This is a zoomed in picture of a tree with a Martinsville ornament on it. (Macie Crawmer and Macey Staley)
This is a zoomed in picture of a tree with a Martinsville ornament on it.

Macie Crawmer and Macey Staley

Gift Giving for Happier Holidays

December 2, 2019

Some children wake up on Christmas morning to dozens of gifts, while others wake up to grumbling bellies and frozen fingers. There are millions of homeless people in the United States who struggle to provide for their everyday needs. In the harsh, unforgiving climate of the holidays, they must combat the cold chills that bite their skin instead of exchanging presents, food, and stories with their families beside the warmth of a fireplace. These homeless people deserve to enjoy their holidays as much as everyone else. 

Donations, whether they be large or small, mean the world to these people who are struggling who find themselves roaming the roads during the holiday festivities. Donating non-perishable food items to food banks will certainly aid those who question when their next meal will be. Cooking meals for the residents at homeless shelters during the holidays will make their holidays special and unforgettable. Rumbling bellies can be satisfied with kind donations and charitable prepared feasts. 

Hunger is not the only thing that the homeless face during the holidays. They must also withstand the frosty chills notoriously known to make their appearance around the winter holidays. Donating old coats that no longer fit is easy and affordable. Old hats, gloves, and scarves can easily be dug out of closets and donated. These donations enable those without homes to protect themselves against the cold and face those white winters with warmth.

Procuring the money for basic hygiene products can be difficult for homeless people who cannot purchase food. Although many people would not be thrilled about receiving toothpaste on Christmas morning, others would be quite grateful. Donating personal hygiene products such as deodorants, toothbrushes, and toothpaste can help homeless people freshen up and feel clean for the holidays. 

Young children possess growing minds that require stimulation to properly develop. Toys are a common way to provide these children with the brain stimulation they need, but parents who struggle to provide their children with food and clothes cannot spare the money to provide toys for their children. Children should not be deprived of toys because of the lack of finances and living quarters of their parents. Buying new toys or giving away old ones that are no longer in use could make the life of a less fortunate child much happier. 

Humans are not the only ones who can find themselves homeless. There are thousands of dogs and cats in shelters who are confined in cold cages during the holiday. Donating blankets and toys to these shelters can ensure a mirthful and merry holiday for the animals that find themselves confined to these shelters. Donating food would allow the shelters to put forth more funds toward the happiness of the animals in their care. 

Sometimes, the best gift you can give another is your company. Spending time with elderly people at a nursing home could lift the spirits of the lonely senior citizens that find themselves unvisited by family. Simply listening to the many stories that the elderly have to share can make them feel wanted.

No one should be alone or forgotten during the holidays. No one should find themselves with nothing during the holidays known for the exchange of bountiful gifts. Every gift means a great deal to someone else. Many associate the holidays with gifts, and to have an exchange, you must give back. Giving back during the holidays can not only make someone else’s holiday special, but it can also fill yours with happiness for there is no greater gift to receive than the gratitude of others. 

* If you do not possess the resources to locate/visit a shelter, you can visit the Thespis Tree, located in the lobby of Martinsville High School, after Thanksgiving break and decorate the tree with your donation! (Donations are limited to hats, gloves, and socks)

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