The event is December 3 this year.

By Jennifer Aldrich
December 02, 2019

Black Friday is done, Cyber Monday is almost over, and pretty soon, Christmas will be here, which means you're wrapping up your holiday shopping list. However, there is one more day out of the year that deserves your recognition: Giving Tuesday. Yes, the day is about giving, but instead of purchasing presents for friends and family, this event is all about donating to people, places, and charities in need. This year, Giving Tuesday falls on December 3, and there are a variety of ways you can get involved. Here's what you need to know about the special day, including why it started, how it works, and what you can do to help.

What Is Giving Tuesday?

According to the official website, Giving Tuesday is simply "a day that encourages people to do good" and is always held on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. The event was started in 2012 by the 92nd Street Y, a nonprofit community and cultural center in New York City. The foundation launched the initiative by using social media outlets to encourage generosity. In just seven years, the grassroots effort has turned into a global phenomenon. In 2018 alone, more than $400 million was raised online for more than 150 charities around the world.

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How Does Giving Tuesday Work?

The organization operates through a network of community campaigns. The campaigns are groups of multiple nonprofits (or a single nonprofit, in some areas) that work together to help the same cause. All of the nonprofits are approved by the Giving Tuesday organization, and in the United States, there are almost 200 community campaigns—and there are even more around the world. A couple of campaigns in the U.S. are #GivingTuesdayKids that encourages children to get out and volunteer and #GivingTuesdayMilitary that asks military service members, veterans, and their families to complete acts of kindness.

Related: AmazonSmile Makes Donating to Your Favorite Charity So Easy

How Can I Get Involved?

Anyone can get involved in Giving Tuesday. Go to the Giving Tuesday website to check out the different community campaigns and see which services are needed. You can donate money, goods, time, or your voice by spreading the word by encouraging others to do good on December 3. For nonprofits interested in becoming a part of the operation, the Giving Tuesday website has resources on how to join an existing campaign or even start your own. Although the deadline for joining this year's movement has already passed, you can register for 2020.

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