PUHI — Staff members at Kauai Humane Society were overjoyed on Tuesday when an Illinois man walked in and dropped a $1,000 check on the front desk.
“We are feeling so grateful today for all the community support we are receiving,” Alexandra Monks said.
The man didn’t give his name. He just made the check out to KHS with “Giving Day” written at the bottom in the reminder line.
The international day of giving, known as Giving Tuesday, followed on the heels of consumer holidays Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Its purpose is to focus on giving back to local communities or to causes of your choice.
Many organizations held matching donation campaigns.
KHS, for example, matched donations for the entire 24 hours of Dec. 3 and surpassed its $10,000 match. Kauai Community Cat Project held an online donation drive and pledged to match the first $5,000 in donations, as did organizations like Kauai Voices, ReefGuardians Hawaii and Kauai Habitat for Humanity.
By 4 p.m. on Giving Tuesday, online donations totaled $570 for Kauai Voices, $620 for Malama Kauai, $1,210 for the Kauai Community Cat Project and $725 for the Aloha School Early Learning Center. Surfrider’s Kauai Chapter jumped in on the Surfrider giving campaign and raised $3,820 in online donations.
Kauai Motocross Association held a Giving Day event to support riders who were involved in accidents, with donations helping with physical therapy and recovery. Their totals weren’t available by the end of the day Tuesday.
There were many ways people could participate in Giving Day.
Malama Kauai’s Village Harvest produce gleaning program, for instance, brought a truckload of fresh fruit to the Hawaii Food Bank Kauai Branch.
Nationwide, organizations and politicians raised awareness of the importance of donations.
Tulsi Gabbard, U.S. Congresswoman and presidential nominee, partnered with U.S. Rep. Will Hurd to urge the House to pass a resolution that would recognize the significant and positive impact that American volunteers and charitable giving have on communities across the country.
“This spirit of aloha reminds us that we are all God’s children, we are all brothers and sisters, and are therefore inspired to respect and care for one another. This is how we can begin to heal the divisive wounds in our nation and come together as fellow Americans,” Gabbard said in a press statement.
The PEDIGREE Foundation announced grant recipients on Giving Tuesday. Their grant recipients received a total of $825,000 and Kauai Humane Society was among the recipients. KHS received the $50,000 “Role Model Shelter Grant.”
Mirah Horowitz, KHS executive directory, expressed gratitude for the outpouring of donations and volunteer hours they received on Tuesday.
“The Kauai Humane Society depends on the generosity of donors and volunteers to take care of the more than 3,000 animals who come through our shelter each year,” Horowitz said. “Without their financial support and without the time they dedicate, we would never be able to save as many of Kauai’s animals as we do.”
Robin Mazor, of Reef Guardians Hawaii, said donation programs such as Giving Tuesday help keep the organization running.
“Because of these contributions, Reef Guardians is a leader in ocean environmental education, inspiring young people to be responsible stewards and advocates,” she said.