Philanthropy Day, a festive affair, is hosted by the Community Foundation for local nonprofits. This year's celebration takes place at San Juan Oaks. Photo by Leslie David.

This year, BenitoLink selected the Community Foundation for San Benito County as its Philanthropy Day honoree. 

Philanthropy Day is the right time to take note at the special annual event in San Benito County and recognize the foundation’s important role in the community. It will be celebrated the evening of Nov. 15 at San Juan Oaks Golf and Country Club. It is a night of inspiration and recognition for the residents and nonprofits of San Benito County who are generous about giving their time, creativity or financial support to nonprofits of all sizes and shapes.

BenitoLink has a unique connection to the Community Foundation for San Benito County since the news nonprofit website was the result of listening sessions held throughout San Benito County with the help of the foundation and its donors. The Community Foundation also was critical to the creation of BenitoLink for four years as a start-up and in a support role for the last three years once it became the county’s first independent nonprofit news operation.The CFFSBC board supported the project and helped guide BenitoLink through many phases from the news website design, identifying its mission and goals to finally assisting while BenitoLink built its own independent financial stability.

Admittedly, there were challenging times and moments of doubt. Yet several foundation board members pitched in and acted as advisors, put hours into righting the ship and gave financial support to the enterprise. 

BenitoLink’s nonprofit news model can best be compared to PBS or NPR except it’s on a small town, hyper-local level. It depends on community support through local businesses and individuals to reach around 30,000 readers a month by providing government coverage, investigative reporting, profiles on important individuals and hosting local forums.

On a broader scale, the foundation has had an important role engaging community members to take a leadership role by joining the grants committee or finding their favorite nonprofit to volunteer with.

There are about 140 nonprofits operating in San Benito County and most of them use the Community Foundation for San Benito County as a resource for education, ideas, grant funding and overall support in operating as a successful nonprofit. The foundation acts as the central hub and umbrella for the nonprofits of San Benito County.