SMIF’s local community foundations raise $48,000 on Give to the Max Day

November 18, Owatonna, MINN. – Now in its eighth year, Minnesota’s Give to the Max day had a record setting year, bringing in $20.1 million in donations. Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF) and its affiliate funds raised $48,000, with some matching dollars still to be totaled.

SMIF oversees 26 community foundations in its 20 county region. Once again, the biggest donations came in for the six community funds in Fillmore County. Collectively, they raised nearly $46,000.

“It’s exciting to see some of our smallest towns leverage this giving opportunity so well,” said SMIF’s Development Coordinator Alissa Blaha. “I think this is a testament to the power of getting out in your community to draw out the generosity that exists in the region. Yes, most of the money raised goes to Twin Cities-based organizations, but the $18,000 raised in a community like Spring Valley can really go a long way.”

Once again, there were issues with the main giving website,, which crashed at 8:15 a.m. and had to be replaced with a simpler site. “We do everything we can to make it easy for our community foundations to capture donations,” said Blaha. “Most donations came in through our website, which remained active and also garners a lower transaction fee.” was back up mid-afternoon.

However, despite the set-backs, SMIF President and CEO said SMIF still supports the mission of GiveMN, the nonprofit that organizes the event and runs the main giving platform. “Minnesotans are historically a very charitable bunch,” said Penny. “It’s fun to be part of such a huge philanthropic effort – ‘The Great Minnesota Give Together.’ It’s great to see our community foundations take advantage of the momentum Give to the Max Day generates.”

About Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation
Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF), a donor-supported foundation, invests for economic growth in the 20 counties of south central and southeastern Minnesota. The Foundation has provided more than $100 million in grants, loans and programming within the region during the past 30 years. SMIF's key interests include early childhood, community and economic development. To learn more about our work and mission, visit

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