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sally-150x150by Sally Cameron, midwife, mother of 2 and co-owner of www.earthbabies.co.za . I am  passionate, creative, trying to be Green unschooling single mom.  It’s a journey.

“We wish you a merry Christmas, we wish you a merry Christmas..”

Yes it is that time of year again. Shops are starting to put up their decorations and soon the air will be filled with Christmas carols, the smell of mince pies and excitement. Kids will be writing their lists for Father Christmas and as parents we hope our saving have enough to make all their dream come true.

One of the most valuable lessons we as parents can teach our kids at this time is to be mindful of those who are not as fortunate as they are. There are so many opportunities to help others and make their Christmas just that little bit brighter. Teaching our kids the joy of giving is a bigger and great gift than anything they will open under the tree this year.

Some idea to help you and your kids touch other people’s lives this Christmas:

In preparation for Christmas and the influx of new toys, clothes and books why not spend time with your kids sorting out the stuff they have and what they can give away to make room for the new things they will get. It is a great time of year to do this as there are so many charities that have Christmas fund raising fete’s that need toys and books to sell. Alternatively crèche’s or nursery schools in less privilege areas also always need more toys and things for the kids there. For a list of charities asking for all sorts of donations, visit to help-babies/children page on Jozikids.

credit:travelground.com

credit:travelground.com

Laura-Kim, the amazing woman behind the Female2Female blog for women is organizing a children’s party for the kids at the Othandweni Children’s Home. I know that she still needs a few more gifts. The details are here otherwise take the plunge and organise a similar type party at a children’s home near you. Facebook and other social networking sites can be a great way to get the word out about these sorts of events.

Elderly people are often forgotten at this time, especially those without family close by. Contact your local old age home and ask if there is someone your family can ‘adopt’ for the festive season. This might mean opening your home on Christmas day or just making home made cards and gifts for an elderly person and brightening their lives a few weeks before Christmas. Our society often separates the young and the old and we forget how much our kids can learn from the older generation.

These are only a few ideas and I am sure there are many local charities in your areas that have specific things on over Christmas that you can ask to be involved in. I think for it to be meaningful to children you need to involve them as much as possible. Get them to make cards or choose toys or make something special. Teaching them the gift of giving is something that will enrich their lives and the live of others for years to come.

Note: If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the uniquely detailed free weekly newsletter for parents in Gauteng – Jozikids – or KwaZulu-Natal – Kznkids

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