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Making a Benevolent Birthday

Another year means that you’re getting another year older. And with each birthday comes a time to break out the party favors and indulge in some decadent celebratory desserts. But what if you could turn your special occasion into a charitable event that your friends or guests would not soon forget? This is such a simple concept, and there are a variety of ways that you can help out an organization while celebrating your big day. So next time you’re celebrating another year, it’s time to give others something to celebrate.

From Party to Charity
To earn some money for an organization of your choice, tell your friends that instead of gifts you’ll be charging for different items at the party. Pick a theme and charge for decorations that your guests can wear or use. For example, your next birthday could be a Hawaiian themed party, where you charge guests to wear leis or tropical attire. Then you can use the money you gained to give back to an organization of your choice. Other options include charging for refreshments or party favors. If everybody knows that the money is going toward a good cause, they’ll most likely be on board with your theme. Set up a jar for other donations for guests who want to contribute a little bit more.

Another option to raise funds for a charity could include having each guest bring a themed basket to auction off to the highest bidder. Then you can use all of the money you’ve earned and put it toward a nonprofit of your choice. Your guests will leave with not only a great party favor, but also knowing that they helped contribute to a good cause. Your party for charity is sure to be a big hit.

For Those Who Have It All
Most times, people will ask what you want for your birthday. And even if you tell them not to get you gifts, somebody always manages to ignore your pleas. Have you ever thought to yourself that you didn’t need anything new at the moment? If this is the case, remember that there are others who could benefit from the things that you might not need. So next time you’re asked about your most desired gifts, pick a nonprofit and tell your friends to make a contribution to the cause instead. You’ll feel good knowing that the gifts you could have been receiving are going to somebody who needs them more.

Getting the Kids on Board
Birthdays are an especially exciting time for young children. But often children can get caught up in the idea of having a special day dedicated to themselves. And while it should be a celebration for them, take time to sit down with your children and explain to them some options for helping others out. Education is the key for getting them to want to be a part of helping others.

On their birthday, have your child donate an item for every new gift that they receive. Or even better, have them choose some of their favorite new toys and donate the rest that they won’t use. Take them with you to donate the toys so that they realize where the toys are going and they can feel good about giving back on their birthday. Before you know it, they’ll be looking forward to helping others out each year on their birthday, and your family can make it a new birthday tradition.

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    LSA is a grantee of the Legal Services Corporation.