Today is #GivingTuesday — a day to help and give

The United Way’s #GivingTuesday today — Dec. 1 — is designed to bring awareness of local need while urging the community to help during the busy shopping season, and throughout the year.

“We expect to see a handful of gifts come in on #GivingTuesday, but the idea is to make sure that people understand the need and help,” said Amy Luppens, assistant director of the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore.

“It’s a national event, but it’s every day, really. I hope people think of us all year long. Local non-profits are trying to make it easier for people to give. On our Facebook page, for example,  there’s a link there that says ‘donate now.’ That makes it a lot more accessible for people who prefer to do it on line,” Luppens said.

She said  #GivingTuesday follows Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday to, “kick-off the holiday giving season and inspire people to collaborate in improving their local communities and giving back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support.”

A news release stated the effort “harnesses the collective power of a unique blend of partners —  nonprofits, businesses and corporations as well as families and individuals — to transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season.”

Kathleen Mommé, executive director of the 71-year-old Lower Eastern Shore chapter, said although a single person can’t provide all needs, United Way demonstrates that, acting together, people can “make a real difference in the lives of our most vulnerable neighbors on the Shore.”

During its 2014-2015 campaign year, the United Way provided about $1.3 million to community programs and helped to change the lives of 77,000.

“Individuals giving to your local United Way on #GivingTuesday can rely on the responsible stewardship of their contributions to be directed to those facing poverty locally by alleviating the effects and moving them toward self-sufficiency,” she said.

Mommé called the United Way a “cornerstone of support for its 29 agencies with 62 programs.”

Anyone interested in giving or volunteering can call 410-742-5143 or see


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