November 16, 2012

Making The Holidays Brighter one donation at a time

Last week I told you how Kayla and I were working with Champions For Kids to donate light bulbs and food to a worthy cause.  We were headed to New York for some family time with grandparents and I couldn't help but feel as though we needed to do more to help out there after Hurricane Sandy.  

GE Smart Energy Light Bulbs for holiday season, #GELightingCFK

Originally my intent was to make a simple donation of GE Energy Smart light bulbs to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Westchester County.  Their amazing team helps children in so many ways, but most importantly by simply letting them know that they have a safe place to go and people who truly care about them.  

What wound up happening is our donation evolved into donating food and supplies not to give to the children they serve there, but to actually have the children assemble into holiday donation baskets to be distributed to others in need.  What I loved so much about this idea is that while still very simple, our donation would help these children understand what it feels like to give to others and hopefully instill a love of giving for many years to come.

teaching kids about donating light bulbs, #GELightingCFK

As you might know by now, giving to those who just need a little help is extremely important to me as an individual and as a parent.  Kayla is still very young and while sharing with peers on a daily basis can be a challenge sometimes all of the talk about giving to those in need is really starting to register with her.

Generally speaking I shop alone so I actually go home with the things we need.  However, I wanted to re-create the feel of shopping for things to donate so Kayla could experience it and we could talk about what we were doing and why.  I set up a little store in our living room with all of the donation items and let her go around putting them into the cart.  Because there were no distractions like there would be in a real store I was able to focus on Kayla and the topic of giving rather than what I was choosing off the shelves.

GE Light bulbs and food from Walmart to donate #GELightingCFK

Our conversation also naturally flowed into talking about how we could save energy and money and then use that money to buy food and clothes to give to other people who needed it.  It was actually the perfect scenario to have a preschool explanation of the GE Energy Smart Challenge.

In my experience, once you find yourself in a giving mode you realize how wonderful it feels to give back in any way you can.  Our Champions for Kids SIMPLE Service Project really launched me into the spirit of giving for the holiday season and reminded me that it was time for our family to sign up to help a child during the holiday season.

In the end we wound up coming back to New York with an entire giant suitcase filled with our original donation items as well as a whole bunch of Winter clothes and a few "older kid" toys for the child we will be giving to this year.

our donation items packed to bring to New York, #GELightingCFK

Have you checked out the GE Challenge and entered a school, classroom or charity you know to win one of many $100 Walmart gift cards to help them serve children better?  It's incredibly fast and easy to do.  I just entered Big Brothers Big Sisters of Westchester County in the hopes that if they win that extra money can go toward those holiday food donation baskets the kids will be making to help make the season brighter for others in need.

How will you give back this year?  Do you have a special family tradition that revolves around helping others?  If you do complete a #GELightingCFK SIMPLE Service Project (which are so easy anyone can do them) be sure to report it to Champions For Kids so they know that you are one of 20 million people they hope to encourage to make a difference for children all over the USA.

Just so you know, as part of my partnership with GE, I received coupons for my GE light bulbs.  All opinions posted about my GE Lighting experience are my own. I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias Champions for Kids andGE Lighting #CBias #SocialFabric everything you see here is my personal and picky opinion.
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