Teach your kiddos the value of charitable giving with help from this local gift donation platform
As you know I recently embarked on a zero waste journey, and one of the biggest challenges is dealing with kids’ birthday parties. I love birthday parties but not all the gifts. The thought of more Lego sets, Pokemon cards or fidget spinners freaked me out. Believe me, our family doesn’t need any more of this stuff. It just feels so wasteful and I know most of the gifts, despite being well intentioned will end up ignored and tossed aside. I needed an alternative. And that’s when I came across Gift-It-Forward.
Gift-It-Forward was started in Singapore in January 2016, by a very busy mama, Theresa. Theresa has 3 young children and spends far too much time shopping for birthday gifts for her children’s friends and her friends’ kids. She realized how much time and effort goes into all that – only to notice that many gifts get duplicated, tossed aside, or are simply not appreciated! Amid all these birthday parties, she was inspired by a friend whose son donated part of his birthday money to a charity and pooled the rest for a bigger gift. Theresa, too, wanted to instill the value of generosity in her children, and at the same time, see that they receive a gift that they truly value. And so, Gift-It-Forward was born.
Gift-It-Forward is an e-vite/donation platform that allows a party host to create and send an invitation to friends and family whilst at the same time create a personal gift fund, where a portion will go towards a charity of your choice, and the other portion to a group gift that your child hopes to receive. Instead of guests bringing individual gifts to your party, they simply contribute to your gift fund online. All you need to do is create an invite, choose a charity and press send. That’s it! Gift-It-Forward will track donations and notify you every time so you can send your guests a proper thank-you note. After your party is completed, Gift-It-Forward pools together your contributions and splits it between your gift and your charity. Gift-it-forward will collect a 15% admin fee.
Gift-It-Foward works with a number of local charities, anything from Make-A- Wish Foundation to ACRES to Alzheimer’s Disease Association (see the full list here) My only regret is that you can only donate to selected local charities due to Singapore’s fundraising regulations.
I think Gift-It-Forward is such a great concept because my son still received a gift (one he chose), all the parents still contributed to the birthday gift, and there was a charitable component involved. I loved having that discussion about giving back and helping others with my son. I really think it is important to get kids involved in charitable giving from a young age. My son decided to use his birthday money to buy a new bike and donated the other half of his birthday money to ACRES, an organization that helps protect wildlife. Something he actually cares about, and thanks to Theresa will be able to see first-hand what his money goes towards with an arranged tour of the wildlife shelter.
In the end, it was a total win-win and I am already using it for our next birthday party!