#GivingTuesdayNow

By Rebecca Angel Baer
May 05, 2020
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Credit: Rabbitti/Getty Images

In recent years every November, Americans have embraced the concept of opening their homes and then their wallets in celebration of family first, and good deals second. First comes Thanksgiving where we all gather around the table to share a delicious meal and count our blessings. That day of gratitude is of course, immediately followed by Black Friday and Cyber Monday where the thrill of the hunt of the best bargain fuels us all. And then comes Giving Tuesday, a day dedicated to making donations to the charities close to our hearts. It’s often the last big financial push these organizations received for the year.

But now, we find ourselves in a changed world. The coronavirus pandemic has stopped the whole world in its tracks. As most are hunkered down at home, waiting to see what’s next, uncertainty and anxiety rises. For non-profits, this is an especially worrisome time as people who might donate normally are furloughed or laid off from their jobs and are suddenly finding themselves in need of the charity they might otherwise help fund. Because of this, American Charities deemed today, May 5, Giving Tuesday Now, a second global day of giving, “in emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19,” as their website states.

The 40-year-old nonprofit that helps facilitate giving in today’s digital age has many resources to help you decide how you can best contribute today. While staying home and helping slow the spread of this disease is the best thing we can do as individuals, if you are able to donate, American Charities suggests that you can donate to the Coronavirus Response Fund, which will directly benefit Feeding America and PATH.

You can also use today to donate to local organizations in your area that have taken action. Some of our favorite Southern nonprofits that are helping those who need help most right now include Mercy Chefs, Operation BBQ, and Giving Kitchen.

Another way to help would be to donate to efforts to feed hospital workers on the front lines. If you would like to help the local small businesses in your area, buy gift cards today that you can use when the businesses re-open. Today is also a great day to help curb loneliness by reaching out to a neighbor, relative, or writing cards to residents at a senior living facility. Call your local VA and maybe there are veterans who would benefit from a phone call or a letter.

WATCH: 5 Ways to Thank Essential Workers While Staying Home

Whichever way you choose to observe, if you are able to give, give today.