North Texas Daily

Give Big DFW promotes charity, community service

Give Big DFW promotes charity, community service

Give Big DFW promotes charity, community service
November 28
19:46 2018

Give Big DFW is an end-of-year fundraising effort launched yesterday on Giving Tuesday and the portal for donations will remain open through Dec. 31.

Give Big DFW is a local response to Giving Tuesday, a global day of giving dedicated to volunteerism and community engagement. Give Big DFW is a collaboration between United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, United Way of Greater Tarrant County and United Way of Denton County and is an opportunity for local nonprofit organizations to raise funds and awareness. Community members can donate to a nonprofit of their choice through their website and the organization will receive the donation within 48 hours. 

 “We’re capitalizing on both the philanthropy and the spirit of Thanksgiving, but also using it as an opportunity to generate much needed financial resources,” said Gary Henderson, CEO and president of United Way of Denton County.

There are more than 20 nonprofits participating in Give Big DFW, including Special Abilities of North Texas, an organization providing services for adults with special needs and intellectual and developmental disabilities.

“We wanted to be a part of the holiday giving that’s going on now, especially in regard to people who are giving back to nonprofits in the area and with our organization,” said JaChel Redmond, CEO of Special Abilities of North Texas. “We participate in end of the year giving campaigns, so that we can sustain through the rest of the year and get the beginning of the year off to a great start and be able to provide quality programming for our clients.”

This is United Way of Denton County’s first year to participate in Give Big DFW, but Henderson said they did not encounter any major obstacles as the other two participating United Way Organizations have prior experience with this event and United Way of Denton County was able to come in and “plug into it.”

“There are dozens of people behind the scenes doing great work,” Henderson said. “We’re excited to be at the table with those two large well-thought of United Ways because they share our vision. We all share the same vision of improving lives and helping people be all they can be.”

Henderson encourages students to consider finding a nonprofit organization to volunteer for on Giving Tuesday and “hopefully throughout the year.”

History freshman Trevian Smith plans to be one of those students and wants to volunteer with United Way of Denton County.

“I volunteered with my local United Way over the summer, and it was such a rewarding experience,” Smith said. “I was excited when I heard about Give Big DFW because I think it’s important, especially with all the consumerism during the holidays, to check your privilege and help people who aren’t as fortunate as you.”

Henderson said the most challenging aspect of Give Big DFW was getting the word out to potential donors. This challenge was minimized through metroplex wide media coverage and the distinguished reputations the two United Ways of Fort Worth and Dallas.

“Our community has a big heart, and people want to make a difference,” Henderson said. “Oftentimes, the need and the people who want to make a difference need to be connected to each other, and an opportunity like Give Big DFW is such an opportunity that it just connects those people. “

United Way of Denton County said that they reach more than 10,000 donors, and more than half of these donors share their email addresses with United Way so they were able to communicate with about 5,000 volunteers, partners and donors for Give Big DFW.

“Any time you bring something new to the community, it’s a challenge for local nonprofits to free up the resources to invest in something like this,” Henderson said. “It’s a great opportunity, but it means nonprofits with limited staff have to divert those staff to these efforts, but when you have the media attention and the worldwide recognition of this day of giving, it’s worth the effort.”

Featured Image: CEO and President of United Way Gary Henderson discusses how United Way of Denton plans on teaming up to double its efforts. Dimmagio Escobedo

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Abigail Hurtt

Abigail Hurtt

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