During the feasts and the gatherings this time of year, we enjoy ourselves. But it seems right that we cannot indulge in the season without considering those who— for many reasons— can’t or don’t feel the joyous celebrations too.
A quick Target run has the Salvation Army bell ringing for a dime in your ear. A trip to the gym shows faces of Angel Tree children needing gifts and love for the holidays. Food drives, overseas Christmas boxes, and volunteering to make a meal for hungry homeless equally populate our calendars during the holiday festivities.
So this week, as Americans, we gladly turn our hearts toward giving with Giving Tuesday. I’m thankful to live in a country that has declared the Tuesday after Thanksgiving as a “movement to create an international day of giving at the beginning of the Christmas and holiday season.” I’ll say the movement is working.
Because while we all want to be cozy and comfortable in our own homes this Christmas, something about the holiday cheer will not allow us to overlook others in need.
We invite you to participate in Giving Tuesday with us. It doesn’t have to be money and it doesn’t have to be big. But we know that our readers are made up of all kinds of philanthropic and charitable givers. After all, we’re a community of moms helping moms. So here are a few ways to help others around you by giving this Tuesday.
While you tidy up kids’ rooms and sneak away that Christmas gift you snagged on Black Friday, consider the moms who might not have that luxury this season. What about a mom of a sick child?
What about a mother who has heard over and over again that her child’s heart defect will take her life much too soon? What about a mother who spends days, weeks, months—even holidays— in a hospital helping her child fight to live?
That’s a true story about one of our own Rhea Lana’s moms, Tracy Lane, our RL blogger. Tracy’s daughter Annie lives with half of a heart, a condition that local doctors gave a grim prognosis for. So Tracy and her family packed up their life and moved to Philadelphia to have access to the life-saving care Annie needs.
Because of Annie’s miraculous outcomes, she has been recently recognized as an ambassador for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia's upcoming cardiac fundraising event in March 2020. Because more moms need answers like Annie’s mom. More kids need help like Annie did. Even Annie, beating the odds, needs more answers to keep thriving at a life that has outlived her prognoses.
Would you be a mom helping one of our moms by donating to support Annie’s team “Heart For Annie”?
There are ample opportunities to serve during this time too. You might not have time on the exact Giving Tuesday, but start looking for opportunities with your family. Can you serve a meal at a local Ronal McDonald House? Can you sign up as a family to serve at a homeless shelter?
Operation Christmas Child, Angel Tree, Salvation Army, and a multitude of other organizations offer opportunities to give gifts to a child or family in need.
The Giving Tuesday site has countless more suggestions for ways to give charitably to individuals or organizations. Check them out for more ideas to make this holiday better for others around you. And let’s be honest, our moms always said giving is better than receiving. I think it’s time we put our moms to the test. I think we’ll find, as we have with everything else, that our moms were right after all.