Wisconsinites show season of giving is year-round

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- Wisconsinites are inspired to give beyond the season of giving.

A 9-year-old volunteer serves food at the St. Martin House.

The St. Martin House, a soup kitchen run by the Catholic Multicultural Center in Madison, typically receives more donations during the holidays, according to director Andy Russell. He said there are also people visiting from out of town who offer to volunteer their time.

“It’s a time of year that people think about giving and think about what they’re grateful for,” Russell said.

“Then come January, I think a lot of times, people get back into the routines," he continued. "They might have already given what they were planning on for the year,” adding that there were other reasons unique to every person.

Mary Beth Collins, an expert on nonprofits at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, suggested that the general interest in giving during the holidays were due to special opportunities as well as their greater visibility.

However, Collins said that Wisconsin is among the top states with residents that give and volunteer at any time of year.

According to a 2019 report called “Nonprofit Wisconsin in Brief”, 35.7 percent of Wisconsin residents volunteer, ranking the state as the fourth highest in volunteer rate.

Collins added that consistent donations, no matter how small, are significantly helpful to nonprofits.

At the St. Martin House, Russell said he would gladly accept gifts all year round. For more information on how you can donate or sign up to volunteer, visit the Catholic Multicultural Center’s website.