Getting While You Give in San Diego

I have a confession. I did not give on Giving Tuesday.

In its 7th year, “Giving Tuesday” encourages those of us who didn’t spend more than we could afford on “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” to give to participating non-profits. It’s a wonderful idea and a global movement that just gets more popular each year.

I especially love when giving is matched, and I’m much more compelled to donate when a match is involved.

All of my favorite charities, museums and non-profit attractions participate in Giving Tuesday. I simply can’t donate money to all of them, but I have found a meaningful way to “give,” while also getting a lot in return.

Family memberships are my favorite way to support San Diego’s amazing membership-based, non-profits. Not only do memberships add to the bottom line of an organization’s budget, having a vibrant, engaged membership base helps the business to thrive.

Our family memberships with the Fleet Science Center, the Museum of Making Music, Pennypickle’s WorkshopLiving Coast Discovery Center, the Salvation Army Kroc Center, Birch AquariumBalboa Park Cultural Partnership, the San Diego Zoo and the New Children’s Museum have benefitted these businesses through:

  • additional tickets purchased by visiting family members when they join us for the day
  • revenue earned when we purchase food, beverages and souvenirs from the shops
  • the positive word-of-mouth we provide that leads to new visitors and members
  • revenue generated from the birthday parties we’ve held at most of these venues
  • the loyalty we feel as members makes it more likely that we donate to fundraising campaigns

As members of these amazing local organizations, I believe that we have received more than we’ve given. From quality family fun, to helping me instill an interest in arts, science and biology in my children, I so am thankful for the opportunity to be a member of these amazing educational non-profits.

Silly Science Fun @ Pennypickle’s Workshop

Some day, when I’m no longer saving for college and paying for hockey, volleyball, art and ukulele lessons, I am sure I will become a bigger giver– on Giving Tuesday and beyond — to these organizations that have meant so much to our family. For now, we show our support by participating in their wonderful programs and sharing our experiences with readers like you.


Happiest of Holidays to you and your family.


PS – don’t forget to ask Santa for a family membership to your favorite non-profit. 🙂

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