Today --- Giving Tuesday --- is designed to help us to remember nonprofits as we spend on friends, families and ourselves this season. A couple's recent go-fund-me scam with a homeless man may be scaring some people out of giving this year. Kimberly Sterling of Houston-based non-profit consulting firm Sterling Associates, says, “Things like that happening can damage the reputation of the whole sector. There is a lot of need everywhere and so many good people doing amazing work – and this one stunt is just a tiny TINY incident in comparison.”

She says think globally, give locally. “For instance, a person sees the hunger crises going on around the world. They want to help. So they find a reputable non-profit in the Houston area that is feeding hungry people here. They give their money locally so they can see it benefiting their neighbors.”  Ms. Sterling says that people in the area are great givers. “Americans give money to charities at a rate of 2.1% of their salaries. In the greater Houston area, we give 3.7%. And with our good economy it could go higher.”

Find a non-profit you believe in and trust --- and be generous.  

As Sterling says, “There’s so much need and so much good work being done out there. If we can have Cyber Monday, we can give some it back on Giving Tuesday.” 

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