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Sweet Charity

Ways to give back this holiday season

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Holiday cards don’t always have to feature bad family photos or cartoon reindeer – they can help make a difference in the life of a child. The Make-A-Wish Foundation is selling holiday greeting cards in an effort to make holiday wishes come true. Make-A-Wish grants wishes to children with life-threatening illnesses, and the cards are a fundraiser to help pay for the often expensive requests. The original drawing on the cards, called “A Snow Man,” was created by wish child Agnes, 12, who wished to visit Disney World. The cards will be sold in packs of 20 with envelopes for $22. The inside of the card contains the message: “Warmest wishes for a joyous holiday season.”

This holiday season, you can buy with cash, check and credit card, but how often do you buy with heart? Sponsored by the nonprofit Social Venture Partners Rhode Island, Buy With Heart has one ultimate goal in mind: tackling social challenges and producing much needed jobs from those opportunities. The website is devoted to organizations and companies in Rhode Island that are selling a product with a cause. Glee Gum in Providence, for example, is manufacturing chewing gum that is eco-friendly and helping to conserve the rain forest. Flying Kites, a nonprofit organization in Newport, is working hard to improve care for orphaned children with a series of groundbreaking programs. 

Having presents under the Christmas tree is not always an option for some families. Do your part and help with the Rehoboth Helping Hands food pantry as they start their “Christmas gifts” project for children in underprivileged families. Throughout October and November the pantry collected the names and requests of children, and now asks that volunteers purchase those items so these children will have presents for Christmas. Donations are also needed for emergency fuel assistance. Last year the pantry helped 57 families with emergency fuel. The pantry is also always looking for food items, especially during the holiday season. For more information call 508-252-3263.