Sunday, November 18, 2007
All I want for Christmas is...
I spent time yesterday tidying up the house, vacuuming, dusting and organizing things. This is the most fruitless chore of my week. No matter how clean things are, they will get dirty again and the task has to be repeated and repeated. There are too many "things" in our home, souvenirs, knick knacks, decorations, etcetera that we have accumulated in the last half-century.
With Christmas coming, the question is asked, "What do you want for Christmas?"
But that answer does not satisfy most askers. Buying out of obligation is such a stressful trap. At work, gift exchanges are popular and as I work in several areas, I could be involved in a number of $10.00 gift exchanges for gifts that will be re-gifted or thrown out.
Last November I wrote a post on this same topic called Christmas Frenzy. And I wrote about a gift I received from my sister-in-law that was very meaningful. I received a catalogue in the mail this week called Gifts of Hope from Plan Canada. This charity has a number of projects that a person can donate to that would make a difference in the life of someone in a third world country. Here are few of the many options available...
$40 for goats in Nepal provides milk and income for a family
$300 for cows in Zambia and Ghana provide the same benefits
$30 buys school books for one child in Sierra Leone
$30 buys equipment for a physiotherapy unit in Uganda
None of us would want to donate to a poorly run charity so it is important to investigate how the organization is run and what percentage of the funds raised actually go to the project. Some projects sound good, but are not culturally sensitive.
Here are a couple of investigative links.
Charities and Giving, A Revenue Canada site with information on assessing charities.
Charity Navigator, an American site with many interesting links.
Happy Shopping! Now you know what I really want.
Here are a few more links from people who commented on this post.
Presbyterian Disaster Assistance