This year’s Giving Tuesday will feature less face-to-face interaction but more ways to give safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, said Christy Tustin, executive director of the Golden Belt Community Foundation.
Giving Tuesday – on Tuesday, December 1st this year – is a day for anyone, anywhere to give – and to make a difference for a local organization by giving together.
Generosity has the power to unite and heal communities in good times and bad, Tustin said.
Like many individuals and families, local charitable organizations faced extra challenges this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some organizations were forced to close their doors while some were called upon to expand their services.
“Charitable and social service organizations are the first places that people turn to in times of need,” Tustin said.
And that is where Giving Tuesday comes in.
“When organizations signed up for Giving Tuesday this year, we asked about their year so far,” said Tustin, “and over half of the participating organizations reported that they were forced to cancel a fundraising event this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you usually attended a fundraising event and it was canceled, they still need the support.”
Canceling a fundraising event can significantly impact an organization’s ability to continue its work in the community.
“It is our hope that this campaign will help the participating organizations fill a gap and provide much-needed funding,” said Tustin.
A new giving website has been created, www.goldenbeltgives.org, allowing 93 organizations to share information about their missions and programs. Each organization has a profile where they can tell about their work, share pictures, and set Giving Tuesday goals.
Additionally, there is a new way to give.
“It is important to us to keep everyone safe,” said Tustin, “we’ve partnered with area banks across Barton, Pawnee, Rush, and Stafford counties to create a ‘stay safe’ drive-through drop-off location for gifts.”
There are four ways to give this year: in-person at the GBCF (1307 Williams St.), by mail (P.O. Box 1911, Great Bend, KS 67530), online, and on Dec. 1 at one of the “stay safe” drop-off locations in each county. The list of drive-through locations can be found at goldenbeltgives.org.
“If everyone gives a little bit, it really adds up,” added Tustin. “When an organization has an extra $1,000 or $2,000, it is a big deal.”
In previous years, the foundation board and staff hosted giving sites across the GBCF service area on Giving Tuesday. This year only the GBCF office in Great Bend will be open to take donations.
“We will try to do as many fun things as we can online,” Tustin said, inviting people to watch the GBCF Facebook page. That includes random drawings for additional charitable gifts and the 2020 Most Generous City award. The community that donates the most per capita (per the rules of this promotion) will receive a $1,000 special grant to support a community project.
At $24 million in total assets and more than 185 funds under management, the Golden Belt Community Foundation has been connecting people who care to causes that matter since 1996. GBCF exists to provide non-profit organizations in central Kansas with a permanent source of support and to serve as a vehicle for charitable giving for donors. GBCF serves the counties of Barton, Pawnee, Rush, and Stafford. For more information, call 620-792-3000 or visit the website at www.goldenbeltcf.org.