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Ethical Giving

What a great name – Ethical Giving. There is a name for everything to do with giving now. What is Ethical Giving and how can you incorporate it into you life? Plan Canada has a definition on their site.

“Ethical gift giving is about giving a gift that truly matters, a gift that brings with it hope and change. Ethical giving is taking real dollars going to real projects that change real lives.”

A number of years ago my entire family made a decision to stop giving gifts at Christmas. You will see why, let’s do the math.

1 husband + 2 sets of parents + 2 in-laws + 5 siblings + 5 spouses of siblings  x  1 kid x 2 nephews = 20 gifts x $30.00 per person  Christmas Total $600 (if I’m lucky)

It’s not just the money. You add up the time, the gas, the stress of getting it all done and Christmas is no longer about giving but everything it was never meant to be.

Our family commitment is now to honour each other and teach our kids that Christmas is for giving to others, for helping others. We each take the money that we would have spent on gifts (or what we can afford) and make a donation to a charity or cause we believe in. I also took this philosophy on for all the special occasions around the calendar year. Mother’s Day, Father’s Day (I’m not sure my husband fully appreciated the goat I bought for the village in Africa rather than a new golf shirt!), and birthdays.

Think of the money you spend each year on those items. $500, $1000, $10,000. What could you do to help change the world with that money instead? Do we really need another bar of smelly soap, fuzzy slippers or a toy that never never gets played with.

Here are a few suggestions for gifts you could give:

Plan Canada:

Goat: Not only funny looking, but useful too! These four-legged mammals are a source of milk, important nutrients and income. Cost $75.00

Second Harvest:

For every $1 donated Second Harvest provides enough fresh food for 2 healthy meals to the people on the front lines of hunger in Toronto. $50.00 = 100 fresh meals

World Vision:

Give a girl the opportunity to go to school and realize her potential $60.00

The holidays are just around the corner. There are thousands of choices to give to people in need all over the world. It may even be someone in your community you can support.

What people are saying about 365give

“I wanted to express my gratitude for the teaching you provided today. Your message was delivered eloquently, compassionately, and without judgment. The kids were engaged, and now have knowledge with which they can change the world. We all appreciated how you took the time to help us learn to build positive mindsets and practice happiness.”
Shelley Gardner, Grade 6 Ridgeview Elementary (West Vancouver)
“Actions really do speak louder than words, which is why I believe the 365give Challenge has resonated throughout my community. Every give we do is so important to us and leaves us happier and appreciating our lives a little bit more than before.”
Mahina Niyozova (Tajikistan)
“After watching the 365give TEDx Talk, I was inspired to join and begin a daily giving program in India. Today, along with 12 other volunteer women, we provide 100 meals to local underprivileged children in Bangalore for school every day.”
Deepika Ahuja, Mom (Bangalore, India)
“My life has greater meaning now.”
Renate Jorge, @BeKindBrazil and 365give Member, Family Program (Brazil)
“I just wanted to share that 365give really helped me. I am a better person now, thank you.”
MayLee, 365give Member, Individual Program
“This 365give Challenge has really injected excitement and extra enthusiasm in each work day as I think about what we can do. It has motivated me and the students.”
Cristina Peters, School Counselor (New York City, USA)
“I have seen a huge shift in energy throughout my classroom since doing the 365give Challenge. The Challenge has empowered my students to make a positive difference in the school’s community and beyond.”
Cella Adriana, Special Needs Educator /The Holliswood School (New York City, USA)
“The 365give Challenge helps students understand their impact on others. It opens avenues for introducing and discussing global and local issues in classrooms. It is powerful to watch students of all ages think about how they can make a change in another person’s life with one small act.”
Jessica Hall, Primary Teacher, French Immersion at École Pauline Johnson (West Vancouver, Canada)