I am a terrible gift giver. I mean, I love to give gifts, I’m just useless at finding good gifts. Whether it’s a birthday present, a wedding present, a Christmas present or any other kind of present, I’m just no good at it. My sister has a knack for it. Especially when it comes to the cards. She just has this incredible ability to find a card that sums things up perfectly. Whether it’s a funny card for a birthday, or something a little more sentimental, she always gets it right. Puts my efforts to shame every single time.
As Christmas rapidly approaches I begin to panic as I start to think about the gifts I need and want to give. Presents for my partner of seven years, my Mum, my Dad, my sister – people I’ve known forever and I still have no idea what to give. Gone are the days of childhood when you had to wait for your birthday or Christmas to get that new book or CD – we all earn our own cash now, so it’s especially hard when people have it all – or go out and buy what they want, when they want it.
That’s why I love the idea of charity gift cards. Many charities at this time of year roll out their gift catalogues where you can make a purchase or donation to their work in the name of someone else. What’s particularly great about this is you can target the donation to the person you want to give it to.
Example: My Dad. He’s the hardest person I know to buy for. He doesn’t really read, he’s a handy man but has all the stuff he needs, he doesn’t play sport, he volunteers but doesn’t have much in the way of hobbies that I could buy him things for. But he LOVES the footy. So I checked out Oxfam. For $65 I could make a donation to a program that uses footy as a way of helping young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men. Sold. This way, my Dad doesn’t get something he doesn’t need or want and he contributes to the sport that consumes about nine months of his year!
If there’s a charity you know that’s close to your heart or the heart of the person you’re struggling to find a pressie for, check them out. Chances are they’ll have a gift catalogue or you can just make a general donation on their behalf.
Now, not everyone likes this idea. There’ll always be someone who likes receiving an actual present. People that know me know that this is one of my ‘things.’ I love the idea of sharing our wealth with communities who really need it – rather than buying my Mum yet another scented candle that will sit in a cupboard.
So for those people in your life that that feel the same way, charity gifts can be a great way of spreading a little love at Christmas – or at any time.
Ally Wells is travelling an undetermined path; following life’s twists and turns to see where she might end up, trying to relax and enjoy its unpredictability.