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Help our Community Organization Become a 501(c)(3)

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Hi. My name is Maryalyce Merritt. Some of you know me as one of the volunteers who helps organize fundraising events and drives in our community. I am reaching out to our community asking for assistance of a different type. We are asking for your help to raise enough money to upgrade our little community projects into a New York State and Federally recognized 501(c)(3) Charitable Organization. This is not a new concept for us, but it is one which will benefit all of the community drives that we run.

Our largest fundraiser is the annual School Supply Drive. We have seen a steady increase of families in need in the Harlem Valley at least since 2020. In 2023, with the assistance of the generous donations of our local community, we were able to distribute more than 143 backpacks filled with school supplies for students in grades Pre-K through 12. We don't have the final numbers in, but we estimate that this drive costs us approximately $50 per student, and we brought in roughly $7000 in donations this year. Most of these were in the form of donated supplies, with some gift cards, cash, and Venmo receipts. This annual supply drive allows us to offer a year-round school supply closet so that local students who may need their school supplies replenished throughout the school year can contact us without worry. We have not been able to offer this before.

We also organize a Holiday Book Drive in December for the Winter Holidays. We offer non-denominational books that are fun to read and age-appropriate for the recipients' reading levels. We have run this program successfully for the last 3 years for ages 0-12, but we would like to expand this to include grades 9-12. We also support the local Little Free Libraries.

By becoming a 501(c)(3), we would be eligible to reach a much broader donor base, thereby securing more funding for our outreach programs. We believe that this would enable us to help more of our community members and work with other local organizations should the opportunity arise.

We are at the beginning of this process, but we have done the research. It is not a large amount that we need, but it is more than we have. The amount listed is for state and federal filing fees and legal fees. Please consider making an investment in us and in your community. No matter how small or large, it all helps.

Our goal is to have the funds raise quickly so that we can file the documents in 2023.

Thank you so much. We will keep everyone posted!

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Donations 

  • Anonymous
    • $150 (Offline)
    • 6 mos
  • Marianne Petit
    • $25 
    • 6 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $25 
    • 6 mos
  • Alicia Cantinieri
    • $40 
    • 6 mos
  • Jill Fieldstein
    • $50 
    • 6 mos
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Organizer and beneficiary

Maryalyce Merritt
Organizer
South Amenia, NY
Maryalyce Merritt
Beneficiary

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