USA (MNN) — If you’re preparing for Black Friday or Cyber Monday, why not throw in Giving Tuesday, too?
Giving Tuesday is a global social media campaign that began in 2012. As its name hints, #GivingTuesday is a 24-hour period devoted to the idea of “giving back” — financially supporting a non-profit ministry or cause.
Terre Ritchie of Keys for Kids says this year’s Giving Tuesday is vital for their ministry.
“We do radio, print, and Internet for kids ages 6 to 12,” she says, explaining what Keys for Kids does.
“We are trying to raise $135,000 that day so that we can keep the new programs we’ve started on the air on Keys for Kids Radio.”
Giving Tuesday: Pros
Giving Tuesday began in New York as an effort to engage new, younger donors using social media, and to get consumption-driven Americans excited about giving instead of getting. Today, it has blossomed into a global movement.
Last year, Ritchie says, $105 million USD was raised for non-profits worldwide on Giving Tuesday. Approximately $31 million was given to support religious non-profits like Keys for Kids.
Though Keys for Kids is only aiming for a fraction of that amount, the challenge remains a daunting one.
“Trying to raise that much money in one day is a humongous feat,” says Ritchie. “We really, really need the help of our listeners and constituents to donate and give and share.”
Giving Tuesday: Cons
If Keys for Kids doesn’t get the financial support they need, they won’t be able to continue their new radio programs. One of those new radio dramas is Red Rock Mysteries, a series based on the popular books written by Chris Fabry and Jerry Jenkins.
“We’ve had great previews and reviews about it, and the kids love it–especially boys,” says Ritchie. “If we have to stop that this year, that’s going to be pretty painful.”
Without wholesome programs, Ritchie says, kids will turn elsewhere for entertainment.
“They will find something else, and that something else is not always good.”
According to a 2010 study performed by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the average U.S. kid spends between 8 and 10 hours consuming various forms of media. Even children under the age of 6 use media at least two hours a day.
“If parents are concerned about the spiritual growth and strengthening that spiritual growth of their children, then they need to help us get those programs out there,” says Ritchie.
Keys for Kids obtained over 832 new “likes” on their Facebook page during the first week they posted about Giving Tuesday, and the engagement rate has only increased since then. They’re using the hashtag #GivingtoKeysDay to single out their campaign.
“Most of the organizations who’ve partnered with the #GivingTuesday campaign have developed their own insignia, or hashtag, so people will recognize who it’s for,” explains Ritchie.
“It will be on the donation page; we have a big, huge heart there, which is part of our logo, that will be filling up as people give.”
One week from today, you can help #GivingtoKeysDay reach a new level.
Giving Tuesday and you
Supporting Keys for Kids on Giving Tuesday is simple. Just upload one of these photos, or the #GivingTuesday logo, to your social media profile. Then, write a post explaining why you’re supporting Keys for Kids, and encourage your friends to join, too. Be sure to finish your post using the hashtag #GivingtoKeysDay.
“We’re trying to provide the best [content] we can for kids, to draw them closer to the Lord,” Ritchie states.
When you donate to Keys for Kids next Tuesday, your gift will be doubled by a matching $25,000 grant. Can’t make a gift on Giving Tuesday? Don’t worry: Ritchie says they’ll be pushing toward their goal of $135,000 until December 31.
“We’re really hoping to raise that because we do not want to stop producing the programs that we’ve just started this year,” says Ritchie.
Not on social media? Help out Keys for Kids here.