Before the holiday season, Thrive Global gifted each employee a Tisbest gift card to give to any charity that is meaningful to them. Below, Emily McInerney opens up about where she decided to donate hers, and what it means to her:

Thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to donate to a charity of our choice. In addition to supporting an important cause, you provided a moment for me to pause and think about what is meaningful to me, and what I can do to give back. 

I chose to donate to Colombia Progresa Corporation, which funds educational institutions that benefit the most vulnerable populations of Colombia.

Last week, I went on vacation to Colombia. I love to travel and it’s my #1 way to truly reset and thrive. It has been in the back of my mind to donate to countries I visit, but I’ve never actually taken the step to do it – then the TisBest card came! 

When I was considering what kind of Colombian charity I wanted to support, I asked myself about why I travel. It is because of my grandparents, who traveled extensively and came back with amazing stories about what the world was like outside our bubble in suburban New Jersey. My grandfather was a lifelong educator. His passion was making children happy, and he even trained to become a clown when he retired. When he traveled, he brought balloons, and he made balloon animals for local children, connecting with them, even when they didn’t speak the same language. His face would light up when he told me about making those kids laugh. 

Because of my grandfather’s devotion to children and travel, I selected Colombia Progresa Corporation, to carry on his light and dedication.

Thank you again for the Tisbest Charity gift card, the opportunity to make my grandfather proud, and for helping me start a new tradition of travel donations.