The United Way of Smith County is providing 75,000 reasons for you to make a gift to support local nonprofits on Giving Tuesday. Giving Tuesday falls on November 30th this year, following Black Friday on November 26th and Cyber Monday on November 29th. Giving Tuesday identifies itself as a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. More simply, Giving Tuesday encourages acts of generosity such as volunteering or making financial contributions to local charities on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving.

Our local United Way of Smith County is capitalizing on the growing momentum of the Giving Tuesday movement by encouraging online gifts to support over two dozen local nonprofits through the special event website at Generous community sponsors are providing $75,000 in matching funds to encourage local participation in the event. Starting at 8am on November 30th, the first $75,000 that is contributed will be matched dollar for dollar. Don’t miss the opportunity to double your gift by starting your Tuesday with an online contribution to support one or more of your favorite local charities. There are some reasonable matching limits in place such as $2,000 per donor and $20,000 per organization to make sure multiple donors and organizations have a chance to share the matching funds, but don’t let those limits stifle your generosity.

East Texas Communities Foundation fully supports Giving Tuesday, just like we do many other fundraising programs and events used by charities to raise the vital annual support required to provide needed programs in the community. In fact, as the host organization for East Texas Giving Day, a regional online giving event held each year in April, we specifically encourage nonprofits to use skills we teach for East Texas Giving Day, for other fundraising and communication opportunities throughout the year. We are all trying to adjust to the value and relevance of utilizing social media to share information and support important causes. Skills such as preparing informative videos and scheduling social media posts are critical to successful online fundraising. Giving Tuesday is another occasion for charities to share the message of their important work and reach out to our community for support.

As I often recall at this time of year, The Chronicle of Philanthropy reports that one-third of all charitable giving takes place in the last three months of the year and research from the Indiana School of Philanthropy confirms that 25% of giving takes place between Thanksgiving and December 31. What this means is the spirit of giving is typically high at this time of year. However, as we continue to deal with the slow return to normalcy from COVID shutdowns, restrictions and hesitancy, many charities continue to rely on safe and socially-distanced fundraising options such as online giving. Giving Tuesday is a great opportunity to combine the urge to show gratitude and brotherly love, with the safety and security of online giving.

In addition to over two dozen charities participating in Tyler Gives, many other local, regional and national organizations will be encouraging contributions on Giving Tuesday. Check your email and social media pages and prepare to respond as your generosity allows. East Texas Giving Day, Giving Tuesday and Tyler Gives are similar, yet unique opportunities for donors to consider online gifts to support the work of local charities. I hope the season of Thanksgiving has adequately allowed you to consider your blessings and contemplate ways you can be a blessing to others. There are still many people in our community who struggle to find work, food, shelter and stability. As we enter the giving season, accept the challenge of Giving Tuesday to support important local nonprofit organizations which make life better for all of us, especially those who need an extra hand this year. Making gifts to support your favorite charities on Giving Tuesday is a great way to share your gratitude and inner joy to the world around you. With 75,000 reasons to give waiting for you on Giving Tuesday at, that should clearly be your next best opportunity to Give Well.