10 meaningful #GivingTuesday deeds you can do with your colleagues.

Did you know this coming Tuesday, November 28, is known as #GivingTuesday around the world? It began six years ago and always falls on the Tuesday after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. During this time, most of us are preoccupied with holiday shopping, scooping up deals, and other consumerist activities. #GivingTuesday is a chance for us to remember the importance of compassion, stewardship, and selflessly giving back to our communities.

Volunteering is good for others, and good for you

There are many benefits to philanthropy. Besides the obvious advantages of helping the less fortunate, contributing to a healthier and safer world, and getting those warm, fuzzy feelings of achievement, volunteering can have positive effects on your well-being. The main reason is because humans are social creatures. Giving back allows us to spend quality time with people we know, and creates opportunities to meet new people who share our values and passions. It also exposes us to new experiences and challenges that can enhance our problem-solving skills and make us more resilient. So even if you’re giving back selflessly, you stand to gain a lot in return.

Ways to help around your community

If you’re wondering how you can support an existing campaign, check out this list of participating organizations — or better yet, collaborate with your colleagues to make social change as a team. The following are all simple but meaningful projects you can undertake:

  1. Clean up trash around your building or at a local park
  2. Donate books to a library
  3. Give blankets to a hospital
  4. Learn CPR
  5. Donate pet food and treats to an animal shelter
  6. Entertain at a seniors’ home (ex: play musical instruments, do standup comedy, etc)
  7. Donate old eyeglasses
  8. Plant a vegetable garden or flower bed if there’s land available and you have permission
  9. Campaign for municipal change (ex: more bike lanes, green spaces, water fountains, etc)
  10. Offer to read to children in an after school program

Don’t forget to take lots of pictures and use the hashtag #GivingTuesday to encourage others to help out in their communities too. If you’d like to learn more about volunteering, check out the following resources:

Also published on Medium.