As with any good rescue-dog-mom, I talk about the fact that my dog is a rescue.
Probably too much, if we’re being really honest with each other.
But, like any Crazy Dog Lady – a title I wear with pride, clearly – I care a lot about animal rescue. It’s important to me, and The Dog is such a good boy. He’s a perfect example of how truly wonderful rescue dogs can be, and I’ve even had people react with surprise when they learn we got him when he was already 2 years old.
(Trust me when I say that a surprised reaction gets that person well and truly stuck in a five-minute conversation about how great rescue dogs are, and how wrong the stereotypes of rescued dogs can be.)
That’s why I’ve been looking forward to this Tuesday all weekend – and by all weekend, I’m 100% including Thursday and Friday, since they’re included in the laundry list of Shopping Days that went on this “weekend.”
While I spend all year lending my voice (trust me when I say people on my Facebook friends list are sick of hearing about dogs) and my time supporting local rescue groups, there are a few times during the year that I make sure to support animal rescues with my money.
#GivingTuesday is one of those times.
Just in case you haven’t heard of it – it never causes quite the stir that Black Friday does for some reason – #GivingTuesday is a day intended to “kick off the season of giving.” It’s also the absolutely perfect antidote to the overflowing inbox full of marketing messages I assume we all have right about now.
It’s a day dedicated to giving gifts of time and money to charities of all shapes and sizes, and spending your resources on something bigger than yourself.
The Perfect Antidote to All That Marketing
For the past five days, I’ve been inundated with carefully crafted messages sent by marketers who probably know me better than my boyfriend does. Seriously, I work in marketing – you would not believe how well they know you.
But there was a very potent combination of forces that gave me superpowers in terms of resisting the avalanche of ads that showed up from every brand I ever even thought of giving my email address to in the past ten years.
One: I knew Giving Tuesday was coming up, and I wanted to make sure I had earmarked money in my budget to make a donation to a local animal rescue group.
Two: OMG PUPPIES.
Specifically, the ones in care at one of my favourite local rescues here in Ottawa, Sit With Me Rescue. I follow them on Facebook, and since early fall, they’ve taken in a whole bunch of puppies – 40 of them, to be specific. Some of these puppies had to be cared for around the clock, because they lost their moms as early as a week after they were born. Puppies at that stage are basically as needy as newborns, and require round-the-clock care and bottle feedings.
But now, those puppies are growing like weeds, which makes for some very cute photos, and some very big dog food bills for the rescue.
That’s why I was able to resist all the shopping opportunities that popped up this weekend.
The puppies. And how much my contribution can help support the amazing work the fosters and volunteers have done for them over their tiny lives, while still taking care of dogs of all ages and placing them in amazing homes.
That’s what I want to “buy” this “weekend.”
Make the Most of Your Giving Tuesday
If you want to get in on the #GivingTuesday fun, here’s my humble suggestion.
We spent the past five days wading through marketing sent by the savviest marketers out there. Some of the charities that need our support the most have the fewest resources to reach us, to let us know about the cute puppies who need our help*.
*insert your own favourite heartstring-tugger here.
So instead of being passive recipients of marketing messages, and responding when they show up, let’s take back marketing this #GivingTuesday. Let’s go out and do our research, find a cause and a small organization you believe in, that is really make a meaningful difference in the world, and give them your money. Instead of relying on them to find you, target you with just the right ask, and then be rewarded with your money, let’s be active participants in the best of all the “shopping” holidays.
And while we’re at it, let’s do some small bit of marketing for them, and tell the world about them on the platforms that we have – even if it just means texting your mom to remind her that today is Giving Tuesday.
I would love to hear which organizations are near and dear to your heart – feel free to link them in the comments! Happy Giving Tuesday, everyone.