You know they say it’s better to give than to receive? Well, we don’t know who ‘they’ are, but they have a point. There’s something about a selfless act of kindness that gives you that warm, fuzzy feeling. That’s especially true at this time of the year. Here are a few ideas of how you could make it a Christmas to remember for so many.
Donate to a charity
One of the most popular ways of ‘giving back’ is by donating to a charity. Charities, particularly small ones, always need extra finance support. But which to choose? One idea is to think about any good causes that are close to your heart. Perhaps you’ve lost a relative through cancer, for example. Or you have a friend going through depression. Christmas is a time when we remember loved ones who aren’t around anymore or who are struggling. Making a donation to a charity in their name is a wonderful way of keeping them in your thoughts – and helping other people going through similar challenges.
Give your time
Giving your time around Christmas is such a rewarding thing to do. Many organisations need an extra pair of hands at this busy time, and your help would mean the world. Why not locate your nearest soup kitchen perhaps, or a homeless shelter? The Salvation Army, for example, is always on the look-out for kind-hearted people to muck in at food banks, community cafes and lunch clubs. You could also volunteer your time through charities who support elderly people, many of whom spend Christmas on their own.
Shop on your doorstep
There’s soooo much to buy at Christmas, isn’t there? Prezzies, turkey, tree, booze, sprouts(maybe)… Although it’s very tempting to pop along to the nearest hypermarket or shopping centre and do it all in one go, trying to shop locally would certainly be the more generous and ethical thing to do. Buying on your doorstep is vital for supporting local businesses and establishing a sense of community. You’re also guaranteed fresh and seasonal produce, a more personal service and a much smaller carbon footprint. Wins all round!
Gifts that give back
No one needs another pair of socks or fizzy bath bomb. Honestly, they don’t. This Christmas, consider giving gifts that help someone or something else. Adopt an endangered or vulnerable animal for a loved one, for example. Many offer lovely adoption packs including things like certificates and pictures. Maybe buy a life-saving mosquito net on behalf of a loved one, or a water pump for a farmer in an arid country in desperate need of a healthy harvest. These are the gifts that truly mean something. (Oh yes, and remember to get your Christmas cards from reputable charities.)
Host a festive charity event
Christmas is such a sociable time. So why not organise a cosy get together for friends and family – and raise some money for a great cause while you’re doing it? Just think… A festive coffee morning, selling mince pies and mulled wine, with all proceeds going to a local charity. You could have a special prize for the best(or worst) Christmas jumper. Maybe even throw in a raffle too, and approach local business and ask if they’d like to donate a prize.
The act of giving Christmas gifts is a sign of showing someone you care. And knowing that you’re helping others while you’re doing it is the icing on the Christmas cake. Happy Christmas, one and all!