By Genevieve Barber, World Vision Canada
When you donate chickens to a needy family overseas, a Canadian company will add its own donation. It's just one way you can 'give smart' this give this Giving Tuesday. Photo/World Vision
I love Giving Tuesday. There it sits like a small island of kindness, right between the frenzy of Black Friday and the mayhem of Holiday shopping.
For me, though, Giving Tuesday isn't a stand-alone event. It marks the beginning of my holiday giving, and fits right in with the spirit of the coming season, alongside sleigh bells, choirs, or the laughter of children as they make their annual wish lists.
If you're interested in making a difference this Giving Tuesday, there are many wonderful organizations across Canada to help connect your generosity with people in need, both here at home and around the world.
Here are 5 smart ways your support can matter even more, as you help change the world this Giving Tuesday:
- Find a cause you can chat about: Your gift this Tuesday is a great conversation starter for next weekend's holiday party. According to a recent poll Ipsos Reid conducted for World Vision, three quarters of Canadians plan to give to charity this holiday season, and 88 per cent agree we need to spend more time at Christmas focusing on those who need help. So whether you mention your donation through your social networks or over the punch bowl, you can likely expect an interesting conversation to follow.
- Look to learn about your community: Whether you're new in town or wanting to explore your neighborhood, plenty of local organizations will be holding awareness events and fundraisers this week. Look for things like art shows, open houses and craft sales. Attending one is a great way to meet new people, learn about what's happening near you and feel like part of an important cause.
- Look for corporate matches or government matches: Many charities are partnering with corporate donors to make Giving Tuesday donations stretch further. For example, Burnbrae Farms will donate an extra $20 if you buy chickens from the World Vision Gift Catalogue. And if you want to help children and families affected by the conflict in Syria, the Canadian government is matching donations made before December 31, 2015.
- Use your tax receipt to give more: Don't forget to check. You should get a charity tax receipt if you give over a certain amount, which you can submit with your tax return. If you are feeling extra generous when you get your refund, you can invest again in the cause you support - or use it to buy a little something for yourself (no one's judging).
- Track #GivingTuesday on social media, and share: Even if you don't have money to support a cause, you can offer valuable social media support, share an interesting cause with your network and show charities that you care about them. Many organizations will be sharing their stories and their most urgent needs using #GivingTuesday on different social media platforms, so it's a good way to find out what other Canadians are doing, and boost their message at the same time.
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