Giving Tuesday: A Day for Giving Thanks

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On November 29th, one week from today, the charitable season kicks off with Giving Tuesday.

Celebrated every year after Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday is a movement that supports giving and philanthropy around the holiday season. It is a global day dedicated to giving back, driven by the power of social media and collaboration.

Created in 2012 by the 92nd Street Y and the United Nations Foundation, Giving Tuesday was started in response to consumerism in the post-Thanksgiving season.

The mission of Giving Tuesday is to connect groups of individuals, communities, and organizations around the world to celebrate and encourage giving.

By focusing on the power of social media, people from around the globe can connect with friends, family, organizations, and charities to encourage the power of giving.

Giving Tuesday 2015 Campaign by the numbers: 

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There are many different ways to spread the power of giving via social media on Giving Tuesday.

  • On Twitter you can follow the @GivingTues account and use the hashtag #givingtuesday at the end of each tweet to get all of your followers involved.
  • On Facebook use the hashtag #givingtuesday and be sure to share how you are participating in the day by posting videos and images.
  • On Snapchat you can follow givingtuesday to follow the day live through images and videos.
  • Be sure to take an #UNselfie to show how you are giving and why giving is important to you. Don’t forget to post it to Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to share with friends!

To find out more about the #GivingTuesday campaign and to find organizations, charities, and events in your own community, visit givingtuesday.org.

Video courtesy of Giving Tuesday

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5 Ways to Give Back this Halloween

  1. Buy your last minute Halloween costume at Spirit Halloween Store

With every costume purchase, consider making a donation to the Spirit of Children program, whose purpose is to make hospitals less scary for children and their families. The donations made at the Spirit Store located in Coralville Iowa will directly benefit the children at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital in Iowa City. Each hospital uses the donations for what they need most, with the purpose of making the hospital experience better for children and their families.

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2. Trick-or-Treat for a good cause 

What’s better than candy? Donations that help kids in need.

This year, trick-or-treat for more than just candy. Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF is a campaign promoted by the organization, dedicated to kids helping kids. By going door to door with UNICEF collection boxes, kids are encouraged to not only trick-or-treat for candy, but also for donations. The goal is to “help kids who need more than candy,” and for those living in impoverished countries where it may be difficult to get even the basics needed to survive.

Support UNICEF or your other favorite causes this Halloween, by going door to door for donations instead of candy.

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Pic credit:https://www.unicefusa.org/trick-or-treat/

3. Volunteer at local, safe alternatives to traditional trick-or-treating 

Stay safe this Halloween.

Communities and local school districts host alternatives to trick-or-treating by passing out Halloween goodies in a safe environment for children. These events would not be able to function without the help of volunteers in the community. Check local listings to see where you can help! There is nothing better than a safe Halloween.

4. Donate your leftover candy 

Don’t feel obligated to eat all your leftover candy. Consider donating it.

Charities are looking for factory-sealed, wrapped candy donations after Halloween is over. The Ronald McDonald House here in Iowa City is taking candy donations to sweeten the days of children and families that are staying at the house.

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5. Donate gently used Halloween costumes 

Don’t know what to do with your costumes after Halloween? Donate them.

Ween Dream is one of many nonprofit organizations that gives free Halloween costumes to kids in need all across the country. Most of these children would not be able to afford a costume without the help of your donation. Ween Dream is located in Louisiana, but makes it easy to donate your gently used costumes so you don’t have to put them back into storage.

Other local charities in the area such as The Ronald McDonald House and Big Brother Big Sister are also taking costume donations. Donating is the best way to get rid of that costume stash that has been taking up room in your house for years.

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Pic credit: http://www.weendream.org/how-to-help/