Plenty of ways to help on Giving Tuesday

Published 8:00 am Saturday, November 25, 2023

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Thanksgiving is a day of fellowship and taking the time to reflect on the blessings of the year. After taking time from work and enjoying a nice holiday meal, the Giving Tuesday movement is an opportunity to give back to the community.

Nov. 28 is Giving Tuesday, a national day for donating to charities, churches and nonprofit organizations. On the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, everyone is challenged to donate to help their community.

The Giving Tuesday movement began in 2012 by a team at Belfer Center for Innovation & Social Impact. The goal was to encourage the nation to focus on altruism over the holidays.

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One of the county’s many local nonprofits is Big Valley Animal Rescue. The organization aids in sheltering and transporting homeless animals from the community. The rescue relies almost solely on donations for supplies for their current animals and to be able to pull more pets out of other overcrowded shelters.

Big Valley often raises money to drive pets to northern states to get adopted where pet overpopulation isn’t as much of a problem. The rescue organization also takes medical cases from other shelters and fundraises for veterinary bills.

“Without the community’s outreach and those donations that we asked for, we wouldn’t have been able to help them,” said Board member Tiffany Weaver.

Throughout the year, Big Valley Animal Rescue does outreach with what they can to sponsor things like spay/neuter surgeries and heartworm treatments for pet owners who can’t afford them.

However, this holiday season, Weaver said Big Valley is partnering with FeeFee’s Christmas Miracles, Weaver’s charity. The charity is in its second year helping sponsor Christmas presents for children in need in Chambers, Lee and Muscogee Counties.

Each year, Point University also holds a Giving Tuesday program to encourage the community to donate and engage with its vision of “teaching Christian leadership.”

“We use this as a way to teach generosity,” said Griff Pemberton, director of Development.

Point being a private, Christian university, it doesn’t receive federal or state funding. Pemberton said the college tries to keep costs down for students by looking for creative ways to fundraise.

Giving Tuesday is another way for Point to provide an education without charging students steeper fees than a state-funded university.

“We don’t charge as much as most private, Christian universities,” Pemberton said. “We raise money to fill that gap.”

This year’s Giving Tuesday theme is about showing their “faith in action,” based on the Bible scripture, James 2:18, “I will show you my faith by what I do.”

To encourage alumni engagement, the university is also having a friendly challenge for each alumni decade this year to see which can raise the most money.