December 2, 2014

What d’ya GIVE?

Author National Philanthropic Trust

The holidays bring with them good cheer, goodwill and, of course, good deals. There’s Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. For the third year in a row, #GivingTuesday follows these retail days to celebrate giving instead of getting.

#GivingTuesday is a day dedicated to giving back. It’s gone global and increasingly viral. It is here to stay.

There isn’t a list of steps; there’s no right or wrong way to participate…you just have to give in any way you can.

This decentralized model is my favorite part of #GivingTuesday. It allows individuals, charities, businesses, families, students, community groups–anyone!–to mark the day in a way that makes sense and celebrate what’s important to them. How refreshing.

“Giving gimmicks” usually have very short-term appeal. They capitalize on a hip trend, hot topic or viral action (see: this year’s ALS ice bucket challenge). These spikes in giving usually correlate to one-time donations for causes that donors don’t always take the time to understand. They can be costly to the charity in the long-run. #GivingTuesday can grow, prosper and be adapted year-after-year and allows both charities and their donors to create more sustainable campaigns and causes.

For several days in December, the retail sector has a full-court holiday press. No doubt you’ve seen the commercials filled with children asking “what d’ya get?” Wouldn’t it be great if we could change the tenor of the holidays from “what d’ya get?” to “what d’ya give?” #GivingTuesday is an effort to change our actions so that they rings truer to the spirit of the holidays.