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Join the rest of the world this Tuesday

Lisa Middents head shotLisa MiddentsThanksgiving is over, and we’ve gotten through the single most crazy shopping day of the year: Black Friday. When Monday rolls around, many of us will be pulling out our smartphones and tablets or sitting at computers to continue the online version of the holiday shopping frenzy on “Cyber Monday.” Stuff, stuff, and more stuff for us to wrap so that our loved ones have gifts to open for the holdays.

What if there were a better way to connect back to the generosity and goodwill toward all that is at the root of the winter holiday season?

Giving Tuesday#GivingTuesday appears most often in print with the increasingly familiar “hashtag” in front of the name. When you are online using social media platforms such as Facebook or Twitter, and you add a “hashtag” or “#” symbol to the front of a word, it adds your message to a catalog of sorts, making it possible for others to easily find messages with a specific theme or content. The hashtag originated on Twitter.Over five years ago in 2012, New York City’s 92nd Street Y, in partnership with the United Nations Foundation, came up the the idea of Giving Tuesday, a global day to give back and to support causes you love on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving. For those of us who have enough, having a special day set aside, when the world comes together to give back, is a welcome relief.

Social media and the ease of donating online has helped the Giving Tuesday movement grow at an amazing rate every year. In 2012, Giving Tuesday was only in the United States. In 2016, the fifth year of Giving Tuesday, millions of people in 98 countries came together to give back and support the causes they believe in. Over $177 million was raised online (up 52 million from 2015) to benefit a tremendously broad range of organizations, and much more was given in volunteer hours, donations of food and clothing, and acts of kindness.

Arlene"He's my hot water bottle," says Arlene of her kitty, Andi. Arlene is grateful to LifePath for the support she's received to help her maintain her independence so she can continue living in her own home and caring for her animals.Your donations can even double as holiday gifts to loved ones when made to local nonprofits like LifePath in honor of your gift recipients or in memory of their departed family member or friend.

LifePath invites you to be part of Giving Tuesday this year by giving to help elders and people with disabilities like Arlene (in photo) not only to stay independent but also to keep a passion for life. Make a charitable donation onine or send a check made out to: LifePath, at 101 Munson Street, Suite 201, Greenfield, MA 01301.

You can also learn more about volunteer opportunities with LifePath.