Ozarks Food Harvest conducts a mobile produce pantry distribution in Hartville. (Photo: Ozarks Food Harvest)

Your dollars can do a lot of good for local nonprofit organizations — including Ozarks Food Harvest and the Springfield Art Museum — on Giving Tuesday, Nov. 29.

Giving Tuesday, according to its website, is a “global generosity movement that unleashes the power of radical generosity around the world.” It was created in 2012 to encourage people to do good and is run by an independent nonprofit organization. Giving Tuesday always follows the big Thanksgiving shopping weekend, which includes Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.

You can watch for email and other messages from your favorite charities, or look on social media for the hashtag #GivingTuesday to find nonprofits of interest to you.

(Editor’s note: If you are interested in supporting the nonprofit Springfield Daily Citizen, we will have information on Giving Tuesday about a large, one-day community match, making your dollars worth three times as much that day. This ties into our ongoing NewsMatch campaign.)

Ozarks Food Harvest has goal of $60,000

Ozarks Food Harvest has set a fundraising goal of $60,000 for Giving Tuesday. That money would help provide food for families facing hunger during the holiday season.

“The need is urgent because we’re now serving more families than we were at the height of the COVID crisis,” Bart Brown, president and CEO of Ozarks Food Harvest, said in a press release. “We supply 70 percent of the food our network of community and faith-based partners distribute, so the best way to help is with a donation because we can take $1 and turn that into $10 worth of groceries for a family in need.”

That $60,000 would help provide more than 240,000 meals to children, families and seniors in the region and local companies are chipping in to help. Feeding Missouri, A-1 Guarantee Roofing and American National will be matching donations dollar-for-dollar up to $15,000.

Since 2014, Ozarks Food Harvest has raised more than $287,000 through Giving Tuesday campaigns. That money has turned into more than 1.1 million meals.

“In southwest Missouri, one in five children and one in six adults face hunger, meaning they don’t know where their next meal will come from,” the press release said. “Ozarks Food Harvest reaches 50,000 individuals monthly and provides more than 20 million meals annually across its 28-county service area.”

To donate to Ozarks Food Harvest, visit its donation website.

Springfield Art Museum wants to preserve columns

The Springfield Art Museum is also calling for donations this Giving Tuesday. The museum has set a goal of $2,500 to preserve the historic columns that sit adjacent to the facility.

“The museum’s historic columns once flanked the entrance to the Colonial Hotel which opened in 1907 off of Jefferson Avenue, in what is now the heart of downtown Springfield,” a press release said. “When the hotel was demolished in 1997, the columns went into storage until they were installed in Phelps Grove Park and then on the grounds of the museum.”

Today, those columns frame the Works Progress Administration-era amphitheater on the grounds of the Springfield Art Museum, which has hosted concerts, plays and other activities.

“The columns were recently cleaned during the amphitheater renovation,” the press release said. “But now — at more than 115 years old — the columns also need cracks repaired and a sealant applied to ensure they spend the next 100 years standing tall on the museum grounds.”

Donors of $25 or more will be recognized on special signage, to be placed near the columns in the spring of 2023. You can donate on Giving Tuesday, or right now, by visiting the Springfield Art Museum’s Cause Momentum page.

Stone columns, with trees and blue sky behind them
The Springfield Art Museum is using Giving Tuesday to raise money to preserve the columns that flank the amphitheater stage on the museum grounds. (Photo: Jeff Kessinger)

Jeff Kessinger

Jeff Kessinger covered sports in southwest Missouri for the better part of 20 years, from young athletes to the pros. The Springfield native and Missouri State University alumnus is thrilled to be doing journalism in the Queen City, helping connect the community with important information. He and wife Jamie daily try to keep a tent on the circus that is a blended family of five kids and three cats. More by Jeff Kessinger