GIVING TUESDAY. BEFORE YOU START SHOPPING ON THE CYBER MONDAY DEALS TODAY, remember that tomorrow is “Giving Tuesday”. Official days after Thanksgiving Thursday are multiplying. The whole notion is beginning to seem overly contrived, with most “days” being designated as special to put extra money into the coffers of merchants generally (Black Friday) and online giants (Cyber Monday).
For good reason, small merchants wish not to be left out of the holiday spending trends which can make or break Mom-and-Pop companies, and thus have raised awareness with Small Business Saturday.
Sunday has been left unclaimed by any themed spending campaigns.
On Giving Tuesday, charities seek to remind us that the holy days of December, now lumped with Thanksgiving and secularly referred to as the holidays, are also meant be about thinking of the less fortunate and being generous with our treasure. So, they are sort of commercializing a day of giving, as opposed to spending, a Wikipedia entry on the subject indicates, as a “response to the commercialism and consumerism in the post-Thanksgiving season”. Ironic.
Before becoming cynical about Giving Tuesday, take a few minutes to learn the history. and then perhaps decide how you might use GT to inject a bit of heartfelt generosity into this important shopping and entertaining season.
“Giving Tuesday was started in 2012 by the 92nd Street Y and the United Nations Foundation as a response to commercialization and consumerism in the post-Thanksgiving season (Black Friday and Cyber Monday)”says the Wikipedia entry. The date is always 5 days after Thanksgiving, and falls on a day between November 27 and December 3.
The idea was announced in 2012, by founding partner Mashable, who was joined by other founding partners, Skype and Cisco, followed by Microsoft, Sony, Aldo, Case Foundation, Heifer International, Phoenix House, and Starwood Hotels, the entry explains. The remaining history can be read online.
We are encouraged on GT to get behind a convenient, coordinated, and promoted effort to give to the charities of our choice at the beginning of the Christmas and holiday season. However, as fitness enthusiasts, we can use this day to find a cause that is special and close to our hearts. Our giving can further the work of organizations, like Boys and Girls Clubs of America (96 Charity Navigator rating*) and Special Olympics (88 rating*) that encourage physical activity. Or that enable military and children with disabilities to enjoy sport, like Challenge Aspen (100 rating), Wounded Warrior Adaptive Sports.
Another way to observe GT might be to simply register for an future athletic event sponsored by a charity. Or to drop gently used athletic shoes into collections bins at specialty stores that donate them to the needy. To buy active toys like sports balls (soccer, basketball, volley-ball, or football) for the Marine Corps “Toys for Tots” drive, and selecting some that would appeal to young girls.
Giving from the heart needn’t involve giving money or buying things. GT can be the day we donate our competition finisher medals to those with big serious physical issues (Medals4Mettle).
Generosity of heart and spirit during the holiday season needn’t be an automatic exercise. We can direct our giving, give any day, and do so more than once a year. What’s wonderful about GivingTuesday is that we can be one with the world as we do so.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
*Charity Navigator https://www.bgca.org/
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Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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