Mindy Kaling is taking the idea that it’s better to give than receive literally for her 40th birthday. The writer, actor, and star of the new comedy Late Night is celebrating her milestone birthday this month by donating $1,000 to 40 different charities. We don’t think many things are better than birthday cake, but this is one of them.
Sharing her celebration plans on Twitter on June 24, the birthday girl referenced her blessings, namely daughter Katherine, and asked fans for help with choosing charities. Jumping on social media on her birthday, Kaling tweeted “I’m so grateful to have my wonderful, peaceful life w/ my daughter Katherine. How lucky am I to turn 40? I would love to express my gratitude by donating $1000 to 40 different charitable orgs that help others. Pls suggest some! I will kick it off by giving $1000 to @RAICESTEXAS!”
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The suggestions quickly began rolling in, with Kaling updating her followers on Twitter and giving the names of the charities she would be adding to her donation list. Kaling shared the wealth with a wide array of charities, including the LGBTQ charity The Trevor Project, the Nature Conservatory, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and Rosie’s Place and Pine Street Inn, two organizations helping homeless people in Mindy’s hometown of Boston. Kaling also donated $1,000 to The Pad Project, the inspiration for the Oscar-winning documentary Period. End of Sentence, which shone a light on the need for menstrual products for low income women in India.
A new mom herself, Kaling also included several organizations that help mothers and children, including Moms Demand, which advocates for legislation to protect against gun violence, Together We Rise, which provides aid for children in foster care, and the children’s research hospital St. Jude’s.
Some of the charity suggestions for Kaling’s birthday giving spree came from her famous friend list. Reese Witherspoon, who tweeted her birthday wishes for Kaling earlier in the day, wrote that she would also make a donation in Kaling’s honour, commenting “What a great birthday idea !! I am going to donate your bday gift $ to @girlsinc.”
Bryan Greenberg, who played Kaling’s love interest on The Mindy Project, shared his pick, writing “Happy bday Mindy!! @olevolos.” Celebrity chef Padma Lakshmi threw in her suggestions as well, writing “Happy birthday my love! This is such a sweet idea! @endofound @ppact @yellowfund @translifeline @aclu_nationwide.”
Kaling received a lot of birthday love on her big day, including messages on Instagram from Octavia Spencer, director Kay Cannon, comedian Anjelah Johnson and more. Kaling’s former Office co-star Angela Kinsey posted a throwback pic of the women on the set of the beloved sitcom.
— Angela Kinsey🍩 (@AngelaKinsey) June 24, 2019
Reese Witherspoon wished Kaling happy birthday for a second time on Twitter, calling her “…a gorgeous diamond.”
— Reese Witherspoon (@ReeseW) June 24, 2019
Kaling’s Mindy Project co-star Ike Barinholtz, who walked the red carpet with Kaling earlier this month at the premiere of Late Night, joked that he wanted to wish the actor a happy birthday even though she had ghosted him.
Even though she has not returned a phone call or text to me in years I’d like to wish a happy birthday to @mindykaling
— Ike Barinholtz (@ikebarinholtz) June 24, 2019
Kaling celebrated her big day in the most Kaling-way, which means hilarious and relatable. The actor posted a video of herself completing her adult duties, like picking up toys and cooking, while still getting slightly turnt up on a Monday.
When your birthday falls on a Monday and you wanna turn up but still have responsibilities 🙆🏾♀️ pic.twitter.com/m8Vd8tevJH
— Mindy Kaling (@mindykaling) June 24, 2019
Following her day of responsible partying, Kaling capped off her 40th with a night of food and drinks with friends, including a custom Mindy Mule, which we’re sure she enjoyed following one hour of napping or one hour of TV watching.
Ringing in 40 with a night of good eats, friends, and a custom drink list! ❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/wYGaDURV7I
— Mindy Kaling (@mindykaling) June 25, 2019