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For many people, the past week has included a fair amount of eating and shopping. But not everyone is this fortunate. So it is very appropriate that this Tuesday is dedicated to a different activity: giving.
Following Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving has come to be known as Giving Tuesday. It’s a day centered around giving, rather than shopping, with an emphasis on supporting nonprofits and the work they do in communities across the state and the country.
The idea of Giving Tuesday has been around for a decade, but its impact seems magnified after multiple years of a global pandemic and soaring inflation. These and other issues have led to hardship for a lot of people, and many individuals and organizations have stepped up to help. The nonprofit leading the Giving Tuesday effort said that $2.7 billion was donated in a single day last year, a record for the initiative.
This Giving Tuesday is a chance to build on that record. It certainly is not the only chance to help — this kind of giving is needed and appreciated throughout the year — but it can be particularly impactful right now, as organizations and the people they assist continue to wrestle with rising costs.
“Numerous interactions we’ve had with our clients, who have advised us that things are very difficult for them right now,” Doug Horner, the director for the Stroudwater Food Pantry in Portland, told TV station CBS 13 recently. “The rate of inflation for the price of gasoline, for home heating oil, for propane, all of these things are driving up their monthly costs, and they’ve got to cut corners somewhere.”
There are so many organizations meeting so many needs across Maine communities, and donations help power their vital work. Whether it is donating money to groups that help keep people fed or housed, donating used items to thrift stores and relief organizations, or donating time as a volunteer, there are many ways across the state for Mainers to give back — if they are able.
Though not a nonprofit, the Bangor Daily News is also accepting donations to help us sustain our independent local reporting. We are hoping to raise $25,000 in 24 hours on Nov. 29.
As in years past, there is no shortage of charities, food banks, libraries, community action organizations and other groups doing important work every day to help keep our fellow Mainers fed, housed and connected to various services and supports.
For all of the challenges caused by inflation and supply chain woes, one of Maine’s most valuable resources remains intact: the way we look out for each other.
We hope that Giving Tuesday has Mainers thinking about what they’re capable of giving, both in money and time, and directing those toward causes and people they care about. And we hope that spirit of generosity isn’t limited to just one day of the year.