Today, Tuesday, December 1, 2020, is GivingTuesday, a global generosity movement that harnesses the power of people and organizations to make a difference in their communities and the world. This year, due to the various challenges and hardships brought on by COVID-19, giving back is more important than ever.
What is GivingTuesday?
Initially created in 2012 to encourage feel-good giving, GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. Since its inception, the day has transpired into a global movement that inspires people around the world to give, collaborate and celebrate charity. For nonprofits, it is an opportunity to leverage the energy of the day of generosity to share their stories, raise awareness, engage with new and long-time advocates, and launch fundraising campaigns. There are many ways to show support and make a difference in your community. Whether it’s helping out a neighbor or advocating for a cause, every act of kindness counts as everyone has something to give.
Here are a few of the ways you can participate in GivingTuesday:
- Give Time: Volunteering offers critical help to those in need. Not only does volunteering make a considerable impact on your community, but it also has great benefits for yourself. The right opportunity can help you develop a new skill, make new friends, and even reduce stress. Given its countless benefits, volunteering at a local nonprofit is a great way to participate this GivingTuesday. Looking for an opportunity in Boston? St. Francis House has volunteer shifts Monday-Saturday. You can also check out VolunteerMatch, which helps match nonprofits with passionate and committed volunteers.
- Give Dollars: Big or small, every dollar counts! Whether it be $1 or $100, donating money is a great way to make a lasting impact on nonprofits that are working for causes important to you. Not to mention your own charitable donations can inspire your family and friends to give to organizations focused on issues they are passionate about. Castle client the Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB) usually asks for donations of canned goods this time of year. This year, due to COVID-19, they’ve launched a Hunger-Free Holidays campaign. A $25 gift to the GBFB provides a complete holiday meal for a family struggling with hunger in Eastern Massachusetts.
- Give Kindness: In the wake of what has been a very tumultuous year, small acts of kindness can inspire others to do the same. Some acts include checking in on your neighbors, using your voice or platform to display advocacy, or hosting a virtual giving party.
Supporting Small Businesses Beyond Small Business Saturday
Prior to GivingTuesday, we have Small Business Saturday. Taking place annually on the last Saturday of November, this American shopping holiday encourages consumers to shop small and support local businesses. Although Small Business Saturday already passed, it’s important to continue the momentum around shopping locally.
The impact COVID-19 has had on small businesses across the nation is devastating. Meaning it’s particularly important to be mindful of where you’re spending your money this holiday season. This year, the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism is advocating for residents to spend their money where their heart is, right here in Massachusetts. Through its My Local MA campaign, they are showing why local is better and why it matters. From creating jobs in the area to fostering economic growth and opportunity, shopping local helps our communities thrive. The good news is every one of us can make an impact. By simply shopping, eating and staying local, you can make a difference.
Looking for organizations to give back to this GivingTuesday and beyond? Here is a list of some of the incredible organizations Castle works with and actively supports:
The BASE: Combines exceptional athletic training and competition with education and career resources to empower student-athletes to achieve their full potential both on and off the field.
Boston Arts Academy Foundation: Raises essential funds for Boston Arts Academy, the City’s only public high school for the visual and performing arts.
Boston Women’s Fund: Supports community-based organizations and grassroots initiatives run by women and girls to create a society based on racial, economic, and social justice.
Center for Women & Enterprise: Provides opportunities for women entrepreneurs and women in business to increase professional success, personal growth, and financial independence.
Family Reach: Dedicated to eradicating the financial barriers that accompany a cancer diagnosis.
Foundation for MetroWest: Tackles community-specific needs and challenges facing the area to improve the quality of life for all who live and work in Massachusetts’ MetroWest region.
Greater Boston Food Bank: Works passionately to end hunger across Eastern Massachusetts by providing our neighbors in need with healthy food and resources they need to thrive.
Joe Andruzzi Foundation: Committed to providing help, hope and a reason to smile for New England cancer patients and their families by contributing financial support when it is needed most.
King Boston: Works closely with the City of Boston to create a living memorial and programs honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Coretta Scott King.
St. Francis House: Rebuilds lives by providing refuge and pathways to stability for adults experiencing homelessness and poverty.
The Center for Collaborative Leadership at UMass Boston: Dedicated to convening future leaders from the corporate, nonprofit, and government sectors and immersing them in the collaborative leadership model – a process built on teamwork, trust, and respect for diversity of thought.
The Commonwealth Institute: Focused on advancing businesswomen into leadership positions in the Greater Boston and South Florida area.
WriteBoston: Promotes deep learning through writing by providing training and coaching to teachers and writing opportunities for students, built on the premise that powerful thinking and writing are inseparable.