Making Spirits Brighter with a Gift Drive

Spread some holiday cheer by organizing a toy and gift drive to help needy children and families in your area. Your contributions and efforts, along with the help of non-profit organizations such as, Toys for Tots or your local Adopt a School program, can make the holidays a memorable time for many. Check out these ideas on organizing a drive:

- Announce the gift drive in advance with flyers, poster, emails, and on your Facebook and Twitter pages, and include the date(s) and drop-off location.

- Provide an incentive for people to bring in a gift. For example, at work find out if it’s possible to offer employees a casual dress day, or be able to hold a company-sponsored raffle (for a neat prize) and give out a raffle ticket in exchange for each donated toy. The more items a person donates, the more tickets—and chances to win—they’ll receive.

- Encourage local businesses to participate by making a donation, or by providing a gift collection area at their place of business.

- Organize the donated gifts with gift labels. Create labels with Avery Shipping Labels and pre-designed holiday templates with free Avery Wizard Software for Microsoft® Office Holiday Edition. Labels can be personalized with the child’s name or picture, or they can specify the age/gender of the intended gift recipient.

- Here’s an alternative to collecting gifts: contact your local charitable organization about hosting a needy family and make a collection to purchase items on that family’s wish list, such as a holiday meal or some much-needed clothing.

- Once you’ve collected the gifts and toys, work with your local non-profit organization to arrange a drop-off at a location or delivery to the recipients.

Get into the spirit of giving by spearheading a gift or toy drive at your work, local school or in your community. You’ll brighten up the holidays for a less fortunate child or family, and share the message of peace, joy and love.