The History of GivingTuesday and How To Participate

giving tuesday

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… to spread generosity worldwide. GivingTuesday, a global movement that aims to encourage people to embark on a journey of giving and provide a day for charities to fundraise, is recognized on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. This year, GivingTuesday is on Nov. 28.

Henry Timms is one of the creators of GivingTuesday. The movement began as a notion inside the 92NY’s Belfer Center for Innovation & Social Impact in New York City. “It was a really simple idea,” Timms told PBS NewsHour, a series on Facebook Watch. “And we designed that from the start in a way that we hoped other people would grab this idea and take it somewhere new.”

Timms explained, “From the very first days, it was a story of other people stepping up and saying, ‘I would like to make this idea better.’” It certainly didn’t hurt when Bill Gates, the former CEO of Microsoft, tweeted his support of the first GivingTuesday, which partnered with 2,500 nongovernmental organizations. It continues to grow year after year. Donors in the United States gave $3.1 billion in 2022.

An Inspiring Holiday Tradition

The movement unites communities with the common goal of building a better world. It continues to grow its global reach and leadership network, which includes CEO Asha Curran, chief adviser Priyanka Dutt, and board members Laurence Belfer, the CEO of Belfer Management; Jeffrey Walker, the chairman of New Profit, a social change investment fund; and Shijuade Kadree, a former attorney and founder of Compass Strategies Consulting, which uses data and insights to increase effectiveness.

In honor of the movement’s 10th anniversary in 2022, it received a $10 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. That’s the most significant grant in GivingTuesday’s history.

“GivingTuesday has inspired countless acts of giving that have the power to transform communities and our world. The foundation is thrilled to extend its longtime support for GivingTuesday and the global generosity movement it has inspired,” stated Melinda Gates.

Get Involved

There are numerous ways to get involved for those ready to join the cause. The organization suggests these five ways anyone can give on GivingTuesday:

  1. Give your voice: Add your signature to a petition or speak up for a cause or issue you support.
  2. Give your talent or time: What do you do well? Volunteer or donate your skills to support and help a nonprofit organization thrive.
  3. Give money: An easy way to get involved is to donate to a nonprofit of your choice. However, running a fundraiser for a charity or cause you care about can be fun.
  4. Give goods: Donating clothes you don’t want anymore is a simple way to make a difference. Another way to support the movement is organizing a food drive to help stock up a local food pantry.
  5. Share the generosity: Spread the word about how you took action by using the hashtag #givingtuesday on social media. Your generous actions could inspire others to get involved.

Together we can be a force for good. Join millions around the world in giving back on Nov. 28. “Each act of generosity, each act of kindness, and each moment where someone gives whatever they can to a neighbor, a cause, or a community takes us one step closer to creating the world that we all want to live in — a just, safe, and equitable world where everyone can thrive,” stated Curran.