Thursday is North Texas Giving Day, a community-wide giving event that’s raised millions for thousands of organizations over the last decade.
This year, amid the pandemic, the need for many of those groups is greater than ever.
For 11 years the Chocolate MINT Foundation has been serving families in Dallas’ southern sector, but founder and executive director Felicia Frazier said the pace at which they need to move to keep up with the need this year is unprecedented.
“We’ve been moving non-stop. Our food pantry, we’ve had to double the days. We used to service people two days a week. Now its four times a week,” said Frazier.
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On those days, cars are seen wrapped around the building.
In the month of August alone, Frazier said their number of clients increased by 62%.
Then came the wave of families needing help paying rent or virtual tutoring services for kids now learning at home.
“When you’re dealing with individuals in the southern sector of Dallas, most of the time you’re living paycheck to paycheck. And you’re just one issue away, one medical bill, one mechanical issue with your car with something that could become traumatic where you could become homeless, there could not be food on the table, no clothes for your children, no school supplies,” said Frazier.
But though the issue may be prominent in the community she serves, its far from the only place where people are suffering.
Of the 3,000 non-profits that benefit from North Texas Giving Day, Chief Giving Day Officer Susan Swan Smith said many are feeling the effects of the pandemic.
“You know, whether its hunger or homelessness or child care or health care, domestic violence, so many different areas have been affected and have had demand for their services go up in the last six months,” said Swan Smith.
She said through an emergency campaign in May helped, the need seems to have grown. That’s why this year, perhaps more than ever, there’s no gift too small.
“We always say that North Texas Giving Day is a time when anyone can be a philanthropist no matter how much they give,” said Susan Swan Smith.
To learn more about the organizations participating and how to help click here.