GivingTuesday, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, began as a simple idea — a day to do good. It was the brainchild of Henry Timms in New York in 2012 and the antithesis of Black Friday’s shopping sprees.

This year, as the COVID-19 pandemic has left many non-profit groups without stable funding sources, giving to good causes in the Spring Branch Management District goes hand in hand with shopping and dining in the neighborhood on any day of the holiday season.

Here are a few organizations based in Spring Branch that could use your support:

Wildlife Center client

TWRC Wildlife Center, 10801 Hammerly Blvd., is planning Facebook Live events on GivingTuesday, including a kick-off message from Director Mary Warwick at 10 a.m., an education presentation at 11 a.m. and a “behind the scenes” tour at 4 p.m. Find the programs here:

With your help, TWRC Wildlife Center hopes to expand its vet room into a full-service wildlife hospital. The Roslyn Even Wildlife Hospital will deliver the services TWRC currently provides but enhanced with an in-house laboratory, surgical capabilities and improved anesthesia and examination equipment.

The need for the lifesaving hospital is great, TWRC says, and will make a difference in the survivability of its patients.

Learn more about TWRC here:

Donations to Vita Living, 3300 S. Gessner, will be matched dollar for dollar up to $5,000, helping to prove services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The organization operates nine client homes in Spring Branch neighborhoods.

Having operated group homes for such Houston adults since 1985, Vita Living, Inc. continues to provide a high quality of life for these residents. More here.

Donate to Vita Living at

The Spring Branch Family Development Center, 8575 Pitner, provides on-site services in the areas of education, recreation, health and social services. By bringing many programs and services to one site, SBFDC creates an economy of scope for clients and agencies.

By making a gift to SBFDC (, you enable families to access resources that improve lives.

Two years ago, in collaboration with the Houston Volunteer Lawyers program and Blank Rome LLP, SBFDC launched a monthly intake clinic through which attorneys donate their services to clients such a woman who hoped to be reunited with her daughter. The volunteer lawyers helped her succeed.

Read about one of SBFDC’s health fairs in the District here:

The Spring Branch Education Foundation partners with Spring Branch ISD and the community to fund programs that enhance education and prepare local students for the future.

On this GivingTuesday, funds raised will provide scholarships for students in the class of 2022 to afford technical, 2-year, or 4-year educational

programs after high school. Every dollar will

make a difference for these students.

Learn more and donate:

The Source is a full-service women’s health clinic at 8312 Long Point Rd.

Your GivingTuesday gift provides services such as

pregnancy and parenting classes, assistance with getting new baby clothes and accessories, Medicaid eligibility verification, counseling and mentoring, pregnancy tests and ultrasounds, STI/STD testing and treatment, and well-woman exams.

Donate here:!/donation/checkout

Social Motion Skills founder Wendy Dawson’s stepson, Cameron, was diagnosed with PDD-NOS — pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified — at age 2. Dawson and her husband spent years scouting the Houston area for social skills classes geared toward children “on the spectrum” and similar special needs, one that offered a stable and sustainable program that would grow with him and offer precursory training for the situations he would face and the future he dreamed of.

They never found it, so in early 2010, they founded non-profit Social Motion Skills, which has offices at 10694 Haddington.

Donate to Social Motion Skills here.

Summerhouse Houston was founded by another determined mom, Donna Fruge, when her daughter, Summer, was finishing high school via a special education program. As she was trying to figure out what would come next for her daughter, Fruge toured programs all over the city and wasn’t happy with what she saw. Serving young adults ages 19 and up, Summerhouse Houston is funded by donations, foundations and member tuition. After several years in the Houston Heights, the organization moved to a new 4,620-square-foot building at 1424 Waseca.

Read more here.


Newspring is a faith-based non-profit dedicated to making a positive social and economic impact in the Spring Branch area.

Newspring Visual Arts programs support academic achievement and career opportunities for high school and college students from Spring Branch, and Newspring’s Business Plan Competition supports social entrepreneurship and economic development in the area.

Dedicate a donation to Newspring to someone special:

In addition to a resale shop open to the public located at 1625 Blalock Road, Memorial Assistance Ministries (MAM) offers a variety of services to area families in need.

During the 1980s, an economic downturn tied to a steep drop in oil and gas prices resulted in the loss of more than 100,000 jobs in the Houston area. Houses of worship were faced with unprecedented requests for food, rent, utility assistance and clothing. The congregations decided to pool their resources and create centralized service centers and, in 1983, MAM opened its doors.

Donate here:

Read about how MAM helped local families cope with COVID-19 loss here.

Urban Outreach services

Urban Outreach, Inc., invests in the growth and development of at-risk youth and their families by providing quality after-school and summer enrichment programs.

Through its Apartment Ministry, Urban Outreach operates after-school Kids Clubs in 22 apartment communities across the Greater Houston area.

Kids Clubs leaders incorporate fun crafts and activities, and they are always in need of supplies. Donate by sending a check to1425 Blalock, Ste. 201 Houston, TX 77055 or online at

— by Dorothy Puch Lillig