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Reinventing the Season of Giving

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On the heels of a hard-fought election cycle, it's hard not to reflect on what divides us, but so much more unites us. I can't think of a better time to rally around an ideal that we all can agree on -- the importance of giving.

Enter #GivingTuesday -- the social and mobile campaign to create a national day of giving at the start of the annual holiday season. This year it's more than just the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping frenzy, #GivingTuesday aims to redefine the most wonderful time of year.

Although the idea was born at 92nd Street Y, the cultural and community center in New York, the creators are making it clear that no one solely owns #GivingTuesday. It relies on countless organizations and people everywhere playing their part to make it a real success. The main goal is to transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season.

Since #GivingTuesday celebrates and encourages charitable activities that support nonprofit organizations, I am proud that the nonprofit I chair has whole-heartedly embraced the movement. Dedicated to fulfilling the needs of more than 32,000 nonprofits with corporate product donations, Good360 has joined #GivingTuesday in an effort to harness the collective power of charities, families, businesses and individuals. To maximize momentum, Good360 has invited its corporate donors and member nonprofits to tweet and post about their giving experience in honor of #GivingTuesday.

Along with the campaign, Good360 is introducing two new initiatives to promote both cash and product contributions. To encourage financial support, Good360 unveils its online Giving Market where individuals can donate symbolic gifts on behalf of their friends and loved ones. The market highlights the substantial impact even small contributions can have due to the fact that for every dollar donated, Good360 is able to deliver, on average, $70 worth of critically needed goods to nonprofits representing every cause imaginable. This means that a $10 donation can deliver $700 worth of toys to sick children or a $50 donation can deliver $3,500 worth of diapers to struggling families. All funds raised will directly help offset the cost of shipping and handling for product distribution to community-based nonprofits that are directly helping people in need.

On the product donation side, I'm particularly excited about Good360's efforts to shout its business case from the roof tops. As the former chairman and CEO of HP, I truly believe that Good360 is a no-brainer for companies on so many levels.

Good360 is striving to make product donation as habitual as recycling. Like many movements, recycling caught on because it became easy for people and companies to execute. Product donation does not have to be an ordeal. With its new motion graphics video, launched today, Good360 has been able to illustrate this simple, win-win proposition in an artfully crafted 60 second snit-bit: Why Product Philanthropy is the Best Idea for Your Business

Not just an inventory solution, Good360's philanthropy model can improve the bottom line, build employee engagement and improve sales as a socially responsible company all by donating merchandise that might otherwise be stored, destroyed, or liquidated for pennies on the dollar. The added bonus? Good360 can tailor a unique giving program that works for a company's specific needs, whether an on-going initiative that becomes part of a strategic plan, direct product pick-ups from retail locations or a one-time donation designated for disaster relief. Good360 does as little or as much as a company needs.

As we gather to transform the giving season as we know it, I am thrilled to invite you to share my enthusiasm for not only this unique organization, but the #GivingTuesday crusade as a whole. This is truly an idea whose time has come.