Tis the season for creating wish lists, hitting the malls, and overspending. Starting with Black Friday and continuing straight through Cyber Monday, Americans are overwhelmed with ads touting the latest deal, trying to persuade consumers to buy things they never knew they wanted, let alone needed. With so many ‘buying' into this craze and making these shopping days almost as anticipated as the holidays themselves, it's no wonder people start to feel empty inside (despite having their hands full of shopping bags). Are consumers walking away from these bargains feeling more festive and in the holiday spirit? Probably not.
In 2012, Henry Timms, an executive director with the nonprofit 92nd Street Y in New York, put forth a rallying cry for nonprofits across the country to be heard and supported during the hectic holiday season. After a day of Thanksgiving, and two days of shopping deals, it's time for communities to rally together and give back. Coined #GivingTuesday, this day is the perfect opportunity for charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world to join for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give. It's a simple idea (1). As part of this effort, FMG is proud to support a local community partner, Northern Virginia Family Services (NVFS), as their corporate match partner for #GivingTuesday 2014. We are here to help double your efforts and make your generous donation go even further.
So, we challenge you, the consumer, to spend slightly less on material items this holiday season, perhaps a few dollars less on each gift, and tally your savings to donate as part of your #GivingTuesday donation. You'd be surprised what a few dollars can buy some of the most deserving and appreciative people in the local Arlington/Fairfax/DC community. Although it can be hard to imagine, many young children in the Arlington, VA (and surrounding areas) have the most simple things on their Christmas lists - hope that their mom or dad can find a job, food for their baby sister, hats/gloves to keep them warm in route to school, gas to fill their family's car, and so forth. Your generosity will not only help families trying desperately to make ends meet today but also create a foundation for success in the future.
If you are unfamiliar with NVFS,, they are a nonprofit dedicated to helping vulnerable children and families on their road to independence. They provide foster care placement, job training and professional development opportunities, health and mental health care and intervention services, workforce development and early childhood services, and so much more to strengthen and empower families in the Northern Virginia communities.
Regardless of where and how much you choose to donate this #GivingTuesday, please remember that every little bit helps. If you weren't inspired by your purchases on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, we have a feeling that #GivingTuesday might do the trick.
Happy Holidays from your friends at Fors Marsh Group!
- Photo: Sean D. Elliot, AP