Plant Based on a Budget’s Holiday Gift Giving Guide
Around this time last year, I was completely miserable. Just about everything in my life had fallen apart and it took all my effort just to brush my teeth and take a shower. I felt defeated, uninspired, without purpose, mistreated, etc … and on Xmas, it was especially bad. I worked at home by myself and I felt incredibly lonely. Fortunately, I remembered that my friend Claire was organizing an event at a park (that is heavily populated by people without homes) and was giving away bags of healthy snacks, travel toiletries and warm clothing.
Participating in her event helped me put my life into perspective. Although I was helping people for an hour, I was able to get in my heated car and drive away while they were left wet from the rain, still without homes. Shortly after that, I began rebuilding myself by focusing on helping others. I had been spending so much time and negative energy on feeling sorry for myself, that I had lost sight of all the positives in my life: I have food, supportive friends and family, shelter, income. I realized, I’m really fortunate.
Since that event pretty much changed my life, I went to my local food bank and asked what they need so I can help out again this year. I’m collecting all the things in the photo, as well as socks and other warm clothing.
I encourage you to look into ways you can give back to your local community, too. Of course it doesn’t have to be in the homeless community, but surely you have your own causes that you’re passionate about. There are always schools and animal shelters in need of volunteers, there are always food banks in need of both produce and non-perishable food. If you’re interested in how I’m collecting, you can check out my event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/334621980017808/
If you find yourself with more money than time to volunteer, here are some organizations that the contributors of Plant Based on a Budget endorse:
Me: I work for Animal Place Sanctuary and have had some of the most beautiful experiences in my life with them. I’ve watched hens who have been neglected in cages for years be able to spread their wings for the first time, I work alongside the most dedicated and compassionate activists, and have been apart of rescues that saved thousands of animals. Their mission is simple: Extend Compassion to All Life. You can sponsor an animal in honor of someone and it makes an excellent Xmas gift. Here are ways to donate: http://animalplace.org/donate.html
From Honor: “There are so many worthy organizations, but I’d like to recommend Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest. It’s a sanctuary near Seattle that not only provides a home for chimpanzees that have been discarded from entertainment and biomedical testing facilities but also works to end the use of great apes in these industries. http://www.chimpsanctuarynw.org/”
From Miranda: “PCRM: One of the most informative and breaking medical research and education services around! I receive consistent emails from them and absolutely trust that their clinical research is right on target with what the public needs to hear about an applicable plant based lifestyle! http://www.pcrm.org/about/about/about-pcrm”
From Renee: “I second Honor on Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest, I actually work with them personally, catered their last fundraiser, (and have met the chimps!) and they are doing incredible work. Also New Moon Farm Goat Rescue and Sanctuary in Arlingon Wa does incredible work on behalf of often overlooked goats and sheep. Rehabilitating and adopting out unwanted goats and sheep and advocating tirelessly on their behalf! www.newmoonfarm.org”
From Marji: “I have two charities on my holiday list this year. One is a local organization and the other is national.
WEAVE,inc. supports victims of sexual assault and domestic violence in Sacramento county. I learned about the organization while giving a tour at Animal Place to survivors of domestic violence and their children. http://www.weaveinc.org/
From Margaret: “Farm Sanctuary aims to protect farm animals from cruelty, inspire change in the way society views and treats farm animals, and promote compassionate vegan living. http://www.farmsanctuary.org”