Apr 15

A Whole Week To Zoo More Good!

Next week (April 19-24), people in Omaha and Southwest Iowa will have a brand-new opportunity to support their favorite organizations and make sure that the future of our greater metropolitan community is brighter than ever.

Share Omaha’s first annual Do Good Week replaces the 24-hour Omaha Gives event that ended its eight-year run in 2020, and celebrates our city’s generosity with six consecutive days of community engagement that focus on three different ways to give: volunteerism, material donations from curated wish lists, and financial contributions.

“Do Good Week represents the next stage in the evolution of community giving and volunteerism,” says Kiley Thiele, vice president of development at the Omaha Zoo Foundation. “It incorporates all the different ways that people can give and encourages them to really learn about the great organizations in our city.”

Each day of Do Good Week has a theme that highlights a different aspect of giving: Mission Monday, New Donor Tuesday, Wish List Wednesday, VolunThursday, Fund It Friday and Celebration Saturday.

“That first day is all about really researching and figuring out the organizations you’re passionate about and what’s most important to you,” Thiele says. For example, members of Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium may be inspired to learn a little bit more about the Zoo’s conservation work. “When people dig deeper into our mission, they begin to see that when you support our pregnant elephant at the Zoo, it’s not just about a new elephant baby here in Omaha, it’s about the whole species.”

Thiele points out that Wish List Wednesday is also a unique way to give. “We speak to the keepers about what the animals need and update our wish list frequently,” she says, noting that there are items on the list that fit every budget and they’re used throughout the zoo for animal enrichment and treats. “Those Kong dog toys are really popular. And bird toys. Bird toys are really big!”

While Do Good Week is an annual event, the Share Omaha website is active year-round, allowing Omahans to make a bigger impact with their community giving. “People tend to think that patronage requires a big monetary gift, but when a lot of people are giving $25, it has a significant multiplying effect,” Thiele says.

She notes that non-profits will be experiencing the aftermath of the Covid-19 crisis—including a change in charitable giving patterns—for years to come, and that the Zoo, which was closed for a few weeks last year, is no exception. Events such as Do Good Week are key to helping organizations recover. “When people support the causes they care about, it makes our whole city stronger.”