WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Since 2012, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving has been known as Giving Tuesday.
The day was created to encourage people to give to charities and non-profit organizations after the busy shopping days of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.
Glenda Tate is the executive director of the Kairos Center, a non-profit that helps people in need gain access to education, career building, and affordable housing. She says that because of COVID-19 that’s been harder to do in 2020.
“The programs that we’ve had in the past just are not there or they’ve been diminished somewhat,” says Tate. “Right now, with everything going on with jobs, even with people getting an opportunity to go to school...it’s more important than ever.”
The Harrelson Center in downtown Wilmington helps organizations like the Kairos Center by providing space at a lower cost so the agencies can focus on helping others.
Executive Director Meade Van Pelt says resources are not flowing to non-profits like in prior years.
“Between the events not happening and people having to re-allocate funding to COVID needs--so many of the banks and organizations that continuously are helping organizations have also had to reassess this year,” said Van Pelt. “So, we’re just not seeing the funding coming into the non-profit community this year like we did and have in the past.”
While the giving has slowed, the need for services these groups provide is just as great. “When someone is desperate in a desperate situation, they are going to show up where they think there might be an opportunity to receive help,” said Van Meade. “So, people are still showing up at the Harrelson Center every day seeking assistance.”
The 17 non-profits in the Harrelson Center are focused on helping people in the Cape Fear region.
“When you help an individual in the organizations here, you help them...but [also], you help their families,” said Tate. “So, this is more than just helping one person.”
WECT anchor Frances Weller will be live from Harrelson Center throughout the day Tuesday, Dec. 1, as she highlights local nonprofits.