Wellesley Is a Giving Tuesday Partner, but Encourages Philanthropy Any Day

December 3, 2013

December 3, 2013, marks the second annual Giving Tuesday, a national day of philanthropy adopted by nonprofits and other charitable institutions. Following the Thanksgiving holiday, it’s a way to give thanks for our own blessings by helping others in need. It also serves as a counterpoint to the shopping-focused days that have come to be known as Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

According to the Giving Tuesday website, New York’s 92nd Street Y was the “catalyst and incubator” for the idea, bringing the expertise of 139 years of community-management to the project and providing a home. The United Nations Foundation partnered with the nascent movement, bringing its strategic and communications clout to the project. … Since then, countless friends, leaders, and organizations—including Wellesley—have added their support and talents to make Giving Tuesday a reality.

Wellesley takes philanthropy seriously. Founded by philanthropists Pauline and Henry Durant more than 100 years ago and supported by philanthropists great and small ever since, the College has also produced generations of women philanthropists.

Giving back is natural to women educated “not to be ministered unto but to minister.”

Sometimes that giving takes the form of impressive financial generosity, such as the late Kathryn W. Davis ’28 showed to Wellesley; or as Amalie Kass ’49 offered to Boston as the lead donor on the Rose Kennedy Greenway carousel project. Kass told the Boston Globe, “Philanthropy is fun.”

It also takes the form of undergraduates giving of their most precious resource—time—and it may be coincidence that Giving Tuesday this year is just the day before the deadline for applications for spring break service projects, but it seems most fitting. (The photo shows students on the 2013 spring break service trip to New Orleans.)

The College community joins the spirit as well, with a Day to Make a Difference in the fall, where faculty, staff, and student participants join in one of several one-day local service projects. And each December a charitable giving campaign encourages giving through the College to Community Works; The National Alliance on Mental Illness, Massachusetts Chapter; Oxfam America; Rosie's Place; and United Way. Led by a volunteer committee of faculty and staff members, the Charitable Giving Campaign has a goal of increasing the overall level of participation to 25 percent this year. The deadline for giving to that campaign, incidentally, is December X.

As Giving Tuesday reminds us of the kinds of giving that don’t entail a trip to the mall, Wellesley urges alumnae and friends to participate, and support those efforts that are meaningful to you. We hope Wellesley will be on the list of organizations you support.

Please visit www.wellesley.edu/give to make your gift today.

Wellesley is especially grateful to all those who have given and will give on this designated day—or any day!—to The Wellesley Fund, which ensures that the College can continue to:

  • meet 100 percent of our students’ demonstrated financial need,
  • admit students from diverse socioeconomic, cultural, and geographic backgrounds to make up our 2,300-strong student body, and prepare them for leadership in their chosen fields,
  • provide more than 1,000 courses and 54 majors,
  • fund more than 160 student organizations,
  • and support 14 varsity sports and countless recreational and wellness activities for students.

We invite you to take part in this national movement, and, as Amalie Kass might say, join the fun.