Sunday, 13 December 2015

Volunteering at Christmas

Day 13
Volunteering (and giving) At Christmas
Things are getting a little serious today for Blogmas.  Many of us are very blessed and live in a world of some sort of privilege.  BUT, at the same time many people do not live in this same privileged world.  It's wonderful to receive presents and eat lots of delicious food at Christmas time and I just think we should all be a little more willing to help those in need.  This year, I spent my time and money helping one local family and 2 kids overseas.

Not to guilt you into doing anything but you could consider giving up your morning coffee for a couple months (or find a cheaper alternative) in order to do something.  My old pastor would always tell us that if we owned a car we were in the top 10% (or so) of the richest people in the world.  He would often direct us to Global Rich List so that you could see just how rich you are in comparison to others.

Every year some friends and I sign up to do a Christmas hamper for a family in need in our city.  I usually spearhead the project and it usually works out quite nicely.  Basically, you sign up for a family of a size that you are willing to help (since it isn't just me and a couple friends I've requested a family of 8 or more the last couple years) and you buy groceries for the family (for a Christmas dinner and other stuff to last them a little while) as well as presents for any children.  When I spoke with the mom of the family she told me she was trying to implement a family game night and the kids loved books so this year we went above and beyond and put together a little collection of games and books for the family as well.

I think that it is important to note that no matter where people live they could still be struggling at Christmas.  It isn't for us to judge how well off a person is because of the car they drive or the house they live.  Things could be gifts, maybe they bought their house before they ran into trouble and have it all paid off.  Anyone could be struggling financially this Christmas.

Anyways, I would like to think, that is is super easy to do... what I always do is print off (or write out) a list of all the items we have to get and get my friends to sign up for different ones.  Then I take a collection for the presents and go out and buy them.  

Here is our collection of presents!

hamper presents
 and here they are all wrapped under my Christmas tree!

The project I help with for overseas is Operation Christmas Child.  John and I put together these boxes a month or two ago and dropped them off at our church.

Super easy to do... just a trip to the Dollar Store and Shoppers Drugmart and it was done!

Don't have money but still want to give something back?
Consider giving your time.  There are lots of organizations that need volunteers.  It could be anything from a nursing home to a soup kitchen to a pet shelter.
Shovel your neighbours walk
Organize a neighbourhood clean up
Bring cookies to your neighbour.

and I'm sure there are so many others.

I've been reading a book about paying it forward... I think that is the kind of attitude more people need to have... to do something nice for another and not expect anything in return.
Then today I heard a story on the news about a person giving someone money to call a lock smith for no reason whatsoever... with the extra money that wasn't spent this person that needed the lock smith bought and donated some toys to a local charity.  This is awesome.

Are you going to volunteer this Christmas season?
What are you going to do to give back?

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