‘Tis the season for individuals and companies to give back – the spirit of the holiday season always inspires a spike of end-of-year charitable giving, with one third of all nonprofit donations occurring in December. This year the pandemic has only increased both need and the desire to help others.
The Texas Cable Association’s (TCA) newsletter each month spotlights the generosity of the cable industry in Texas. Cable operators believe in giving throughout the year to support the communities where they do business and their employees live and work. This year cable went even further to get families connected to meet COVID-19 challenges.
A study commissioned by NCTA – The Internet & Television Association found that corporate giving by cable’s video and internet providers and programmers totaled $1.2 billion in 2014 (the latest data available). The study found that in-kind contributions, direct cash giving, employee volunteerism, and employee-matching gift donations comprised the bulk of cable’s giving.
That total also includes $10 million in contributions directly from employees, who also logged more than 658,000 volunteer hours.
While an impressive amount, it’s safe to say those numbers have risen in the past six years. And according to NCTA, in 2020 cable “doubled down on their giving efforts, nationally and locally, in robust and creative ways.”
This year – as TCA newsletters have highlighted – cable providers serving Texas have participated in food and toy drives and shelter pet adoption events, provided relief in areas stricken by hurricanes, awarded scholarships, sponsored community events, fed local firefighters, mentored students and much more.
Since March, COVID-related giving has included providing gloves to hospitals, meals to healthcare workers, donations to community nonprofits meeting Texans’ basic needs, financial assistance for small business recovery, airtime for COVID-19 related public service announcements, and support for cable employees facing tough times.
Since the pandemic began to impact daily life, cable operators also have focused on supporting efforts to get families online so students could continue to learn and individuals could work remotely. This has included expanding broadband access, donating devices and other technology, providing financial support directly to teachers, funding school supplies, increasing digital education grants and more.
No one could have predicted the events of 2020. And no matter what’s ahead in 2021, the cable industry will continue to support their communities, subscribers and employers, whatever the need.