'Tis the season to give back. It's the fifth year of #GivingTuesday, it's the official unofficial start of the charitable season. Started by the 92nd Street Y in 2012, the campaign harnesses the power of social media to connect people and causes and inspire those to give. While we're all for monthly donations, volunteering your time, and being of service all year long, we compiled five easy and free ways to give back today.
Sign up to be a marrow donor
Every four minutes, someone in the US is diagnosed with a blood cancer. Help out by adding yourself to Sharing America's Marrow donor database—it's as easy as filling out a form and swabbing your cheek and you might save someone's life.
Log those miles
Turn every workout into a charity run with Charity Miles, an app on iOS and Android where you can donate miles-turned-cash to over thirty charities.
How many tabs do you have open right now? Five? Ten? North of 15 but closer to infinity? Tab for a Cause is a browser extension that helps turn those tabs into donations for charity. They take ad revenue from each new tab and you in turn earn a heart, which you can donate to a variety of charities like Water.org, Save the Children, and Conservation International.
Improve your vocabulary
Free Rice was started in 2007 and its ad revenue makes it possible to donate ten grains of rice for every word you get right, through the UN's World Food Program. But it also benefits education, providing you a simple way to learn new $5 words to impress your friends or ace the SATs. In addition to English, the site supports French, Italian, Korean, and Spanish.
Smile while you shop
If you're already an Amazon shopper, consider switching your bookmark to Amazon Smile. All eligible purchases result in a donation of affiliate income to your nonprofit of choice, from big organizations like the Red Cross or Nature Conservancy, to local charities and schools.
What are your favorite ways to give back?