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Give Back Together

Although you may feel overwhelmed as the holidays approach, I’m sure you can schedule at least an hour to help families less fortunate than yourself. Give back to your community by signing up or even creating your own project. Not only will it teach your child compassion, but the feeling they experience as they help others is priceless.

It will actually make you feel better to do something for others. It can take your mind off the shopping lists, meal recipes, and your in-laws arriving and let you really think about the importance of what you’re doing.

Here is your challenge: Give back as a family.

There are plenty of kid-friendly charities that would love you and your children to get involved. Pick something together so they also feel a connection to the project. Here are some great charities that could really use your help.

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Project Linus

Think about how many blankies, lovies, stuffies, and cuddly things your child has. I bet they love them so much and would be incredibly sad without them. Project Linus is dear to me and will be to your child too. The project collects blankets at their chapters in 50 states. The blankets are homemade lovingly by adults and children from all walks of life and many different sources.

If you can handcraft a blanket, that’s wonderful! You can become a “blanketeer.” If not, you can donate your time, any needed materials, or money. You could even teach your child how to knit or crochet. Blankets are collected at the many chapters and distributed to kids in hospitals, shelters, social service agencies, or anywhere a child may be in need of a big hug.

Blankets are such an easy way to give back and they provide a needy child with so much: warmth, comfort, and a good nights sleep.

Heifer International

Heifer is such a great charity because you will see it giving back long after you get involved with the charity. Their goal is to end poverty and hunger. You can get involved in SO many ways with Heifer. They work globally to link communities and provide sustainable agriculture. They go to places that have been destroyed by war or disaster. They don’t just give them food and water, but teach them how to have it for a lifetime.

Families that receive gifts from Heifer then pass on the outcome to other families in need. Whether it be livestock, water purification systems, sustainable farming techniques, etc. Heifer sets up impoverished people with the key essentials they need so they can spread their knowledge and donations.

One Warm Coat

One Warm Coat collects coats that go directly to children, women, and men in need. A winter coat is something we probably take for granted but it is such a necessity. Adults cannot work effectively and children find it difficult to learn when cold. A warm coat can solve a lot of problems but a warm, winter coat is not in many family’s budgets.

Go through old clothing and donate gently worn coats or pick up a few rain or down coats at a local store. Places like Old Navy have great, inexpensive down coats and hooded jackets. You can also host your own drive. Simple instructions how to do so are on their Web site. Having a holiday party? Encourage each guest to bring a coat! Your child can also go through their closets and pick (themselves) a coat they feel comfortable giving away. Tell them some child will be really happy to wear it.

Toys for Tots

Toys for Tots collects new, unwrapped toys during October, November, and December each year. They distribute the toys as Christmas gifts to less fortunate children. You can donate toys at a local drop location, host a Toys for Tots event at your home, office, or other venue, or volunteer at the local warehouse. Push for time? You can also donate online.

Campaign coordinators conduct an array of activities throughout the year and other voluntary events designed to increase awareness for Toys for Tots, and concurrently generate toys and monetary donations.

Emma believes that every child should have a gift to open on Christmas Day. Emma recently raised over $2000 in toys and monetary donations for Toys for Tots, and you can too!

Imagine how many children we could help if we all made an effort!

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3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Lou #

    This is the REAL spirit of giving !!!

    December 9, 2012

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  1. Keep Your Kids “Grounded” Through Holiday Madness | Emma's Children

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Speaking of Marriage

Winifred M. Reilly, M.A., MFT

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