The Czech Republic is for the first time fully taking part in Giving Tuesday, a global event created back in 2012 to promote charitable and philanthropic acts. Countless Czech charities are on board, including Doctors Without Borders and People in Need. Giving Tuesday is designed to serve as a counter-weight to the consumerism of Black Friday, a custom which has also made its way to the Czech Republic. Markéta Šetinová is a coordinator at the Association of Social Responsibility, a Czech corporate and social responsibility NGO serving as official ambassador for the event. I began by asking how Giving Tuesday made its way into the Czech Republic:
“We actually saw some initial activities related to Giving Tuesday taking place last year. And we thought that it was a nice idea, so we contacted Global Giving Tuesday in the US and we went through a selection process and were ultimately appointed to be the Czech ambassadors for Giving Tuesday.”
Which charities are taking part in the Czech Republic?
“At this point we have more than 100 Giving Tuesday activities in the Czech Republic. We have big charities such as Doctors Without Borders. And we also have very small charities like local hospices and other local organisations.”
What about Czech companies and corporations? Globally, firms such as Microsoft and Google are serving as partners.
“Yes, we have seen major interest from companies such as T-Mobile and Vodafone as well as from major charities such as Amnesty International. We also have small and medium-sized companies partaking in Giving Tuesday activities.”
What kind of overall impact do you expect from today’s events? How much money do you hope will be raised and what kind of overall participation are you hoping for?
“It isn’t only about money. We also want to see volunteering taking place. And Giving Tuesday is also about building awareness about giving and philanthropy in the Czech Republic. As for the potential money to be raised, we will measure that after the event is over. I should also mention that the initiative is especially big on social media, so we hope to see a lot of engagement there.”
“One of the biggest success stories so far is definitely Doctors Without Borders. Their fund-raising target for the day was already reached during this morning. And as we speak, it has reached more than double what they had hoped.”
How did they go about raising this money?
“They focused on social media. And they also cooperated with a company that promised to match all that they had raised. And that is actually a very popular fund-raising mechanism for Giving Tuesday - NGOs partner with companies and then the latter matches what the charities are able to raise.”
For more information about Czech Giving Tuesday events, visit the website giving-tuesday.cz