Today’s Holidailies prompt is simply “A Season of Giving.”
During the holidays, there are always a million ways to give, from volunteering to small financial donations to very large financial donations. We have one Salvation Army bell ringer at the grocery store I pass everyday on my way home who sings Christmas music while ringing his bell. I always make a point of stopping and dropping a few coins into his kettle (Side note: what’s up with these new plastic kettles? The act of dropping the coins in is somehow less satisfying.)
The holiday season is a time of great generosity and a time of great need. Plus it’s also the end of the year, so people are looking to increase their tax breaks. Sure, it might not be the most generous reason to give, but the end result is the same.
The tough part is deciding where to give. There are families to adopt for the holidays and toys to donate to local charities. Food banks around the country are asking for donations due to the increased number of clients. Charities all across the globe are working to feed the hungry and provide homes and clean water and prevent violence. And then there are the charities for the animals, from abandoned and abused pets to endangered species. Another concern is the environment.
One person can’t give to every cause. It’s just not possible. So how do you choose? And how can you bring that into your holiday giving?
One way to do so is to give gifts of giving. At both Kiva and Network for Good, you can give a giftcard for a donation. It’s a very cool idea, especially for the person who has everything and wants nothing, but for whom you still want to buy a little something. You can also give a gift through an organization like Heifer International. “Here, brother, I bought you a goat for Christmas.” And you can always make a donation in someone’s name. I like the idea of giving a donation gift card though, because it allows the recipient to play a part and choose where the money goes. Two acts of giving for the price of one.