Ways you can help others this festive period.
‘What is the true meaning of Christmas?’. A cliché question, I know, but one with an ever-growing relevance. The expression became popularised as a result of Christmas commercialisation back in the 1850s. Yep. Since the mid-19th century we’ve been spending the holidays as a way to demonstrate greed and materialism.
In 2019, the phrase seems to be of even more importance, with extravagant lights dotted around the city, elaborate window displays strewn along Oxford Street, advertisements for the latest and most lavish gifts. It’s easy to get swept into the 21st century model of what ‘Christmas’ really is.
In an effort to dispel the modernity and affluence that drowns our yearly festivities, there are many small actions each one of us can take to commemorate the true meaning of Christmas.
Join the Christmas Lunch Campaign
Age UK have been running their Christmas Lunch Campaign for a number of years now. Their aim is to help the elderly who often find themselves alone and isolated during the Christmas period. The project enables residents to spend time with others, get a hot meal and receive gifts and goodies. Relying solely on donations and volunteers, their website advises on how you can fundraise and the importance of helping ageing residents.
Purchase a gift from ‘The Crisis Wishlist’
Crisis is one of Britain’s leading charities attempting to end homelessness across the country. With an aim to provide a happy and wholesome holiday to those less-privileged, they have released their annual Christmas Wishlist. You can access this through Amazon and purchase goods including deodorants and games; you can also pop into your local shelter and donate other essential products such as sleeping bags, blankets and pillows.
Attend the Battersea Christmas Carol Concert
Prioritising our smaller and furrier friends can often be overlooked at Christmas. However meeting their needs and ensuring they are comfortable and cosy over the festive period is just as significant. Battersea Dogs and Cats Home are hosting a series of Christmas Carol Concerts where you have an opportunity to meet the shelters residential pets, snack on mince pies and enjoy a tipple of mulled wine.
Sign Up for a ‘Giving Tree Tag’
In an effort to ensure a cheerful and merry Christmas for disadvantaged and abused children, KidsOut is launching its annual ‘Giving Tree’ programme. Perfect for spreading that goodwill through the office, the process works by purchasing Giving Tree Tags, which are provided to you with an individual child’s name and their desired gift. You can then hang these on your communal Christmas tree where colleagues and friends can pick one off, and purchase the desired present.
Words by: Peri Taskiran
Infographic by: Peri Taskiran
Photos by: Unsplash