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CFVI’s First Virtual Giving Tree Project Raises $33,000 in Christmas Donations for Nonprofits

St. Thomas Reformed Church used one of its CFVI Virtual Giving Tree gifts to help fund its Compassionate Care Program, which provides groceries to those in need. (Submitted photo)

What started with one random holiday request earlier this month turned into the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands launching its first Virtual Giving Tree Project, which so far has raised more than $33,000 — and counting — for USVI nonprofit organizations.

“After that initial request, I wondered about how CFVI could serve as a broker to help address our nonprofit community’s holiday-related needs for children, youth, families and seniors,” said Anna Wheatley Scarbriel, CFVI’s vice president and director of grants and programs. She followed up with a call to Dee Baecher-Brown, CFVI president, who felt it was definitely worth exploring. “Dee even came up with a name on the spot: Virtual Giving Tree!,” said Scarbriel.

After that, the CFVI team jumped into action to make it all happen. Executive Manager Beth Nuttall created an online form that Communications Manager Sean Liphard sent out asking USVI nonprofit organizations to submit specific needs and requests by Dec. 11. Next, CFVI sought potential donors via email, social media, and personal contact by CFVI leadership.

“Before you know it, we were matching up donors with requests right and left, and our amazing accounting team of Susan Clark and Una Pascal were cutting checks by Dec. 18,” said Scarbriel.

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“It definitely takes a village,” said Baecher-Brown, “and we are so thankful to all the donors who answered the call. I know all of us at CFVI have had a lot of fun playing Santa’s elves by being able to make so many holiday wishes come true during such a challenging year. And we couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate CFVI’s 30th anniversary! Hopefully, the Virtual Giving Tree can be a new annual holiday tradition,” she said.

Below is a list of CFVI Virtual Giving Tree gift recipients:

All Saints Cathedral School

$5,000 for extra support for students’ needs at the holidays

$700 for providing lower school students with soccer balls

Boys and Girls Clubs of St. Thomas/St. John

$600 for purchasing 25-30 earphones for students this Christmas to be used for educational purposes

$100 for purchasing 25-30 earphones for students this Christmas to be used for educational purposes

$100 for purchasing 25-30 earphones for students this Christmas to be used for educational purposes

Catholic Charities

$5,000 for Bethlehem House and Soup Kitchen – in memory of Mayrelou Thomas

Family Resource Center

$4,500 for providing laptops for children and youths

$500 for providing laptops to children and youth

Leap and Learn Academy

$1,640 for purchasing 41 age-appropriate gifts for each child

Long Path Garden Street Community Association Inc.

$4,500 for providing food baskets for 60 families of the Long Path/Garden Street areas

Lutheran Social Services

$1,000 for purchasing personal care, hygiene supplies and medical supplies for residents at Yellow Cedar Residence

$1,000 for purchasing personal care, hygiene supplies and medical supplies for residents at Yellow Cedar Residence

St. Thomas Reformed Church

$750 for the Compassionate Care Program

$750 for Virtual Learning Program

$5,000 for Compassionate Care Program – in memory of Mayrelou Thomas

$100 for Virtual Learning Program

$50 for Virtual Learning Program

The Collective Collaboration

$500 to support purchases of clothing for their clients

The C.O.R.E. Foundation

$25 donation in honor of Susan and Michael Blumenfield (grandparents of Nia and Obi) to support the preservation of the VI coral reef environment

$100 donation on behalf of Nia Blumenfield to support the preservation of the VI coral reef environment

$100 donation on behalf of Obi Blumenfield to support the preservation of the VI coral reef environment

YWCA USVI Inc.

$1,250 to provide $50 gift cards for members of the Y-TEENS VI program

If you are interested in making a contribution to CFVI’s Virtual Giving Tree initiative, it’s not too late. There are several outstanding needs, not all of which are time-sensitive. Review the list of requests at the link below, and contact annas@cfvi.net if you would like to make a contribution of any amount.

View the list of needs here!

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St. Thomas Reformed Church used one of its CFVI Virtual Giving Tree gifts to help fund its Compassionate Care Program, which provides groceries to those in need. (Submitted photo)
What started with one random holiday request earlier this month turned into the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands launching its first Virtual Giving Tree Project, which so far has raised more than $33,000 -- and counting -- for USVI nonprofit organizations. “After that initial request, I wondered about how CFVI could serve as a broker to help address our nonprofit community’s holiday-related needs for children, youth, families and seniors,” said Anna Wheatley Scarbriel, CFVI’s vice president and director of grants and programs. She followed up with a call to Dee Baecher-Brown, CFVI president, who felt it was definitely worth exploring. “Dee even came up with a name on the spot: Virtual Giving Tree!,” said Scarbriel. After that, the CFVI team jumped into action to make it all happen. Executive Manager Beth Nuttall created an online form that Communications Manager Sean Liphard sent out asking USVI nonprofit organizations to submit specific needs and requests by Dec. 11. Next, CFVI sought potential donors via email, social media, and personal contact by CFVI leadership. “Before you know it, we were matching up donors with requests right and left, and our amazing accounting team of Susan Clark and Una Pascal were cutting checks by Dec. 18,” said Scarbriel. “It definitely takes a village,” said Baecher-Brown, “and we are so thankful to all the donors who answered the call. I know all of us at CFVI have had a lot of fun playing Santa’s elves by being able to make so many holiday wishes come true during such a challenging year. And we couldn't think of a better way to celebrate CFVI's 30th anniversary! Hopefully, the Virtual Giving Tree can be a new annual holiday tradition,” she said. Below is a list of CFVI Virtual Giving Tree gift recipients: All Saints Cathedral School $5,000 for extra support for students’ needs at the holidays $700 for providing lower school students with soccer balls Boys and Girls Clubs of St. Thomas/St. John $600 for purchasing 25-30 earphones for students this Christmas to be used for educational purposes $100 for purchasing 25-30 earphones for students this Christmas to be used for educational purposes $100 for purchasing 25-30 earphones for students this Christmas to be used for educational purposes Catholic Charities $5,000 for Bethlehem House and Soup Kitchen - in memory of Mayrelou Thomas Family Resource Center $4,500 for providing laptops for children and youths $500 for providing laptops to children and youth Leap and Learn Academy $1,640 for purchasing 41 age-appropriate gifts for each child Long Path Garden Street Community Association Inc. $4,500 for providing food baskets for 60 families of the Long Path/Garden Street areas Lutheran Social Services $1,000 for purchasing personal care, hygiene supplies and medical supplies for residents at Yellow Cedar Residence $1,000 for purchasing personal care, hygiene supplies and medical supplies for residents at Yellow Cedar Residence St. Thomas Reformed Church $750 for the Compassionate Care Program $750 for Virtual Learning Program $5,000 for Compassionate Care Program - in memory of Mayrelou Thomas $100 for Virtual Learning Program $50 for Virtual Learning Program The Collective Collaboration $500 to support purchases of clothing for their clients The C.O.R.E. Foundation $25 donation in honor of Susan and Michael Blumenfield (grandparents of Nia and Obi) to support the preservation of the VI coral reef environment $100 donation on behalf of Nia Blumenfield to support the preservation of the VI coral reef environment $100 donation on behalf of Obi Blumenfield to support the preservation of the VI coral reef environment YWCA USVI Inc. $1,250 to provide $50 gift cards for members of the Y-TEENS VI program If you are interested in making a contribution to CFVI's Virtual Giving Tree initiative, it's not too late. There are several outstanding needs, not all of which are time-sensitive. Review the list of requests at the link below, and contact annas@cfvi.net if you would like to make a contribution of any amount. View the list of needs here!