During the holidays it’s so easy to get caught up in the spirit of wanting. I know I know, everyone says it’s the season of giving, but we give to those we love and then make our wish list of wants and too often forget about those who are really, truly in need. You really can’t blame us though… It’s in our face with ads and commercials and billboards, non-stop about all of the amazing-things-we-have-to-have-and-they’re-on-sale-and-there’s-only-X-number-of-days-until-Christmas-and-hurry-up-and-buy-because-you-can’t-pass-up-this-deal and, and, and….
The reality is, if we can afford to even buy a gift for ourselves or our loved ones, we’re blessed. There are so many out there in need, so many who can’t afford to put food on their table let alone give a gift at the holidays, and it’s so important for us to be aware of that and share the blessings we’ve been given by giving back.
A few Christmases ago I shared about my much needed reminder. It breaks my heart to look at those Christmas Angel trees and see that kids are asking for clothes, the bare necessities. There’s no reason and no excuse for me not to do something for them. And so every year, the kids and I go and choose some names from that Christmas Angel tree and buy for those sweet kids who ask for so little. It’s been a great teaching tool for my kids; they need to know that they are so blessed, that there are tons of kids their age who don’t even have a jacket to stay warm when it’s cold and ask for that rather than a toy. Puts it in huge perspective.
This year marks the 2nd annual Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) Give the Gift of a Great Future Holiday Campaign. You can help them by playing a simple, quick, free Giving Game which will easily donate a gift to a Club this holiday season. I have played a few times, it took me a few mere minutes, and I feel great knowing I helped a child in need!
You can also vote in the Kids Give Back photo contest. After reading through how all of these kids volunteered their time to give back I was so impressed and proud of them! It took me a few minutes to read through the entries, and choosing just one was SO hard! Good news is, you can vote every day through December 19th!!
This year I want to give you a challenge. Take some time and give back. Do the above mentioned game and photo contest. Take a portion of the money you have set aside for your kids, family members, co-workers, and give to someone in need. Take your kids with you and volunteer; create a giving tradition! If you need some tips on teaching your kids the value of giving back, check out BGCA’s tips! They’ve created a list of tips that vary from reading books about giving to volunteering together. Read through them, pick one (or two or three or four or more!) to do with your kids!
Please remember the TRUE reason for the season, and take some time today to give back. More importantly, please teach and encourage your children to give back!
I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Boys and Girls Clubs of America. I received a promotional item as a thank-you for participating. Regardless, all opinions expressed are my own.