Aurora, IL

Aurora's Fox Valley Mall Introduces Unique New Way to Donate for the Holidays

Natalie Frank, Ph.D.

Giving Machines aimed at bringing people together, uniting them
Aurora, Illinois has the first Giving Machines in the statePhoto byScreen Capture/Youtube Video [Creator]

In a gesture of generosity, Fox Valley Mall in Aurora introduces a revolutionary way to contribute to the holiday season – The Giving Machines. This initiative, spearheaded by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, transcends barriers of race, religion, and political persuasion, aiming to unite people in a collective effort to uplift and bless lives.

These unique machines, resembling traditional vending machines, offer a seamless and inclusive method of charitable giving. Each one features cards corresponding to essential items such as food, clothing, and healthcare provisions for those in need. With a straightforward process of selecting the desired donation, pushing a few buttons, and making a payment, the act of giving becomes accessible to individuals of all ages.

The Giving Machines, sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, make their debut in Illinois at Fox Valley Mall. Though initiated in 2017, the three Giving Machines at the mall represent the first of their kind in the state, showcasing a blend of technology and compassion that brings the community together.

During an official unveiling ceremony, members of the church, mall officials, and city leaders came together to welcome the Giving Machines. The occasion was marked by the joyous tolling of a bell, signifying the commencement of a charitable season.

While supporting global charities, the Giving Machines primarily benefit four local non-profits: Hesed House, Little Friends, Bernie’s Book Bank, and Loaves and Fishes. Nancy Wiersum, Executive Vice President of Advancement for Loaves and Fishes, commended the initiative as one of the most innovative fundraising methods, providing a diverse range of options for donors.

Over the past six years, Giving Machines globally have successfully raised over $21 million for various charities. The organizers hope to replicate this success locally, encouraging families to participate, especially with the affordability of certain items, fostering a spirit of giving in the younger generation.

Community members eager to engage with the Giving Machines must seize the opportunity promptly, as they will be available at the mall only until December 9th. Post this period, all donations collected will be distributed among the participating charities, ensuring a meaningful impact on those in need.

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