Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are exhausting. Constant "deals" crowd your social media and television screens making you feel obligated to buy something.
And most Americans did make purchases on one of those days, but today is set aside to remember the charities that help the needy this holiday season and year-around.
As #GivingTuesday trends on Twitter, it is important to remember some tips when picking out a charity to donate to.
1. Make sure the charity has a working email address and a physical address.
2. You receive some sort of confirmation and print the receipt for a tax deduction.
3. Check the IRS's website to confirm if the charity is classified as a 990 non-profit.
The Better Business Bureau has a few of their own suggestions posted on their website:
1. Get the charity’s exact name. With so many charities in existence, mistaken identity is a common problem.Thousands of charities have “cancer” in their name, for example, but no connection with one another.
2. Resist pressure to give on the spot, whether from a telemarketer or door-to-door solicitor.
3. Be wary of heart-wrenching appeals. What matters is what the charity is doing to help.
4. Press for specifics. If the charity says it’s helping the homeless, for example, ask how and where it’s working.
5. Check websites for basics. A charity’s mission, program and finances should be available on its site. If not, check for a report at www.give.org.
John McNamara of McNamara Capitol in Chicago explains the popular text-in donations and things to consider when donating to crowd funding websites such as Kickstarter.
So... where will you be giving today?