My family decked our Christmas tree, hung the stockings, and adorned every doorknob and flat space with some kind of red-green-glitter decoration. I saw my happy kids and warm house and couldn't help thinking, I feel so blessed, followed by some sadness that everyone doesn't feel full in December. What about the parents who don't have the means to buy something, the kids who try not to look forward to much.
Here are some organizations you (and your family, office, or group) can contribute to in order to make the Holidays a little warmer, a little happier, for someone else.
Every city has shelters and local ways to help. Google "Christmas Charity [City State]" or "Holiday Charity [City State]" to begin your search results. Call shelters or large churches to see how you can help.
I first read about Hurricane Sandy Toys from MeRa Koh's blog. You have until this Friday, December 7, to order a wish list item from Amazon, and it'll go right to the hopeful kid who asked for it.
Angel Tree: Christian program that delivers gifts to children of prisoners, along with a message of hope to the family.
Operation Christmas Child: Follow the guidelines to fill a shoebox with much-needed items. Imagine a shoebox full of blessings.
Compassion International: Sponsor a child for a monthly fee; change a child's year and life.
Children's Hopechest: Over 100 active partnerships in Asia, Africa, and South America. Engage your children by sponsoring a child.
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3for5.org: Donate $5 and invite 3 friends to do the same. Small change to change someone's life with clean water.
Hugh Jackman has been a recent topic around Today's Mama, and he's also supporting Laughing Man, "All be happy" coffee, teas, and gifts inspired by a trip to Ethiopia and a humanitarian interest there. If you're going to order office and neighbor gifts, why not from Laughing Man?
More to chew on for the Holidays...