You’ve eaten some turkey and pumpkin pie and shopped ’til you dropped; now it’s time to get back into the spirit of giving! On the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, and after the shopping frenzy of Black Friday, millions of people around the world will come together to celebrate Giving Tuesday, a global generosity movement started in 2012 to inspire others to perform acts of kindness. With the holiday season upon us, this movement is more important than ever. It encourages us to show up for each other and get in the spirit of giving back, even in the smallest of ways. If COVID taught us anything, it’s that people really do want to help others and will go out of their way to do so. While you shouldn’t need an excuse to lend a helping hand or give freely of your time to a friend or neighbor, this worldwide event has successfully encouraged others to lend support and kindness in more ways than one. In our selfie-obsessed world, Giving Tuesday’s message is clear—giving back and helping others without expecting anything in return is what gives our lives meaning.
Read on to discover 5 amazing ways you can truly make a difference on Giving Tuesday or any time:
1. Start a GoFundMe® page. This type of non-profit fundraiser has become very popular in recent years. It harnesses the power of social media to reach many people at once. You can ask for monetary support to help those in need, usually struggling with health or legal issues. You can also start a GoFundMe® page to raise funds for a charity that is close to your heart. www.gofundme.com.
2. Volunteer to clean up nature. Contact a local volunteer organization in your community and help clean up trash and waste from beaches, forests, parks, community centers and gardens. You’ll know you really made a difference when you see the results; the immense pride you feel when you take in how great your community looks and feels is priceless.
3. Volunteer at a senior center, donate clothes to a women’s shelter or help out at an animal rescue. Seniors often struggle with loneliness during the holidays, and women in shelters often need clothes and other living essentials in addition to someone to talk to and listen. Often a smile, a friendly conversation, or a reassuring hug can brighten the day of someone struggling with emotional issues. Animals in shelters often feel lost and lonely. Some may have been abused, or their owner may have abandoned them. Why not volunteer in an animal shelter and share some love with a new furry pal?
4. Assist a neighbor. It doesn’t take much effort to help out a neighbor who isn’t feeling well, just lost a loved one, or is new to the community. A simple, generous gesture can make a world of difference in your neighbor’s life. Bring over a meal or dessert, invite them to dinner, offer to walk their dog or mow the lawn. A small act of kindness can go a long way in helping brighten your neighbor’s day.
5. Show gratitude to teachers. Have a favorite teacher who goes above and beyond but never asks for anything in return? Teachers are precious; we depend on them to shape and grow our children’s minds. Yet, they are often taken for granted and underappreciated. Perhaps your child’s teacher could use some help in the classroom, assistance with cleanup or needs extra supplies. Maybe they just need someone to bring them lunch or a pumpkin spice latte. Go the extra mile on Giving Tuesday and do something nice to make a teacher smile.
Give Back this Holiday Season
This year, giving Tuesday falls on November 30th. The power of Giving Tuesday is far-reaching, with enormous feel-good consequences for everyone involved. At NP, Inc., we know a small act of kindness goes a long way towards making a positive change in someone’s life. So, show up with a gift of kindness for someone on Giving Tuesday, whether it’s a friend, relative, or a stranger. How are you giving back on Giving Tuesday or this holiday season? Let us know in the comments. And please remember to visit us at usmtg.com. Happy Giving Tuesday!
By Susan Sherman for NP, Inc.