GivingTuesday: get involved in the global generosity movement this holiday season
Tuesday, December 3 is GivingTuesday, choose to make a difference.
Just like that, it’s officially holiday season! While the holidays are about spending quality time with loved ones and creating memories to last a lifetime, they’re also about giving back and helping those in need.
Tuesday, December 3 is GivingTuesday—just the day to get started!
GivingTuesday is a global generosity movement that unleashes the power of people and organizations to transform communities around the world. Looking ahead to GivingTuesday, TDS offers the following steps to help you get started, giving back this holiday season.
1. Choose a cause. When selecting a charity to donate to, people often choose an organization that improves the outcomes of something that has directly impacted their lives. If you don’t have a specific cause in mind, it’s worth knowing there are several different forms of charities to consider, including:
- Medical charities. They can raise money toward finding cures and helping people live with diseases or disabilities.
- Educational charities. They create opportunities for less fortunate students to earn a quality education or to pursue a college degree.
- Veteran charities. They support our nation’s heroes by providing housing, support, and treatment.
Whatever positive impact you wish to make on the world, there is likely a quality charity that supports your desired cause.
2. Think about how you want to contribute. After you’ve identified a cause to support, it’s worth asking yourself: “What do I actually want to donate?” Often, the first thing most people think about is money. While it’s true, charities can use donations to help people in a variety of ways, there are several other ways you can make a difference.
Donating time is an extremely intimate and rewarding way to give back, especially if you have specialized skills such as teaching abilities or construction expertise. In fact, many organizations need volunteers just as much, if not more, than money. Volunteering also has numerous benefits to volunteers themselves. Research shows that people who donate their time regularly are more marketable, have better physical and mental health, and feel happier overall.
Donating blood or organs is another irreplaceable way to make a difference. Blood and organ donors are always in demand for organizations like the Red Cross, and, at the expense of perhaps a little light-headedness, donating blood has a direct impact on people’s lives. And, it only takes a little bit of time to make an impact.
3. Narrow the cause. When you begin researching which cause you want to support, you’ll notice there are many different organizations dedicated to achieving similar goals. Some are more general, while others address specific issues. Medical charities, for example, can be broad and impact a large group of people dealing with a wide-range of illnesses or disabilities. Others, like the Lung Cancer Research Foundation (LCRF), deal with a specific illness and attempt to improve outcomes for that single illness.
Different charities also have different focuses. For example, while one organization might dedicate itself to finding a cure for a disease, another may be focused on supporting people and families dealing with the illness and high medical bills.
4. Pick your charity. After narrowing the cause and deciding how you want to contribute, it’s time to select your charity. Charity search engines like Charity Navigator and GiveWell provide easy access to lists of reputable charities. Used together, these sites allow you to view lists of charities, filtered by category, and also view rankings of charities based on a series of criteria. In addition, charity search engines provide crucial information like financial statements and overhead costs to help you make an informed decision.
In addition to reading up on charities through search engines and viewing their websites, consider reaching out to them directly. Asking charities questions like “how will my money be used?” can go a long way in confirming an organization’s legitimacy.
So far in 2019, over $400,000,000 has been raised in the U.S. through GivingTuesday. Additionally, over 3,600,000 gifts have been donated in this timeframe, worldwide. Whether helping others through the gift of your time, donations, goods, or your voice—get involved in the movement and make a difference in your community on Tuesday, December 3. To find local organizations, upcoming events, and other ways to give back, search your area on GivingTuesday’s directory.