Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Simple Suggestion #189 ... Give a gift that makes a difference

What do you want for Christmas this year? Is it something you really need? I could use some new oven mitts -- but if I'm totally honest, the ones I have still work just fine (though they're a bit worn and kind of ugly from past baking "accidents"). And the rest of the stuff on my Christmas wish list isn't really essential to my well-being, either -- or anyone else's, for that matter.

So I'm thinking I should be more like my mom. For our family Christmas exchange, she put "men's briefs" on her Christmas wish list. Not because she's odd that way, but because she knows that there's always a shortage of underwear for homeless guys who visit the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Clothing Room where she volunteers.

What if everybody on the planet gave/asked for gifts that made the world a better place for others, not just for themselves? Here's a funny little video in that vein to make us all think!

There are many organizations that provide necessary items to those who need them -- in our own back yard or in the developing world. Even better are those organizations that help people to help themselves, like microloan groups.

If Kid President (who is pointing his viewers to Unicef's inspired gifts.org website) has you thinking, here are a few more websites worth a visit:

Donate toward housing a family (Habitat for Humanity)

Give a microloan to help someone make a living (Kiva.org)

Donate toward justice issues in the developing world (Development and Peace)

Give an education (Mennonite Central Committee)

Donate food producing livestock (Food for the Hungry)

Give the gift of food (Canadian Foodgrains Bank)

Donate water  (Plan Canada)

So here's a note to the person who has my name in our family gift exchange: Ignore everything I may have told you that I want for Christmas. I'd be happy to receive a donation to any of the above organizations! Or, some men's underwear...

P.S. Looking for more Simple Suggestions? Click here.

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