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Celebrate Christmas Charitably

Celebrate Christmas Charitably

Christmas is just around the corner! And after the year we’ve had, it feels like we could all use a little comfort and joy.

We’re in the season of giving, and there’s no better time to spread the love. But this year has been a little different. With the extreme economic uncertainty and widespread job insecurity brought on by nine strenuous months of COVID-19, giving back may not be at the forefront of your mind. 

Charitable giving is a yearly tradition for many folks, so much so that the National Philanthropic Trust recorded nearly $450 billion in donations in 2019. Unfortunately, it seems that the spirit of giving may not carry over to 2020. Economic researchers predict that COVID’s financial impact will also significantly effect charitable donations as the year draws to a close.

But all is not lost. While 2020 has been incredibly difficult for everyone, it has also shown us the remarkable resilience of human nature. It has also shown us that a little bit of kindness, decency, and compassion can go a very long way.

How to Donate

Giving back starts when you take stock of your situation. What do you have to give? Is it money? Time? Expertise? Perhaps it’s a combination of these things. Not all donations come in the form of cash, so consider whether you’d like to donate money, goods, or services. Keep in mind that not all charities are currently accepting material donations or volunteers. Understandably, there’s a lot of wariness around health protocols.

However you choose to give, your donation is welcome and much needed. Now it’s up to you to decide whether you want to keep your contributions local or support a national or global cause. It makes sense to donate to a cause that is close to your heart. Think about where your passions and values lie. Be sure to research your charities of choice. Sites like Charity Navigator make that part easy.

A Different Way to Donate

Giving back doesn’t have to mean donating a chunk of change, though. Of course, that is one way to go, but here’s another: this year, consider shopping local. With all the folks you have to buy for this Christmas, it may be convenient to expedite your spending over to Amazon. It’s fast, it’s easy, and it’s cheap! What’s not to love?

If you’re a business owner, you probably already know that this year has been tight on the finances, and that applies to your local shops as well. If you can, why not give your friendly neighborhood businesses a boost? Shopping local is good for the economy, and it helps keep small companies afloat. These are the mom-and-pop shops, the local artisans, and the grassroots entrepreneurs. You get something, they get something, and we can all feel good about supporting the local industry!

This holiday season let’s remember what’s really important. Kindness and goodwill may sound a bit cliché, but they really do make the world go ‘round. No matter what you do this season, do it with humility and an open heart. It will feel great—we promise!

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