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Alternative Gift Ideas: Think Charitably

Carolers by di_the_huntress on Flickr via creative commonsWhile giving and receiving presents that you can open and hold in your hand is a whole lot of fun, there are some alternatives to consider.

Instead of buying lots of little gifts for a big family or for grandma and grandpa who already have everything they need, consider donating to a local food bank in their name or choosing an angel – or a family of angels – from the Angel Tree. In either case you’ll be providing Christmas for someone who might not otherwise have a nice holiday feast or a gift to open. Then share your thoughtful gesture in lieu of a “real” present in a card to let your family or those grandparents know what you did in honor of them.

Another idea that I love is a longstanding project sponsored by our local newspaper called the Community Christmas Card. Readers who donate as little as $2 can have their name included on the “card,” a special page printed in the newspaper on Christmas day. All of the money raised is then donated to a local charity. It’s heartwarming to see the long list of names of our generous neighbors in the paper every year, many presented “in honor of” someone else.

Do you have a lens about charitable giving or other alternative gift ideas? We’d love to see it. And if you haven’t made your lens yet, there’s no time like today. Feel free to leave the lens link in a comment below.

Photo Info

Susan52 didn't know she wanted to be a Giant Squid when she grew up, but here she is and she couldn't be happier about it! When she isn't doing one thing or another here at Squidoo, you'll probably find her spending time with her family or otherwise appreciating life one precious moment at a time.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/PaigSr PaigSr

    Yes this is an older lens but it is focused on giving. And the nice thing is some of these gifts can be given in their name. Check it out and see what I am talking about.

    http://www.squidoo.com/they-dont-want-a-present-now-what-can-i-do

    • http://Susan52.com/ Susan52

      Great choices, PaigSr! Thanks for sharing your lens.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/RenaissanceWoman2010 RenaissanceWoman2010

    I just updated my Amazima lens today with additional charitable giving opportunities. For as little as 99 cents (one song download), you can ensure 6 children are fed. Purchasing the new Christmas music CD is a way to give the gift of music to someone you love (or yourself), while feeding 29 children. There are also jewelry and other wonderful options. Please stop by to listen to the new music. Thank you! http://www.squidoo.com/amazima

    • http://Susan52.com/ Susan52

      Love the lens and the cause! Thanks so much for sharing with us here!

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/me_glenrose me_glenrose

    This lens is a tribute to the victims of the super typhoon Haiyan.
    http://www.squidoo.com/my-christmas-wishlist-58546

    • http://Susan52.com/ Susan52

      Another wonderful cause. Thanks for sharing this, me_glenrose!

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/grammieo grammieo

    Thank you for this urging to think of others before adding more “stuff” to what we already have too much of. I would love it if my family would make donations, they know the causes that I work for and love…..

    • http://Susan52.com/ Susan52

      I think we just need to tell our families how we feel, grammieo, and demonstrate by giving to others. Have a happy holiday season!

      • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/grammieo grammieo

        You are so right, my family knows and they always seem to do something for one or more of the charities I do things for too! I am blest indeed! Happy Holidays to you too! God Bless.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/terilass terilass

    Local charities have taken over our hearts so we do Christmas with them in mind.
    http://www.squidoo.com/envelopes-to-hold-the-best-gifts

    • http://Susan52.com/ Susan52

      Love this, terilass! Thank you!

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/---Chazz —Chazz
  • Papiers

    Here’s my charity project to use my art to benefit the homeless in Seattle, through a new organization accepting donations. http://www.squidoo.com/leslie-sinclairs-art-show-fundraiser-for-homeless-in-seattle

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/Colin323 Colin323

    My book review, where all the royalties from sales go to support a British charity: The Grandparents’ Association
    http://www.squidoo.com/the-child-within

  • http://Susan52.com/ Susan52

    Love all the participation here! We have such charitable people on Squidoo and each one is very much appreciated!

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/aredey aredey

    thanks for your suggesting

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/getmoreinfo getmoreinfo

    Thanks, this is a great idea.

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