Giving Tuesday: My Favorite Memphis Nonprofits

Published on Nov. 28, 2017, 3:36 p.m.

Today is #GivingTuesday. A time when we've finished with Black Friday shopping and all the Cyber Monday deals are over still well under way. It's a chance for us to collectively reflect on the charitable organizations that help make the world a better place.

Here are my five favorite Memphis-based nonprofits.

1. Tech901

Tech901's charter is to "train current or potential Memphians for a variety of information technology jobs and to work with employees to increase the Memphis technology job base." They offer classes in IT fundamentals, Project Management, and computer programming, all at steeply discounted rates that make these educational opportunities affordable for just about everyone. Donate to Tech901.

Disclaimer: I'm absolutely biased; I teach the Code 1.0 class.

2. CodeCrew

CodeCrew mentors underrepresented youth to be tech innovators and leaders through practical, hands-on computer science education. They run summer camps and after school programs that teach people to be producers of technology, not just consumers. And with a hashtag like #GritGrindCode, how you can not love the attitude they've taken toward changing Memphis and the world. Donate to CodeCrew.

3. Memphis Technology Foundation (MTF)

Memphis Technology Foundation is a charitable, educational, and scientific organization that aims to foster growth of Memphis's technology ecosystem. They organize or assist with events like TechCamp Memphis, GiveCamp and HackMemphis, and provide a number of tools to help the individuals who organize and run dozens of local technology user groups. Follow the #memtech hashtag on twitter to discover all sorts of cool things happening in our city. MTF is 100% volunteer-run, and all of the above happens on very little cash. Donate to MTF.

Disclaimer: I'm on the board of directors and have been involved with many MTF events over the years.

4. MHBC: Memphis Hightailers Bicycle Club

MHBC is one of Memphis' hidden gems. They organize dozens of weekly group rides, special riding events, and provide cycling advocacy and education to the area. Many of their larger club rides also raise money for other local charities. If you like to ride a bike, you should be a member. You can join the club for a very modest fee, or donate to the Memphis Hightailers Foundation.

Disclaimer: I'm a member, and a league cycling instructor involved in some of the Hightailer's educational efforts.

5. MRTC: Memphis Runners Track Club

If you've ever run a 5k in Memphis, you've probably benefited from MRTC. They're a running club responsible for events such as the Winter Off Road Series (WORS), the Road Race Series (RRS), and Women Run/Walk Memphis (WRWM) among others. Whether you're an avid runner, or you're just setting a Couch to 5k new years resolution, you should join the MRTC.

So, there they are. My five favorite organizations that are making Memphis a better place. Yes, they're tech & fitness oriented (things I like!), but all of these organization offer programs that improve our lives in meaningful ways. Pick one and support our community.

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