Blogmas #4 | Seven Easy Ways To Give Back This Christmas


Christmas is the time of giving and there are so many ways we can all do our bit for charity and those in need! I feel that now more than ever we need to be generous to others and look out for each other, so let's see out the last month of a godawful year by doing something good.

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1. Give As You Live | This is the absolute easiest thing on the list! Christmas shopping is fun but sometimes it's just far less faff to buy gifts in the comfort of your own home and if you shop through Give As You Live they will give a small percentage to a UK charity of your choice at no extra cost to you at all. It takes two seconds to sign up, it's super easy to do and participating online stores include ASOS, Amazon, New Look, Boohoo plus thousands more! Plus it's good way of justifying that cheeky Topshop order as I like to think I'm just doing my bit for charidee. Not just for Christmas, I use it all year round and think it's the most fabulous idea! If you're not sure of which charity to raise for may I suggest the Cystic Fibrosis Trust? 😏 If you do one thing from this list, please do this as it's so simple and we all shop online. Sign up here and happy shopping! 

2. Charity Christmas Cards | Again, a simple way to support good causes. Unless you're supporting a small, independent business and are buying their Christmas cards then try your best to buy charity cards, which you can get practically everywhere now! Not only will the charities receive a small donation you'll also be raising awareness too with each one you send. Paperchase are doing 3 for 2 to support a variety of good causes and I really love the designs at Sainsbury's this year  - their charities are Comic Relief and The British Legion, plus they are selling The Greatest Gift Film Kit to raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital (I'll be buying one as that's where I had spinal surgery as a teen and they were fantastic!)

3. Donate unwanted gifts | We all get them but they don't need to go to waste! Don't let unwanted, unopened toiletries sit there gathering dust - places like your local food bank, Cwtches from Kim or Give And Make Up will put them to good use and give them to people in need. I like to have a good clear out of my stuff before Christmas so often drop a load of stuff off at the charity shop who are always in need of stock but especially this time of year. I'll also be sending old bras to Against Breast Cancer who have a recycling scheme - I had no idea they could be of some use, I've just been binning them! Alternatively you can also sell unwanted gifts on eBay and give a small percentage to charity.

4. Send a Christmas parcel | Many charities have set up schemes where you can donate send a 'parcel' to people in need ranging from toys for children and Christmas dinners to maybe more practical things such as legal help or a bed for the night. Centre Point, Crisis and Oxfam are a few examples, or you can Send A Smile  to patients who will be spending this Christmas ill in hospital. The NSPCC are also doing a personalised Letter From Santa to help protect children from abuse.

5. Look out for your neighbours | As happy a time this is for the majority of us it can also be so lonely for others. It's important to look after each other all year round but just something as simple as a Christmas card can really brighten someone's day.

6. Donate blood | Giving blood may seem like a relatively small thing to do but it saves lives! I'm quite surprised at how few of us do it. Approximately 200,000 new donors are needed each year as 6000 blood donations are used a day which is a staggering amount. However during the busy Christmas period people donate less as they don't manage to keep to their appointments, so they are in extra need of volunteers this time of year! I myself received blood from a stranger when I had my transplant back in July as I'd lost a lot of blood during surgery, my blood donor is a hero to me and I'll be forever thankful. But literally anyone can need it for a whole number of reasons, AKA it could be you or a loved one some day which is why I think if you can, you must donate. Find out if you're eligible and sign up online here!

7. Sign up to the organ donor register | As if this wasn't gonna be included on the list 😉 When I compare last Christmas to this year's the difference is incredible, I literally have to pinch myself to make sure it's not all some amazing dream. You know I love shoes and clothes and all these material things but new lungs the best present I ever could have asked for. The fact a selfless stranger and their family have changed my life in such a way blows my tiny mind! Long time readers of the blog will know how much I was suffering before (even if I did try and put a brave face on!) but posts lately are just all about how fantastic my life is now. Thanks to them, I'll be eating Christmas dinner with all my family (all twenty of us!) without feeling ill or tired and I'll see in the New Year dancing with my best ever friends - I can't bladdy wait! It truly is the most spectacular and magical thing you will ever do for someone, sign up now, tell your family your wishes and give the gift of life!

These are just some ideas but there's loads more I could add! It's so important everyone does their bit, no matter how 'big' or 'small'! How will you be giving back this Christmas?

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