#GivingTuesday focuses on giving to organizations, local communities

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Black Friday and Cyber Monday are over, now it is time for Giving Tuesday.

After a long holiday weekend of shopping, Americans are urged to focus their efforts on end-of-year giving. It's a largely on-line campaign that uses the power of social media to encourage people to contribute as much as they can in one day to the charities of their choice.

Today marks Giving Tuesday, a movement that was begun in 2012 by technology website Mashable and other primarily technology companies and organizations as a counter to the commercialism and consumerism that has overtaken the holidays.

"Giving Tuesday connects diverse groups of individuals, communities and organizations around the world for one common objective: to celebrate and encourage giving", the website givingtuesdaymorg explains.

Giving Tuesday is now a global phenomenon that raised $177 million in online donations a year ago.

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This year, Facebook and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will be matching up to $2 million of funds raised on Facebook for USA nonprofits.

The website GivingTuesday.org features a directory to help you find organizations, charities, events and more ways to donate to your community.

But these are by no means the only local charities or nonprofits worth supporting.

The Press-Republican has always recommended donating to local charities and nonprofits, which usually have lower overhead and administrative costs and get more of the money directly to those in need. There is no risk and it will never cost you more than buying from the official retailer.

Of course, we also understand that people may want to help, but aren't in a position to assist monetarily right now.

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