I’ve never been a devoted Black Friday shopper.
In fact, over the last 10 years, I can probably count all my purchases on one hand. I enter the store around 9 a.m., long after the peak hours of 4-5 a.m. The Walmart aisles look like ghost town streets. Display tables have been completely emptied, with only scattered wrapping material revealing that there had once been anything there at all.
It’s shocking, really, just how we obsess about getting a good deal. We see “50-inch TV for 50% off” and we think, “It’d be stupid not to buy that television, right?”
In fact, last year, people spent over $3.5 billion on good deals on Black Friday. Despite all those purchases, the spending continued, and on Cyber Monday, consumers spent another $3 billion.
On Tuesday people spent 1.68 million.
While this number may seem insignificant compared with Friday and Monday, that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
United By Giving Tuesday
Despite the vast amounts of money spent over the weekend, people around the United States still chose to unite in the spirit of giving, donating $1.68 million online to various nonprofits and charities. People of all income levels donated on Giving Tuesday, and USA Today reported that families with a yearly income of less than $17,500 donated the highest percentage of their income at an average of 4% (or $686 per person).
While it’s no secret that most of us are thrilled to purchase something because it’s a good deal, we seem to be equally passionate about donating to something because it’s a good cause.
Where to Begin on Giving Tuesday?
But with so many quality charities and nonprofits in the United States (and the world), where does one begin?
At Village Missions, we are passionate about the work happening through Reach 19, a program focused on reaching the vulnerable children right here in small-town America.
Reach 19 exists to provide local, rural churches with the resources they need to effectively reach kids with the gospel of Jesus Christ. These include books for kids’ programs like AWANA, Sunday School or VBS materials, equipment for sports camps and much more.
Not only will they hear the good news about Jesus Christ, Reach 19 programs will help protect youth from underage drinking, drugs and suicide, which currently affect rural and small-town youth at a rate just as high (or higher) than youth in cities.
The reason? Rural and small-town youth simply are not offered the number of programs or resources that their peers in the city have. Some public schools don’t even have a counselor for struggling students.
For many small communities, the local church and Village Missionaries are the only positive influence they will have during their childhood. Yet, many of these small churches have little (or no) children’s ministry budget.
These children are the future of our families, our country and our world.
You Can Make a Difference on Giving Tuesday