The stress of finding the perfect gift for a loved one can be overwhelming, but the #LightTheWorld Giving Machines at CoolSprings Galleria Mall provide an opportunity to give a unique gift with lasting impact. Instead of “getting” items like jewelry or clothing, the recipient will “give” life-changing items to those in need.
Local beneficiaries include Catholic Charities, Tennessee Resettlement Aid, Angel Heart Farm, Achilles International, and Graceworks Ministries, serving thousands of people in the greater Nashville area. Each charity selected five items for the machines that are most needed by those they serve. Gifts like books, meals, personal care items, fresh food, school supplies—even ducks—are represented by cards in bright red vending machines.
Participants can purchase an item from the machines on behalf of someone else, with holiday postcards available to share that a gift was given in their name. A simple means to touch two hearts with the swipe of one card. Item prices range from $4 to $130, and one of each item in the machine can be purchased for $1,096. For those wishing to buy in honor of someone else, “purchased on your behalf” cards are available to give to friends and family.
“It’s an easy way to just be a light to others,” said Sarah Critchlow, co-chair of the Giving Machines Nashville. “Rather than buying more gifts for people that have enough, let’s go out there and really share our light by buying things that help others.”
The #LightTheWorld Giving Machines were launched in Salt Lake City by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which covers the cost of the machines and associated fees. As a result, charities receive 100 percent of donations made through the machines. Since 2017, the initiative has raised over $15 million through the donations of more than 1,200,000 people. Nashville is one of 26 cities worldwide to be selected to receive Giving Machines.
CoolSprings Galleria shoppers can experience the Giving Machines daily through the remainder of the year. For more information about upcoming events or items inside the machines, please visit GivingMachinesNashville.org.