This past weekend was a holiday shopping blitz. Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday encouraged consumers to spend, spend, spend. Today is Giving Tuesday, an event that challenges consumers to give, give, give.
Since its launch four years ago, Giving Tuesday has become a global event observed on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving. The goal of this initiative is to harness “the potential of social media and the generosity of people around the world to bring about real change in their communities; it provides a platform for them to encourage the donation of time, resources and talents to address local challenges. It also brings together the collective power of a unique blend of partners— nonprofits, civic organizations, businesses and corporations, as well as families and individuals—to encourage and amplify small acts of kindness.”
I have three goodwill organizations that are near and dear to my heart. Many people are familiar with Toys For Tots, which collects and distributes toys to children within local communities. Visit their website to learn how you can help.
The Forgotten Children’s Fund, which serves four counties in the Pacific Northwest, was actually inspired by a child’s letter to Santa Claus in 1976. Since then, this all-volunteer organization has worked to provide gifts for needy children and families.
Teen Feed, a Seattle-based group, holds a special place in my heart. Their mission is to work with homeless and at-risk youth by providing meals, outreach, healthcare access and support. Reader may recognize the organization as I featured it as part of Hollie Thomas’s backstory in the Grayce Walters series. For #GivingTuesday, Teen Feed is collecting funds via their Holiday Socks & Hot Meals campaign.
Organizations such as this are a reminder that the holiday season isn’t a joyful event for everyone. Fortunately, there are opportunities to help in big and small ways. What programs or organizations do you sponsor during the holidays?