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Monday, December 9, 2013

Give Back This Season!


  I wanted to donate to a toy drive this year as my Christmas Charity. But so many places were advertising a toy drive but I did not know which one to do or to trust. Ever since graduating college, even when I have been broke, I have donated to a charity. I make a policy to donate to a charity even if I do not have the budget to give out gifts. This is another year of not even sending out cookies to my friends. At this time of year I cannot forget about being grateful for what I do have and not think about what I do not have.

  I am only giving gifts to my husband, to my family and to my in laws this year. I am baking for Christmas as my gifts to my in laws. I am combining my father's December 15th birthday/ Christmas gift for everyone in my family. I am sending them Legal Seafood to their door so that they can make a good memory out of the gift. If I sent them what the value of what I spent each individual gift would have been weak and thrown away/a waste of money. The gift I got them will have them get together and the pooled money is a much better option. 

  I usually post on Thursdays but I make an exception this week for the Toy Drive for The Coalition for the Homeless that ends December 13, 2013. One of my good friends made a casual Facebook comment with a link to the The Coalition For The Homeless in New York on December 5th. They make it very easy for you. When you go on this website they give you the address, links for donations, and the link to the wish list on Amazon. Within five minutes of seeing the post and going to the website I already sent out the items! It is so easy and convenient. But if you see it posted for less money you can check off that you purchased it via the online wishlist and send it to the address: Coalition for the Homeless,Attn: Toy Drive,129 Fulton Street,New York, NY 10038. I saw after I purchased the items that Toys R US has free shipping after a purchase of $49 and the prices are lower. If you go through ebates you can also get 2% back on your purchases. 

  I decided on this particular toy drive because it goes to homeless children. The children who are homeless (and who celebrate Christmas) should not be denied happiness on Christmas. I was very lucky to have had an amazon gift card from the cash back from ebates so I was able to splurge on three gifts. I got two items from the list: one African American  Ballerina Barbie and one soccer ball. I wanted to get both a "boy" and "girl" gift. Then I realized that I really only spent (after the gift certificate that I got from going through ebates) $4.05 and that these kids should be spoiled for one day. I had budgeted for $25 so I felt like why not? I still came at my budget. 

  I wanted to get the I can be president someday African American Barbie but at $30.50 that was pretty steep! But that Barbie is pretty amazing! The President Barbie can actually stand on her own! But I did find an awesome Astronaut barbie not on the list that I also sent out. I just feel like even though I am donating I have to let those girls know that you can be more than your looks! Also encouraging women to be better in math and science is always better for our future by empowering these girls today! 

  The Coalition For The Homeless and The United Federation of Teachers host a Holiday Carnival for the kids at the UFT. The toys go out to the Boys and Girls living in New York City Homeless Shelter. The Carnival is a festive holiday lunch, face painting, carnival games, costumed characters, musical entertainment and even Santa will be there! Each kid will get a gift bag and a toy. If you would like to help sponsor the Holiday Carnival contact Marisa Butler at mbutler@cfthomeless.org

If you would like to mail your toy directly to the Coalition, please send it to:
Coalition for the Homeless
Attn: Toy Drive
129 Fulton Street
New York, NY 10038
(212) 776-2112