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Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are all designed to motivate consumers to spend money on holiday gifts for their loved ones. However, Giving Tuesday, which will be observed on November 30, 2021, has a more altruistic purpose. "The Global Day of Giving" encourages people to "give their voice, time, money, goods, and advocacy to support communities and causes."
Giving Tuesday was started in 2012 by New York City nonprofit 92nd Street Y and its Belfer Center for Innovation & Social Impact. The movement was an instant success, with over $10 million raised for charities worldwide in a single day. Things have only improved since. In 2020, an estimated 34.8 million people across the world participated in Giving Tuesday — a 29 percent increase from 2019. Even better, the 33.1 million US supporters donated an astounding $2.47 billion to worthy causes on that day. The total was in addition to the $503 million raised during the special #GivingTuesdayNow campaign held on May 5, 2020, to support front-line organizations battling the Covid-19 pandemic.
While giving money certainly helps, there are many other ways to show compassion for the less fortunate. Performing a chore or two for an elderly neighbor, or donating gently-used clothing and toys to local shelters are some great ways to participate. Alternatively, enlist your peers to help you with a service project that addresses an issue close to your heart. Even small, easy gestures, such as opening a door for a stranger, or smiling at one, qualify. You can also select something from the 50 acts of kindness suggested on the Giving Tuesday website.
What are you going to do to make a positive difference in your community on #GivingTuesday — and every other day? Let us know by adding your comments below!