Today is #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, after the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday, to kick off the holiday giving season and inspire people to collaborate on improving their local communities and giving back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support.

Among the thousands of charities and organizations that have joined the #GivingTuesday movement are the Promotional Products Education Foundation (PPEF) and the Kids In Need Foundation (KINF), a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that PPAI has supported since 2007. Since its inception in 1989, PPEF has awarded more than $1.7 million in financial assistance for college scholarships to benefit the children of industry professionals. The mission of KINF is to ensure that every child is prepared to learn and succeed by providing free school supplies nationally to students most in need.

Funded by PPAI and donations from the promotional products industry, the PPEF scholarship program enables youth and professionals to continue their education on a collegiate level. The Association and industry patrons have a longstanding commitment of service to the promotional products industry and this fund supports those who demonstrate the same commitment.

Staff and volunteers from KINF have been at The PPAI Expo for the past 10 years collecting donated promotional products after the show closes. The donations are used directly by students whose parents cannot afford to purchase school supplies, and by creative educators in underprivileged schools who use them as incentives, rewards and teaching aids.

#GivingTuesday was conceptualized by 92Y—a cultural center in New York City that, since 1874, has been bringing people together around its core values of community service and giving back—as a new way to strengthen communities and encourage giving. In 2016, the fifth year of #GivingTuesday, millions of people in 98 countries came together to support the causes they believe in. Over $177 million was raised online last year to benefit a broad range of organizations, and much more was given in volunteer hours, donations of food and clothing, and acts of kindness.