In a recent ChildFund International online survey, 43 percent of adults said their favorite gift to give children and teenagers is a toy. The majority of respondents also said they like to help others during the holidays through contributions, donations via a gift catalog, volunteering in the community or adopting a family.
During the 10-day survey, we asked our Facebook fans and Twitter followers about their favorite gift when they were growing up. The results:
• 31 percent dolls
• 15 percent electronics/video games
• 15 percent other (books, clothing)
• 7 percent sports equipment
• 6 percent board games
We conducted the survey on our social media platforms to raise awareness of ChildFund’s Gifts of Love and Hope catalog. Each gift chosen from the catalog is used exactly as described, whether it’s a soccer ball for children in Brazil, a mountain bike for a youth advocate in Zambia or an outdoor game set for Ethiopia.
The gifts come in all shapes and sizes — and price ranges — and are a great way to become familiar with ChildFund’s work to help deprived, excluded and vulnerable children around the world become leaders of enduring change.
Forty percent of survey takers cited books as a favorite holiday gift to give others. In the Gifts of Love and Hope catalog, $38 will purchase three reference books for a school in the Philippines and $14 will buy five story books for a children’s “Dream Corner” in Sri Lanka.
Candy and books tied as the favorite stocking stuffer, with 31 percent of survey respondents identifying each. Five percent of respondents listed toothbrushes as a favorite stocking stuffer — children of dentists perhaps?
For the upcoming holiday season, here are some original stocking-stuffer ideas sure to make your loved ones smile: corn and bean seeds for a family in Mozambique ($7); 10 chicks for a family in Indonesia ($8); a 60-day supply of vitamins for a child in Belarus ($21).
Traditions are an important part of the holidays. In our survey, the holiday meal was a top favorite, as cited by 31 percent of respondents. Another 23 percent selected decorating. Fifteen percent said looking at holiday lights, and 11 percent selected volunteering as their favorite holiday traditions.
Among the pages of the Gifts of Love and Hope catalog, it’s easy to find unique ways to share those holiday traditions with others in very practical ways. Just think of the excellent meals that could be prepared in the eco-oven and chimney by a family in Honduras ($143).
Imagine the decorative items that a young person in Indonesia could make with a new set of weaving materials ($40). Think about how a solar lantern ($117) to study by at night will light up a child’s eyes in India.
So this year as you look for that perfect gift for those special people in your life, consider one that also helps children and families around the world. Multiply your love.