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December 3, 2013 / Christian Clansky

Giving Tuesday is a charitable way to close out a week of shopping

You’re familiar with Black Friday (apparently now known as “Thanksgiving”), Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. Today, we get to cap these off with a day of charity – Giving Tuesday. The event was created last year by NYC’s 92nd Street Y and the U.N. Foundation. Last year’s event featured 2,500 partners. This year, that number has grown to 7,500. (USA Today, 12/3)


– The Giving Tuesday website has a ton of resources. It’s worth noting that the Giving Tuesday campaign doesn’t actually accept donations, but instead connects donors directly to charities.

– Lots of celebrities are promoting the event via social media. As we know, Kevin Bacon is connected to everybody, so his influence should really help.

– The Chronicle of Philanthropy and the Huffington Post both have live blogs with updates, news stories, and social media posts.

PHILANTHROPY | At our annual meeting, keynote speaker Dr. Emmett Carson issued a challenge to funders to do more. In her latest column, Tamara reflects on Dr. Carson’s challenge and says that as we strive to do more, we must also celebrate philanthropy’s successes.

Giving Tuesday is a perfect example of how philanthropy makes a difference beyond just funding (Daily, 12/3):

To support [Giving Tuesday], the U.N. Foundation, which is headquartered here in our region, stepped up to serve as a strategic communications partner. In 2012, its first year, nonprofits raised millions of dollars on Giving Tuesday, and one year later, Giving Tuesday is part of the national conversation. One must believe that the U.N. Foundation made a difference. Even the White House has taken note. That’s a truly impressive accomplishment, and just one timely example of philanthropy’s impact.

HEALTHCARE | Last week, the White House announced that had finally met its technological goals. Progress! Unfortunately, the Post reports today that a third of enrollees to date aren’t getting the coverage they signed up for thanks to computer bugs. (WaPo, 12/3)

Related: The Post has an accompanying set of charts that map performance rates of the federal and state exchanges. (WaPo, 11/21)

HOUSING | The District is leading a new trend: micro-housing. Tiny 200 sq/ft homes have been built in an alleyway in Northeast. The goal of the builders is to get people to think differently about residential options. Could this be part of a solution to our struggles with affordable housing? (Atlantic, 12/3)

I don’t know about this. These houses should be at least…three times bigger than this.

WORKFORCE | Following the Montgomery Council Council’s vote to increase the minimum wage, County Executive Ike Leggett has said he’ll sign the bill this week. (WAMU, 12/3)

HIV/AIDS | Following in the steps of his predecessor, President Obama has announced a major commitment to the fight against HIV/AIDS. $100 million will be directed to a new initiative at the National Institutes of Health to develop a “new generation of therapies.” The president also announced major contributions to the global fight, contingent upon participation from other countries. (WTOP, 12/3)

EDUCATION | Greater Greater Education examines the Common Core State Standards and asks whether they “promote big words instead of big ideas.” (GGE, 12/3) This explains why I heard a third-grader telling her mother that she hopes her classmates can achieve honorificabilitudinitatibus.

Ok folks, I’ve got two fun things for you today. The shorter one is a Fatboy Slim music video from 2010 that I rediscovered. Fatboy Slim?! The song is decent, but it’s the dance moves that are worth your time. Believe you me. (When the video starts, X out the annoying ads.)

Next, if you’ve got ten minutes, check out this nifty high school lecture on gravity. The teacher has some really cool ways of visualizing gravity’s effects.

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