I love Holly Hunter. An Academy Award- and Emmy-winning actress, she seems to take any role and make it memorable; she dies to self while her characters come to life. I appreciate her talent, sure, but maybe tipping the scale for my fangirldom is the fact she’s Southern, born just up the road from me in Conyers, Georgia. Her accent makes me happy. Instead of sounding like some illiterate, backwoods miscreant – the way Southerners are too often played in film and television – her voice is comfort food to the ear. As Tammy Hemphill in 1993’s The Firm, she delivers one of my favorite movie lines of all time when convict Ray McDeere tells her he “loves her crooked little mouth.” She quips…
Gah–J’adore! (Shout out to my friend Lisa M. who jinxed me with this line!)
Anyway, that scene always comes to mind when one of my, say, “lesser qualities” rises to the surface. Like today. Today is known far and wide as Giving Tuesday. My first instinct is cynical.
My cynicism is birthed out of priority:
- Black Friday.
- Small Business Saturday.
- Sunday usually equals more of #1 and #2–retailers and e-tailers are smart that way even if Sunday doesn’t have an official name.
- Cyber Monday.
And with whatever you have leftover after all that manic spending, tip your favorite charity on Giving Tuesday.
See? Not my best feature.
Here’s the thing, though. While my first instinct is cynicism, it’s not where I land. I am a bargain shopper. I understand that this season sometimes offers the most savings of items you plan to buy anyway.
More than anything, I believe that giving is good.
And when there’s a global movement encouraging citizens of the world to give to organizations and causes who represent undeniable need, we should respond with great generosity.
#GivingTuesday reminds us giving isn’t only about dollars and cents–
…whether it’s some of your time, a donation, gift or the power of your voice in your local community….
but a financial gift is always an easy and immediate way to respond.
There is no dearth of non-profits to support, but three I’d very personally love for you to consider are:
- CrossPurpose. 2½ years ago, freshly graduated and with a degree in community development, my daughter accepted an urban leadership development fellowship in Denver, CO. On the ground, working to eradicate poverty in their city, CrossPurpose in an incredible organization that teaches people how to fish for a lifetime instead of feeding them for a day. When her fellowship ended, Rachel accepted a full-time position with CrossPurpose. We’ve met those who serve and are served by this visionary organization. Your dollars here change lives, now and forever.
- Compassion. Eight years ago I traveled to Kolkata (Calcutta) with Compassion International, and it’s still changing my life. Compassion is a world-wide organization that works by investing in local people and projects to do the work of caring for the least of these. I was privileged to observe first-hand what this looks like, and I’m convinced it’s the best, most reputable sponsor program out there.
- Salvation Army. Ringing the bell for the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Drive has become an annual tradition for me; it was fascinating to learn so much my first year (10 Things Salvation Army Bell Ringers Want You To Know is one of my most popular posts of all time). The Red Kettle Drive is a great example of every gift matters–whether pocket change or folding money, every donation thrills the bell ringer AND makes a difference in your community. Which goes the same for my online campaign: gifts of any size are welcome! (Please help me reach my humble goal?)
Your support doesn’t have to end with the organizations I’ve mentioned here; I’m sure there are many near and dear to your heart. But I sincerely hope you join me AND THE ENTIRE WORLD in giving something today.
Because something is always better than nothing, yes?
Love this, Robin! I reckon we might be forgiven for a bit of cynicism these days–but how much better to approach life with an open heart and open hands, yes?
You in that bell-ringing photo is one of my all-time favorites. Bless you!!
Maybe one day cynicism won’t be the first thing I think :). And agreed, open-heart/open-hand living is where I ALWAYS hope to end up; at least my intention is to move in that direction. (and you’re sweet on my piccha–I think how I felt on the inside shows on the outside!)