Time, donations, advocacy – we all have something to give!
Established in 2012, GivingTuesday “was created…as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good. Since then, it has grown into a year-round global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity,” according to GivingTuesday.org. Nearly 75 countries are home to official national GivingTuesday movements, and in the United States, it falls on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, making November 30th this year’s GivingTuesday.
According to National Today, “An astonishing $2.47 billion was donated to U.S. nonprofits by a reported 34.8 million people on GivingTuesday in 2020,” up from $1.97 billion in 2019.
Interested in helping make 2021 another record-breaking year? There are more then 1.5 million nonprofit organizations in areas, including the arts, public advocacy, education, and health. First off, you don’t need to be rich. Even donating a few dollars can have a huge impact on a cause, especially for non-profits in your community. Many organizations are able to multiply your donation through matching gift challenges. Head to GivingTuesday.org to find ways to participate. In addition, there are number of nationwide coalitions that focus on a specific cause, issue, culture, or identity. Entities include #GivingBlackTuesday, #GivingTuesdayLGBTQ, GivingMilitary, #LatinxGive, and Choice. Respect. Independence. which provides personalized resources to people with developmental disabilities and mental health needs.
You can also get a jump on your holiday gifting by donating to a cause that is of great importance to someone you care about. For example, if you have a loved one active in community theater, donating in their name can help that organization continue.
There is far more to giving then money, though. Here are some ideas to inspire you
- Share your talents by volunteering. Local libraries and hospitals are often looking for people to read to children. Many neighborhoods sponsor local cleanups, and food pantries often need help packing and delivering donations for those in need.
- Spread kindness. Maybe you have a neighbor who is elderly or ill who could use a little cheer. Put a greeting card in their mailbox, drop off some home-baked treats, or offer to help with a chore they can’t handle on their own.
- Speak up for a cause that matters. There is strength in numbers, so turn out to support funding for a library addition or to save a nesting space for endangered birds.
- Share your #GivingTuesday participation on social media. Your networks may be inspired to act by your posts.
- Get your family involved. If you need some inspiration, here are some tips for volunteering with your kids.
- Donate clothing and household goods. With the onset of winter, many local agencies are looking for coats, socks, shoes, gloves, and scarves to help keep people safe and warm.
As you put together your action strategies for making the most of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday sales, take a few minutes to plan to participate in #GivingTuesday. Your giving efforts will not only help others but also be good for you. Studies show that giving can actually boost your physical and mental health, including lowering blood pressure, increasing self-esteem, and lowering stress. It can also help you live longer, giving you even more time to share your money, time, and advocacy to help others.
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