12 Places To Donate For Giving Tuesday 2018 To Make A Difference

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The holidays are exciting, fun, and full of joy, but they also have a tendency to make people feel a bit gluttonous, especially in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Between all of the sales, the marketing, and the emphasis on picking out the perfect present to show someone you love them, or receiving the best gift from friends and family members, you can start to feel a little guilty for how much you're spending on material possessions. This feeling can intensify when you're reminded of all of the people out there who can't afford to spend that kind of money on unnecessary items. That's one reason that giving back this time of year feels so important to so many people, and luckily, Giving Tuesday comes at the best time. Giving Tuesday is a day dedicated to giving back to those in need. If you need some ideas on how to participate, there are a few places to donate to for Giving Tuesday that will put your money in the right place.

Giving Tuesday occurs the Tuesday after Thanksgiving each year (this year it's on Nov. 27), right after a day dedicated to eating as much food as possible, and the long shopping-filled weekend that is made up of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The day was created by the team at the Belfer Center for Innovation & Social Impact at the 92nd Street Y, a cultural center in New York City. According to the website, it "connects diverse groups of individuals, communities and organizations around the world for one common purpose: to celebrate and encourage giving."

While you should obviously think about making donations and giving back all the time, it's normal to think about it more during the holiday season, when the difference between those who have it all and those who don't seems to be more pronounced. And if you're not sure where to start, Giving Tuesday is a great way to get going. If you're going to participate, be sure to use the hashtag #GivingTuesday, as this day is meant to "harness the potential of social media and the generosity of people around the world to bring about real change in their communities." This is your chance to give back and to use social media for good.

The organization behind Giving Tuesday encourages you to find local charities and events in your area to donate to, which is a great idea. If you can't think of any, below are a few more options to consider. Give what you can, and donate whenever you can - not just on this day.

1. The Trevor Project

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The Trevor Project is the biggest national organization that helps with crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25. Suicide has been said to be the second leading cause of death for LGBTQ youth, and organizations like The Trevor Project really work to bring those numbers down. If you want to support and help save lives, donate today, or even set up a monthly donation.

2. CARE

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CARE works in over 90 countries throughout the world in a movement dedicated to ending poverty, putting women and girls at the center to encourage equal rights and opportunities. This Giving Tuesday, if you donate, the organization will match your donation (up to $1 million), so you can feel good knowing that whatever you give will be doubled. And if you can't donate on Nov. 27, the matching will be going on through Dec. 31.

3. The Nature Conservancy

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Climate change has never been a more pressing issue, and unfortunately, the current government and president is making things harder. If you want to give back to science during this crucial time, consider doing so with a donation to The Nature Conservancy. They tackle climate change, work to protect land and water, and help build healthier cities.

4. American Red Cross

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American Red Cross is a huge organization that could always use more donations. The organization works with donors, volunteers, and employees who help those in need all over the world. Donate now and know that your donation could also be tax deductible.

5. UNICEF

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The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) works in over 190 countries and territories to help children in need, saving their lives by providing health care, immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, and emergency relief, among many others. If you want to contribute to saving children, consider a donation. In honor of Giving Tuesday, UNICEF will be match any donation by three, meaning your donation will be tripled.

6. 350

350 on Twitter

Another way to give to science to contribute the fight against global warming is to donate to 350.org. The organization strives to build a global climate movement that holds leaders accountable for following through on aggressive climate change mitigation efforts. They use online campaigns, grassroots organizing, and mass public actions to oppose things that are going to be contributing to climate change.

7. American Refugee Committee

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The American Refugee Committee (ARC) works with refugees in communities throughout the world to figure out what they need. The organization then does what it can to give them exactly that, which means they world with emergency response services, helping refugees find shelter, providing healthcare, and conducting formal and informal education programs, among many other things. Donate and help refugees in need this Giving Tuesday.

8. The Humane Society of the United States

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You may have heard of the Human Society of the United States recently, as the organization has been making headlines for their work with abandoned animals in the California wildfires. This animal protection organization helps care for thousands of animals each year. Your donation could help save the lives of animals around the country.

9. Planned Parenthood

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As the US government does their best to take away women's reproductive rights, you might end up feeling powerless. Feel a little bit more in control with a donation to Planned Parenthood, the largest reproductive healthcare nonprofit in the country. Donating to Planned Parenthood helps women and girls find safe healthcare.

10. Operation Warm

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As temperatures drop lower and lower throughout most of the country, you'll probably start bundling up in your warmest coats. Just remember: not everyone has one. Operation Warm is an organization that works to provide children with coats throughout North America. On Giving Tuesday and through Nov. 29, every donation to Firefighters for Operation Warm program will be doubled up to $50,000 thanks to a series of anonymous donors. Your donation will go towards the manufacturing of 100 percent USA-made winter coats that will be given to children in need.

11. Wildlife Conservation Network

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Another way to help animals is to donate to the Wildlife Conservation Network. The WCN works to support endangered animal species by doing things like preserving natural habitats and supporting environmental conservation work. Donate to help keep endangered animals alive.

12. GiveDirectly

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GiveDirectly is an organization that will find extremely poor communities around the world, then allows donors to send money to the people most in need. They transfer about $1,000 per household each year using electronic payment systems, then monitor the situation. Donate on Giving Tuesday if you want to help.