MARQUETTE — After a weekend of shopping the Black Friday deals and surfing the web for the best Cyber Monday specials, it’s time to kick off the giving season. ABC 10’s Sarah Mac tells us more about how you can support local charities and organizations on Giving Tuesday.

Now that the Black Friday Frenzy has subsided and everyone has awoken from their Turkey comas, it’s time to turn our focus to the community. One way to do that is to participate in Giving Tuesday – an event that is held every year on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

This year the Great Lakes Center for Youth Development is connecting with local non-profits to help push this event.

GLCYD Associate Victoria Leonhardt says, “There’s a few ways you can get involved on Giving Tuesday. GLCYD has been working with a number of non-profits throughout the Upper Peninsula on plans to have different events in their facilities and online.”

Organizations across the U.P. rely on the financial support from the community. Organizations like Start the Cycle – which pairs at-risk kids and teens with mentors to train for cycle events for most of the year.

Start the Cycle Laura MacDonald says, “Start the Cycle is a volunteer biking program through the YMCA, where we train kids to ride the Ore to Shore bike race on mountain bikes. We’re hoping to raise $1,000, and we provide everything for the kids. So Giving Tuesday would be just wonderful to have more resources for them and at the end they get to keep everything. So each year we start from ground zero and fund-raise for all of the equipment we’re going to need.”

Start the Cycle, like other organizations and programs, partner with the YMCA of Marquette County.

YMCA Community Engagement Leader Matt Deal says, “That’s the wonderful thing about the YMCA, and Giving Tuesday in general, is that we do so many wonderful things in the community and we partner with a lot of great organizations, but at the end of the day it’s about making an impact on the people that we serve, and one of the ways that we’re able to do that is through a wonderful program, specifically Start the Cycle.”

If you are not able to contribute a financial donation there are plenty of other ways to give.

“You can volunteer with your favorite organization,” Leonhardt added, “you can give financially, you can do something as small as giving socks to the Rock the Socks Campaign that the Marquette Alternative High School is doing. There’s so many ways you can give back to your community, and having a day that’s really centered on that is awesome.”

Another fun way to celebrate Giving Tuesday is to take an “Unselfie,” also known as a “Selfess Selfie.” Just take a picture holding this sign with your favorite charities name written on it and then share it to your favorite social media site, that way you can connect with givers around the world.

When you share your Selfless Selfie make sure to include the hash tags #Unselfie and #GivingTuesday in the post, and tag ABC 10 and the CW 5 on Twitter and Facebook.

For more information about the GLCYD click here.

For more information about the YMCA of Marquette County click here.

For more information about Giving Tuesday click here.