Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Holiday Charity Ideas

What charities do you support with your children (or students) over the holidays? Do you give money or volunteer? I know there are a lot of unique ways to give and I'd like to hear some ideas.

In years past I've asked my boys to pick a charity and make a donation (with their own money). One has picked the Children's Cancer Research Fund and the other has picked The SmileTrain. I've had them fill out the envelopes the checks go in with their names on it so that when return mail comes back, it is addressed to them.

My husband and I support two children at a small school in Costa Rica. We donate their tuition each year at Escuela Nueva Hoja. I've previously posted about this school here.

Other organizations I give to are: Challenge Success and the Alliance for Childhood. My husband gives to Reason Foundation and Moving Picture Institute.

There are so many opportunities to give year round, but especially at the holidays. What do you and your family do?


  1. I would add Kidango who serves 2500 low income and high risk children ages 0-5 throughout the bay area. They have a program called Gifts from the Heart. Purchase a gift for a needy child. Contact Julie Kurtz at jkurtz@kidango.org.

    We are in dire need of donations.

  2. The link for Gifts from the Heart (Kidango) is:


  3. Another idea is www.StopHomework.com:

    Stop Homework is supported by a grant from a private founda­tion. Contributions are gladly accepted (and needed) and are fully tax deductible. Please make your check payable to “Stop Homework/Alliance for Childhood,” and send it to:

    Stop Homework/Alliance for Child hood
    P.O. Box 444
    College Park, MD 20741

  4. Here's another one I support:

    The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice


  5. Here are two of my favorites:

    projectenterprise.org (It's NYC-based--quite a distance from the East Bay)

    New York Times Neediest ("all contributions go directly to provide services and cash assistance to the poor")

  6. A thought would be to donate blood. With the economics they way they are, what better way to give, and not have to “give". Anyway, my friend just died of cancer. 40 years old, 4 kids, and the message that I learned from that was the giving blood is very important……

  7. Lots of good ideas there, thanks. My family comes from a very small town where there are many families who have a hard time making ends meet. Each year we would chose someone who we thought could really use a specific item, or someone who needed cheering up with surprise gifts. We would give them their gift annonymously hoping to lift their spirits and hoping they would pass the good feeling along. Sometimes we need only to look in our own back yards to make a difference. This year our hockey team is helping a family with 8, soon to be 9 children with clothes, furniture and gifts for these kids. It is a great opportunity to share the joy of giving with our children and hope they will continue with generous hearts as they get older. Merry Christmas to all and remember it the words of Emerson "You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late."