In honor of the 9th Giving Tuesday, we thought it might be interesting to share a little of the history behind the day.
Giving Tuesday, started in 2012 as a reaction to the commercialism of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It is the brainchild of Asha Curran, formerly of the 92nd Street YMCA in New York City. The YMCA, in collaboration with the United Nations Foundation, envisioned a day focused on giving and generosity, whether monetarily, through volunteerism, or acts of kindness. So, what has made this “campaign” so successful?
Creating a Community
Giving was reimagined for the digital age to build a personal sense of community. Social media, websites and PR allow organizations to share real stories about the difference they make, promote charitable giving, and thank donors. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter promote Giving Tuesday, and #GivingTuesday has become instantly understood all over the world. Making giving as easy as possible through online giving platforms and payment processors has been key.
Facilitator not Recipient
Giving Tuesday succeeds because it is not a registered charity but promotes and helps others build visibility for their missions. Through comprehensive resources and tools, it provides nonprofits the means to get the word out. In 2012, more than 2,500 nonprofits participated in Giving Tuesday, with an estimated $10MM in online donations. In 2019, approximately $511MM in online donations were attributable to Giving Tuesday.
Giving Tuesday has spread from the United States to over 70 countries and numerous organizations around the world. GivingTuesday.org, which became a separate independent organization in July 2019, has adapted to align with global growth, and its leadership and Board of Directors include Giving Tuesday regional directors from non-U.S. regions. GivingTuesday.org also helps build community among nonprofit leaders and organizations around the world so best practices and ideas can be shared.
This year, of course, is like no other, and many nonprofits are experiencing a drop in funding at the same time need has increased. We applaud the work that GivingTuesday.org does to help nonprofits reach their audiences and hope that everyone has an opportunity to give back in some way to those in need this holiday season.