Helping Hands: #GivingTuesday Highlights Charitable Contributions This Holiday Season

Ageless Giving

Trying to ease your conscious after eating your weight in food and racking up the debt from Black Friday and Cyber Monday? Feeling a little empty and trying to get into the holiday-giving spirit?

Instead of shopping until you drop, give your Benjamins -- and time -- to charitable organizations, because today is the start of #GivingTuesday. A national effort to create a day of giving at the start of the annual holiday season, #GivingTuesday celebrates and encourages charitable activities that support non-profit organizations throughout all 50 states.

This is the second year of the social movement and media campaign, and last year, more than 50 million people worldwide spread the word about #GivingTuesday and the hashtag became a trending topic on social networks, according to the namesake movement.

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San Francisco's Latest Hashtag is All About Doing a Good Deed

Categories: Volunteering

Hashtaglunchbag/ Instagram

Hashtags, love them or hate them, they continue to develop into something beyond a teen's frenzy of #emotions below their Instagram photos. Earlier this year we mentioned the project of collecting photos about those who love San Francisco under the hashtag #nowrongwaysf, and last week we mentioned the guerrilla marketing campaign, #CJMRogueTicket, by the Contemporary Jewish Museum.

Here's the latest hashtag for San Francisco -- and this one is all about doing a good deed. #Hashtaglunchbag is a project that originated in L.A., when a few friends got together and handed out bag lunches to the city's homeless population. They instagramed and tweeted their process under the lunch bag hashtag and have encouraged others to follow their lead.

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Don't Be a Scrooge: Where to Volunteer this Holiday Season

Categories: Volunteering
Don't be a Scrooge!

The holiday season is here, and it's the season of giving. But we're not just talking about giving presents to loved ones and trying to woo your office crush. We're talking about giving back to the community. Whether you are helping out by making donations to the Red Cross to support hurricane relief or serving meals at a local soup kitchen, every ounce of effort that you can give matters. We've compiled a list of ways you can help others in need this holiday season, and we urge anyone willing and able to do so! Basically all you need are arms, legs, a warm smile, and willingness to help.

See also:

Cute Overload: SPCA Pet Adoption Holiday Windows and 3D Light Show with Nutcracker Dancers

Experience Corps Brings the Awesome

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Five Great Places to Support or Volunteer this Thanksgiving Weekend


The holidays are officially, officially upon us. Thanksgiving is Thursday, and then we'll have tree lightings, family dinners, and the discount consumerist death duel of Black Friday, Black Thursday, Cyber Monday, and something-else-I-forget Tuesday. If the hustle and bustle of trying to find the perfect turkey -- or the perfect gift -- is making you wonder what the holidays are really about, you might want to consider volunteering. There's nothing like giving back to make you thankful for what you have, and we've found some great places where you can help out.

See also:

Best Good Guys -- St. Anthony Foundation/Glide Memorial Church

Bi-Rite's Got Your Back for the Holidays

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Community Art Center CELLspace to Become For-Profit Entity Inner Mission


Full Disclosure: I was a core collective member of the CELLspace Community Arts Center from 2000 until 2007. During that time I lived in a small box in the ceiling, sat through more "ritual theater" than I care to remember, and learned that when someone starts shooting at a party you end up with a large pile of high heel shoes because you just can't run fast enough in heels.

If you're involved in community arts in the Bay Area, you've probably been touched by CELLspace in some way. The graffiti and mural covered warehouse on Bryant has been hosting b-boy competitions, tango lessons, art classes, youth programming, and underground dance parties for over a decade. During it's early years CELL functioned almost entirely through the efforts of volunteers and operated on the collective consensus model of decision making. It provided space for artists like the Flaming Lotus Girls, Twisty Tie Joe, and the female hip hop collective Sisterz of the Underground to make a name for themselves, and also helped to create and inspire the warehouse art movement now flourishing in the Bay Area at spaces like The Box Shop and The Crucible. Burning Man's Community Events Director Steven Raspa commented over e-mail that, "CELL has played a vital and significant role in the underground creative community in the Bay Area for many years, serving as a stopping point for touring acts, a stomping ground for local art groups, and numerous mad-capped 'happenings' that defy explanation."

See also:

Best Community Arts Center -- CELLspace

Big Lebowski Party at CELLspace

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Barf-o-Rama in Dolores Park: Protesters Plan Puke-In

dolores park.jpg
flickr/Granada!!! =oP
Possible site of future mall; definite site of future mess.
There's a movement afoot to resist what some call "the commercialization of Dolores Park," and it's about to get messy. A Facebook group called "puke in" Dolores Park, 4-23-11 2:00 pm announces the following:
"I'm gonna puke!!!!! How do you get the attention of the people of SF? The neighbors of Dolores Park have no idea that the trailer issue is even back, so to get the word out and get people talking about it, we are gonna have a protest, sort of. We're all gonna puke in Dolores Park on Saturday the 23rd at 2:00. More details soon. Privatizing our parks makes me sick. How about you?"

Many of the people who plan to toss their cookies have signed an online petition called Take Back Our Parks, which opposes permits that have been or are likely to be issued to vending trucks. Basically: "The undersigned respectfully demand that all necessary measures be taken to rescind the currently issued permits, and a new process be undertaken to fully mitigate all possible environmental consequences, and all resource use and development potential prior to permitting any further commercial activity in Dolores Park."

We've heard of Die-Ins, Teach-Ins, Kiss-Ins, Be-ins, and Drive-Ins. But this is the first time we've run across a civic-minded group hurl.

(Yes, yes, it's a Chicken John event. Yes, yes, he used to do a weekly column for this blog. It's going to be fine.)

Follow us on Twitter at @ExhibitionistSF

Experience Corps Brings the Awesome

Categories: Volunteering

Picture 2.png
Hey look everyone, it's cute!
Said it before, we'll say it again: Volunteer. Especially if you're unemp. or ret.

It's "nice," right? Of course, but it's also frescante for you, refreshing, invigorating. We were gonna say that volunteering is "fun," but it's often better than fun, more than fun. Hence the resort to Fauxtalian.

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