‘Tis the season of giving. And the season of using abbreviations like ‘tis, apparently. Mostly, it’s the season to shop.
But if you’re a Babe with Heart, you don’t just spend spend spend without thinking of how you can make a gift that touches lives beyond your immediate family.
Here are four ways to support super cool charities this Christmas:
Make the World Better with a Sweater
Save the Children is inviting people all over the UK to wear a Christmas jumper on Friday December 13 and donate £1 to help kids in need. Until the end of this week you can head to their pop-up Woolly Wonderland at Westfield Stratford where there are customisation workshops, knitting natter, storytelling with The Gruffalo and Elmer in the Snow and more fun.
And don’t forget to don your Crimbo threads this Friday – it’s all for a fantastic cause, Ms Claus! Follow www.facebook.com/ChristmasJumperDay or @savethechildren and #xmasjumperday on Twitter for updates. Or just text WOOLLY to 70050 to donate your £1!
Write a New Christmas Wish List
Do you remember the letters you wrote to Santa as a child? I used to wish for everything from my sister’s Barbie kitchen (I only ever had Sindy or her Barbie hand-me-downs) to a baby brother or sister whom I could look after/boss around (being the youngest was sometimes a pain in the whatsit). Nowadays as I watch my boys scribble out their wish lists, I’m leaning towards getting them something more meaningful and enduring than the latest gadget or toy. Action Aid offers child sponsorship at just 50p a day – or £180 a year, less than the average UK household spends on Christmas toys annually (that’s £310, for the record).
When you sponsor a child through Action Aid in another country, it helps connect you and your little ones to a world beyond their immediate grasp and can create a powerful shift in how you appreciate your own life circumstances. Each sponsor receives a photo of the child and their life story, two handwritten messages from them a year, two newsletters a year from staff in their child’s community and detailed updates showing exactly where their money goes. A brilliant gift that truly keeps on giving – and no batteries or screwdrivers required!
Save Santa’s Home
Help! The Arctic is melting and the big guy and his reindeer are in danger of losing their home. But Greenpeace has set up a web site that hopefully will get more people to take action and rescue the North Pole. All you (and your friends and family) need to do is click on and sign the petition to protect the Arctic, save Santa’s home from melting away or stop him getting so fed up that he cancels Christmas altogether!
You can also send a Greenpeace Christmas e-card designed by celebrity artists. A simple but poignant way to educate your little ones about the impact of climate change, and to do your small part for the greater good. Keep up with the campaign on Twitter with #SaveSanta.
Give as You Live
One of the simplest ways to keep on smiling while you’re ripping through that credit card is to sign up to Give as You Live. The award-winning giving platform allows members to shop at thousands of partner retailers – John Lewis and hundreds more – and for every purchase, they donate a portion to any UK cause or charity you fancy. Best part is it doesn’t cost you a penny extra and it actually gives you a worthy reason to shop until you pop. Now that’s what we call a win-win!
Photo credit 1: Save the Children Woolly Wonderland
Photo credit 2: Karina Rivera, ActionAid Guatemala.
Photo credit 3: Greenpeace Save Santa card, cartoon by Seppo Leinonen