(Photo from Coombs Outdoors)
Thanksgiving has come and gone, and our annual consumer binge-fest is fully underway. It’s kind of hard to avoid. The commercials have been running since Halloween, the stores and online shopping sites are offering deals you simply can’t pass up, and money goes faster than Santa sliding down a chimney. And while giving gifts to those we love is very, very nice, it’s also worth noting that there are lots of others who could use our help.
Which brings us to today, November 29, or Giving Tuesday. Giving Tuesday was created to celebrate generosity and encourage us to help those in need. It’s a simple idea: Whether it’s making someone smile, helping a neighbor or a stranger, or showing up for an issue or people we care about, every act of generosity counts and everyone has something to give.
Obviously, this isn’t just something to think about on Giving Tuesday. But it helps to have a reminder that giving is the essence of the season, and that there’s something more important than how many Black Friday specials we can score this year.
So with all this in mind, here are a few ski-related charities that could use a donation:
High Fives Foundation: Dedicated to raising money and awareness for athletes that have suffered a life-altering injury while pursuing their dream in the winter sports community.
SheJumps: Works to increase the participation of women and girls in outdoor activities. This is done through high-visibility Get the Girls Out events, outdoor education, youth initiatives, and grassroots recreational gatherings.
Kelly Brush Foundation: Dedicated to improving the quality of life for individuals living with spinal cord injuries by purchasing adaptive athletic equipment for those with financial limitations. It also advocates for improved ski racing safety; supports research to treat and cure paralysis due to SCI. (For my interview with Kelly, go here.)
American Blind Skiing Foundation: Provides blind children and adults with opportunities to build confidence and independence through skiing.
Protect Our Winters: Helps protect the places we live and lifestyles we love from climate change. POW is a community of athletes, scientists, creatives, and business leaders advancing non-partisan policies that protect our world today and for future generations.
Share Winter Foundation: A grantmaking organization working to improve the lives, health, and fitness of youth through winter sports. The foundation strives to make winter sports accessible to a broader, more diverse community, and aims to share winter with 100,000 youth by 2028.
Coombs Outdoors: Founded in 2012 by Emily Coombs in memory of her husband, skiing legend Doug Coombs. Coombs Outdoors is dedicated to empowering local youth to grow and thrive by reducing barriers to outdoor recreation through programs, mentorship, and community building.
SKI4All: Helps kids going through difficult times by providing access to the emotional and physical benefits of skiing.
EDGE Outdoors: Created to attract and retain Black, Indigenous, and Women of Color (including Trans Women of Color) in snow sports while encouraging leadership/exploration in snow and adventure sports.
SOS Outreach: Since 1995, SOS has grown to support over 4,000 youth annually in Colorado, Utah, California, Nevada, the Pacific Northwest, and the Midwest . The SOS journey spans up to 10 years, starting with introductory programs at 15 different ski resorts across the country, with consistent mentorship opportunities to help kids stay engaged and build leadership skills.
Winter4Kids: Embraces the dream that every kid should benefit from the rich experience of the outdoors in winter.
Special Olympics: Provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.
Outdoor Women’s Alliance: Encourages, educates, and engages females through adventure sports worldwide.
STARS of Steamboat: Formed in 2007 by a group of parents, ski instructors, and management from Steamboat to help provide improved winter recreational opportunities for people with disabilities
Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sport*: Promotes independence and furthers equality through access to and instruction in alpine skiing and other outdoor sports and recreation.
New England Adaptive Sports*: Provides adaptive sports instruction to students of varying abilities that meet the Essential Eligibility Criteria .
*(Note: There are adaptive ski & sport organizations in many other places, too. A little searching on the internet will find them for you.)
Please give generously.