National Philanthropy Day

Something is celebrated officially each day. For instance, if you are a Parks and Recreation fan, you might want to join Ben Wyatt in spirit for National Calzone Day every November 1, or to skip the shower and take a soak instead on National Bathtub Party Day on December 5.


But around the Community Foundation, we look forward to November 15 - National Philanthropy Day - the most. The timing, right between Halloween (AKA candy-philanthropy-night) and Thanksgiving, a day dedicated to gratitude, is perfect. Before the hustle of December hits, and after everyone has settled into the school year routine. It isn't even that cold yet in the Finger Lakes.

Ever since President Ronald Reagan* proclaimed November 15th to be a day dedicated to celebrating giving, volunteering, and other charitable engagement, communities across the globe have paused to reflect on all the good works they accomplish together.

As professional philanthropists, we plan to make our celebration more personal this year. Sara wrote letters to share with people she loves, Katie crafted some surprises for people doing great things, and I am donating stuffed animals to the Sexual Assault Resource Center for their comfort kits.

Please join us in celebrating in your own way this year too! Food pantries are looking for help with holiday baskets. Your favorite museum would love for you to give the gift of membership or visit their shop to find the perfect present. And nothing makes the loving staff at cancer treatment centers or domestic violence shelters smile quite like a quick note and a check - no matter what the amount - telling them you care about their work.

Afterward, please take a moment to tell us about what you did! Comment on this post, tag us on Facebook, or reach out to Penny Lane, Philanthro-cat, on Instagram or at

It would be an honor to share your National Philanthropy Day story! Keep an eye out for lots of Community Foundation posts from November 15 through December 31. We love watching all of you care for each other and our community... every day of the year.

*I can't wait to tell my favorite aunt, a staunch Republican with a heart of gold, that her beloved President Reagan started this whole thing. That will be my ultimate act of kindness for the day!