Thurston County's Hidden Sector

Think #GivingTuesday is just today?


Congratulations, you survived Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, (to my knowledge the Sunday following Thanksgiving does not have a designation except National French Toast Day), Cyber Monday and now Giving Tuesday!

By now, I am sure you have heard of #GivingTuesday but you may not know the background of how this day started.

Not just about money

#GivingTuesday began in 2012 as a simple idea: a day that encourages people to do good.

Over the past nine years, this idea has grown into a global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity. According to the organization’s website, #GivingTuesday “is an inclusive and pluralistic community of millions of givers, with activity in every country on every continent to build the world we want to live in.”

 During these pandemic times, #GivingTuesday emphasizes opportunities to give back to communities and causes in safe ways that allow for social connection and kindness even while still practicing physical distancing. But it does not have to stop today.

What if every Tuesday was #GivingTuesday?

 #GivingEveryTuesday is a series of weekly opportunities to come together to give, volunteer, and show kindness in shared moments with communities, causes and countries around the world.

Here’s what you can do

Get into the Holiday Spirit with the "12 Days of Giving" - A Local Festival of Generosity

This year, several local nonprofits are participating in a pioneering campaign called the "Twelve Days of Giving - Thurston County" which crosses several sectors - food, children, and youth, LGBTQIA+, family support, and the environment. The "Twelve Days of Giving - Thurston County" campaign is an affiliate of the #GivingTuesday national fundraising campaign and coordinated locally by Thurston Climate Action Team (TCAT). TCAT’s mission is to partner with our community to restore earth’s climate and create a healthy, just, and joyous world for all people and our planet. Participating nonprofits include GRuB, Pizza Klatch, YWCA, Monarch Children’s Justice and Advocacy Center, Haki Farms, Thurston Climate Action Team (TCAT), and the Family Support Center. To donate or for more information about the "Twelve Days of Giving - Thurston County" campaign, visit  Twelve Days of Giving – Thurston County , or contact TCAT's Melinda Hughes at (360) 350-6507 or

 Volunteer Opportunity

Yelm Shoreline Riparian Planting - Eagle Scout Project

 Donation Drives

Toys for Tots - In partnership with Toys for Tots, McLane Black Lake Fire Department Station 91 serves as a drop-off location for citizens that desire to donate new, unwrapped toys or gifts. Toys for Tots will pick up on December 16, 2021. For more details got to McLane Black Lake Fire

 Olympia Toy Run - The 44th Annual Olympia Toy Run is this Saturday, Dec. 4th. The Olympia Toy Run brings motorcyclists together for a very worthy purpose: the joy of a child receiving a gift at Christmas. All the toys and money are donated to The Salvation Army for distribution through its Toy n’ Joy Shop. Strapped to bikes four abreast in row after row are brand-new children’s toys. Gleaming bikes sport different names and badges and colors and their riders range from all-season diehards to weekend enthusiasts. For details including the parade route go to Olympia Toy Run

95.3 KGY Holiday Toy Drive - 95.3 KGY has teamed up with up T-Mobile and invite you to donate new unwrapped, unopened toys. Items needed for all ages and can be donated at participating T-Mobile locations. For details go to 95.3 KGY Holiday Toy Drive.

Happy Chanukah – Nov. 28 – Dec. 6

Chanukah, based on the Hebrew word for "dedication", is known as the Festival of Lights. Chanukah is a Jewish holiday that celebrates the victory of the Maccabees over the larger Syrian army. It also celebrates a miracle that happened during this time, where just a day's supply of oil allowed the menorah (Chanukiah or Hanukkah Menorah) in the rededicated Temple in Jerusalem to remain lit for eight days.

Soliciting your ideas

If you know of a nonprofit that is doing something great, celebrating a success, needs some outstanding volunteers or hosting an event, let me know! This column (aside from a little education) celebrates nonprofits! 

Mary Beth Harrington, CVA (Certified Volunteer Administrator) lives in Tumwater. She travels the country speaking at conferences and to individual organizations articulating issues facing nonprofits. Send your ideas to her at


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