Spotlight on America’s True Holiday Spirit
Don’t let the media fool you. The frantic mob scene images from this year’s Black Friday news coverage only tell half the story. Of course Americans know the holidays aren’t just about spending; we also focus on connecting with friends and family through gift giving, parties and sending of holiday cards.
In addition, Americans love to give through charities. We are at our most generous during the holidays, recognizing the needs of those less fortunate than us, regardless of our own position. 50% of charitable donations come during the months of November and December, making holiday giving our bright spot.
Here’s a look at our holiday spirit by the numbers:
- 74% of U.S. adults give during the holiday season
- $48 billion gets donated in the form of cash and goods
- Nearly half of that $48 billion is given by foundations ($20 billion)
What do we Americans like to give?
This holiday season anticipates donations of the following items:
- Clothing. More than 11 million articles of clothing
- Electronics. Over 580,000 electronic items
- Food. Americans will donate 387,160 food items
- Cars. More than 330,000 cars will be donated
- Christmas trees. 11,000 trees go to U.S. troops and their families
Popular American Charities
These non-profit organizations should top the charts again this holiday season:
- Toys-for-Tots. Toy drive for needy children sponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps
- Make a Wish Foundation. Granting wishes every 40 minutes
- Operation Christmas Child. Christmas gifts for children worldwide through Samaritans Purse
- Christmas Spirit Foundation. Environmental stewardship (recycling, hurricane relief) and ongoing support of programs in education, youth camps, and Trees for Troops
- Angel Tree. Gifts for the children of an incarcerated parent.
Give With Your Next Purchase
Other ways you can make a difference include donations to non-profits who partner with retailers. For example, make a direct contribution or send a portion of proceeds with the purchase of your holiday cards and holiday party invitations.
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