Giving the Gift of Climate Solutions on Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday

My wife takes her gift-giving very seriously. We are a Christian family, so the most important gifting holiday is Christmas for us. My wife starts accumulating stocking stuffers for our kids in the summer, and most of her shopping is done by early November. She’s a machine, and I’m grateful to her for taking the lead on our Christmas gifts. It makes my life much easier!

There are two gifts that we always choose together, however. We started a tradition when we became parents – we choose a special charity for each of our children and make a financial gift to that organization. It always has some connection to our son and daughter and what has taken place in their year of life. We write them a letter explaining why we chose each of their charities, and we’ll give them all of their letters when they turn 13 years old. We hope it helps them develop giving spirits of their own.

My wife and I find such joy in these gifts, and I imagine many of you all have experienced something similar. There are so many important organizations doing tremendous work, and Giving Tuesday (December 1) and the upcoming holiday season are a perfect time to support them. I hope you all will consider giving to the organizations doing the work you value most.

Giving Tuesday


I also hope that some of the work you value most is helping to reverse global warming. The climate crisis is the challenge of our generation, and of those generations still to come. Responding to this challenge will take the dedication and hard work of so many. We cannot look to any one sector to solve such a massive and systemic challenge. It will take the dedication of all of us, from businesspeople to clergy, farmers to mayors, and educators to organizers.

This multi-stakeholder approach is at the heart of Drawdown Georgia. As we formed the Drawdown Georgia coalition, we knew that the climate solutions that would work best in Georgia would not all be in the same category. The data has born that out, reflecting the potential of twenty different solutions across five different sectors. Moreover, we see the clear linkages between our state’s most promising climate solutions and issues of equity, the environment, health, and economic development.

Practically, this means that there are more opportunities to make a positive impact on climate than many might realize. Perhaps you’ve supported organizations that feed the hungry in our community with food that would otherwise go to waste. If so, that’s a climate solution. Maybe you’ve supported a synagogue that was raising funds to install energy-efficient upgrades. If so, that’s a climate solution. You might have supported an organization that plants a tree in honor of your loved one. If so, that’s a climate solution. And perhaps you’ve contributed to a community organization working to address the energy burdens of the poorest among us, which is a particular challenge in my hometown of Atlanta. If so, that’s a climate solution. The list goes on and on.

I hope you see how many opportunities there are to make a difference. Yes, many of our climate solutions will require governments and businesses to play a leading role in scaling them. But many of them are being addressed by the nonprofits that are already solving the myriad challenges in our communities. If you support them, you are supporting Drawdown Georgia.

And that is my ask to you. On Giving Tuesday - and every day - please consider giving generously to the organizations that are, even tangentially, working to scale climate solutions in Georgia. If you aren’t sure where to start, just look at the Drawdown Georgia list of climate solutions! See if the organizations you already cherish are making a difference in those areas. If so, tell them that you appreciate their work on the climate.

And if you still aren’t sure what to do or how best to make a difference, you can even support the Drawdown Georgia coalition itself. To make a donation, visit the Drawdown Georgia homepage and look for this button in the lower right corner of your screen:

Donate to Drawdown Georgia

No matter how or to whom you choose to give, and no matter how much, you have my heartfelt gratitude!

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About Author

John Lanier
John Lanier

John A. Lanier joined the Ray C. Anderson Foundation as Executive Director in May 2013. He serves on the Board of Directors for Southface, the southeast's nonprofit leader in research, design, and implementation of a regenerative economy.