Generosity in Giving During the Holidays

Charitable Giving in December

Giving Tuesday kicked off this month as a season of giving, not just in terms of presents for loved ones but also in terms of donations or your time to charities and other groups relying on community support to carry out their programs.

Chances are you've heard of Black Friday, which is the day after Thanksgiving Thursday where stores open early, stay open late, and offer products for sale at prices you haven't seen all year, causing people to lose their minds for a good bargain.  It gets its name from the accounting phrase 'being in the black', being profitable that day because of the large number of purchases.

And Cyber Monday isn't new to you either.  The Monday after Thanksgiving when people are back at work, they're still holiday shopping and trying to find amazing deals.  Since they're likely at work, they're shopping online.

What is Giving Tuesday

But what is Giving Tuesday you ask?  Created in 2012, it was started to be a global day of generosity in giving to communities and nonprofits during the holiday season.  It now applies to the entire month of December when doing nice things for others is top of mind!  Thanksgiving through the following Monday were spent thinking of ourselves either in terms of buying things we want for ourselves at great prices, or our skill at finding the best deals out there.  This is a day to reflect on the needs of others and impact real change in communities.  Volunteer for a cause you believe in or engage in charitable giving to an organization you are passionate about.  This movement is a global call towards making the change you want to see in the world.

This year Girl Up Initiative Uganda, the 501(c)3 non-profit founder of Mazuri Designs is running a crowdfunding campaign on to raise money for its 2016 programs.  Girl Up Uganda focuses on providing girls with knowledge about violence and their rights, communication and leadership skills, sexual health, puberty, and their bodies, and the importance of learning vocational skills to make money and be independent.  The main goal of Girl Up Uganda is to give girls the education and tools they need to make informed decisions and stay in school, thereby reducing childhood marriage and teenage pregnancy in the slum communities.

From left Innocent (head seamstress), Harriet (trained seamstress), Guy (designer), Suzan (trained seamstress)   

Part of Girl Up Uganda's crowdfunding campaign is to raise money for Mazuri Designs so that it can be a self-sustainable business. The funds will go directly to: a fair salary for our head seamstress, business development and registration, fabric and other much-needed basic equipment so that our Ugandan team is able to do their jobs most efficiently.  Being a start-up enterprise funded by a non-profit charity, we are humbly grateful for the generosity of people who believe in our mission - providing skills and employment to an underserved population in a country with high unemployment rates and giving them hope and opportunity.

Whether it's Girl Up Uganda, Mazuri, or another nonprofit that you support this month (it's not too late - you still have 2 weeks!), please do think about what Generosity is all about, and consider donating in whatever way you are able to this holiday season.