Photo: How to donate to someone you've never met

David Suzuki's family and David Suzuki Foundation staff fill 10 hampers each year. (Credit: Lindsay Coulter)

Are you missing someone important on your holiday gift list? What about your community?

Is this the year you finally volunteer for the local soup kitchen, or donate socks, underwear and non-toxic deodorant or toothbrushes to an organization in need?

I say, yes it is! And there's still time.

How to give to someone you've never met

Option 1: organizations

Check out must-have lists or volunteer hours for organizations. For example:

Mustard Seed in Victoria needs 1,000 turkeys (see wish lists for Edmonton and Calgary)
Union Gospel Mission in Vancouver needs long johns and gloves
Holiday Helpers needs help assembling Christmas bundles or you can sponsor a family in the GTA

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Option 2: hampers

Host a holiday hamper party.

Each year David Suzuki and his wife, Tara, create hampers for 10 families in need with the help of DSF staff, who sign-up to contribute from a list of 22 seasonal goodies like sweet potatoes, onions, oranges or chocolates.

Ask guests to your holiday open house or party with family, friends or co-workers to bring items for a hamper. Local organizations can provide a full list. Or, keep it simple and collect only one item — maybe socks, underwear, gloves or blankets.

Option 3: events

Plan ahead. Before you take part in community events festivals of trees or lights, find out if they accept donations — money or things — on-site. Many festive events make it easy to give!

Option 4: food stores

Donate food where you shop for food! Local supermarkets — Safeway, Save on Foods, Superstore, Choices and others—allow you to donate food items right at the till.

Did I forget something? Tell me how you give to someone you've never met.

Lindsay Coulter, a fellow Queen of Green

December 11, 2013

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1 Comment

Dec 19, 2015
9:18 AM

In 1957, Canada accepted 37000 Hungarian refugees. In December 1957, my seven year-old brother wrote a letter to Santa asking for a lot of toys and left it by the fireplace. On Christmas morning, Santa wrote a note on my brother’s letter and said “sorry, I didn’t get you everything on your list but this year there were so many refugee children. Your old friend, Santa.” Our “Santa” was always so thoughtful and considerate and giving. (and yes we still have that letter today)

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