‘Tis the season to do good, but especially on Giving Tuesday.
Americans are more generous than ever, according to a report by Giving USA, especially on #Giving Tuesday, an online movement specifically focused on giving to charity on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.
Giving USA found that U.S. charities saw an estimated $390 billion in donations in 2016, an increase of nearly 4 percent from 2015. Giving to religion increased 3 percent, with an estimated $122 billion in contributions. And many givers chose #GivingTuesday to share their generosity, giving $177 million last year, according to GivingTuesday.org.
On the special giving day and throughout the holiday season, people volunteer, raise awareness and donate money to charitable organizations of their choice. Such giving opportunities to Catholic organizations are available in Denver’s backyard and online.
Giving that does good
“Leaving a gift in support of our Catholic faith is perhaps the easiest way to show your love for our God and His Church – giving back a portion of all He has given us,” said Jean Finegan, director of planned giving and development for The Catholic Foundation of Northern Colorado.
The Catholic Foundation, based in Denver, is a generous giver’s most efficient way to support multiple charities, with its ability to offer various options including, appreciated stock, planned gifts, real estate and personal property, retirement plans, insurance policies, and more.
Finegan said even if cash is not on hand, there are other avenues to give back in faith.
Making a difference
Giving is as much about the receiver as the giver, and Catholic Charities of Denver offers something for everyone.
“Charity is about giving and receiving. That’s the beauty of Christ’s design,” said Larry Smith, president and CEO of Catholic Charities of Denver. “We think we lose something when we give, but to give is to receive and to receive is to give. That’s the beauty of it. It’s important to be a part of that process.”
Its continuum of care model offers multiple services to those in need. From Marisol Health, a network of medical clinics that provide life-affirming care, to shelter services, which provide short- and long-term housing and supportive services to help individuals and families become self-reliant—givers can see their generosity provide both material and spiritual support.
Catholic Charities offers opportunities to pray, volunteer and donate to its all its ministries including, early childhood education, Gabriel House, Marisol Homes, Samaritan House, Mulroy Senior Center, emergency assistance, Sacred Heart Counseling, and more.
Investing in future generations
“We really want to make it possible for any family that is in need to send their kid to Catholic school if they so desire,” said Jay Clark, executive director of Seeds of Hope. “The face of Denver is changing, which means where people are in need is changing as well.”
Seeds of Hope, which makes Catholic education accessible to needy students, expanded its mission to provide aid to any of the Archdiocese of Denver’s 37 Catholic schools, beyond the nine urban schools previously served. Giving to the organization would provide more children with a quality Catholic education and bright future.
Givers passionate about Catholic education can continue their support by giving to Bishop Machebeuf High School and Holy Family High School. Both archdiocesan schools offer a faith-based environment and rigorous academics that set-up youth for success.
Building a community
Centro San Juan Diego, the groundbreaking institute that provides faith formation and education services to enrich the lives of Hispanics in Denver, offers givers a chance to build the community.
The growing number of Hispanic individuals and families—an estimated 445,000 Catholics of Hispanic descent live in the archdiocese—presented a need to empower and support their development into faithful and integrated leaders of the community.
Givers can support the organization’s programs including, citizenship and English classes, tax preparation, small business training, computer classes, Bibles studies, youth faith formation, family ministry, lay pastoral minister certification, online bachelor’s degrees, and more.
A gift to Centro is an investment in the community.