It’s #GivingTuesday: are you strategic about giving?
I wrote this email to many people I admire this morning.
I’m so excited to invite you to join a groundbreaking program that is being announced to the world today! It’s called Giving Tuesday. #GivingTuesday will take place on November 27, 2012 – the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. #GivingTuesday is a day to celebrate giving – a day when families, charities, businesses, community centers, students, retailers and more can come together to encourage more, better and smarter giving during the holiday season.
And got this wonderful feedback from blogger NakedJen:
I think by focusing energy on that Tuesday, on that season, on that time of year, we’re missing the point.
I was just asked to promote and be part of a GIVING TUESDAY promotion for the TUESDAY following BLACK FRIDAY. What bothers me most is that we’re focusing so squarely on THAT DAY. Why??? Why do we need to focus on a single day of the year to encourage people to give?? I know that times are VERY TOUGH right now. I get it. But here’s what I also know. We are all in this together. We all have just a little bit extra love, a little bit extra time, a little bit extra vegetables or fruit from our garden, an extra magazine that we’ve read and can pass along, an extra paperback book that we can set free by leaving for someone else on a park bench, a HUG for god’s sake, a meal we can make and take to a neighbour who has come home from the hospital or even just go visit the neighbour in the hospital, take a dog for a walk because someone else can’t, babysit a kid or two while the parents get a break, offer to SHARE YOUR GLITTER WITH SOMEONE WHO DOESN’T HAVE ANY RIGHT NOW. Seriously, friends. I know you have some part of your own heart that is free to give. And guess what?? Someone else who knows you (or even doesn’t know you) has a part of his heart that is free to give to you. Absolutely free. Open up, accept it, give what you can. I don’t care if it’s Tuesday or Saturday or whatsday. Let’s do this. We’re in it together, we’ve all got glitter to share. I love you and I mean this with every fiber of me.
Jen, I hear you. But this I have to say back, because I really love the idea of #GivingTuesday, and I’m honored to be able to work on it. I’m also someone who hides in her house on Black Friday.
I want to personally try to use the target date of Tuesday, November 27 as a chance to step back and think deeply about how to better integrate giving into my life and my family’s budget.
#GivingTuesday is not a new giving platform; it’s an idea. It’s a moment to try to create a national conversation about what giving means. As a political and non-profit marketing professional, I can tell you that while Americans are the most generous people there is, many of us are quite haphazard in our giving. Apart from tragedies, supporting friends and families’ good work, and end of year charitable giving, it’s rare that many American families or companies for that matter take a step back and think, what is my giving strategy? How should I give back in my limited time, disposable income, etc? How do I want my money to work for other people, in the smartest, most effective way?
One of the things my husband and I decided to try to be better about this year was to plan how we would give as a family. We give in crisis, we each give to our preferred groups (sometimes their ideals clash, btw). We want to make the most of our resources and time, and #GivingTuesday is a wonderful forcing function for us to do this.
Our hope is #GivingTuesday will show that America gives as good as it gets — and how Americans can do much more with our wallets than just consume.
Here’s a video clip – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OO7jxUQXIP4&feature=plcp
If #Giving Tuesday strikes a chord for you, please register to become a Social Media Ambassador – http://www.givingtuesday.org/.