Alaskans turn to the internet to bridge the distance between communities, to find out what’s going on in the world, and to donate. That last item is the purpose of Pick Click Give, which kicked off Monday.
The Alaska State Legislature set up the program so that Alaskans could direct their permanent fund dividends to good causes. A number of local Kodiak nonprofits are enrolled.
Program Director Sofia Fouquet says in 2017, 544 individuals donated roughly $30,000 dollars to the nonprofits in the Kodiak region.
But, overall, donations through Pick Click Give have decreased.
Fouquet says Pick Click Give saw a peak year in 2015, and since then, a number of factors may have affected how many people donate and how much they donate.
She refers back to the legislature’s 2017 vote to cap the dividend at $1,000 and the 7 percent coordination fee Pick Click Give began to collect in 2015 to fund its operations.
“It’s really difficult to pinpoint any one factor to say how has giving changed but what we do is that the number of donations has gone down since 2015 due to that aforementioned factors and just the fact the economy is not great right now.”
Pick Click Give still provides an easy way to give and, for some local nonprofits, it’s the only option for online donation. Beth Davis, outreach coordinator with the Kodiak Women’s Resource and Crisis Center, says that’s the case for KWRCC.
“We don’t have a button online that says click here and donate, and we’re in the process of doing that because we’ve had so many people call us and ask us if they can donate online and we’ve had [to turn people away] – you know, check, checks, checks. And it’s like we need to do this. We really, really need to do it because we’re actually turning dollars away.”
In 2018, there are a total of 22 nonprofits that serve the Kodiak community participating in Pick Click Give. The program accepts donations through March, but Alaskans can make pledge adjustments through August.
Edit 1/03: A former version of the article misspelled Sofia Fouquet name as Foquet.