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The Big Payback this year will raise money for 964 nonprofits in 35 Middle Tennessee counties

The Big Payback this year will raise money for 964 nonprofits in 35 Middle Tennessee counties


A record number of area nonprofits are busy preparing in a big way for The Big Payback’s sixth annual, 24-hour online giving day.

A total of 964 Middle Tennessee nonprofits — including schools and religious institutions — from 35 counties will be participating in The Big Payback, an initiative of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, on Thursday, May 2.

The record total includes 118 organizations representing 23 counties that will be participating in The Big Payback for the first time. Categories include human services, education, community improvement, arts and culture, youth development, animal welfare, health, housing and shelter, and the environment.

The Big Payback is a community-wide online giving day designed to give the public the opportunity to pay back the nonprofits that make this a place we are proud to call home. Starting at midnight on May 2,

there is 24 hours to make donations to a wide swath of participating local nonprofits at

In its first five events, The Big Payback has helped organizations raise more than $12.5 million in donations as well as foster an impressive 24,716 first-time gifts, making possible awareness of and solutions to pressing needs in our community.

Last year’s event raised a record of more than $3.1 million in donations, from 22,071 total gifts.

“The Big Payback’s slogan is ‘Live Here. Give Here’ and provides an easy and fun way for our community to show our local pride and give back,” said Ellen Lehman, president of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.

“Nonprofits do life-changing work every day across Middle Tennessee, and it’s important we recognize the positive impact they have in our own backyards by supporting their efforts,” Lehman continued. “It’s hard to imagine where we’d be without them and their work.”

Gifts to nonprofits from the public will be boosted with additional financial prizes from sponsors of The Big Payback, and an online leaderboard will track donations in real time.

Donors will be able to search and select organizations based on location and focus area, Donors also can support multiple nonprofits and make gifts of any size with ease, from $10 and up.

The Big Payback Plaza Party Set for Smashville Plaza

Nonprofits and the general public also can participate in The Big Payback in person. Thanks to the Nashville Predators Foundation, Smashville Plaza in front of Bridgestone Arena will turn into The Big Payback Plaza Party from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on Thursday, May 2.

The Big Payback’s Plaza Party gives participating nonprofits the chance to represent their causes while competing for additional prize money. Minute to Win It games and other fun activities are scheduled.

Live music will be provided by local favorite Matt Walberg & The Living Situation, with well-known local radio personality Ana Lee as emcee. Several food trucks also will be on site, as well as radio and TV stations, some broadcasting live.

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