The Christmas saying says, “it is better to give than receive.” It is always fun to get gifts from Santa but the real joy should be in giving them, especially to those in need.
Yesterday, I went to my daughter’s school to pick up an order from a fundraiser and I was listening to the morning announcements while I was waiting in the main office. One of the announcements was a reminder regarding the “One Less Gift” campaign. Hmm, sounded interesting; wonder why my child failed to mention it to me. The purpose of the program is for children to tell their parents to give them one less gift this year and to use the money they would have otherwise spent on them to give a present to someone in need. Since we live along the Jersey Shore, our gifts are going toward families in towns hardest hit by superstorm Sandy.
When she got home from school that afternoon I asked her about the announcement and why she didn’t mention it to me sooner. She said it was because she wants all of her gifts for herself. I was aghast! I though we raised her better than this. This was a real eye opener. We always donate gifts at Christmas as well as donating to the food bank regularly.
She also sees how deeply involved I get in the Halloween Costume Fundraiser so and I just assumed she understood the concept of doing things for a worthy cause. Nope. I was wrong, so what to do?
This year, she will receive the most important gift I can ever give her by turning her apathy to empathy. If you have the opportunity to teach your children that there are many good people struggling to provide for their families and what that truly means, you will be doing them a great service.
This year, choose a cause or two where you believe you can make a difference and include your children as active participants.