Giving Tuesday: Ways to Get the Whole Family Involved

Did you save a lot of money taking advantage of those Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals? Feeling thankful in the aftermath of Thanksgiving? Then what better way to give back to others than through Giving Tuesday! Read on to learn more about this day and some great charities you and your family can support.

What Is Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday (or GivingTuesday) began in 2012 as a global day encouraging people to cultivate generosity and do good. It’s the day after Cyber Monday, which is December 3 this year. Most people associate financial giving with Giving Tuesday, and for good reason. In 2018 alone, people in 150 countries raised over $400 million dollars for charities. But beyond those numbers, Giving Tuesday made a big impact on social media as well, with 14.2 billion media impressions sharing the love and fundraising for their favorite nonprofit.

How Does Giving Tuesday Work?

In addition to fundraising, a huge component of Giving Tuesday is raising awareness of giving and support on social media. It’s wonderful to be a donor to your favorite charity, but showing a visual on your social media feed or favorite family app might also inspire others to donate to their favorite nonprofit. Some companies offer matching gifts, which could really jumpstart the fundraising efforts of a small nonprofit. So check and see if your business has that type of arrangement.

Here are a few of our favorite charities:

Nonprofits the Whole Family Can Support in the U.S.


Instead of a puppy for Christmas, why not make a donation to the ASPCA. This organization has been a leader in helping prevent animal cruelty since 1866 and is a noble cause for your animal-loving family to support.

2. Children’s Hospitals (nationwide)

Being in the hospital is no fun– especially when you’re a kid around the holidays! But you can your family can help make their stay a little happier by sending donations or cards to help those in need. Even if you don’t see your local hospital on the GivingTuesday list, call up your local hospital and see what types of things you and your family can do to brighten the day of some of the patients.

3. ForKids

This nonprofit based in Norfolk, Virginia provides shelter to families experiencing homelessness. It also provides many tangible opportunities for families like yours to help contribute. In addition to financial donations, you can get involved by donating supplies, like clothes, food, and supplies for cleaning and school. You can call ahead to find out where they need help the most, and get the whole family in on the action!

4. Toys for Tots

This long-running organization, also known as Marine Toys for Tots, offers wonderful ways for your children to support other kids in need. Last year, donors gave over 18 million toys to help over 7 million families in need! This year, you and your family can also donate some toys to children who need them this Giving Tuesday.  You can give physical toys through a local drive, or make an online donation. In any case, giving to Toys for Tots is a wonderful way to bring some seasonal joy to those who need it!

International Nonprofits

5. Charity:Water

Charity: Water has a clear mission: to bring clean drinking water to the world.  Their sustainable water projects have provided clean drinking water to over ten million people in 27 countries worldwide. Added bonus: a small group of donors pays the operating costs, so all the money you contribute will go directly to the different projects that bring clean water to those in need.

6. World Vision

World Vision also offers a wonderful Christmas catalog for those wanting to give something especially meaningful to someone at home or abroad. One year my mosquito-magnet daughter donated bed nets for kids who needed them. Other options include donating chickens or goats to a local village, career training opportunities, medical supplies, or even warm winter clothes for children in the United States.

The Season of Giving

The days after Thanksgiving remind us of how much we have to be thankful for. And how important it is to give back to others. For families with children still living at home, it’s also a wonderful way to cut through the consumerism and commercialism of the season and encourage charitable behavior. You might decide to make a big year-end gift to your favorite organization. Or maybe you’ll just set aside some time at dinner to be kind to one another. There’s no wrong way to celebrate #givingtuesday! But regardless of what you do, make sure you make the most of December 3 Giving Tuesday this year!

What are your favorite ways to give? Let us know in the comments or on your favorite family app!

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