My alter ego ‘The Reluctant Philanthropist’ has always been rather taken with Giving Tuesday. #GivingTuesday is the day to do good stuff for charity, straight after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Reluctant sees it as an opportunity not to be bothered with requests to give, phone calls, letters though the post and things popping up on social media when he is trying to have a laugh at cats jumping, missing their foothold and falling; then jumping, missing their foothold and falling, then jumping – oh you get the picture. He just feels it is his day to do whatever he feels like to help people and he can then sit out the rest of the year, with a smug smile on his face and a warm glow in his tummy, having done his bit.
Indeed, it now runs in over 70 countries so maybe a lot of people agree with him, though I expect that even more promotion and fundraising goes on around it then on any other day. With UK charities alone receiving £6,000 a minute, that is highly likely and shows the power of official days for philanthropy. Especially, as we will have nearly bankrupted ourselves on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Of course, it’s not all about the money, okay it is, but you can also volunteer your time, donate stuff and be nice to people. Reluctant says his name is down for that one…
Giving Tuesday is brought to you by the Charities Aid Foundation which has a long history of innovation in helping charities, and just four of their people drive the day forward. The income to effort ratio must be huge and I bet most charities would die for their ROI. So, is there a downside to all this do goodery?
In terms of charity fundraising I guess it may cut across any other programme they may have to raise funds as part of an annual schedule, but I expect that most charities now bend their plans around that particular occasion. Indeed, it is more likely and highly recommended that they enter whole heartedly into the spirit of the day, and make it quite clear how people can help them and their beneficiaries.
Perhaps, the most surprising thing about Giving Tuesday is the number of mega companies involved, and the second most surprising thing is how easy it is to miss it if you blink – maybe it should really be a week.
Reluctant says he would give a lot more if people didn’t badger him to give, but when asked why he didn’t give, his usual answer is, “Well, they never asked me!”
John Baguley, CEO, Groupifc.com