What are some of the key takeaways from living over a year through a pandemic?
For the 2021 Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments® (GCC), an event founded by the father/daughter team of Mark and Paige Bellissimo in 2009, COVID-19 highlighted that non-profit organizations and civil society stood at the core of our community’s resilience.
To respond to the devastating effects of COVID-19, the last edition of the GCC in February 2021 shifted a majority of its funding priorities towards local non-profits who were directly supporting and assisting the most vulnerable and affected populations in Palm Beach County. Thanks to the support of 64 donors and countless brave riders, 49 charities were able to put $1.1 million to work directly in our backyards, ensuring that many children, families, and seniors were able to be fed, keep a roof over their heads, and have access to the most basic services during the pandemic.
Through the generous support of the equestrian industry and the local community, the GCC has acted as a catalyst for charitable giving over the last 12 years, distributing $15.9 million to 276 Palm Beach County non-profit organizations.
The event will return for its 13th year on Saturday, February 5, 2022 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC), home of the Winter Equestrian Festival, with the goal to distribute an additional $1+ million dollar purse to local charities.
The application process for the 2022 GCC is officially closed. Applications were exclusively accepted between Monday, October 25, 2021 and Monday, November 15, 2021 (5 PM).
“We are extremely grateful for the continued support of our generous donors and sponsors,” commentedExecutive Director, Anne Caroline Valtin. “In addition to fund disbursements, the GCC’s strategy involves capacity building and enabling invaluable partnerships, as well as concentrating on amplifying the event’s impact. The pandemic has taught us that moving forward, we must focus on supporting those who provide immediate needs in the community, but also those who work towards long-term, sustainable change.”
Following the format of previous years and to guarantee transparency, up to twenty pre-vetted organizations will be randomly selected via the event’s famous lottery style drawings during the months of December and January. Additional smaller grants will also be awarded via a random selection process to non-profits who pass the GCC’s vetting. These grants will range between $1,000 and $10,000.
To be eligible to participate, applicants must, at a minimum, demonstrate that they are a 501c3, serve residents of Palm Beach County, have a physical presence, commit to spending a minimum of 75% of funding received in the County, and have a non-discrimination statement and/or policy.
For additional event information, including information about the application process, donations, and sponsorship opportunities, please visit www.greatcharitychallenge.com. We also invite you to join us on Facebook and Instagram to stay up to date with our latest news and happenings via Facebook and Instagram.
About Fidelity Investments
Fidelity’s mission is to inspire better futures and deliver better outcomes for the customers and businesses we serve. With assets under administration of $11.2 trillion, including discretionary assets of $4.3 trillion as of August 31, 2021, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers: helping more than 38 million people invest their own life savings, 22,000 businesses manage employee benefit programs, as well as providing more than 13,500 wealth management firms and institutions with investment and technology solutions to drive growth. Privately held for more than 75 years, Fidelity employs more than 52,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit http://www.fidelity.com/about-fidelity/our-company.
About the Winter Equestrian Festival
The Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), known as the “Winter Equestrian Capital of the World,” is the world’s largest and longest running equestrian festival in the world, located in Wellington, Florida. The equestrian industry adds more than $100 million to Palm Beach County’s economy each year and provides more 900 jobs for the area. WEF is the proving ground for the Olympic Equestrian sports of show jumping and dressage. WEF is run by Equestrian Sport Productions, which also operates the International Polo Club. For more information on WEF, please visit https://pbiec.coth.com.