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Greater Lakes Region Children’s Auction Awards $525,000 to 60 Nonprofits

The Greater Lakes Region Children’s Auction recently distributed $525,000 in grants to 60 local nonprofit organizations at a meet-and-greet luncheon event at the Huot Career and Technical Center in Laconia.

During the event, Corina Locke, Creative Director of SnapRoot Creative Digital Marketing, an agency that collaborates with the Children’s Auction, also held a marketing presentation on how nonprofits can benefit from using an online software graphics program called Canva to enhance their social media presence.

“We were glad to see everyone enjoying the food prepared by the students of the Huot Center and seize the chance to network with other nonprofit leaders,” said Jaimie Sousa, Children’s Auction Board Chair. “It was a great opportunity to get everyone together.”

Grants will be used by the local nonprofit organizations to fund wide-ranging programs that support local children and families in need. These programs address needs that are vital to the well-being of children in our communities, including food and housing insecurity and related emergency assistance; after school programs, recreation, education and the arts; childcare and related family resources; and healthcare, including victim outreach and support and preventative health and wellness training.

The Auction had $686,398 in requests in 2022 from 65 nonprofits and awarded $525,000 to 60 agencies. For specific distribution information visit "Where the Money Goes.".

“While still impressive, our fundraising was impacted by the financial pressures of the pandemic for 2020 and 2021. I am beyond thrilled to see the Auction emerging stronger than ever with a new fundraising record set in 2022,” she said. “These funds are significantly improving the lives of local children by ensuring their basic needs are met, and they have opportunities to thrive. There are so many people from the Lakes Region and beyond that made this possible, and we cannot thank you enough for your generous contributions.”

Sousa also thanked the Children’s Auction Distribution Committee, which reviewed all the grant applications and offered recommendations on funding.

“We are so lucky to have a group of community volunteers who carefully reviewed every application to ensure we are best meeting the requirements and wishes of the children in need in our local communities,” said Cindy Hemeon-Plessner, chair of the Distribution Committee. “Because of the committees’ strength with problem solving, analysis, empathy and community awareness, we are able to ensure all who donate, bid and volunteer that the funding is being spent wisely.”

The next round of grant applications will be due by Oct 15. Click here to find out more about the GLRCA application and funding process, In the past 41 years, the Auction has distributed roughly $8 million to nonprofit organizations in the community.

If you want to learn more about the Auction or how to get involved, please join us at the Lakes Region Chamber at our Let’s Meet for Coffee on April 5 from 8am -10am. Click here for more information.

LACONIA — The Greater Lakes Region Children’s Auction distributed $532,000 in grant funding to 60 child-oriented nonprofits Wednesday. In lieu of ceremonial checks, representatives of the recipient organizations spent a half hour learning from Corina Locke, the creative director of SnapRoot marketing, before a luncheon at the Huot Career and Technical Center.

“We heard from a lot of the nonprofits that digital marketing is an area that they would love some insight into and some help,” explained Children’s Auction Executive Director Jennifer Kelley.

The presentation taught attendees how to utilize Canva, a free online graphics tool, to expand reach across social media channels like Facebook.

Andrea Condodemetraky, a board member of the Santa Fund of the Greater Lakes Region, expressed gratitude for the marketing lesson, and the $30,000 awarded to her organization in grant funding.

“The presentation in particular was really cool because it condensed a whole lot of really good information into a short amount of time and how to get yourself out there with marketing, which is not something we do a lot with,” Condodemetraky said. “It was really helpful, and I look forward to putting some of that information to good use.”

As for that $30,000, Condodemetraky said it will be help to accomplish the Santa Fund’s mission of providing winter wear to 700 children each year.

“If you imagine that spending, about $150 to keep your kids warm with outerwear, that's the value of what we’re doing,” Condodemetraky said. “We also have an emergency fund that we provide to help families in crisis.”

The “Children’s Auction is really the nonprofit we connect with,” Locke said while listing a series of similar workshops she’s conducted. “We’re trying to help them out with their digital marketing. Especially with the nonprofits.”

The region’s sparse digital marketing environment is especially challenging for nonprofits.

“Up here it’s an untapped digital market. You Google something out here, and it’s so hard to find anything,” Locke said. Nonprofits "don’t really have a marketing budget. I mean, you find a lot of small businesses up here that don’t have marketing budget. Big companies, they’re taking up all the digital marketing, you see it all the time, so nonprofits definitely have to hustle a little bit more. And the tools are constantly changing, so how do you keep up with that if you don't have someone who specializes in that?”

Lakes Region Mental Health Center also received $30,000. The money will be used to support training and implementation of eye movement desensitization and reprocessing, or EMDR, therapy.

“It treats children who have been exposed to trauma,” said Beth Vachon, director of development and public relations. “We appreciate so much, that level of support for our work.”


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