Giving Tuesday, created in 2012, is meant to be more than just a single day of giving. Its intent is to encourage global generosity, and the movement has continued to gain traction worldwide year after year. In 2020 alone, an estimated $2.47 billion was donated in one day, including $808 million in online donations. And that’s just the monetary component, considering the ripple effect volunteerism and other acts of giving have had on communities worldwide. A 29% increase in participants over 2019 shines a light on something we all possess — the capacity to give. Remember, the meaning behind Giving Tuesday isn’t solely to fundraise, but rather to inspire people to do good. So, get the entire family involved — no donation, donor or act of generosity is too small. Here are five simple ways to give back.
Donate to a BBB-accredited charity
Make the most of your donation by supporting a Better Business Bureau-accredited charity. BBB accreditation provides assurance that your donation will be handled with care by an organization that meets high standards for ethics and accountability. Give with confidence to a local accredited charity or find a national cause to support. If you’re searching for information on a charity that isn’t on either of these lists, search give.org for their charity review report.
Volunteer your time
Regardless of whether you have funds to share, consider volunteering your time to a charity this holiday season. Spending time in service to others actually triggers a chemical release in our brains that boosts our physical and mental health. From walking shelter dogs to serving food to the unhoused or donating blood, there are opportunities all around us to spend time in service to our communities.
Give goods in-kind
If time is hard to spare and money is tight, consider rifling through your closets and cabinets to find new and gently used items to donate. This time of year, canned food, coats, blankets, housewares and gently used toys are in demand by charities serving a variety of causes. Before dropping off your donation, consult this guide to used-goods donations to ensure your donation provides more benefit than burden.
Give your voice
Are you passionate about one of our BBB-accredited charities? Post about it on social media. Tell your community about the organization and include a link to their website, a relevant article, or even their BBB Charity Review. Challenge your friends to match your donation, join you in volunteering, or start a conversation about their favorite charity, too.
Random acts of kindness
Giving time to charity is a fabulous thing, but there are also opportunities all around us to show generosity through random acts of kindness. They’re simple ways to let someone know they are cared for and seen. Here are some ideas to get you started:
• Send a card to a resident at a retirement home or patient at a children’s hospital;
• Rake leaves for an elderly neighbor;
• Give a stranger a compliment;
• Cook a meal for a friend;
• Pick up trash in the community;
• Tell someone whose made a difference in your life about the impact they’ve made.
Giving Tuesday started with the simple idea of encouraging people to do good. Whether you’ve got $50 to give or choose to start with a weekly random act of kindness, you can help create radical change in everyday life. And remember, there’s no reason to limit these actions to a random Tuesday in late fall.
Kelsey Gardipee is with theBetter Business Bureau Great West + Pacific office. The website is bbb.org.
Source: The Garden Island