Christmas is the season of giving and we believe the best gift we can give this year is kindness. During these challenging times when many people have lost so much, we look at ways you can give back to your local community or to someone in need. Small acts of kindness that can make a big difference to others…
1. Ways to help your friends
This has been a difficult year for so many people. Before splashing out on a gift for friends or family, try asking them what the really need. You could be the person to make their Christmas and give them the help they require.
- Maybe they need help paying a utility bill, their rent or mortgage?
- Maybe they’d love a night off cooking and washing up would love you to shout them a takeaway?
- Maybe they need a petrol refill for their car?
- Maybe they would love a home-cooked meal delivered to their doorstep?
- Maybe they need a cup of coffee and a walk with someone who will just listen?
- Maybe they need help buying gifts for their children?
- Maybe they need help in some other way but don’t know how to ask?
2. Ways to help your community
This December start a reverse Advent Calendar that will help those struggling to make ends meet at Christmas.
Coronavirus has led to increased demand on food banks and, as more of us are buying food online, donations in supermarket collection points are actually decreasing. Simply add a few extra bits to your supermarket trolley each week and pop your extra food items in a box. When you have 24 things inside drop it off at your local food bank. Go for healthy, non-perishable groceries. Here are some suggested donations to get you started or you could contact your local food bank and ask what they need.
- Day 1 Breakfast Cereal
- Day 2 Jam
- Day 3 Baked Beans
- Day 4 UHT (long-life) Milk
- Day 5 Tinned Tuna
- Day 6 Tinned Carrots
- Day 7 Tinned Sweetcorn
- Day 8 Tinned Chickpeas
- Day 9 Dessert mix
- Day 10 Tinned Soup
- Day 11 Tinned Fruit
- Day 12 Tinned Custard
- Day 13 Pasta Sauce
- Day 14 Pasta
- Day 15 Rice
- Day 16 Tea
- Day 17 Coffee
- Day 18 Squash
- Day 19 Crackers
- Day 20 Ketchup
- Day 21 Biscuits
- Day 22 Chocolates
- Day 23 Sweets
- Day 24 Tinned tomatoes
3. Ways to help strangers
Complete a random act of kindness to bring some unexpected joy to other people’s day. Not only will you be putting a smile on someone else’s face, but you’ll be benefitting your own health too!
The warm feeling of wellbeing that washes over you when you’ve done something kind releases hormones that contribute to your mood and overall wellbeing. Acts of kindness don’t have to be grand gestures. Here are five ideas to make kindness the norm this December:
- Buy an extra ‘suspended’ coffee from your local cafe. The barista then logs the second coffee as ‘suspended’, and it can be redeemed at any time by someone who needs it
- Compliment the first three people you talk to today and smile at five strangers
- Let someone jump the queue in front of you.
- Leave some money in the parking meter or vending machine
- Send a Christmas card saying thank you to your local police or fire station.
4. Ways to shop kind
By shopping smarter and more consciously this year you can help others while you tick items off your own Christmas list…
- unhoused.org is the world’s first online Shop for homelessness where you can buy yourself clothing and, for every item you buy, they donate one to someone who needs it. They even stock a self-cleaning hoodie which uses technology to reduce the need for laundry.
- Spend 10% less on each person’s gift and donate that 10% to a charity you know they support.
- Pay it Forward At Inscripture. Help someone get a special Inscripture gift this Christmas. You can make a donation towards a gift for someone in need when you place an order with us. Simply select the amount you wish to donate from the drop-down menu and we will top up your donation by 25%. Click here for more information
5. Ways to get the kids on board
Nurture kindness in kids and start a Christmas tradition of helping others:
- Send handmade cards to residents of your local care home. Age UK figures showed 1.9 million people over the age of 65 often feel invisible or ignored, 1.4 million feel cut off from society and 3.6 million admit that their television is their main form of company. One way to help ease the isolation is writing cards to lonely people in your community
- Put together gift bags for the homeless. Ideas of things to include are socks, gloves, water bottles, wet wipes, hand sanitiser, toothbrushes and toothpaste, nail clippers, plasters, tampons, lip balm, multivitamins and hand cream. Once you have them packed up take them to a local organisation or hostel
- Make some kindness rocks. Collect some stones and decorate each one with a positive message and Christmas design and leave them around your neighbourhood for people to find
- Feed the Birds. Put out food and water in your garden for the birds. Your child will be able to watch the birds arrive and could learn to identify them.
Make someones 2020 a little brighter and a little better by spreading kindness this Christmas ♡
Photo by fotografierende on Unsplash