting housing inspections on properties before her clients sign a lease. “Typically, I’m checking for proper ventilation systems in kitchens and baths, making sure smoke detectors are operational, looking for signs of pest infestations, and ensuring electrical outlets are working.”

But not all landlords want inspections done on their properties. Sometimes, she must explain to them, “I do inspections to make sure normal maintenance on the property is done and meets the health and safety regulations to make a home habitable.”

Mediation is another aspect of Le Colst’s liaison position. “A lot of times, clients have barriers to attaining housing, such as having a felony record or a prior eviction debt that needs to be paid off. We evaluate what they’ve been denied for, then deal with the issue or get an appeal process going in hopes that they’ll be approved and can move in.”

She also mediates between landlord and tenant when a problem arises, helping to find a mutually agreeable solution and avoid eviction.

Le Colst makes great effort to treat her homeless clients with dignity and respect, without judgment, and to help them find the resources they need to get on their feet.

“People are homeless for many reasons,” she says. “Some are on a fixed income. For those clients, I try to mediate the cost of housing and get them connected with other resources like SNAP [Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program]. Others can’t work because of a disability, and I help them connect with SSI [Supplemental Security Income] or other forms of income to help. Still others are fully capable of working, and we work with an employment specialist to determine their interests and what they’re physically capable of doing and help them find a job. Each case is different.”

Le Colst, who was born in Omaha, grew up in Texas in a military family. She moved back in 2006, earned a real estate certificate, and started a career in property management, working with Seldin Co., Lund Co., and Habitat for Humanity of Omaha before joining Together in December 2016.

“I realized I wanted to do more in the housing industry, and I have a heart for helping people,” she says. “Working closely with landlords while being able to help homeless individuals and families find a safe place to call home is truly the most rewarding job ever!”

Le Colst says her work is often made more challenging by economic factors, such as the subprime mortgage crisis of the past decade.

Many people who lost their homes in the crisis have now become renters, Le Colst explains. “With these more stable families, landlords are comfortable with raising rents and rental standards, which is now pushing low-income families into the shelters. There just is not enough affordable housing in our community to meet the need.”

Property management companies in Omaha typically set renter income requirements at three to four times the amount of rent, Le Colst says, while the average rent increase is three percent annually. These factors create more barriers for fixed- or zero-income clients, such as those on Social Security, she adds.

Jessica Jones, program director at Together, believes Le Colst is doing great work to meet these challenges and further Together’s mission. “When I hired Tiffany as landlord liaison, the position was brand-new,” Jones says. “With her hard work and professional yet personable demeanor, Tiffany has grown her position to be much more than originally designed. She has grown Together’s landlord base, recruiting over 20 new landlords in 2017. She explains our Horizons program to landlords and breaks down stereotypes of homeless individuals. She advocates for our clients, while also keeping the landlords’ needs and rights at the forefront.”

Jones is optimistic that Le Colst’s efforts will pay off going forward. “It’s our hope that landlords will volunteer to come talk with the [RentWise] class, and will accept the class certificate from our clients in lieu of good credit or references, giving them another chance.”

Le Colst has another goal in mind: setting up a landlord mitigation fund. “The funds would provide financial assurances for landlords concerned about additional risks related to damaged property, non-payment of rent, or eviction costs,” she says. “These funds could be accessed to cover expenses that exceed a tenant’s security deposit.”

This insurance policy of sorts would likely bring more landlords on board and offer housing options for those facing the greatest housing barriers, Le Colst adds.

“It’s especially rewarding when you have someone homeless for 20-plus years walk into their own apartment for the first time…It’s a profound moment,” she says. “You realize they do want a special place they can call home. They’re no different than the rest of us.” 

Visit togetheromaha.org for more information.

This article was printed in the November/December 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

Charitable Giving

September 21, 2018 by

The new tax law’s impact on charitable giving remains to be seen, but Omaha nonprofits expect the holidays will reveal whether the changes will discourage philanthropists from stepping up during the most popular time of the year to donate. 

“Until we see the numbers, we won’t know for sure,” says Matt Darling, vice president of donor services for the Omaha Community Foundation, which connects donors with causes they want to support. “Nothing can be proven yet.” 

The new law took effect Jan. 1, with the most significant change affecting the standard tax deduction, which is a fixed amount that benefits everyone who pays federal taxes. The 2018 single filer’s standard deduction is $12,000—nearly double the previous deduction of $6,350. For taxpayers who are married and filing jointly, the 2018 standard deduction is $24,000—up from $12,700.

Darling says most people donate as the holidays approach in October, November, and December, with the largest gifts going to charities between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve. Some people donate because they view the holidays as an emotional time of year and want to help those less fortunate; others see the season as a natural deadline or incentive for tax planning purposes before Jan. 1. 

But the fear among nonprofit organizations all over the country—organizations reliant on charitable contributions to fund their causes, pay their employees, and have a positive impact on their communities—is that under the new law, taxpayers who don’t itemize their tax returns will stop donating as much money as they had in the past.  

There are options for filers who want to give and receive a positive tax benefit, Darling says, if they use a strategy called “bunching.” 

Under bunching, taxpayers would give the same amount they would over a two-year period in only one year. Bunching in one year allows them to itemize dedications where they otherwise could not. 

“I’m hearing a lot of conversations about it, just tweaking the individual amounts,” Darling says. 

The Omaha Community Foundation has helped facilitate donor contributions of more than $906 million since it was created in 1982. Recipients have included more than 3,000 charitable organizations in Omaha and southwest Iowa, including nonprofits, initiatives, and funds. 

The foundation is made up of more than 1,200 donors. The city is nationally ranked fourth in per capita giving, according to its website. 

Despite the worries over the new tax law, Darling is confident that Omahans will donate as they always have. That’s how people are here, he says. 

“Nationally, I think there will be an effect,” Darling says. “But not every community is like ours. I have no reason to believe that Omaha will see a contraction of charitable giving.” 

He continues: “It’s our hope and the charitable community’s hope that we are going to continue down this track. We are a giving town.” 

For more information on the new tax law, visit irs.gov.

This article was printed in the September/October 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

Community First

September 17, 2018 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

First National Bank is known for “putting customers first.” Part and parcel of that commitment is reinvesting in the communities their customers call home.  

“Our success as a company is dependent upon the success of the communities that we operate in…so the purpose of our community work is to contribute to the success of the communities in which we operate in and serve,” says Alec Gorynski, vice president of Community Development and Corporate Philanthropy at First National Bank.

First National partners with nonprofit organizations across its seven-state footprint—Nebraska, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota, and Texas—to support local communities with reinvestments that channel through nonprofit partners. The bank reinvests by direct philanthropy, impact investment, and volunteerism, and chooses its nonprofit partners based on their alignment with First National initiatives, history and track record of success, and potential for impact. 

While philanthropy and community development are not new concepts at First National, Gorynski says that in 2016 the bank specifically committed to reinvesting $85 million and 100,000 volunteer hours back into its communities by 2020. According to First National’s 2017 Impact Report, their two-year totals at the close of 2017 were at $56 million and 76,000 volunteer hours.

While Gorynski acknowledges there is lots of need and many excellent potential partner organizations, First National strategically aligns its community investments with organizations that are working to foster success in eight specific areas: strong local economies, stable housing, vibrant neighborhoods, an educated workforce, good health, community cohesion, access to culture, and sustained environment. Of those eight areas, First National focuses the majority of its efforts on an educated workforce, a strong local economy, and stable housing, each of which can act as essential building blocks to foster success in the other five areas.    

“Success is a wide net when we think about helping our communities succeed, so we think about success from the economic standpoint,” says Gorynski. “We want to help our communities, and the individuals in our communities, move above a certain economic threshold. Certainly it’s a spectrum, but there’s an economic line at which people are more likely to be more active in the economy and more independently prosperous. What we’re really focused on is helping move people above that economic line.”

In service of that goal, Gorynski elaborates, an educated workforce is fostered by education and
job training that helps individuals attain the skills and tools necessary to achieve economic success, often through avenues like youth and adult education, or vocational training. Similarly, their strong economy initiative is buoyed by investments in nonprofits that support small business development, and stable housing is achieved by investments in organizations that work to provide quality, affordable housing opportunities. 

“We believe that home ownership is a means to gain wealth and a pathway to economic stability and prosperity, so we want to invest in programs that help people own a home as a means to building wealth,” says Gorynski. “At the same time, we want to invest in programs that help low-income individuals get quality affordable housing, even if it is rental housing, because we know that housing should never take up more than 30 percent of your income and we want to ensure that people can get housing that’s affordable, but also quality.”

Amanda Brewer, CEO at Habitat for Humanity of Omaha, a prominent community partner of the bank, says the bank provides crucial support to her organization.  

“First National Bank is an incredible partner of Habitat for Humanity. In addition to sponsoring a house and having hundreds of team members volunteer each year, First National has helped by investing in our loan pool, servicing Habitat loans, leading budgeting workshops for our homeowners, and providing countless hours of technical expertise,” says Brewer. “They’ve helped more families realize the dream of homeownership through Habitat and helped us transform neighborhoods.”  

Not only does First National encourage employees to volunteer, they have a time-off policy that allows each employee eight hours paid time off annually to use for volunteering in their community. Gorynski says it all goes back to one of the bank’s guiding mantras: “When our communities are successful, we are successful.” 

For Gorynski, it is a privilege to help set the strategy and tone for First National Bank’s community development and corporate philanthropy efforts, while also leading the team that “puts our financial and human capital to work in alignment with that strategy.” He is quick to praise his team and the Lauritzen family’s ownership and leadership as drivers in making these efforts successful. 

“It’s truly an honor and a privilege to do this work for a company that has a 160-year history of being so committed to Omaha and to all of the communities in which it operates and serves,” says Gorynski. “The team does meaningful work developing really genuine, meaningful partnerships with nonprofit organizations. We have boots on the ground in Omaha and in every community in which we operate who are out there getting to know the communities we serve, getting to know the organizations that are addressing the needs in our communities, and finding meaningful ways for us to support the work of those organizations. It’s because of [the team] that we’re able to get to know the right nonprofit organizations, make meaningful investments in those organizations, and ultimately, realize our goal of successful communities.”

Visit firstnational.com/community to learn more about First National Bank’s community development and philanthropy efforts.

This article was printed in the August/September 2018 edition of B2B. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

September/October 2018 Giving Calendar

Featured Fundraiser:

Journey Through Time: A Gala Celebrating 20 Years at the SAC Aerospace Museum
Oct. 19 (6-10 p.m.)
Location: SAC Aerospace Museum
A summary of U.S. military history would not be complete without mentioning Strategic Air Command, headquartered at Offutt Air Force Base during the Cold War. Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum, which seeks “to preserve the history of Strategic Air Command” and aerospace memorabilia, is hosting a gala to celebrate its 20th anniversary. Contact 402-944-3100 or events@sacmuseum.org for information. 

Sept. 2 (6-9 a.m.)
38th Annual Zoo Run
Benefiting: Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium
Location: Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium

Sept. 2 (8 a.m.)
2018 Bingo Open Golf Fundraiser for the Kids
Benefiting: NWA Kids Fishing Clinics, “Fishing is Fun!”
Location: Grandpa’s Woods Golf Course, Elmwood, NE

Sept. 2 (noon-4 p.m.)
Packer Car Show
Benefiting: Omaha South High School Alumni Association
Location: Collin Stadium Parking Lot

Sept. 6 (10:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m.)
2018 SAC Foundation Golf Outing
Benefiting: Team Offutt Home Away from Home
Location: Tiburon Golf Club

Sept. 6 (5-9 p.m.)
Brew Haha: A Beer and Food Tasting Event
Benefiting: Habitat for Humanity
Location: Stinson Park at Aksarben Village

Sept. 6 (5:30-9 p.m.)
2018 Imagine Our Youth Fundraising Celebration
Benefiting: Omaha Home for Boys
Location: Marriott—Capitol District

Sept. 7 (11 a.m.)
Sixth Annual Aerotek Charity Golf Event
Benefiting: Wishing Well Foundation
Location: Tiburon Golf Course

Sept. 7 (6:30-11 p.m.)
Holy Cross Parish Festival Concert
Benefiting: Holy Cross Parish
Location: Holy Cross Catholic Church

Sept. 7 (7-9:30 p.m.)
Wings & Wheels
Benefiting: Ronald McDonald House Charities Omaha
Location: Signature Flight Support

Sept. 8 (9-11 a.m.)
24th Annual Siena/Francis House 5K Walk/Run
Benefiting: Siena/Francis House
Location: Stinson Park in Aksarben Village

Sept. 8 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)
September Latino Festival
Benefiting: Centro Latino Council Bluffs
Location: Bayliss Park

Sept. 9 (7:30 a.m.)
Freedom Run
Benefiting: YMCA
Location: Twin Rivers YMCA

Sept. 9 (8-11:30 a.m.)
Fight for Air Corporate Cup
Benefiting: American Lung Association
Location: Aksarben Village

Sept. 9 (9 a.m.-3 p.m.)
Eighth Annual Cruisin’ for a Cure Omaha
Benefiting: Methodist Estabrook Cancer Center
Location: Methodist Health System parking lot

Sept. 9 (noon-6 p.m.)
Holy Cross Parish Festival
Benefiting: Holy Cross Parish
Location: Holy Cross Catholic Church

Sept. 9 (11:30 a.m.-4 p.m.)
14th Annual Omaha Out of the Darkness Walk
Benefiting: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
Location: Lewis & Clark Landing

Sept. 9 (3-6 p.m.)
Glow Gold Rally Omaha
Benefiting: Sammy’s Superheroes
Location: Village Pointe Toyota-Scion

Sept. 10 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)
28th Annual Driving for Excellence Golf Fest
Benefiting: Mercy High School’s Negotiated Tuition Program
Location: Players Club at Deer Creek

Sept. 10 (noon-6 p.m.)
25th Anniversary Safe Haven Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Heartland Family Service
Location: Oak Hills Country Club

Sept. 13 (11:30 a.m.)
17th Annual Golf Classic
Benefiting: Ralston Schools Foundation
Location: Eagle Hills Golf Course

Sept. 13 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)
Fourth Annual Rejuvenating Women’s Restored Wings Banquet
Benefiting: Rejuvenating Women
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Sept. 13 (5:30-9 p.m.)
Night in the Neighborhood 2018
Benefiting: Completely KIDS
Location: Founders One Nine

Sept. 13 (6-9:30 p.m.)
Decades in Deco 2018: Meet Me at the Expo
Benefiting: The Durham Museum
Location: The Durham Museum

Sept. 14 (7:30 p.m.-midnight)
OutrSpaces Lift-Off
Benefiting: OutrSpaces
Location: OutrSpaces

Sept. 14-23
Omaha Restaurant Week
Benefiting: Food Bank for the Heartland
Location: Varies

Sept. 14 (11 a.m.-5 p.m.)
23rd Annual Jailhouse Scramble
Benefiting: UNO School of Criminology and Criminal Justice Student Scholarships
Location: Tiburon Golf Course

Sept. 14 (6-9 p.m.)
Closer to the Cure: Sixth Annual Fundraiser for Cancer Alliance of Nebraska
Benefiting: Cancer Alliance of Nebraska
Location: Omaha Country Club

Sept. 14 (6-10 p.m.)
QLI’s An Evening at the Fair
Benefiting: QLI
Location: Baxter Arena

Sept. 15 (6-10 p.m.)
Jewels of Autumn
Benefiting: CHI Health Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program
Location: CHI Health Lakeside Hospital

Sept. 16 (11 a.m.-6 p.m.)
63rd Annual Fall Festival
Benefiting: Mount Michael Benedictine School
Location: Mount Michael Abbey

Sept. 17 (10:30 a.m.-6 p.m.)
Mid-America Council’s 48th Annual Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Boy Scouts of America, Mid-America Council
Location: Shadow Ridge Country Club

Sept. 17 (11 a.m.-7 p.m.)
Cougar Classic Golf Tournament
Benefiting: Gross Catholic High School
Location: Eagle Hills Golf Club

Sept. 17 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Great Friends to Kids Luncheon
Benefiting: Omaha Children’s Museum
Location: Omaha Children’s Museum

Sept. 20 (6 p.m.)
2018 Archbishop’s Dinner for Education
Benefiting: Archdiocese of Omaha Scholarships
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Sept. 20 (4:30-9 p.m.)
Collector’s Circle Champagne Reception and Preview Party
Benefiting: Lauritzen Gardens
Location: Lauritzen Gardens

Sept. 21-23 (10 a.m.-5 p.m.)
Lauritzen Gardens Antique & Garden Show: Celebrating 15 Years
Benefiting: Lauritzen Gardens
Location: Lauritzen Gardens

Sept. 21 (11 a.m.-7:30 p.m.)
The Camp Classic Golf Tournament Ashland
Benefiting: Carol Joy Holling Camp
Location: Ashland Golf Club

Sept. 21 (3-7 p.m.)
HETRA Participant Horse Show and Awards Party
Benefiting: Heartland Equine Therapeutic Riding Academy (HETRA)
Location: HETRA Barn, Gretna

Sept. 21 (5:30-11 p.m.)
2018 Angels Among Us Gala: No Place Like Home
Benefiting: Angels Among Us
Location: A View on State

Sept. 21 (6-10 p.m.)
2018 Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day
Benefiting: Project Harmony
Location: Champions Run Golf Course

Sept. 22 (8:30-9:30 a.m.)
Second Annual 5K Race
Benefiting: Elkhorn Public Schools Foundation
Location: Elkhorn High School Football Stadium

Sept. 22 (9-11 a.m.)
2018 Walk to End Alzheimer’s—Council Bluffs
Benefiting: Alzheimer’s Association
Location: Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park

Sept. 22 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)
Light the Night Walk
Benefiting: Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
Location: Stinson Park at Aksarben Village

Sept. 23 (9 a.m.-noon)
2018 Walk to End Alzheimer’s—Omaha
Benefiting: Alzheimer’s Association
Location: Stinson Park at Aksarben Village

Sept. 23 (noon-4 p.m.)
Sixth Annual Superhero Heart Run Omaha
Benefiting: Heart Heroes
Location: Werner Park

Sept. 23 (noon-9 p.m.)
Our Lady of Lourdes Fall Festival
Benefiting: Our Lady of Lourdes Church and school
Location: Our Lady of Lourdes Church

15th Annual MBCF-MBA Scholarship Scramble
Benefiting: Millard Business Community Foundation Scholarship Fund
Location: Oak Hills Country Club

Sept. 25 (4:30-8:30 p.m.)
2018 Omaha Go Red for Women Expo
Benefiting: American Heart Association
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Sept. 26 (5:30-9 p.m.)
Fourth Annual Food Truck World Tour
Benefiting: Immigrant Legal Center
Location: Metropolitan Community College, Fort Omaha Campus

Sept. 26 (6:30-8:30 p.m.)
Between the Lines with Amy Thielen
Benefiting: Omaha Public Library
Location: Institute for the Culinary Arts, Metropolitan Community College

Sept. 27 (5-9 p.m.)
2018 Love Your Neighbor Gala
Benefiting: Open Door Mission
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Sept. 27 (6-9 p.m.)
Pure Inspiration: An Evening of Artistic & Culinary Expressions
Benefiting: Center for Childhood Deafness, Language & Learning
Location: Lied Learning and Technology Center

Sept. 28 (6-9 p.m.)
2018 Spotlight Gala
Benefiting: Voices for Children Nebraska
Location: Omaha Marriott Downtown at the Capitol District

Sept. 28 (6-9 p.m.)
Fifth Annual Open Space Soiree
Benefiting: KANEKO
Location: KANEKO

Sept. 29 (10 a.m.-10 p.m.)
Creighton University Dance Marathon
Benefiting: Children’s Hospital & Medical Center
Location: Skutt Student Center

Sept. 29 (6-10 p.m.)
20th Annual Black Tie Harvest for Scholarships
Benefiting: Iowa Western Pottawattamie Promise Scholarship Fund
Location: Iowa Western Kanesville Arena

Sept. 29 (6-9 p.m.)
Nebraska Ataxia Engagement Party
Benefiting: Nebraska Ataxia
Location: Creighton Prep High School

Sept. 29 (8-10 p.m.)
Glow ’N’ Go 5K Run/Walk
Benefiting: Society of St. Vincent de Paul
Location: Aksarben Village

Sept. 30 (9-11 a.m.)
Walk & Run the Park for Parkinson’s
Benefiting: Parkinson’s Nebraska
Location: Elmwood Park

Sept. 30 (11 a.m.-2 p.m.)
2018 Margre Durham Walk for the Animals
Benefiting: Nebraska Humane Society
Location: Nebraska Humane Society

Sept. 30 (1-7 p.m.)
St. Margaret Mary Parish Festival
Benefiting: St. Margaret Mary Catholic Parish & School
Location: St. Margaret Mary Catholic Parish

Oct. 1 (12:30 p.m.)
2018 Men for Others Golf Classic
Benefiting: Creighton Prep School
Location: Shadow Ridge Country Club

Oct. 2 (5:30 p.m.)
27th Annual Creighton Prep Sports Night
Benefiting: Creighton Prep School
Location: The Heider Center at Creighton Prep

Oct. 4 (5-7 p.m.)
Survivors Rising Friendraiser
Benefiting: Survivors Rising
Location: Highlander Accelerator

Oct. 4 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)
Signature Chefs Auction
Benefiting: March of Dimes
Location: SAC Aerospace Museum

Oct. 4 (6-9 p.m.)
Boys Town National Hotline: Fine Wine & Hors D’oeuvres Fundraiser
Benefiting: Boys Town
Location: A View on State

Oct. 4 (6-9:30 p.m.)
20th Annual CHS Hall of Fame
Benefiting: Central High School Foundation
Location: Central High School

Oct. 4 (6-9:30 p.m.)
45th Woman of the Year Gala
Benefiting: Arthritis Foundation
Location: Omaha Marriott-Regency

Oct. 5 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Passing Periods: CHS Alumni Luncheon
Benefiting: Central High School Foundation
Location: Field Club of Omaha

Oct. 5 (6-9 p.m.)
The Hope Center for Kids 20th Birthday Gala
Benefiting: The Hope Center for Kids
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

Oct. 5 (5:30-8:30 p.m.)
Chariots4Hope’s Third Annual Gala: Under the Hood
Benefiting: Chariots4Hope
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Oct. 6 (10 a.m.-noon)
Omaha South Alumni Hall of Fame Brunch
Benefiting: Omaha South High School Alumni Association
Location: Stockyard Exchange Building

Oct. 6 (5-9 p.m.)
Joslyn Castle Unlocked
Benefiting: Joslyn Castle Trust
Location: Joslyn Castle

Oct. 6 (5-9 p.m.)
Vintage Affaire Gala
Benefiting: Autism Action Partnership
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Oct. 7 (7-10 a.m.)
25th Annual Komen Nebraska Race for the Cure
Benefiting: Susan G. Komen Great Plains
Location: Baxter Arena

Oct. 11 (5-9 p.m.)
Benefiting: Nebraska Children’s Home Society
Location: Kros Strain Brewing

Oct. 11 (6-9 p.m.)
Good Apple Awards
Benefiting: Nebraska Appleseed
Location: Livestock Exchange Building Ballroom

Oct. 13 (9 a.m.-2 p.m.)
2018 Step Up for Down Syndrome Walk and Family Festival
Benefiting: Down Syndrome Alliance of the Midlands
Location: Stinson Park at Aksarben Village

Oct. 13 (3-8 p.m.)
Fourth Annual HEALS to the Pavement for Pregnancy & Infant Loss
Benefiting: HEALing Embrace
Location: Lake Zorinsky

122nd Aksarben Ball
Benefiting: Aksarben Foundation
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

Oct. 14 (4:30-8 p.m.)
12th Annual Comfort Food Classic
Benefiting: Grief’s Journey
Location: Hotel RL

Oct. 16 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
A Time for Hope & Healing Luncheon
Benefiting: The Kim Foundation
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Oct. 17 (6-8 p.m.)
Taste the Season: The Nebraska Way Patron Party
Benefiting: Food Bank for the Heartland
Location: Omaha World-Herald John Gottschalk Freedom Center

Oct. 18 (11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.)
Taste the Season: The Nebraska Way Luncheon and Marketplace
Benefiting: Food Bank for the Heartland
Location: The Marriott at Regency

Oct. 18 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Eighth Annual Climb Higher Luncheon
Benefiting: Omaha Outward Bound School
Location: Metropolitan Community College Center for Advanced and Emerging Technology, Fort Omaha Campus

Oct. 18 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
PurseOnalities 2018
Benefiting: Child Saving Institute
Location: Hilton Omaha

Oct. 18 (6 p.m.)
2018 Annual Go Wild for Conservation Beer Tasting & Auction
Benefiting: Pottawattamie Conservation Foundation
Location: Mid-America Center, Council Bluffs

Oct. 19 (5-10 p.m.)
2018 Bethlehem House Fall Fundraiser
Benefiting: Bethlehem House
Location: Marriott Courtyard

Oct. 19 (6-10 p.m.)
Legacy Gala 2018
Benefiting: Women on a Mission for Change
Location: DC Centre

Oct. 19 (6-9:30 p.m.)
Ninth Annual TGIF!
Benefiting: Women’s Center for Advancement
Location: View on State

Oct. 23 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
Changemakers 2018
Benefiting: Nebraska Children and Families Foundation
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Oct. 24 (5:30-10 p.m.)
Packer Sports Greats Banquet
Benefiting: Omaha South High School Alumni Association
Location: Anthony’s Steakhouse

Oct. 24 (6 p.m.)
Loyola Dinner of Honor and Distinction
Benefiting: Creighton Prep School
Location: Henry J. Sullivan, S.J., Campus Center

Oct. 25 (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.)
2018 Annual Lead the Change Celebration
Benefiting: Women’s Fund of Omaha
Location: CHI Health Center Omaha

Oct. 25 (6 p.m.)
1877 Society Hosts Animus: Film vs. Book
Benefiting: Omaha Public Library Foundation
Location: Aksarben Cinema

Oct. 26 (5:30-9:30 p.m.)
Benefit Art Auction
Benefiting: Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts
Location: Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts

Oct. 26 (7-10 p.m.)
Hops & Grapes Fall Festival
Benefiting: Partnership 4 Kids
Location: Hilton Downtown

Oct. 26-28 (8 a.m.-3 p.m.)
Kids & Clays Sporting Clays Tournament
Benefiting: Ronald McDonald House Charities Omaha
Location: Oak Creek Sporting Club

Oct. 27 (7-11 p.m.)
Masquerade at the Castle
Benefiting: Joslyn Castle Trust
Location: Joslyn Castle

Oct. 27 (5:30-11 p.m.)
2018 Angel Flight: Masquerade Gala
Benefiting: Skutt Catholic High School
Location: Skutt Catholic High School

Oct. 27 (5-9 p.m.)
PLV Schools Foundation Gala 2018
Benefiting: Papillion-La Vista Schools
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Oct. 27 (5:30-10 p.m.)
BPS Foundation Purple Apple Gala
Benefiting: Bellevue Public Schools Foundation
Location: Beardmore Events Center

Oct. 27 (5:30 p.m.-midnight)
Scare Away Cancer
Benefiting: Scare Away Cancer
Location: Anthony’s Steakhouse

Oct. 28 (5-8 p.m.)
2018 TeamMates Tailgate Gala
Benefiting: TeamMates Mentoring Program
Location: Embassy Suites-La Vista Conference Center

Event times and details may change.
Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.

This calendar was printed in the September/October 2018 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.


Woodmen of the World

August 14, 2018 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

The Woodmen name has graced a downtown Omaha skyscraper for nearly 50 years, but the organization behind it, WoodmenLife, also stands tall with nearly $11 billion in assets, $38.5 billion of life insurance in force, and an A-plus/superior rating by the independent agency A.M. Best. Since its 19th-century beginnings, WoodmenLife has also built a towering history of philanthropy and service to the community. 

“WoodmenLife was founded in 1890 to provide financial security for families while making a difference in their community. As a not-for-profit fraternal organization, we’re able to offer competitive life insurance and cash-accumulating products,” President and CEO Pat Dees says. “When I say, ‘fraternal,’ it’s a not-so-common word, but it’s a description of our business model. My modern definition of ‘fraternal’ is ‘to find an unmet need in the community and purpose yourself to find a way to meet it.’ That’s the guidance that we give our individual local chapters throughout the U.S.”

Brook Bench is director of City of Omaha Parks, Recreation, and Public Property, which has benefitted from Woodmen’s beneficence through the donation of American flags. Woodmen has donated more than 3 million American flags to parks, schools, churches, and other civic organizations.

“WoodmenLife’s American flag donations have enhanced our parks for years. We are so fortunate to have brand-new American flags we can display in our parks to honor veterans and show patriotism towards our country,” Bench says.

Although the range of activities is too extensive to enumerate, Dees says WoodmenLife focuses its support in three primary areas: family, community, and patriotic endeavors.  

One example of supporting family is the WoodmenLife Focus Forward Scholarship program for WoodmenLife members and families. Applicants who meet basic eligibility criteria are considered for awards based on factors including volunteer activity, work history, career goals, and patriotism. 

“We created this two years ago to support their futures and a chance to get ahead,” he says. “This is one of the unique benefits of being a member of WoodmenLife that extends to families.”

One community-oriented activity specific to Omaha was providing funding to the Omaha Police Department Mounted Patrol. 

“WoodmenLife has generously donated funding to be used towards the purchase of new horses for the Omaha Police Mounted Patrol Unit,” says Sgt. Joseph Svacina of the OPD Mounted Patrol. “Several horses have been retired, creating a need for quality replacements. The Omaha Police Department welcomes and appreciates this relationship and financial support from our partners at WoodmenLife. This level of corporate support is invaluable in our growing city, particularly our evolving downtown riverfront area and entertainment district. We look forward to growing this relationship, as well as maintaining a highly professional mounted patrol unit.”

“We adopted a focus on a national scale to fight hunger,” he says. “One of the more powerful things we can offer is, that, because we have nearly 700,000 members throughout the country, we mobilize them for volunteer efforts in local food pantries, or to raise funds, or to have canned food drives to support food pantries. In just the last few years [since 2015] we have collected 627,337 pounds of food and donated $1,117,120 for community food banks.”

Even after more than a century of giving, the people of WoodmenLife continue to look for ways of serving others, Dees says. Because like a tall building, WoodmenLife was built on a strong foundation—of giving, Dees says. 

“There are so many ways we connect with the community. It’s part of our founding principles,” he says. “It is who we are.”

Visit woodmenlife.org for more information.

This article was printed in the August/September 2018 edition of B2B.

Pat Dees, president and CEO of WoodmenLife