One year since its founding, DonateMyWage.org and founder Joan Smalls have added nine new organizations to the donation-focused site that will join DonateMyWage.org’s original organizations.
Potential donors can calculate their donation amount based on their pay and are able to send funding directly to the organization or organizations of their choosing.
“The fight for equality didn’t end in 2020,” said Smalls, the model and activist. “As we continue even further into 2021, there is still a lot of work to be done to bring about inclusivity and education in all areas. We are committed to continuing our support of organizations that are making a difference in underserved communities. The organizations we chose to add to DonateMyWage.org are focused on key areas like education, voting, health, accountability, women and children and more. We celebrate one year by continuing to walk the walk, not just talk the talk because we’re stronger together and the fight for justice and inclusion isn’t over.”
DonateMyWage.org is continuing its efforts to support the Black Lives Matter movement, as well as those that aid in the well-being of Black communities.
The added organizations in 2021 are Black Girls Smile, Black Trans Advocacy Coalition, Black Voters Matter, Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, GYRL WONDER, Integrate NYC, National Police Accountability Project and Woke Vote. The founding organizations remaining on the site are Black Women’s Blueprint, Black Visions Collective, BLD PWR, Color of Change, Equal Justice Initiative, Gideon’s Army, Innocence Project, Know Your Rights Camp, The Marshall Project, Until Freedom and United Negro College Fund. DonateMyWage.com will continue to add new organizations that best support the evolving needs within the Black community.
In June 2020, Smalls pledged 50 percent of her earnings for the remainder of the year to Black Lives Matter organizations. From this, DonateMyWage.org was born to help others within all industries donate portions of their wages to organizations of their choosing.
In an interview Thursday, Smalls was asked how the organization has been doing and what the priorities are for the coming year.
“Basically it’s been going great. I was able to donate over $100,000 to be divided amongst 10 or 11 organizations, on top of IMG donating $250,000. I would say it was quite successful. Friends donated for my birthday, they re-posted, they created awareness and I was able to build relationships with organizations that needed a platform to be seen and heard,” said Smalls. She said the idea behind it was to show people and lead by example. “Rather than complain about a system that isn’t working, I wanted to be part of the progress and positive change,” said Smalls.
Smalls said the concept was based off her wages and using it as an example. “During COVID-19, it’s a tough period for people to maintain their livelihood, it was a reminder that some people can donate an hourly rate, or weekly, or monthly or whatever they could do,” said Smalls, noting that those in the modeling industry or entertainment business have the opportunity to donate a little bit more.
For 2021, her plan is to continue highlighting organizations that need the funding, to lend a voice to raise awareness and continue to participate in panel discussions.
Discussing whether the momentum in the Black Lives Matter movement will continue as people start returning to their offices and their regular lives, Smalls said, “I think these conversations need to continue to be had because a lot of times companies might do things because they feel it’s a trend to be part of a conversation so they’re not left behind and they don’t want their consumers to attack them or to leave them. I feel it’s getting into their heads and their core business how important it is to have diversity within a brand, and to speak on their true values and what is meaningful. Millennials are all about awareness and what they can do. So hopefully it doesn’t plateau, and this is the new normal to be inclusive of everyone,” said Smalls.
Further, she noted that, “What needs to happen is that pressure needs to be put on the people who are missing the whole mission. They need to be held accountable, if not, they’re being complacent. We’re looking for accountability and understanding.”
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