In the US, GivingTuesday is after Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday and marks the start of the year-end giving. But GivingTuesday is not limited to the United States, it has caught fire over the past 7 years to become a global movement, with over 43 countries joining.
GivingTuesday celebrates philanthropy and countries around the world that participate make it their own, unleashing creative and localized strategies to promote a culture of giving. It is every year on the Tuesday between Oct 2-8, a weeklong festival that starts with Gandhi’s birthday on Oct 2. This year it was on Oct 2, Gandhi’s birthday, next year is on Oct 8. GivingTuesday India is powered by GuideStar India, India’s most reliable NGO information repository with over 8700 NGOs.
This year #GivingTuesdayIndia, organizers expect over 10 million people in India will celebrate giving by taking part in over a dozen digital fundraising campaigns. With support from philanthropists and participation from many individuals, NGOs across the country are aiming to raise Rs100 million or $13 Million in US Dollars (if I’ve done the currency conversion correctly.)
Leading up to the day, organizations provide training in online digital fundraising and giving via mobile apps. The country’s restaurant association, AHAR, has organized 300 of its members to include tent cards on dining tables with QR codes to promote GivingTuesday and to make it easy for diners to scan & give. Not limited to restaurants, over 15,000 businesses across Mumbai region, Delhi, and other large urban areas will offer their customers the convenience of making a donation while shopping.
Like in the US, organizations and online platforms, including Global Giving will issue matching challenges to help incentivize giving to NGOs. There are also a number of creative mobile apps to make it easy for people in India from all walks of life to give money, time, and in-kind. For example, SevaKitchen is enrolling NGOs to define “hunger zones”, making it easy for people to share excess food near their homes. With over 7500 verified NGOs across India, IamHere, another app makes it possible for people to discover NGOs near them and donate.
Another creative approach is #MyTuesdayPromise that encourages young people to save up small amounts to donate to a charity.
Of course, social media plays a pivotal role. GivingTuesday India has localized and adapted ideas like the #unselfie. Since #GivingTuesdayIndia is happening on Gandhiji’s birthday, they are encouraging supporters to where “khadi” (clothing items made of cotton) and to share a selfie.The #charkha (spinning wheel for weaving) is a #Gandhian symbol of both independence and interdependence, which embodies spirit of the global giving movement and inspired this Indian version of the #unselfie.
There is an explosion of philanthropic and online giving creativity happening on Giving Tuesday in India today. There is so much learn from looking at how GivingTuesday is celebrated in different contexts.
Happy Giving Tuesday in India! And a reminder that Giving Tuesday here in the US is just a few weeks away.