Give Up the Gimme

Local Ideas for Holiday Giving
Give Up the Gimme

The holiday giving season can quickly become the holiday ‘gimme’ season for kids. So to help change their focus from the ‘getting’, we found some great local charity ideas that put the giving back where it belongs. 

Give a Gift
Putting a gift hamper together is a great way for children to understand that others have less, and by sponsoring a family, the giving becomes much more personal. The YWCA Presents of Peace supports single mothers and their families living in the city. The Christmas Bureau has some great options, including Adopt-a-Family in Surrey, and Family Services North Shore. Each program has different suggestions for meals and gifts, so read the details first to ensure your family can make the commitment. If a hamper is not feasible, Family Services North Shore accepts new, unwrapped toy donations to their Toy Shop for needy families.

Give Time
Ronald McDonald House BC is a home away from home for out-of-town families whose seriously ill children are undergoing treatment at BC Children’s Hospital. Located in Shaughnessy, the house gives parents and siblings a comfortable, affordable place to stay during a difficult time. There are many ways to help these families, but Ronald McDonald House BC also accepts meals. One family, or a few families, can make cookies or prepare a meal for the visiting families and then coordinate the delivery with the Director of Family Services. For kids who love to cook, this could be a fun way for them to give back this holiday season.

Give a Donation
Some kids have a particular soft spot for animals, and BC SPCA has a great program for families to help animals in need through their Pawsitive Gifts program. For as little as $10, children can make a gift donation in someone’s honour for a particular animal’s care. In return, they receive a holiday card that they personalize and send (email or mail) in lieu of a gift to that special person (perhaps Grandma shares this love for animals). 

Of course, there is also The Province’s Empty Stocking Fund, in its 92nd year. With lots of kid-oriented fundraising events happening throughout the Lower Mainland this month, it’s a great way to give back while having some family fun.

So instill the spirit of giving into the season, and with any luck, it will become a family holiday tradition.

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Tagged under kids, holiday, christmas, charity
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First published 2010.12.09

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