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Leslie Horn – Guest Contributor
Mar 14 @ 11:34 am
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Dallas (March 1, 2024) - 

Eight North Texas charities benefited as the Light the World Texas Giving Machine rolled through DFW, reaching thousands of donors. The machines also stopped in Houston and San Antonio, totaling donations nearly $1M in our state.

More than $10.4 million was donated at Giving Machines during the 2023 Christmas season worldwide in 61 locations, a record number — with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints covering all the operating costs.

Total charitable donations from North Texas donors were over $630,000. The machines kicked off in DFW with Marie Osmond offering a holiday mini concert in Sundance Square to an audience of over 8,000. Next, the machines stopped in Grapevine, the Christmas Capital of Texas, and finished their tour in downtown McKinney.

Filled with cards representing essential goods and services requested by North Texas charity partners, Giving Machines allowed visitors to make a difference through the simple act of swiping their credit cards and buying something for someone in need.

“The ripple effect of this program is priceless,” Kellie Maynard, CDO of The Samaritan Inn, said. “Giving Machines have brought so much awareness to so many charities in need.”

As a result of the Texas Giving Machine in DFW donations provided:

  • 11,000 chickens
  • 1500 hot showers, lunches for homeless
  • 1500 canine care kits for those experiencing homelessness
  • 1200 new shoes for battered women and children
  • 1100 fresh produce, grocery items
  • 1000 winter coats
  • 900 infant care kits for women rescued from human trafficking
  • 600 veteran kits
  • 500 music classes for adults with disabilities

“Each number represents a person being fed, clothed, educated and trained,” Karl Cheney, program manager said. “Hundreds of thousands of children will be vaccinated and sheltered, thousands of newborn babies will receive a healthier start, and countless women and men in every corner of the world will have their dignity restored.”

This is the first year that the Giving Machines have come to north Texas, which is one of only 61 cities worldwide to host Light the World Giving Machines in 2023. A record 600,000 people made purchases at Giving Machines in November and December 2023 worldwide.

The DFW machine benefitted eight charities locally in the metroplex, including:

  • GRACE Grapevine
  • NTX SNAP
  • Arlington Charities
  • It’s Going To Be OK
  • Samaritan Inn
  • I Can Still Shine
  • Hugs Cafe
  • American Red Cross North Texas

And two global charities: African Girls Hope Foundation and Church World Service

“Overwhelmed. Speechless. Blown away by the response.” These were common responses when the North Texas charities received their 2023 donation checks. Dr. Tonya Stafford, founder of charity "It’s Going To Be OK," said the Light the World Giving Machine is “truly a reminder that the good we do will outshine the evil.”

“I’m overwhelmed with the donation amount and thrilled and excited for this support,” Rebecca Cox, CEO of GRACE Grapevine said. “Our need has grown 40% this past year.” HUGS Founder Ruth Thompson said, “This will help as we are changing lives. The need for special needs employment is so great. This is what God said to do.”

The first Giving Machine appeared in 2017 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Total donations since then have exceeded $32 million, with 100% used to fulfill each donor’s selection – all possible because the initiative’s sponsor, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, covers all operational costs.

For more information, go to givingmachine.org. And on social, @TexasGivingMachine