Tuesday was Giving Tuesday, a day set aside to shift the focus from holiday shopping to holiday giving.
But, Golden Belt Community Foundation Executive Director Christy Tustin said that doesn’t mean the opportunity to contribute has passed. This marked the third year the foundation has used the day to raise money for its myriad of endowment funds.
“Donations will probably keep trickling in,” Tustin said. However, as far as Giving Tuesday goes, she will close the books on the 2016 come Friday so she can tabulate the results.
Just like the prior two years, the foundation raised funds to match Giving Tuesday donations. There are two match pools: at least $40,000 for organization/area of interest endowments and at least $10,000 for county-wide endowments. Matching funds are awarded in proportion to the total amount raised on Giving Tuesday.
The foundation was taking contributions at its office and other locations in the area. It also held a Great Bend Chamber of Commerce after-hours celebration Tuesday night that offered a chance to donate.
Going into yesterday, Tustin said local giving was on track with last year at this time. They started Giving Tuesday with $45,000 given to the effort.
This is the fifth year of #GivingTuesday, according to the Better Business Bureau. It’s a global day of giving that’s powered by social media and collaboration.
Following the shopping rushes of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday is often regarded as the start of the charitable season. More than 10,000 organizations worldwide are engaged in the day.
“No matter what we choose to do over the next few weeks, it is hard to separate it from giving to others,” said BBB President and CEO Jim Hegarty. “From the gifts we will be wrapping to meals we will be providing, making the lives of those around us brighter is the goal.”
With this in mind, the BBB released some holiday giving trends and tips.
• Digital + grassroots: Research shows that to better reach millennials, organizations will continue digital communications, but will also incorporate grassroots efforts (peer-to-peer or personal challenges, events, ambassadors).
• Traditional holds strong: 93 percent of funds donated in 2015 came from traditional means (major gifts, annual funds, events, checks, snail mail and phone).
• Mobile giving: Even though traditional ways of donating are holding strong, organizations are recognizing the shift to mobile. On Giving Tuesday in 2015, 17 percent of donations came from a mobile device. In 2014, it was 13 percent.
• Donations by sector: The top three most popular sectors to receive donations during #GivingTuesday are faith-based (21 percent), higher education (17 percent), medical research (13 percent) and healthcare (13 percent).
• Give.org: Donors research before giving. In 2015, Give.org saw a 162 percent increase in site traffic on #GivingTuesday.
• What’s In a Name: Be on the lookout for name similarities. When charities seek out support for the same cause, their names are often similar. Before you give, be sure you have the exact name of the charity you want to support.
• Charity Disclosure: Avoid charities that don’t disclose. Although participation is voluntary, charities that don’t disclose any of the requested information to BBB WGA raise a critical red flag for donors. Visit Give.org to find out if your selected charity is nondisclosure.
• Take Your Time: Avoid on-the-spot donation decisions from unfamiliar organizations. The holidays bring a higher frequency of donation requests outside public locations. Don’t succumb to pressure to make an immediate giving decision. Responsible organizations will welcome your gift tomorrow as much as they do today.
• Give a Guide: Request a free Holiday issue of the BBB Wise Giving Guide to be sent to a friend or family member this giving season! The guide features evaluation results for thousands of charities. Simply email Guide@give.org with “Free Guide” in the subject line, and a name and address of where you’d like the guide to be sent to.