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#GivingTuesday: Seaworthy Nonprofits to Include in Your Year-End Giving

Post by Becky at Dockwa - Published on 11/7/18 7:01 AM
One well-earned reputation of boaters: we heed the call of those in distress. For Giving Tuesday – this year falling on November 27 – and throughout the holiday season, support organizations that speak to your salty side or simply help you give back to whichever community floats your boat. 

Being part of the boating community sometimes means relying on good samaritans to share knowledge or help you out of a jam. From Salty Dawgs to Vs. Cancer, here are some of our best options for paying it forward on #GivingTuesday. 

Keep in mind, you can always double-down by making an additional donation in someone else's name. Stay tuned for this and other gifting tips in the 2018 Dockwa Gift Guide by subscribing below. ⬇️   

Banner photo: u/Indominuscami

Community Boating Programs & Maritime Preservation 

Nonprofit community boating programs help make boating accessible for people of all ages, abilities, and interests. 

Preservation organizations help connect boaters (and non-boaters) to boating's rich history.

Find a local community boating center or boat building program near you. East Coast boaters might consider:

  • The Chesapeake Bay's Valhalla Sailing gives recovering, transitioning and wounded veterans the opportunity to regain and recapture their sense of team work, family, community and self through sailing and racing on the Chesapeake Bay and beyond.

  • Warrior Sailing offers specialized training camps and coordinates sailing challenges for maritime education and outreach for wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans throughout the country.  

  • For 27 years, the Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB) has brought sailing to persons with disabilities, recovering warriors, and youth in at-risk communities.

  • Boston's Community Boat Building and Community Boating offers summer-long classes, memberships and events for those interested in pursuing boat building as a hobby or career, or looking to 

  • Portland's SailMaine supports keep the sails hoisted and boats whizzing around the Casco Bay. 

  • Donating to Newport's International Yacht Restoration School (IYRS) helps their educational program along with equipment, faculty salaries, scholarship aid, and career education for their students. 

  • On a national scale, the BoatUS Foundation works behind the scenes year-round to provide online boating education, promote boater safety awareness, and more.

Offshore Educational Groups: 

  • I've been a fan of the Salty Dawg Sailing Association since I joined their rally from Beaufort to St. Thomas in 2012. They're an active nonprofit educational organization dedicating to helping cruisers safely realize their long-distance cruising dreams. Join here to support their cause.

Preservation organizations:


To highlight your nonprofit sailing org, email becky@dockwa.com

Ocean Conservation

You spend your free time on the water and the rest of your time dreaming about it. While it's a hot topic right now, the initiative isn't going anywhere anytime soon. Support environmental organizations to help our planet:

  • Sailors for the Sea promotes sustainable boating world-wide through their Clean Regatta Program, and has fun doing it.

  • The National Park Service goes beyond Yellowstone, maintaining public parks along our national shorelines. Check out a few of the National Parks you can get to by boat

  • The Ocean Conservancy works to protect the ocean from today's greatest global challenges by creating science-based solutions for a healthy ocean along with the wildlife and communities that depend on it. They work hard to see that the ocean's most extraordinary places are preserved for future generations to use and enjoy. 

  • Since 1951, The Nature Conservancy has worked to protect the lands and waters on which all life depends. 

  • The Bahamas has a great rap for its pristine bright blue waters – and it has people dedicated to keeping it as such. The Bahamas National Trust  manages the country's parks, which include more than 2 million acres of air, land, and sea. 

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Hands-on Hurricane Relief 

If this season's brutal storms didn't impact you directly, you may have already started to forget how hard people in the Carolina's along with the southeast, and islands were hit this fall. 

Hurricane Florence hit the Carolinas in September 2018 after peaking as a Category 4 hurricane and ultimately making landfall as a Category 1 hurricane. To make a donation specifically for Hurricane Florence relief efforts: 

  • In response to the impact of Hurricane Florence, Foundation for The Carolinas has established a relief fund to support those affected by the unprecedented storm. Donations to this organization will be directed to nonprofits in North + South Carolina providing relief to victims of the storm.

  • Loaves & Fishes provides nutritionally balanced groceries to individuals and families throughout the Mecklenburg County in North Carolina who are in a short-term crisis by giving them a weeks worth of groceries. 

  • The North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund is accepting contributions for Hurricane Florence damage. Contributions will help with immediate unmet needs of Hurricane Florence victims. 

  • The All Hands and Hearts: Smart Response team is working in New Bern, North Carolina, a city that was severely impacted by Florence to asset, muck and gut the city, to help rebuild what was lost.  

  • The Charleston Animal Society has rescued 43 dogs + puppies during Hurricane Florence and has provided them with emergency care along with food, water, and shelter. They are accepting donations to give these animals the care they need to survive. 


Hurricane Michael crashed into the Florida Panhandle on October 10 as a category 4 storm and caused widespread damage and power outages in many local communities. If you're looking to give a donation specifically for Hurricane Michael relief efforts: 

  • Matthew 25: Ministries has and will continue shipping truckloads of aid throughout the disaster region in order to help out as many people as possible. So far they have shipped more than 18 containers, 330,000 pounds, of aid to these areas. They accept monetary donations, non-perishable food donations, personal care products, cleaning supplies, paper products, baby and infant supplies, first-aid items, new and gently used clothing, and clean-up supplies. 

  • GlobalGiving is the largest global crowdfunding community connecting nonprofits, donors, and companies in nearly every country. For specific donations to the Hurricane Michael Relief Fund, the fund supports preparation relief efforts in the form of emergency supplies like food, water, and medicine as well as longer-term recovery assistance to help residents recover and rebuild. 


If you are looking to donate on a more national level for any Hurricane Relief efforts, one is able to always donate to: 

  • The American Red Cross volunteers and staff work to deliver relief and support to those in crisis, along with helping others be prepared to respond to emergencies. 

Beyond the Sea

The team at Dockwa is full of boaters, but like you we have causes we love both on and off the water. Please consider supporting these organizations that are personally near and dear to the hearts of team members who volunteer year-round to support them.

  • Katharine is involved with Ronald McDonald House Boston Harbor, which helps relieve the child patient housing crisis in Boston. While able to serve 100 families this past year, 400 families remain in need of housing while their children receive medical care. From Katharine: "Giving to RMH is pretty cool, because your donation contributes directly to the house in Boston Harbor (it's not routed through corporate or distributed to other RMHs) so you know exactly where your money is going. If we reach our goal of $40,000, we’ll be able to open a new apartment and serve 10 more families next year." With 67 nights donated so far, the program is already a quarter of the way to their goal! Give the gift of family: Donate here

  • Mat (aka Minty) volunteers for The National GRACE Foundation, an organization that helps children with cancer go to college. Based in Rhode Island, the foundation provides FREE college admissions and financial aid counseling, advocacy, and scholarships to pediatric cancer fighters. They have worked with more than 900 families from all over the country since 2011. Their goal is to raise $30,000 in 2018 to award scholarships to children affected by pediatric cancer. In addition, they are looking to expand their services to hospitals in San Diego, San Francisco, and Miami. Donate here

  • You may have noticed Dockwa raising funds for Vs. Cancer at boat shows and previous holiday campaigns. With a unique mission dedicated to saving kids' lives by empowering athletes and communities to fund lifesaving childhood cancer efforts, we'll highlight them any chance we get. Donate here
  • I'm personally inspired by the crew of Sail Like A Girl. Fully badass from their mission and dedication to their knowledge and mentorship, these women made headlines this year with their R2AK win. Donate here to help them buy sails, safety equipment, or supplies. 

Spread the word! Share this post and that you've donated with the hashtag #GivingTuesday!



Post by Becky at Dockwa

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