As I shared last year, the Tuesday following Thanksgiving marks #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. This special day kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving. Since its inaugural year in 2012, #GivingTuesday has become a movement that celebrates and supports giving and philanthropy with a variety of events. The great news is it is so easy to get involved and everyone is invited to participate since supporting a charity can be in the form of financial gifts… of time… of advocacy… etc.
Here’s how my family is getting involved for #GivingTuesday 2015:
- If we haven’t already given our annual financial gifts to organizations we care about, we will do so today. They include a variety of local and national organizations as well as a couple of academic institutions.
- In conjunction with my son’s school, we are preparing “Homeless Relief Bags” — 1-gallon freezer storage bags filled with items that could be of use to a person in need. You can keep these types of filled packets in your car and hand them out as you discover a person in need and/or provide a supply of filled packets to a local homeless shelter or similar relief organization. Here’s what we’re filling ours with: Toothbrush and toothpaste, aspirin (individual packet of 2), tissues, antibacterial wipes, hand sanitizer, bandages, juice box or water, non-perishable foods (e.g. peanuts, granola bars, trail mix, raisins, applesauce, tea bags, hot cocoa packets, oatmeal packets, candy, beef jerky sticks, cheese & cracker packs), plastic utensils, safety pins, loose change, socks, gloves, wash cloth, deodorant, bar soap, shampoo, razor, lip balm, mouthwash, comb, a note of encouragement and any other item(s) useful to a person in need.
- This evening, we are volunteering at a local food pantry to wrap holiday gifts and organize donations. It’s an event we attend every year and it’s a wonderful, festive way to get into the holiday spirit while doing something good with and for others!
Whatever you do… give and give generously! Remember, time, money and other resources are all appreciated. Consider getting your family and/or your co-workers involved in a project or a drive of some kind to benefit your community – at home, across the nation or around the world.
As ever, please share with the CLC Community ways that you are giving today or throughout the holiday season. Take a moment to comment at CoffeeLunchCoffee.com. Also, be sure to take photos and Tweet about the good work you are doing by tagging #GivingTuesday in your messages. Thank you for your kindness and generosity!