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Lowcountry charities hope ‘Giving Tuesday’ will kick off spirit of giving

Published: Nov. 30, 2021 at 6:27 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2021 at 8:26 AM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Nonprofits across the Lowcountry are looking to “Giving Tuesday” as a kickoff for holiday charitable donations.

Earlier this month, South Carolina Secretary of State Mark Hammond released a list of 15 charities he dubbed “Angels” because of their good stewardship of donated money used to support their causes.

Four of those charities are in the Lowcountry.

Charleston

Kids on Point, a program designed to help kids in afterschool and summer learning programs, needs volunteers for both athletic and academic programs. Director of Advancements Barbie Schreiner says they need to fill about 30 percent of the positions they currently have open since they run almost completely on the help of volunteers.

Schreiner says they serve about 75 students every day after school.

As shown in the state’s report, nearly 87 percent of all funds raised go directly back into the program. But Schreiner also says on this day of giving, they want to direct financial donations onto their partners who make all food and activity programs possible.

“Kids on point is absolutely not possible without partners and other non-profit partners,” Schreiner says. “So we believe that Giving Tuesday is an opportunity for us to elevate our partners as well, because in order for us to be successful, we need our partners to be successful.”

Click here to volunteer or donate to Kids On Point.

Johns Island

Our Lady of Mercy Community Outreach on Johns Island recently expanded its services to more than double their service area.

Executive Director Erika Plater says the expansion into more rural areas like Edisto and Ravenel means this year’s Giving Tuesday is more important than ever.

Plater says with more people in need of help this year, the organization set a goal of $2 million for the year, and they are only about 35% of the way there.

The group received an Angel designation from Hammond’s office because more than 86% of their fundraising goes directly to their programs.

“Whether it’s through the volunteering, or in-kind donations, or actual financial donations, I don’t know if people really know how much that helps us keep our doors open every year,” Plater says.

The group is in need of everything from blankets and socks to financial donations.

Click here to donate to Our Lady of Mercy Community Outreach.

Pawleys Island

Another Lowcountry charity recognized by Hammond’s office as an Angel is All Four Paws on Pawleys Island.

The animal rescue relies completely on community donations with nearly 90% of fundraising going directly to their programs.

Founding Director Allison Gillespie says says this year they are hoping to raise $10,000 to help fund their newly-opened spay and neuter clinic.

But she says even more importantly, they are in dire need of volunteers.

“One of the things that did not come back after COVID was our volunteers,” she said. “Probably only a third of our volunteer force came back out, but we miss you guys. Come on back. We’re open again.”

Click here to volunteer with All Four Paws.

Beaufort

The Moss Creek Marines in Beaufort are also being recognized by the Secretary of State this year as an Angel. Hammond said 97.3 percent of all of their funding goes directly to their programs, giving them the highest percentage of charities in the Lowcountry.

Their organization is run by Marines to make life improvements for our deployed troops and seriously injured Marines and their families, through our “Helping Heros” and “Adopt A Combat Unit” programs and others, their website states. The group supplies items like service dogs, special equipment, and services neither the Veterans Administration nor the Department of Defense provides.

Click here to donate to the Moss Creek Marines.

To qualify as an “Angel,” the charity must have devoted 80 percent or more of its total expenditures to charitable programs, the charity must have been in existence for three or more years, it must make good use of volunteer services, it must receive minimal funding from grants, and it must be in compliance with the South Carolina Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act

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