It's December 3, and I'm already getting a little disgusted with the raging commercialism and consumerism of this Christmas Season. Every. Single. Commercial. implies that you need this and you need that and essentially, that Christmas is all about SHOPPING. I realize more and more every day that it will take great intentionality to overcome the secular messages of this culture. One way I try to do this with our family is through intentional giving during the holidays. The following are a few of our favorite charitable organizations. I don't think it matters necessarily how much you give (Jesus said the widow who gave two mites gave more than all the rest, Mark 12:43) as long as you give according to what you have yet sacrificially and with a humble and cheerful heart. I like to find ways of giving that are easy to involve my kids in so they can develop that cheerful heart early.
We sponsor a little girl, Maureen, from Uganda through World Vision. Each month we have $35 automatically deducted from our bank account and sent to help get her the things she needs: food, clothes, clean water. The best part about child sponsorship through World Vision is that we actually have ongoing communication with Maureen. We send her cards and letters and she sends them to us too! My girls LOVE receiving letters and photos from Maureen. This helps them visualize Maureen's life and realize her need of our help. They absolutely love giving to her and writing to her.
I have filled a shoe box with small gifts for a child at Christmas for as long as I can remember. And now, I love doing this project with my own children. Operation Christmas Child is such a simple, tangible way to get kids involved in giving (and grown-ups too!). It's fun and fulfilling.
Champions for Kids.
I learned about this organization earlier this year through Collective Bias but quickly fell in love. It's great because it is so EASY to get involved. Champions for Kids does "Simple Giving" projects at Walmart. And all you, the consumer, has to do is purchase items from the designated purple pallets, then drop them in the donation bin as you exit the store. Champions for Kids donates the items, like snacks and hygiene products, to kids in need. EASY!
I'm linking this post up with Arkansas Women Bloggers for their #GivingTuesday, which has a heck of a lot more meaning than Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Visit the link-up for more charitable organizations from Arkansas and beyond. Also, I'm the featured blogger over there this month, so check out my introductory post if you haven't already. And also also, don't forget to enter my "Story of Christmas" book giveaway I have going on until Monday.