TWIN FALLS — Most people focus on getting good deals and bargains while out shopping for the holiday season. But it's also a time for thinking about and giving to others that may be less fortunate.
"Giving Tuesday", or the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, is all about assisting local nonprofit organizations and helping them in their efforts to benefit the community.
“It’s really just for people to kind of take a step back in the hustle and bustle of the holiday and to give,” said Bri Owen, the director of Operations for the Boys and Girls Club of the Magic Valley.
The Boys and Girls Club is one of many organizations in the area that rely on donations just to function, which is why this day is so important for all nonprofits.
“Part of our job is figuring out how we’re going to raise funds to operate and serve kids and pay staff and do everything that we need to do to keep our doors open,” said Owen.
Money tends to be the most popular choice among donors. Yet the Boys and Girls Club has received a variety of donations in the past, like food or clothing, and in turn, they have been able to help other families. The Boys and Girls Club is not the only one that benefits from donations, but the donors do as well, especially if they're passionate about something specific. Those who donate have the ability to choose what their contribution goes towards.
“If a donor earmarks their donation and says, I want this to be used for specifically, art programs, then that’s what their money will go to," said Owen. "If someone donates and it’s unrestricted, and they say, use this for whatever you need, then it just goes into our general operating.”
As people get into the giving spirit, the Better Business Bureau does have some advice for those who are looking to make a donation to a specific cause.
“You really want to pay attention to those charities that don’t disclose where those funds are going," said Rebecca Barr from the Better Business Bureau. "If you really want to make your dollars make an impact, do a little bit more digging and find out what that charity is actually doing to help the cause you are really trying to help with those donations.”
The Better Business Bureau is also encouraging people that plan on making an online donation to do it as safely as possible.
“Watch out for name similarities. Oftentimes con artists will put these websites up and it looks like 'Red Cross' but it’s not," said Barr. "You want to review the website carefully to make sure you’re on the legitimate website.”