Commentary: Reclaim Kindness by Giving Locally

Commentary: Reclaim Kindness by Giving Locally

On Thursday, May 17, more than 370 Arlington County nonprofits will join together with other organizations throughout the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area to take part in United Way of the National Capital Area’s Do More 24 — the region’s largest online giving day expected to raise nearly $2 million for local nonprofits.

We know that dramatic budget cuts and changes to the tax laws will affect the local nonprofits servicing Arlington County residents. A reduction in federal funding for nonprofits throughout the area could dramatically impact mission-critical initiatives, such as providing food for the hungry, job counseling for the unemployed, health care services for seniors, as well as access to affordable housing and child care for low-income families.

All of this is happening against a backdrop of an increased need for critical services for our area’s most vulnerable populations from local nonprofits, whose capacity is already strained past the point of breaking. We are hearing from our nonprofit partners on a daily basis about the overwhelming demand for services for the area’s “at-risk” populations, including those benefiting from programs that support school success, financial empowerment and access to health support services.

In response, during a 24-hour period beginning at noon on Thursday, May 17 to noon on Friday, May 18, our local nonprofit community will come together with an urgent call to action for area residents to reclaim kindness by thinking and giving locally to the nonprofits on-the-front lines here in our own community.

Do More 24 is the region’s largest online giving day and has raised more than $7 million in the last six years. The support goes directly towards helping organizations right here in Arlington County and throughout the metro area fill holes in their budgets, buy desperately needed new equipment and ultimately serve our neighbors.

By reclaiming kindness, residents are banding together and supporting more than 790 participating nonprofits ranging from animal welfare to workforce readiness, environmental causes, financial stability, education, homelessness and housing, and more. Residents are letting our local nonprofits know that they are here, aware of the need and willing to support in unison with their neighbors. We know that our community is up to the challenge, so even a small act of kindness goes a long way, especially during these financially volatile times. With that, we invite you to reclaim kindness on May 17.

Rosie Allen-Herring is the president and chief executive officer for United Way of the National Capital Area, which will host its community-wide Do More 24 Online Giving Day on May 17. Residents can learn more at