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"Giving Tuesday" Expected to Raise Millions for Charity

A child enjoys herself at a recent climate-change rally in Boise, which was sponsored by the nonprofit Snake River Alliance, just one group encouraging people to donate on Giving Tuesday. Credit: Snake River Alliance
A child enjoys herself at a recent climate-change rally in Boise, which was sponsored by the nonprofit Snake River Alliance, just one group encouraging people to donate on Giving Tuesday. Credit: Snake River Alliance
December 1, 2015

BOISE, Idaho - We all know about Black Friday, and probably Cyber Monday. But today is "Giving Tuesday," an annual event announced just four years ago by a group of tech companies. It's billed as a way to get people into the true spirit of the holidays by giving to charity following the biggest shopping weekend of the year.

It's estimated that Americans spent close to $11 billion in stores and online since the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Wendy Wilson, director of the nonprofit Snake River Alliance in Boise, said she's hopeful that Giving Tuesday will motivate more people to donate, to help support their solar initiatives and efforts to block nuclear waste from being stored in Idaho.

"A hundred percent of that work is reliant on private donations," she said, "and so Giving Tuesday is a real opportunity for people to be part of what we're doing and plant the seed for our programs next year."

Last year, nonprofits raised an estimated $45 million for causes and charities on Giving Tuesday.

Wilson said it's nice to see Americans open their hearts to support important causes during the holiday season.

"My family doesn't really do Black Friday because we think getting outdoors is more important than consumerism," she said. "We like to give online on Giving Tuesday, and try to move forward and make the world a better place."

People can contribute to their favorite charities directly or get more information on Twitter at #GivingTuesday.

Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - ID