Sunday, December 12, 2010

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories, Day 12 - Charitable/Volunteer Work

I will have to say that I'm one of those legions of anonymous Christmas gift givers.  Most churches and many other organizations now have an "angel tree" where you select a name and purchase a gift for that particular person in need.  I always participate, but of course that means you never actually give the gift to the person.  I also make other cash donations - the Salvation Army kettle, etc.  And give canned and boxed food items to various appeals to fill Christmas food baskets.

My local DAR chapter buys gifts for eight girls in one of the cottages of a DAR supported school.  They send us names, ages, sizes, wishes ...and we fulfill.  Since I have granddaughters about the same age, it's really fun to shop for these young ladies.

One of my sons coaches youth teams - baseball and football.  As he has become acquainted with the boys and their families, he has often discovered needs that slip through the cracks of local charities.  I know that last Christmas his family provided Christmas - from the dinner to the gifts - for a newly-abandoned wife who couldn't find a job and her young children.

As a child, I remember that the local fire station collected toys - both new and used but in good condition - and distributed them on Christmas.  Early in December, my grandmother or my mother would help me go through everything in my room, and select those toys or games I really wasn't interested in to give away.  I wasn't much of a girly-girl so there were always dolls and such that had scarcely been touched by me.  Later I did the same with my children and we even added new toys to the donation - it was still the local firemen that collected toys.  I wonder if the firemen in small towns still do this?

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