In our recent “It’s Better to Give” blog contest, we asked our wonderful readers to tell us how they were planning to brighten someone else’s holiday season for a chance to win one of ten $100 Store More Cards.
We were blown away by all of your amazing responses – more than 600 people left a comment telling us about their plans to help others over the holidays. It was so very inspiring! Thank you to everyone who participated in our contest, but most of all, for taking the time to brighten someone else’s holiday season this year.
Below are the ten winners of our contest – congratulations to each!
And don’t forget, we host contests on our blog often – in fact, we’re kicking off a BIG one starting this Thursday – so don’t forget to check back to participate!
- Pat C. – I sent Christmas Cards to include all the people I knew over the age of 70 to let them know they are not forgotten; some were so amazed and/or touched at being remembered with a card and note.
- Beverly – I have volunteered for Operation Christmas Child for 15+ years collecting shoeboxes full of gifts for children all over the world. This year I was able to work at a processing center for four days preparing shoe boxes that shipped to the Philippines and several African countries. Over 200,000 children will have gifts just from the time I was there. So thankful to be a part and brighten the day and, hopefully, lives, of so many children!
- Carol V. – Several times a year, my family organizes our own Stop Hunger Project. It started out as a service project but has grown into much more. We collect food and donations from our friends and family so that families can enjoy life without the worry of where their next meal might come from. Our Thanksgiving project collected enough food to feed more than a 100 people. It’s amazing how generous people are-even when they might be struggling themselves. This year, my 16 year old son, took over the project. He has learned to help others and to not judge a family’s circumstance. We also started a project where we collect gently used towels, sheets and blankets for the animal shelters. I wish happiness, health and all good things to you and yours as we begin anew in 2014! Love helping others and thankfully I still have a job so I can help my own family and still have enough to share ☺
- Rie – I will try to smile at as many people as I can and hope to draw them to smile as well ☺
- Nancy S. – I wanted to do something nice for my friend in need (who is also a co-worker). I made an entire family dinner and dessert and delivered it to her about a half hour away. She is struggling to make ends meet, and instead of giving her a grocery gift card, I thought it would be easier on her if I also did the cooking! She is such a sweetheart, and she always has a smile on her face, despite her difficult situation (including having a disabled daughter). She was very grateful, and it made me happy to be able to help! If I won this Container Store gift card, I would also pass it on to her! Thank you and Merry Christmas!
- Gina – I saw on a blog or Facebook post (can’t remember now) about someone making hygiene and snack kits for the homeless. I thought it was a great idea and am making some now. They include a toothbrush, travel toothpaste, floss, and a few non perishable snacks and/or food coupons. I always feel bad when I don’t have anything to give when I see someone asking for help on the side of the road so now I’ll have a few of these kits in the car ready to give!
- Mary Dell H. – I am the human half of a certified animal therapy team; Moose, my 7 year old chocolate lab, is the other half. For the last five years we have visited a group at NY-Presbyterian Hospital right around the corner from your White Plains store. The group we see for pet therapy is called “Second Chances” and the 30 adults who live on the floor full time are being treated for schizophrenia and other psychiatric illnesses. Moose and I are volunteers and pet therapy is optional. Last Monday we brought cupcakes and Christmas cards for everyone, hoping to offer our patients some holiday cheer, in addition to the pleasure they receive from stroking the dog or giving him a hug. Each Monday, I leave with thoughts of our patients who have serious health challenges. At Christmas-time, in addition to the snack, I offer them my most sincere wishes for a healthier and happier new year.
- Cami T. – As a teacher at a Title I Campus, more than 80% of the kiddos are on free lunch programs, my students are not able to buy gifts for family members. So, for the past 15 years or so, I have purchased small gifts that the students can win and then give to others. The students win tickets by participating in class, showing good citizenship, and helping others. They then choose which prizes they want to try to win and place their tickets into an envelope that matches the prize they want to win. Prizes usually include jump ropes, yoyos, Christmas socks, toiletries, candy, picture frames, candles, pencils, school supplies, anything that would please a baby to an 80 year old. I absolutely adore hearing the stories that they share about how they want to give to others. My favorite was a few years ago – a student put all her tickets in to win an insulated lunch bag. I asked her why she wanted it so badly, she said “My grandma took all of us kids in when daddy and momma couldn’t take care of us, she works 2 jobs and always carries her lunch to work – to save money so she can buy for us. She wrote a note on the inside of the lid that her grandma would see every day – she planned to write Dear Grandma, thank you for loving us so much” This year I was able to offer more than 100 prizes in Holiday Ticket Drawing. My 6th graders have big plans for how they want to give to others. That is my legacy I think, helping them show others that they love and care for them.
- Kathy B. – We “adopt” a variety of families and children’s wish lists from local organizations. It’s fun to shop for exactly what they want and very satisfying to know they’ll get a great surprise on Christmas morning!
- Tina B. – After struggling with breast cancer this year, I will be a “cold capper” for another patient. Penguin cold caps have helped some chemo patients (including me!) keep their hair during treatment. Cappers wrap freshly frozen gel packs around the patients head every 20 minutes or so for 4 hours. The patient can’t do it alone, so I have volunteered to help with the arrangements, capping, and insurance paperwork. Cancer is hard enough- I want to try to lighten the load.