If your inbox looks anything like mine, lately you’re seeing a lot of subject lines about #GivingTuesday, Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Just about everybody has a promotion, sale, deal-of-a-lifetime, or fundraising campaign going on right now.
And since my inbox is overflowing this time of year, great bargains and great causes alike can just get lost in the shuffle. (Please tell me I’m not the only one who feels that way.)
But today, #GivingTuesday, is a day for people like us—you and me—people who want to make the world a better place, even if that means we’re doing it for just one person.
(In case you’re new to the phrase, #GivingTuesday is a global movement, a day of global giving on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. The “giving” can include your time, your money, or some other creative way to give.)
Last year #GivingTuesday saw a record $274 million in contributions from over 2.5 million people. Awesome. Just think of all the good things that happened around the world to help those in need because a few million people said “Yes, I want to do something.”
I’m hoping 2018 sets a new #GivingTuesday record, and I’ve got a couple quick, super-impactful ways we can do that.
Here’s my 60-second (okay maybe 90-second) elevator pitch. A lot of what we do at Bright Hope revolves around reaching kids in the poorest communities of the world. Why? Kids are the future—the future leaders, farmers, parents, pastors—the future everything of our world. We are investing in them now to help them grow up healthy, educated, happy, and knowing the truth about Jesus Christ. We’re also trying to help them break the cycle of poverty in their lives so they can pursue things they’ve only ever dreamed of!
Right now, we’re focusing on five kids—five of the 387 million living in poverty around the world—to show you how a little giving can change a life.
Ten-year-old Marycruz in Bolivia depends on the food she receives three days a week from our children’s care center. I met her in September and saw the desperation of her widowed mother firsthand. You can read her story, or give $45 to provide meals for hungry schoolchildren here.
When Ben’s mother passed away when he was 15, he found himself without a home and wondered if he’d ever get to fulfill his dream of graduating. Then he found a place at a Bright Hope-sponsored school in Kenya, and everything changed. Give a $100 towards a scholarship and help literally make someone’s dream come true.
Little 6-year-old Meshach lives on an island in Zambia. His parents never made it past grades 1 and 3, but they value education so much that they helped Bright Hope build a preschool BY HAND—carrying sand, water and bricks from the island’s shore to the construction site. For $50, you can provide books for early childhood literacy.
We can’t only meet children’s physical needs, we need to grow them up in the knowledge and fear of the Lord. Hertzley lives in a poor, rural community in Haiti, but he attends Bible Club at our partner church. This 11-year-old said that it has changed his life—and he wants to be a pastor when he grows up! Just $10 gives a Bible Story Book in Creole to a child in Haiti.
And baby Mukisa is in Uganda. His mother didn’t even always have enough money for food, yet in Uganda women are responsible for gathering the supplies needed for their delivery…whether they give birth in a dirt-floor home or in a hospital. Sadly, so often dirty, unhygienic materials are used, there is risk of contracting diseases like HIV and tetanus, and there is very little help if complications arise. Every year, a million babies die the day they are born, UNICEF estimates, but promoting antenatal care and giving a $50 Mama Kit can mean the difference between life and death.
In each of these cases, I see how something very simple can do so much. How I can do so much by giving—I can quiet hunger pains, save an infant from disease, or play a role in teaching a child about Jesus and salvation…maybe even affecting his eternity!
With your inbox full of options, I’m sure there are probably about 643 ways you can “give back” this #GivingTuesday, but these are a few ways I’ve been thinking about lately. If this is where you feel the Lord nudging you, we’d be honored to link arms with you and change the future together.