It can’t have escaped your notice that Christmas is on its way. Time to get started on the to do list to make sure everything is just right come 25th December. For me, that means reviewing the space in the house to make room for family visits, festive decorations, the Christmas tree, and of course the gifts that descend on the house over the holiday season.
Spread the Christmas Cheer
But Christmas is also a time for giving. And the best kind of giving is the kind that helps those less fortunate than us. So what can you do to help spread the Christmas cheer?
- Sending cards at Christmas is a great way to reach out to family and friends – especially those we don’t see much throughout the year. If you enjoy buying, writing and sending cards at Christmas consider buying those that also raise money for charity. A quick search of your favourite charity will let you know if they sell cards.
- Would you like to raise money for your favourite charity while you shop online? There’s an app for that! Give as You Live raises free funds for charity with your Christmas shopping. All you need to do is sign up, choose your charity, download the Give as You Live app and shop away. They do the rest. And the great news is, it’s not just for Christmas, it works all year round. That’s a real year round feel-good factor right there!
Real Scottish grown Christmas trees
Ever conscious of our carbon footprint, choosing a real Christmas tree makes sense. They’re not only great for the environment – producing oxygen as they grow – they also provide habitat for wildlife. An artificial tree made of PVC and metal uses up large amounts of energy in its production and eventually ends up in landfill, where it take years to degrade. Crimbotrees produce Scottish grown Christmas trees – and for every tree sold, they donate £5 to Maggie’s Centre Edinburgh to support the great work they do helping families affected by cancer.
Could you give the gift of time? Volunteering is welcomed by so many organisations at Christmas, and none more so than The Social Bite, which runs a range of projects to tackle homelessness in Scotland. Check out opportunities at one of their social enterprise cafes – at least 1 in 4 of the staff have experienced homelessness – or take part in their nationwide sleep out to raise funds and awareness of homelessness – Sleep in the Park. It’s on Saturday 8th December, and there’s a sleep out near you.
Charity Begins at Home
They say charity begins at home, and Christmas is a great time to check on neighbours – especially if they’re older and have no family to spend Christmas with. Setting an extra place at the Christmas table might mean the world to a lonely person.
FInally, Pay it Forward has become a popular random act of kindness all year round. Lots of cafes and restaurants will allow you to pay the price of a meal or a coffee in advance for someone who needs it. Just ask.
I hope that’s given you some inspiration for spreading the Christmas cheer, and that you and your family enjoy the festive season.