Give Back While Shopping This Holiday Season



Can you believe Christmas is right around the corner? Me either. The year flew by! We have had our share of ups and down this year, no doubt.  The holiday season tends to be the time we think the most about how we can give back. And although we should work on giving back all year long – giving back this year can be easier than you think, especially with the partnership between Give Back Box and Goodwill.

Are you preparing for holiday parties, cleaning out your closet for the new year, or looking for a way to help others? I know I am! Luckily, Goodwill provides ways to fulfill all of these goals. Not only can you shop for your holiday outfits, but you can also make a difference in the lives of people in your community by donating to Goodwill.

When this time rolls around, each year, I always think more about how I can help those less fortunate. And if you know me, you know that giving back and helping charities is something I do all year long. Unfortunately, I never find the time to do all of the things that I want to. Until we have more than 24 hours in a day, I will likely never have the time to do all of those good deeds.

This year, even with all of the chaos, I have found a way to give back while I shop! All of those extra boxes I have from online shopping can now be put to good use. When you shop online this holiday season, many major retailers will send your purchase in a Give Back Box, which will enable you to donate items to your local Goodwill at no cost to you. This program gives every cardboard box a second life to help people in need. Visit for more information.

Another thing we like to do during the holidays is share all of the great deals we found. You know what I am talking about – that text, phone call, email, or Instagram post that lets everyone know what you just bought and how much you saved. Let’s try something a little different this year.

Show us your stuff by doing a “Reverse Shopping Haul” photo or video:


We’ve all seen those shopping haul videos and photos on blogs and social media. In fact, several of my friends make them about their thrift shop finds from Goodwill. But we would love to see a “Reverse Haul” video or photo that shares what you plan to donate using the hashtag #DonateStuffCreateJobs. Share videos or picture(s) of the items you plan to donate and use the donation impact calculator to let the world know how many hours of on-the-job training you are creating with your used stuff — stuff that doesn’t help anyone when it’s in the back of your closet or under your bed.

You can even calculate how much your donation helps your local community by using Goodwill’s donation impact calculator, a feature available within the Goodwill Locator App  and at (click “Explore Our Map” on the homepage to access the calculator). Simply input the items you’re donating to calculate the number of hours of career counseling, on-the-job training, résumé preparation, financial planning classes, and other services you’ve helped provide people facing challenges finding employment.

By sharing this – I hope that you will join me and my family this year in giving back!

About Author


Debbie lives in Philadelphia with her husband and two sons. She’s a #momprenuer who loves technology, toys, travel and anything that helps her squeeze more time with her children into her packed schedule. After graduating from Yale University with a BA and MA, Debbie worked in the travel industry at companies such as Site.59 (a start-up later acquired by Travelocity), and Debbie is currently a partner at Element Associates. In 2012, Debbie helped organize SheCon, and she is a frequent speaker at social media and tech conferences such as BlogHer, SXSW, Type-A Parent, Affiliate Summit, SheConExpo, and ASTRA Marketplace. Along with Candace, Debbie is the co-founder of, which recognizes bloggers for using social media for social good, which is at the heart of what she does every day. Debbie serves on several charitable boards, focusing on education and at-risk students. Find Debbie at

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