The joy of the holiday season is upon us. Cool temperatures, twinkling lights and shopping escapades are quickly becoming a part of our daily routines. With all the commotion that comes with this magical time of year, the true meaning of the season can easily be overshadowed by other, more superficial factors.

Scoring an amazing deal for those sparkling earrings you’ve been eyeing at the mall, making sure you have the perfect dinnerware for your holiday bash or getting your hands on this season’s must-have gadget are some of the little things that consume us this time of year.

Giving Tuesday is a global day of giving that reminds us that after all the shopping events that recently took place (Black Friday and Cyber Monday), the spirit of giving back never goes out of style.

Coldwell Banker’s “Give Where You Live” Campaign

Coldwell Banker offices throughout California have been celebrating the essence of the holiday season by hosting charity drives to brighten the spirits of children and adults who need it most during this magical time.

In Northern California, offices are participating in Toys for Tots, where new toys are being collected for children throughout the Bay Area and Sacramento/Tahoe area. Participating offices are also sharing the warmth by hosting One Warm Coat charity drives, where new or gently used coats are donated to local children and families to help keep them warm. Offices will be collecting donations for both campaigns through December 12. Click here for more information on both campaigns.

Southern California offices are also getting in on the fun by collecting donations for Toys for Tots throughout their Orange County, Palm Springs, San Diego and Temecula Valley offices. For more information on the campaign, click here.

Other Ways to Give Back

Giving Tuesday inspires us to give back in numerous ways, whether it’s lending a hand to organizations, charities, events or any other creative form of end-of-year giving.

With that in mind, here are a few other ways you can get involved in giving back this holiday season.

  • Help Alleviate Hunger and Poverty: Assist struggling families who are dealing with hunger and poverty by donating a gift they’ll be able to utilize and benefit from in more ways than one. By purchasing an animal for a family through Heifer International, you’ll give them the opportunity to use the animal as reliable source of income thanks to the agricultural products that can be produced from it. Options start at $20 for a flock of chicks and run through $1,500 for a Joy to the World Basket which includes two sheep, four goats, one heifer and two llamas.
  • Support Humanitarian Needs: Assist one of the many efforts of the American Red Cross by donating to its Disaster Relief, Service to the Armed Forces or International Services programs which provide individuals and families in need with supplies and essentials to live safely and comfortably.
  • Let Our Troops Know You Care: By sending a Care Package to deployed troops worldwide through Support Our Troops, you’ll not only provide them with basic necessities and treats, you’ll also bring a smile to their face by letting them know people here at home care and are grateful for their services.
  • Help Animals Across the Country: We can’t forget about the animals that bring so much joy into our hearts. A one-time or a recurring monthly donation to the ASPCA helps their efforts in rescuing, protecting and finding loving homes for animals throughout the U.S.
  • Give the Gift of Food: Join the fight against hunger by donating food at various food banks and drives in your community. You can also donate monetary gifts to Feeding America where funds will be distributed to Feeding America’s network of food banks.
  • Support Wildlife Conservation: Help protect elephants, penguins, snow leopards and other precious wildlife by supporting Wildlife Conservation Network. WCN works with leading independent wildlife conservationists to save the world’s most endangered species. 100% of your donation supports the species of your choice.

TIP: Before you give, make sure that the charity you are donating to is reputable and the money will be used to directly support your cause. GuideStarCharityNavigator,and CharityWatch are a few websites that can help you assess an organization’s financial health and budget breakdown.

How will you give where you live this #GivingTuesday and throughout the holiday season?