History

The Unofficial Start

Our organization had its humble beginnings when Mike Keating, Givingmas founder, was looking for a way to assist families in need and help them celebrate a better Christmas. With the help of several close friends and colleagues, the first unofficial Givingmas fundraising event was held, raising almost $600 — granting an individual family much-needed Christmas wishes.

2015

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2016

Building Momentum

The idea spread and La Shonda Bush became a founding Ambassador, bringing in many supporters. Together, we launched our "public fundraiser," raising over $2,000 with the guiding principle of focusing on one family at a time. With more resources, the program expanded beyond providing Christmas gifts. It focused on helping families over extended periods through opportunities to improve their lives sustainably. Our 2016 family received car tire service packages, grocery store memberships, bill payments, and more.

2017

Growing in the Community

Givingmas becomes the official name of the annual event in reference to the fact that we will impact beyond the Christmas season… We will give MORE (mas in Spanish). Our program's tagline came to be "Changing Lives One Family at a Time." This year the program doubled its contributions and rolled out its family nomination process with the support of the nonprofit organization "Family Gateway," a family-only homeless shelter. We proudly gave a "hand up" with new beds, career education tuition, birthday celebrations, and necessity gift cards to our 2017 family of 4 who survived domestic violence.

Over the years, the one thing that's always stayed the same is we believe in giving a hand up, not handouts. We are on a mission to Change Lives…One Family at a Time, and it starts with helping those in need take the necessary steps to self-sufficiency.

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2018

Landmark Year

Several firsts took place in 2018, including live entertainment at our annual fundraising event and a civil nonprofit (VFW) nomination. A record-breaking $10k in donations enabled us to provide the tools and teachings necessary to help our nominated family access the resources needed to ensure that they provide for themselves, including a 2009 Lexus, legal support, bill payments, and secure employment.

2019

Givingmas, Inc. is Born.

Givingmas was granted the official approval of becoming a 501(c)3 independent nonprofit in Texas with the help of now Secretary John Craft and Treasurer Mark McGruder. We expanded our reach, selected two families, and introduced a new program, "Days of Givingmas," setting a record of $25,000 raised. 2019 was the first year we received out-of-state donations and were recognized by other nonprofits, such as The DUDA Foundation. Success highlights include helping our nominees clear up many arrest warrants, gain their GED, obtain a reliable vehicle to get to and from their new full-time job with benefits, and more.

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2020

Facing the Pandemic

As Givingmas headed into the new year, we were inspired by a 5th straight record-breaking fundraiser. We picked our 1st self-nominated family. Our single mom of two cleared up debt and warrants, improved her credit score, received rent assistance, and obtained a driver's license with gas cards to get her to and from her first year in university for a degree in criminal justice.

 

As the global pandemic took hold in March, we focused on identifying families impacted by the pandemic, giving birth to the Givingmas Groceries program. Our donors raised 10k. Albertsons/Tom Thumb and their "Nourishing Neighbors" program matched our donations 150%. With these funds, Givingmas Groceries provided $100 gift cards to over 100 laid-off workers and their families for four months. 

2021

Onward and Upward

In 2021, Givingmas Groceries continues by working with the North Texas Food Bank to provide a helping hand to families who register and pass their "Nutrition and Food Economics" courses.

 

Over the years, the one thing that's always stayed the same is we believe in giving a hand up, not handouts. We are on a mission to Change Lives…One Family at a Time, and it starts with helping those in need take the necessary steps to self-sufficiency.