Sometimes during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, we get so caught up in what we are purchasing, that we never really stop to think about "The True Spirit of Christmas." There are so many families in need in our country and around the world.
"The holiday season provides the perfect opportunity to honor a loved one and give a gift that has real-life implications on a family in need," said Traci Coker, World Vision Gift Catalog national director. "As little as $16 can feed a family in the US for a day or put a smile on the face of a young child by replacing their makeshift banana leaf ball for a real soccer ball. "
World Vision's gift catalog offers more than 250 gifts online and in the print version ranging in price from $16 to $39,000. These gifts can be purchased in the name of a family member, teacher, co-worker, or child, including many affordable items under $50. Last year, some friends of our family donated goats in our name. My children were so excited about the thought of donating to other children in the world.
The best part about these gifts is that they are self-sustainable. For example, goats given to communities in Africa are purchased in Africa. This allows transformational community development within the most poverty stricken villages.
Here are a few gift ideas:
* Goats ($75): One of the most popular gift items because its milk provides protein for children and the surplus can be sold.
More than 20, 000 goats were purchased last year.
* Feed a family in the US for a day ($16): Here in the US, 1 in 5 children lives in poverty. Gift givers can help restore hope to families that have been struck by disaster, homelessness, or job loss.
* A child's education ($32) : Supplying school fees, textbooks, paper and pencils will help a child reach their full potential.
*Beehive ($150): Beekeeping is a sustainable, year-round way to generate income and is a great source of nutritious, medicinal honey and beeswax.
You can also help by donating to the Maximum Impact Fund. The Maximum Impact Fund gifts help answer specific, urgent needs of children and families that might otherwise go unmet. For a donation of $50 to the Maximum Impact Fund, you will receive a Fair-Trade Coffee set. Delicious coffee flavors from Ethiopia, Sumatra, and Costa Rica blended by OneCup.org. The coffee is delivered in a gift bag of African fabric hand sewn by local women. Also with a hand carved scoop made to benefit orphans of the Kamba tribe.
World Vision has also designed a way for donors to see these self-sustainable gifts in action in real time through "The True Spirit of Christmas Tour". For the third consecutive year, World Vision staff will be traveling across the world this December to see the impact that goats, sheep, and other gifts have on families and children. Donors can follow "The True Spirit of Christmas" on Facebook at www.facebook.com/thetruespiritofchristmas.
*disclosure: I did receive a Fair Trade set of Coffee. I did not receive any other monetary compensation for this post. All opinions expressed by me, are my own.