Giving Tuesday is a global day of giving, celebrated the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. It gives nonprofits a day full of opportunities to receive monetary donations or other items. It gives the general public a full year to set aside money to donate on Giving Tuesday. It gives nonprofits a chance to highlight their missions and solicit donations.
The first annual Giving Tuesday was in 2012. It was founded by New York’s 92nd Street Y partnership with the United Nations Foundation. Today, Giving Tuesday has its own organization. It was started because nonprofits have varying levels of resources and might only have a single social media post or send out newsletters via email.
According to a nationwide report, 53 percent of American nonprofits have had a greater demand since the COVID-19 pandemic. One-third of nonprofits have higher operating costs and there is less volunteer participation because of health care risks.
If you are not sure of what nonprofit to donate to, tour the facility, volunteer, or attend an event a nonprofit you are interested in is hosting. If you don’t want to donate money, many nonprofits often need specific items. Some places have online accounts where you can purchase items and have them shipped directly to the nonprofit.
Many churches are nonprofits, but they also help raise money or donate items to other nonprofits. In Highland County, there are a number of food pantries. The Highland County Dog Pound and Highland County Humane Society accept monetary donations and donations of blankets, pet food and toys.
Teachers often buy items for their classrooms with their own money. You can support your local school by adopting a classroom, give to the Children’s Literacy Initiative or Operation Backpack. Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation provides instruments to underprivileged schools or students in need.
If you don’t have the ability to make a monetary donation, you can do small things on Giving Tuesday. As a family, you can volunteer, deliver meals to shut-ins or clean up litter in your community. Even acts of kindness are considered an opportunity on Giving Tuesday. Buy someone a cup of coffee or pay for the person’s meal behind you in a drive through. Bake cookies for your neighbors or make Christmas cards for soldiers or nursing home residents. Maybe just leave a positive note on someone’s car or open a door for someone.
No act of kindness is considered small, making someone feel cared for, costs nothing. Use your gift of time or talent to make a difference in someone’s life, not only on Giving Tuesday, but everyday of the year.
Sources for this story included Kindful.com/nonprofit, Giving Tuesday, Odysseyonline.com and sharedetroit.com.
Jackie Wolgamott is a stringer for The Times-Gazette.