DuBois, PA – After a busy holiday shopping weekend where so much of the focus is about getting things, it’s time for Giving Tuesday, a global day that is dedicated to giving back.

Penn State DuBois is holding a Red Cross blood drive today in the campus gym from 9 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. for Giving Tuesday. Not only will your donation save lives, but Penn State DuBois’s THON charity for childhood cancers will receive $2 for each person who donates blood.

There are many other charities and organizations that would love your support on Giving Tuesday. Pick a cause that is close to your heart and make a plan to give back. If you plan on giving time by volunteering, make sure you call the organization first to see what kind of help they need and what day and time you should stop by.

Make a monetary donation to any organization that means something to you and your family. Money is effective because organizations can use the donations for exactly what they need. Although items are appreciated, the organization needs space to store them. By giving money, you’re giving the charity the flexibility of being able to pay bills, expand their services, and handle any unexpected emergencies that pop up.

Make sure your donated money is being put to good use by checking to see how effective the organization is. CharityWatch.org and GiveWell.org can help you choose how to make a wise donation.

Some other ideas for giving back:

Visit a nursing home. Spend time with the people there, listen to their stories, play a game, sing, play music, and make a new friend.

Help clean up at a local animal shelter. Although playing with the animals and walking the dogs is also a great way of volunteering, the less glamorous jobs are often ignored. It can be a big help to pick up messes in the yard.

Donate items to your hometown food pantry. More families struggle with keeping food on the table than you might think. Call to food pantry beforehand to see what items they are lacking and what would be most helpful.

Become a hospital volunteer. You can either visit with patients directly or work behind the scenes organizing fundraisers and other events.

Send a letter or a care package to a military member. Organizations such as Operation Gratitude and A Million Thanks can help you send them, or you can contact a church to see if they know of any local soldiers who are currently overseas.

Pick up any trash you see along the sidewalk or road. If you’re going to pick up trash along a roadway, be sure to wear a reflective vest and other highly visible clothes. Picking up even just one bag of litter can help keep our towns looking better and can protect wildlife.

Do a random act of kindness for someone else.

Whether you give in a big way or a small way, thank you! It’s all about giving back and helping out others.

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