Give Back on Giving Tuesday

My son just had his 4th birthday in October. This was the first year he understood the concept of asking for and receiving gifts. We have a super generous family and A LOT of packages showed up on our doorstep starting about a month before his birthday. Each time he would exclaim, “Is it for ME?!” and almost every time each package was for him. Now, however, when we go shopping he says, “Get me this for my next birthday, Mom.” I just say, “Okay… we’ll see,” all while I have horriblephoto images in my head of him tearing through all the gifts that will be arriving for Christmas. I’ve been searching for ways of teaching him how to give instead of receive because I’m nervous that with the onset of the Christmas holiday that he’ll really be a handful about his Christmas list and getting “stuff” for himself. My husband and I have decided to stick to this type of list this year to help combat the giant long list-making horribleness.

His Sunday School class at church is raising money by having the children do chores at home and get paid for them. They’ll collect the money in a few weeks to buy baby chicks for a family in need in an impoverished country. This project has been truly amazing because my son is now looking for jobs around the house that he can do to earn money. Not only has it revealed to me how capable he is to help me, but also I’m becoming more creative at giving him jobs. He’s completely capable of putting away all plastic dishes and silverware from the dishwasher. He transfers wet clothes to the dryer and dry clothes into the laundry basket. He sorts the clean laundry and then matches up the socks. I also give him a few coins to entertain his sister for a while. It has also shown to me that he does have a heart to help others. Whew!

I was really excited when I heard about Giving Tuesday. I wanted to learn more so I jumped online and discovered that it’s an amazing movement that is dedicated to bringing everyone together to remember to give back during this holiday season. Businesses, non-profits, churches, schools and other groups can be official partners while families and other groups can strive to be personally charitable. There are great ideas on how to get your family excited about it as well as tips for official partners.

Many businesses in town are collecting gifts for The Rochester Area Neighborhood House, including The Funky FrogDentists On Main, Home Bakery, Eugenia’s Third Street Hair and James & Olive. These gifts will be distributed to children in the greater Rochester area. Make sure you ‘like’ the RANH on Facebook to keep up to date on different ways you can donate and help our community.

Other ways to participate in Giving Tuesday:

Food drive at Wanderlust Boutique.

Catching Fireflies are selling fair trade ornaments. You can also educate your family on fair trade issues.

Rochester Helping Hands Food Pantry

Whoo U R Upscale Resale For A Cause

ReSale Connection

You probably know how I feel about children and reading, so check out Reach Out and Read here or here.

Look into the Samaritan’s Gift Catalog, but be ready because it might just make you cry.

There are so many ways to celebrate Giving Tuesday. When I started looking into all the different businesses and organizations that give back I felt so proud of our community. The list goes on and on! Don’t forget you can donate time, items or money. All three things are needed! Or you can just do a random act of kindness. However you participate, do not forget how important your kindness and generosity is. You will no doubt touch another person’s life.





About Meghan Zeile

Mom-in-the-know and local writer for Rochester Media. Always looking for tips with kids, family life, and fun local adventures. Contact at

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