Don't give us stuff. Give to great causes instead.

Since our first child was born in 2004, we’ve had a Christmas policy:

  • DON’T give us any  stuff.
  • DO give stuff to our kids.
  • DO donate to a good cause instead of giving us stuff.
  • We’ll do the same for you and your kids.

For the most part, our family has adhered to this policy, although a few cable-knit sweaters still sneak under the tree each year.

This year we’ve given to several organizations, and I thought I’d zoom in on those we gave to via Help Attack!, which enables you to pledge to nonprofits every time you post something to Facebook or Twitter. Below are the organizations we supported in 2011. The links go to a pledge page on the Help Attack! website.

Health Alliance for Austin Musicians

Mobile Loaves & Fishes

Sierra Club Foundation

Southwest Key Programs

St. Baldricks Foundation

Sundt Memorial Foundation

Wikimedia Foundation

Help Attack! was not the only means by which we gave to charity in 2011, and none of our donations through Help Attack! were large (the median was around $20). But by using Help Attack! we definitely gave more than we ordinarily would have, and to a greater number of nonprofits.

However you choose to give, as you check off those last-minute gift lists, consider giving to a great cause in lieu of wrapped gifts that ultimately wind up in a landfill. (Not that I don’t love cable-knit sweaters, Grandma.)

Happy New Year!

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