Giving Hearts Day is Thursday: 10 local nonprofits participating this year

Ten Detroit Lakes-area nonprofits will be participating in the annual Giving Hearts Day fundraiser, set for Thursday, Feb. 9. Donors can step up and register their gifts at

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Giving Hearts Day is Thursday, Feb. 9. Ten lakes-area organizations are participating in the 24-hour online fundraiser this year.
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Since the first Giving Hearts Day fundraiser was held 16 years ago, the 24-hour, online-only event has raised more than $138 million, 100% of which has gone directly to the participating charities, according to information available on the event's website, .
Over the years, an increasing number of local nonprofits got on board with the fundraiser, and 10 Detroit Lakes-area charities are participating in the 2023 event, set for this Thursday, Feb. 9.

This year's participants include the following:

  • The Boys & Girls Club of Detroit Lakes provides a safe, positive place for children to spend structured time with friends and adult mentors and through a $25,000 match from an anonymous donor, the Boys & Girls Club is hoping to raise $50,000 this year, with the proceeds to be used to continue growing and expanding the programs offered for community youth and families, both at the club and through outreach. Growth of the programs offers current and new children, teens, and families the opportunity to benefit from the variety of services offered at the club every day including after-school and summer care, preschool care, building use for gym space and conferences, and many outreach events providing free meals and fun for the entire family.
  • Detroit Mountain Recreation Area hopes to use its donations to support its Ski Angel program. "This program opens access to the mountain for people of all backgrounds in two ways," says Meghan Eastman, the mountain's inside operations manager. "First, our ski school program supplements the cost of field trips for local schools and pays for student lunches for those with the need. Secondly, we offer season passes to anyone qualifying for a Ski Angel scholarship. One need only fill out the online application. Children and families who are approved will receive a season pass as well as rental equipment and meals while they are visiting the mountain. We would like to raise $5,000 this year at Giving Hearts Day, and are willing to match up to $5,000 as well.
  • In the spirit of Giving Hearts Day, the Essentia Health St. Mary's Foundation is showing love for lifesaving emergency care," says the foundation's director of development, Cara Frank. "We’re raising critical dollars to fund a specialized stretcher that supports our most vulnerable patients as they are transported to and from our helicopter. Designed for the harshest weather conditions, this leading-edge equipment will increase efficiencies, decrease safety concerns and make a tremendous impact—especially when every second counts. Our employee giving group, ROOTS is matching up to $10,000 on Giving Hearts Day, hoping to achieve our $20,000 goal."
  • The Friends of Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge "provides outdoor education to kids not only in the Detroit Lakes area, but also from districts like Hawley, Perham, Frazee, Waubun, Pine Point and more," says Tina Pierce, a Friends board member. "The demand for our programs is expanding rapidly and we would love to raise $15,000 to help offset the costs of a full-time education program coordinator, equipment, buses to get kids to and from the refuge plus more. By getting kids outside we are creating future stewards for our environment."
  • At Health Resources Center in Detroit Lakes, Britton Ramsey, the center's executive director, said, "We have secured $10,000 in match funding, with a goal to raise $25,000 to help offset operating costs that fulfill our mission to remove the barriers families’ face to empower them to make life-affirming choices, improve their family’s stability, and equip them to thrive! We keep a fully stocked store with all the baby essentials any family could need that our community can access whenever emergencies come up, or as an ongoing basis through our Earn While You Learn program. We provide a supportive, safe community for new moms through our weekly drop-in lactation group where they can make new mom friends, be encouraged by each other, and have access to an RN/Lactation Counselor if they have any questions or need help troubleshooting issues. We also provide completely free prenatal vitamins, pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, education, and lactation consultations with absolutely no eligibility requirements. Whether someone is scared or excited to be a parent, our goal is to come alongside them to provide support and practical help. Donations made to Health Resources this Giving Hearts Day will help us do exactly that!"
  • The Holy Rosary Catholic School is planning to use funds raised during Giving Hearts Day "to continue to broaden our STEM and Robotics programs at Holy Rosary School," says Jamie McDougall, director of stewardship and development at Holy Rosary Catholic Church, which operates the school. "We are also hoping to introduce an archery unit into our physical education curriculum, update some of our locker space and continue replacing desks and chairs that have seen better days." The school's GHD goal for 2023 is $30,000, and they have secured $6,125 in matching funds.
  • The mission of the Humane Society of the Lakes is "to provide much-needed services to abandoned, stray, and unwanted pets while they await lifelong homes," says HSL board president Lori Thompson. "This money will help us to improve on our mission by paying for medical bills, food, treats, toys, and to keep our building maintained at progressive standards. One of our biggest goals is to combat the local stray population by spaying and neutering all of our animals in care as soon as possible prior to being adopted. With future funding, we hope to find a solution for everyone in the community to have easier access to spay and neuter programs."
  • The Detroit Lakes-based Lakes Crisis and Resource Center is planning to use donations received during Giving Hearts Day "to grow the children’s services and Kinship programs for youth in our region," says Stephanie Baker, LCRC's outreach and development coordinator. "Our children’s services programming works to improve the lives of children in our area. Our children’s advocates work with kids who have experienced domestic violence, sexual assault, or general crime. They also provide groups through our Partners in Parenting program for young parents and support groups for kids in local schools. Our Kinship program matches volunteer adult mentors to kids across our area who could use some extra support from a caring adult. Mentoring is changing our community one kid at a time! We are so fortunate to have a generous donor who has pledged to match all Giving Hearts Day donations to LCRC, up to $20,000; including the generous match, LCRC hopes to raise a total of $40,000 this year."
  • Lend a Hand Up serves not just Becker, but also Cass and Clay counties. Because it is affiliated with Dakota Medical Foundation, its operating expenses are covered, so 100% of gifts made on Giving Hearts Day help families. According to information on its GHD page, "Lend A Hand Up provides a free crowdfunding and online auction platform, gift cards and boost grants of up to $5,000 per family fundraiser to increase the impact of people's generosity. Since 2008, Lend A Hand Up has partnered with volunteers to raise $20 million for more than 600 families! Gifts made to the program on Giving Hearts Day may not be directed to benefit a specific individual/family fund. To learn more and/or direct your gift to an individual/family fundraiser, please visit to review and select the fundraiser you wish to support."
  • Minnesota Flyers Gymnastics will be looking to raise $40,000 this year, to support its FlyTime program; a total of $13,000 in matching funds has been secured. "We help these athletes with special needs attain more movement so that they too can achieve physical fitness!" says MFG Foundation Coordinator Kristi Jeffery. "Our facility provides specialized equipment and coaching staff, free of charge to Detroit Lakes schools, Frazee, Lake Park, and the Becker County DAC so that children and young adults have the opportunity to get a little sweaty, build muscle, and challenge themselves through physical fitness. With the support of our community, 85 children and young adults with developmental disabilities will be able to achieve more movement."

How to give

Nearly 550 charities are participating in this year's Giving Hearts Day. Though early giving is also encouraged, the official date for the fundraiser is Thursday, Feb. 9.

Supporters can donate $10 or more at g by selecting the charity of their choice. Once you have found that charity's page on the website, choose the donation amount, then select "Pay on Giving Hearts Day, February 9, 2023" in the checkout cart.

All donations must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. on Feb. 9 to be eligible for inclusion in the fundraiser.

A reporter at Detroit Lakes Newspapers since relocating to the community in October 2000, Vicki was promoted to Community News Lead for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and Perham Focus on Jan. 1, 2022. She has covered pretty much every "beat" that a reporter can be assigned, from county board and city council to entertainment, crime and even sports. Born and raised in Madelia, Minnesota, she is a graduate of Hamline University, from which she earned a bachelor's degree in English literature (writing concentration). You can reach her at
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