The Sun asks for submissions for $500 award for nonprofits, charities

Know a nonprofit or charitable group that could use an extra $500? Well, here’s its chance.

The Moorestown Sun has re-ignited its “Ray of Hope” award. Those of you who have followed us from our beginning in 2005 might be familiar with it.

The way the process works is simple: Sun readers are invited to write a short essay — about 300 words — describing their favorite township-based nonprofit or charitable group. In the past, we’ve had everything from organizations backing the building of a skate park to service groups and even field hockey teams that were nominated.

Then we publish the essays. If we receive more than one essay supporting a particular group, we’ll choose the one we consider best describes the group’s goals and contributions and put that one in the contest.

Finally, our readers check out the essays and then vote for the group they believe is the most deserving.

The competition always is keen, with groups often urging their supporters and volunteers to cast a vote. In years past when we’ve run this drive, we’ve received more than 1,000 votes.

Here are a few more details (we’ll be sure to repeat them and remind everyone to write and vote in future editions).

Good luck to all:

Write and send us about 300 words regarding your favorite township-based nonprofit/charitable organization.

It can be a PTA, Scout troop, church group, traditional nonprofit, just about anything that fits the description. The group just must have a 501 © (3) status as a non-profit.

Tell us why your group is deserving of the $500, what it might do with the money and how it makes a positive impact in the community.

Write with flair, passion and persuasion.

And make sure we get your submission by Friday, March 4.

The Sun then will choose several finalists and will publish them in March.

At that point, it’s up to the readers to decide who gets the money.

Readers will be given the opportunity to vote for one of the finalists.

When it’s all over and the votes are counted, we’ll award $500 to the organization featured in the essay that receives the most votes from readers.

We’ll give prizes to the person who wrote the winning essay, and also to a few lucky voters whose names we’ll throw in a hat.

It all starts now, so break out a pen and pad or, better yet, send us an e-mail singing the praises of your favorite township-based nonprofit/charitable organization. You, and your favorite group, just might take home some money.

To enter:

Via mail: The Moorestown Sun, 108 Kings Highway East, 3rd Floor, Haddonfield, N.J. 08033.

Via e-mail:

Be sure to include your name, address and telephone number.

Questions? Call (856) 528–4993 or send an e-mail to

Remember, we must have your essay in hand by Friday, March 4 to enter.