Delaware nonprofits hoping for generous Giving Tuesday

Earlier this year, volunteers bagged dinners for the Meals on Wheels program at the Modern Maturity Center in Dover. The center is hoping to raise $50,000 to cover travel costs to the volunteers. (Delaware State News file photo/Gary Emeigh)

DOVER — Delaware nonprofits are hoping for big things this Giving Tuesday, the newest post-Thanksgiving “holiday.”

Following Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday is designed to encourage selflessness.

The day was started in 2012 by New York’s 92nd Street Y and, according to its website, saw $177 million raised online in 2015.

Often written as #GivingTuesday, the day, its website says, “connects diverse groups of individuals, communities and organizations around the world for one common purpose: to celebrate and encourage giving.”

Aspiring do-gooders around the world can help by offering a monetary contribution to a cause or by lending their time to help a charity or other entity.

Locally, the Dover Interfaith Mission for Housing is hoping it will see a benefit from the day of giving, although mission chair Jeanine Kleimo doesn’t have any specific expectations.

A homeless shelter for men, the Dover Interfaith Mission for Housing has housed more than 2,200 people since 2008, helping more than 70 percent of them find work.

The Dover Interfaith Mission for Housing relies heavily on the kindness of people willing to give money or time to assist the shelter, Ms. Kleimo said. It needs $50,000 to be able to run smoothly for the remainder of the fiscal year, which concludes June 30.

“We know that many people donate at this time of the year because they know what they have available and what will make an impact on their taxes,” Ms. Kleimo said.

The mission is one of several running advertisements in today’s Delaware State News to highlight what it’s done, hoping to show readers it is worthy of support.

“We’re hoping it’s more appealing that just saying, ‘Hey, we help the homeless, we’re nice, why don’t you help us?’” Ms. Kleimo said.

Less than a mile away from the mission, the Modern Maturity Center is looking to raise $50,000, $50 at a time. The money, President and CEO Carolyn Fredricks said, would be used to cover travel costs for Meals on Wheels volunteers.

Like many other not-for-profits, the center has had to do more with less recently. The grant-in-aid bill, which provides funding for more than 100 organizations, was cut by the General Assembly by about 19 percent compared to last year. For the Modern Maturity Center, that’s about $120,000 less, and while most of the nonprofit’s funding comes from other sources, the loss of money has been problematic, Ms. Fredricks said.

Like the Modern Maturity Center, the Beau Biden Foundation also aims to receive donations from 1,000 different individuals. Started in 2015 after the death of former Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, the son of former Vice President Joe Biden, the foundation aims to prevent child abuse.

“This is a chance for people around the country to give back to a cause or charity that’s important to them,” a promotional email containing a message from Beau’s brother, Hunter, reads. “I can’t think of a better cause than making sure every child in this country gets to have a full childhood free from abuse or neglect.”

The Delaware Division of the Arts is encouraging Delawareans to donate to an arts-related organization, from the Biggs Museum of American Art to the Delaware Friends of Folk.

United Way of Delaware is hosting a guest bartending event at the Augusta Grille. It will take place from 5 to 8, with several state lawmakers among the bartenders and all tips going to United Way.

Any donor who gives at least $52 (representing the number of weeks in a year) is eligible to win a new car, according to spokeswoman Schlonn Hawkins.

“People tend to enjoy doing these fun moments,” she said. “It doesn’t take a huge amount of time out of your day.”

Staff writer Matt Bittle can be reached at 741-8250 or mbittle@newszap.com. Follow @MatthewCBittle on Twitter.

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