It was a 12-hour crowdfunding campaign that will change the trajectory for Lorain County’s difference makers and infused donations into nonprofits that rely on community support. The Community Foundation of Lorain County’s Connect to a Cause kicked off on September 21 at 8 a.m. and wrapped up at 8 p.m., along with a celebration and rally from 5:30 to 8 p.m. It took place at the Lorain Palace Theatre. “What is unique about the event this year is we had more than 94 nonprofit organizations that participated — the most at one time,” says Brittany Lovett, staff lead for the project. Since the first campaign in 2020, the foundation has raised $750,000 that directly benefits nonprofit recipients. “Lorain County has so many organizations that partner and collaborate, and some of the bigger names people know, but there are other nonprofits people may not be as familiar with,” Lovett says, pointing those interested in participating to a comprehensive list on Education, animal rescue, recovery, children, food and shelter — the list of participating groups goes on. Lovett says, “There’s a cause that matters for everyone.” Lovett describes the dedication and excitement that took place during Connect to a Cause — a flurry of phone-in donations, walk-ins who give in person, online giving and networking at the evening event that included a game show: Lorain County Family Feud, NonProfit edition, hosted by Tony Gallo, Lorain County Chamber president. “We had 33 business champions that sponsored Connect to a Cause and over $50,000 in bonus dollars benefiting the nonprofits including the bonus match,” Lovett relates.

Here’s a snapshot of a few
nonprofits you can connect with during the event.

Lorain County Urban League

Since 1978, the league has been empowering and connecting African Americans and minorities to opportunities and programs including employment, entrepreneurship, housing and education. The league holds youth development workshops for college readiness along with career speakers, and a Road to Success College Tour with 40-plus students grades 10 and 11 to expose them to a variety of campuses.

Partners with Paws of Lorain County

It started in 2003 as a radio show featuring homeless pets on Kool Kat Oldies WDLW and Gold Country WOBL. Partners with Paws has raised thousands for pets in need and reunited lost and found pets with families.

YWCA of Elyria

As the oldest, largest multicultural women’s organization in the world, the YWCA is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. YWCA of Elyria started in 1913 and in the 1930s was the first local group to host multiracial events with women socializing and serving on boards together. The YWCA is also the creator of the Lorain County Racial Equity Center.

The Nord Center

A comprehensive behavioral health and advocacy provider, The Nord Center offers mental health programs, prevention and education, along with emergency stabilization services, crisis intervention and a housing services program. Services are available around the clock.

Main Street Amherst

From recruiting new businesses to rehabilitating buildings, Main Street Amherst promotes the city’s downtown and commercial districts. It holds Beautification Days for community-wide cleanup, and Morning Mingle, held on the first Thursday of each month at 9 a.m.