RELIGION

Light The World Giving Machines: Connecting hearts and changing lives

Apr 2, 2024, 5:17 PM

SALT LAKE CITY The Light The World Giving Machines, an initiative sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, have become a regular tradition during the holiday season. Instead of buying something for themselves, individuals can donate to help those in need. These unique vending machines allow people to give back in a meaningful way, supporting global and local charities.

During the 2023 Christmas season, the Giving Machines were placed in 61 locations worldwide and took in more than $10 million. Over 250 nonprofit groups benefitted from the money, and more than 1,200 different items were available for purchase in the machines. People donated to help with everything from clean water and meals, to shelter and education. The Church covers the cost of the program so 100% of the money earned goes to the charities.

Two of the charity organizations who have benefitted from the funds at the Giving Machines are Lifting Hands International and Mentors International. Both groups have seen how the money raised in the Giving Machines can have a significant impact on the people they serve.

(KSL TV)

Helping Refugees in Ukraine

Lifting Hands is a Utah based nonprofit organization helping refugees in Utah and around the world. According to Jessica Kendrick, outreach director with Lifting Hands International, their mission is simply to provide humanitarian aid. Kendrick said thanks to the money raised through the Giving Machines they were able to deliver several thousand boxes of food and other aid to displaced Ukrainian families affected by the ongoing war.

“One of the great things that I love about the Giving Machines is being able to connect people here in America with refugee communities around the world,” Kendrick said.

Empowering Farmers in Mexico

Mentors International has been serving communities in Mexico since 2011. Their mission is to empower individuals regardless of their background or circumstances. They help communities around the world through personalized training, vocational classes, and mentorship.

Sarah Barrett, marketing director of Mentors International said the funds received through the Giving Machines has enabled them to provide participants with items that will help launch their businesses and provide people a way to support their families. One example was a farmer in Mexico who was given seeds to replant his fields after a fire destroyed his crops and left him with few options.

“It is a great opportunity to be able to witness what’s happening,” Barrett said. “No matter what the news says there’s so much more good out there than bad. And I know that because of the Giving Machines.”

Watch More About The Giving Machines

The Light The World Giving Machines create a global network or compassion and exemplify the spirit of giving. You can watch more about the Giving Machines on Saturday, April 6 at 12:30 p.m., on KSL TV and the KSL+ app. Hear how this initiative first got started and the growth that it has experienced over the years.

KSL 5 TV Live

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Light The World Giving Machines: Connecting hearts and changing lives