NEW BERN, N.C. (WNCT) – Giving Tuesday’s initiative is to raise awareness and unite charitable organizations. New Bern took part in the day by hosting “Carry It Forward Event” for the third year with more than 40 nonprofit vendors participating.

“After Thanksgiving, we have Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday. Giving Tuesday is the day where we can give back, get in the Christmas and the giving spirit and give thanks to these nonprofits who give so much to our community through their programs and services,” said Erin Langley, event organizer.

Not only was the event held to raise money for nonprofits, but to draw awareness to their mission.

“Not only do we have this national cemetery here in town, but that it’s an opportunity to give back and say thanks to those veterans that have paid that ultimate sacrifice,” said Kevin Yates, location coordinator for Wreathes Across America for New Bern National Cemetery.

Some vendors use Giving Tuesday’s event in New Bern as a time to network with each other.

Paws of War is an organization where they help train dogs of veterans and first responders to be companion dogs, service dogs or therapy dogs.

“We’ve worked with a few of the organizations already that are here, and also to make the public aware of what we do. Because not everybody you know, is aware that they can get training if they’re a veteran for free,” said Jackie O’Brien, Paws of War community outreach liaison.

Vendors at Union Point Park also let the public know about upcoming events that raise awareness for their organization, such as Easterseals UCP NC and VA which provides disability services and mental health services to children, adults and families living with disabilities.

“We have the glow run. It’s happening March 4th here in New Bern. The last little run that we have was in 2019. But it’s been around for a while. It happens at night, and everybody dresses up and they have glow sticks and they come out and have a great time and raise money for all our services,” said Marta Quintana, Easterseals UCP North Carolina and Virginia worker.

Langley said she hopes everyone will consider supporting nonprofits, especially this time of year as COVID set a lot of nonprofits back.