Giving Tuesday –  How to participate when you’re not sure you can afford to donate.

Nov 29, 2022 | Financial Wellness | 0 comments

Giving Tuesday - Giving generously when you're not sure if you can afford to donate.

How to participate in Giving Tuesday – even when you’re not sure you can afford to donate.


It’s Giving Tuesday and if you’re like us, you’re probably feeling 1-of-2 ways right now…

1) You want to give, but…

Your finances still aren’t in the right place. Maybe you’re living paycheck-to-paycheck. You’re afraid to make a donation, even though you want to. You’re living in scarcity and anxious about what surprise expenses tomorrow will bring. 


2) You have complete confidence in your Financial Journey

You have an abundance mindset! You know exactly where you stand and it doesn’t stress you out. You’re able to give without worrying about tomorrow.

No judgment if you’re in the first camp. We used to be there too. As have many of our clients!

9 times out of 10 – Giving generously and helping others motivates us into action to improve finances! It feels incredible to give without a second thought!  Without need for repayment or reciprocity.

We remember the first time we were in a position to give money to a family member in need. We were able to do so without hesitation and it was the best feeling in the world! It was a motivator to keep building wealth to share.

But even when your heart is in the right place…If you’re stuck in an anxious relationship with your money it can feel almost impossible to think of giving to others. 

So how do you make donations and participate in things like Giving Tuesday, when you’re not sure you can afford to donate money?

Before we answer – let’s first look at what Giving Tuesday is the different ways to give.

What is Giving Tuesday?

GivingTuesday is an annual event organized by an independent nonprofit of the same name. It started in 2012 as “a day that encourages people to do good” and it has grown massively since. Especially with the help of social media and #GivingTuesday to share the various ways people participate in the event each year.

What is special about Giving Tuesday?

GivingTuesday is special in that it brings people together from all over the world in an effort to spread kindness and generosity. 

While of course you can and should give to those in need on more than just one occasion each year. It is remarkable to see people across the globe sharing their stories of giving and generosity across the internet. It’s inspiring to say the least!

Should I donate money on Giving Tuesday?

If you plan to make financial donations this Giving Tuesday, or at all this Holiday Season, be intentional with how you give. Review your budget and see what you can afford to donate. 

Review your Budget

If you are feeling called to give a certain amount, you can always make adjustments to your budget or even make personal sacrifices so that you can give to someone in greater need. You could also be like one of our clients. She was feeling so called to donate more money, she started a side hustle and donated all of the proceeds!

A good rule of thumb is to ensure that you aren’t putting yourself at risk of an extreme financial burden. Donations need to be a part of your financial plan. We’re talking Annual Budget, Monthly Budget, Cash Flow, etc.​​ 

You Cannot Pour from an Empty Cup

While it may sound awful and can feel almost wrong to think of yourself first, that is exactly what many of us need to do. 

Sure there are times when someone in your community might desperately need money more than you do. Maybe you can either afford it or you just have faith that you will find a way to make it work – and God bless you for that! 

My dad is that way – he would give a stranger the shirt right off his back! He taught me the meaning of generosity and doing whatever you can to help others. With complete faith that he will be taken care of no matter what. But when it comes to giving to organizations and making large charitable gifts, we do suggest setting a budget and being as intentional as you can.

Give for the Right Reasons

We also suggest that with the influence of social media and #GivingTuesday – you take special care that you’re giving for the right reasons. Not just for the accolades or “likes” on Instagram. 

You should also be selective about the foundations you choose to donate to. Not all charities and nonprofits are all they’re cracked up to be, so do your due diligence.

What if I Can’t Afford to Donate?

If you find that you cannot give as much as you want to right now, that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to give more in the future. Prioritize Financial Freedom so you can give more and make a bigger impact on the world around you!

If giving money today means being unable to pay bills tomorrow, we encourage you to look for other ways to participate.

What can I give on Giving Tuesday other than Money?

If you determine that giving money is not the right path for you this year, that is completely OK! There are so many other ways to participate in GivingTuesday.

Again, the mission for this holiday is not just about donating money, but spreading generosity and showing kindness to others! 

Here are a few ideas.

FREE Ways to Participate in Giving Tuesday

  • Donate non-perishable foods to the local food pantry
  • Volunteer your time at the local food pantry or homeless shelter
  • Donate blood
  • Celebrate local heroes by sharing an inspiring story of kindness and generosity on social media
  • Call a friend or family member just to tell them you love them!
  • Spend time with the elderly and Volunteer at a Senior Center
  • Donate your skills or knowledge and teach a free class in your community
  • Donate used bedding that’s no longer needed to the local homeless or animal shelter

There are so many ways you can help in your community that don’t cost a dime. So if you have more time than money, don’t feel like you can’t participate in GivingTuesday! 

We all need connection and community, so giving your time and energy means more than you might think! 

How to Plan for Giving Tuesday

Now is a great time to plan for giving next year!

If you don’t have the money to give now, but want to financially support organizations in the future, now is the time to start planning for next GivingTusday.

Just like the holidays, Giving Tuesday comes around every year. Since its inception in 2012, Giving Tuesday has grown in popularity and has become well known. That being the case, just like any intentional giving, it should be planned for. 

If you know that Giving Tuesday is something you want to give to in the future, make a plan for that now. It is always best to plan for charitable donations in advance so that you may also vet the charity you are giving your money to. Ensuring that the funds will go toward what the organization claims the money will go towards.


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