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Giving Tuesday is one of the biggest successes in philanthropy in recent years. This occasion got its start in 2012, as a partnership between the 92nd Street Y in New York and the United Nations Foundation. It comes after Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The thinking behind Giving Tuesday was that after over-consuming for a week, people might be ready to think about philanthropy.


In recent years, the world of tech has been a big part of spreading the word and mission behind Giving Tuesday. Obviously, online donations streamline the process of giving. However, the rapid expansion of technology is important for other reasons. It has created lots of new ways for people to communicate with one another. The best example of this may be social media. By sharing stories of giving on these networks, people are providing real-world examples of giving. Non-profits can also quickly and easily show the results of philanthropy on their social media.


For a recently developed movement, Giving Tuesday has grown a great deal. Today, it’s an established, known quantity in dozens of countries. This is only true because people have made it their own. Some of the places where it’s gained a foothold don’t even have the American traditions that Giving Tuesday is a response to. Giving Tuesday also isn’t just limited to donations of money. Locally, people institute new twists on Giving Tuesday all the time.


Two examples of this are Giving Tuesday Military, which focuses on giving back in ways other than through money. Giving Tuesday Military is all about kind words and actions. It doesn’t cost anything to do someone a good turn, and Giving Tuesday Military proves that over and over again. Giving Tuesday Kids was developed by and for children who wanted to get in on the act of giving back to less fortunate people. Again, because children don’t really have money, the focus is more on acts of kindness.


In the coming years, it will be interesting to see how Giving Tuesday develops. Though this feast day is a new innovation, it has already won the hearts of millions of people around the world. The holiday season is a great time to remind people that we all win when we’re willing to give.