10 Way to Make a Big Impact and Do Good for “Giving Tuesday”
You can make a big impact by giving this GivingTuesday and do good for the world. Did you know that this year marks the 10th anniversary of GivingTuesday? It began in 2012 to encourage and inspire people to do good, practice giving, collaborate, and celebrate generosity (About GivingTuesday, n.d.). As winter holidays approach, we can get caught up in the busyness of holiday meal preparation, gift shopping, or event planning. Why don’t we take a moment this GivingTuesday, and think about ways we can make an impact by giving? Here are 10 ideas for celebrating the 10th year of GivingTuesday.
Even though both Canadian and American Thanksgiving Days are over before GivingTuesday, being thankful doesn’t have to end! As you may already know, practicing gratitude makes you happier and healthier, and helps you deal with people and life better (Harvard Health Publishing, 2021). Being thankful might sound like a small, even trivial act; however, based on my experience, finding a silver lining in just about everything can not only change your life but inspire and change others for the better, too. It truly is a very powerful way to make a big impact by giving.
Consider Eco-Friendly, Fair-Trade Products
Technically, Black Friday and Cyber Monday come before GivingTuesday, but why not start your giving a few days earlier? Whether you are shopping for yourself or for someone else’s holiday gifts, consider purchasing eco-friendly and fair-trade products. Your gift giving this year could benefit the environment and workers who create products you purchase.
Re-Decorate with Friends
Organize a get together with friends or neighbours and make new holiday decorations by re-cycling or up-cycling old, broken or previously loved decorations. Use existing craft items, old wrapping paper or glitter and make new decorations or holiday cards for you and your friends. Your recycling will make a positive impact on the planet this season.
Donate Toys to Charities
With the holidays approaching, many charities are gearing up to serve their clients in need with Christmas hampers of food and gifts. With the current inflation, charities are experiencing shortages of items, and it costs them more to purchase extra items like toys for children. If you find great deals on toys and children’s items during Black Friday and Cyber Monday, consider purchasing them and donating them to charities for children in need.
Serve Meals to the Hungry
In addition to handing out gifts during the holiday season, many charities serve special meals (e.g., Thanksgiving or Christmas turkeys) to their clients. They need volunteers who can help prepare ingredients and cook meals in the kitchen, decorate the dining room, set the tables, serve meals, and clean up after the events. Contact your local charities to see if they are accepting volunteers for special events like Thanksgiving or Christmas and help make a positive impact on people in your community.
Help Neighbours with Their Yard Work
Depending on where you live, November can be an interesting month —- is it autumn or winter? I’ve seen snow as early as mid-October in my area! You may be spending the last week of November either raking leaves or shovelling snow. If you have a neighbour who has mobility issues, your GivingTuesday give could be helping them with their yard work. You can do it alone, with your family and friends, or others in your community.
Do Not Clean Up the Yards
OK, I am contradicting myself, but hear me out. Cleaning up the yard immaculately is a give, but so is keeping some of those fallen leaves. These leaves can shelter and protect insects and bugs, such as bumblebees, snails, and beetles over winter. Plant stalks can provide seeds for the birds to feed on during winter when their food sources are scarcer (Seahra, 2015). This act of giving requires less work – a win for the planet, the animals and you.
Donate Your Hair
Considering a new hairdo for the holidays? If you have long, untreated, and healthy hair, donate it. There are charities that provide wigs to adults and children who do not have hair due to illnesses or genetic conditions. You will make someone feel confident about their looks, and you will also feel great about your new hairstyle!
Organize Your House/Room/Attic
Organizing can definitely be a gift to yourself and others who can use your excess material blessings. I’ve been spending a good part of this year going through my belongings in my room and in packed boxes in the basement. By doing this major organizing, I felt great after discarding or recycling items I don’t need, and giving proper homes to things I want to keep. I also realized that I am richer and more blessed than I knew. Giving away items I no longer need, and feeling generous and freer was a bonus.
Donate $5 to 365give
Last, but not least —- consider a donation to 365give! Until December 31, 2022, the West Vancouver Foundation will match your donation through their “Give Where You Live” campaign. Your giving can make a double impact on 365give’s programs and services this year.
Remember that GivingTuesday is only one day of the year, but you can give every day. For more giving ideas, check out our website at 365give.ca.
Happy GivingTuesday, everyone!
GivingTuesday. (n.d.). About GivingTuesday.
Harvard Health Publishing, (2021, Aug 14). Giving thanks can make you happier.
Seahra, S. (2015, April 15). Don’t clean up your garden just yet! Insects need some old brush to thrive in spring.