As the owner and co-founder of Art 4 Charities, Diane Machaby draws on her two decades of nonprofit experience to offer an innovative way for individuals to support their favorite charities while also helping nonprofits achieve their fundraising goals.
What brought you to Ponte Vedra?
After living in the Jacksonville area for nearly 30 years, I made a decision to buy a home in 2008 between Jacksonville and St. Augustine, where I was working at the time. I knew I wanted to live somewhere between the two cities and drove out to Nocatee one afternoon after church. I saw the beautiful houses and lots available in the Del Webb community and told my sales associate that day, “I want that house, on that lot.” I also wanted to support the developers of Nocatee in their efforts, since they had been so supportive of the nonprofit organization I was working with.
What motivated you to launch Art 4 Charities?
I had worked for three nonprofits in Northeast Florida for over 20 years: Keep Jacksonville Beautiful, Habitat for Humanity in Jacksonville and St. Augustine, and Home Again St. Johns. I knew how difficult it was to raise funds to keep things going, especially in challenging times. My husband, Terry, had always had a great love for photography and art. So, we decided to meld our two loves: mine for helping people and his of beautiful artwork and photography.
How does Art 4 Charities work?
We assist organizations in their fundraising efforts by providing some of the most beautiful artwork and photography in the world to their supporters. If someone purchases a beautiful piece of artwork or photography from our website, Art4Charities.net, 10 to 40 percent of the proceeds go to the buyer’s favorite charity. Our company has a unique, year-round, proven method of generating revenue for nonprofits, civic groups, churches and schools.
What are the benefits to a charity or community group of working with Art 4 Charities?
An organization may choose to align themselves with Art 4 Charities and become an associate partner with the business. Mission House of Jacksonville Beach was our very first charity partner!
We try to make the process simple and easy for the charity. All they need to do is agree to inform their community and supporters about their partnership with Art 4 Charities and its fundraising program. They also agree to include us in their events and participate in the special fundraising events that we hold for them. The organization then receives 40 percent of the proceeds of any sale designated to them. It’s a win-win for all!
Do you have any plans to expand your products or services?
One addition to our business model that we recently started is to conduct live auctions along with the silent auctions, art showings and online sales. Our first live auction raised a substantial amount for a local charity. After researching live auctions for charities nationally, we discovered that they can be one of the best ways to raise money for charities and other nonprofit organizations that would like to hold an auction or for us to host one for them. They receive an added bonus of extra donations and reduce their fundraising time and effort.
We also plan to expand our “Families on Canvas” program, whereby the general public can submit photos of their families and/or pets to be placed on canvas, thereby giving them a personal method to support their favorite charity. The charity receives the same 40 percent of the proceeds.
What is your favorite part of living on the First Coast?
I’ve lived my entire life in North and Central Florida, and nearly all of that time was spent near the ocean, a river, lake or pond. Growing up in Ponce Inlet, Florida across the street from the Ponce de Leon Lighthouse – the tallest lighthouse on the East Coast – I became a “salt-lifer” at a very early age. I also enjoy fishing!
Do you have any hobbies you’d like to mention?
Besides going boating and fishing with my husband, I enjoy riding my recumbent bicycle in my neighborhood as well as playing water volleyball. I’m involved in the Musician’s Forum, where I participate in community-wide performances and am also a member of the Writer’s Group, where I serve as club secretary.
In addition, I enjoy visiting my grown children, Kim, who lives in Philadelphia; and Krista, who is in Asheville, North Carolina. I volunteer at Crosswater Community Church as much as I’m able and love spending time with my long-haired calico cat, Scarlett, and my grandpuppy, Roscoe.
Recently, I completed a long-time goal of writing and publishing a book called “When God Showed Up,” a collection of 76 real-life stories that occurred over a 15-year period. Those amazing occurrences showed me that God never leaves our side and often finds unique ways to remind us of that.