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A Time for Giving

December 1, 2009

It’s Sunday; there is a break in the perpetual November rain and I’m heading to the west side to visit the Aunt Leah’s Christmas Tree Lot. Yup, you can’t deny it – Grey Cup is over and it’s time to enter the consumer season and pull our economy out of this recession. This year I’m only buying one gift. My family is scaling back – what do we need? I see people all around me who are in greater need and none more so than the people helped by my favourite charity, Aunt Leah’s Independent Life Skills.Aunt Leah's tree lot

There are a lot of charities to choose from at this time of year and a lot of different ways to help, let me put in my small plea to you.  If you are going to buy a Christmas Tree this year, why not buy from Aunt Leah’s?

They have two convenient locations, prices that haven’t changed since 2001, lots of friendly volunteers and delivery service if you don’t have a car!Volunteers - the heart of every charitable organization

Aunt Leah’s is not one of those big, sexy, charities like Breast Cancer with Pink Ribbons, Cancer with Daffodils or a star-studded televised fundraising marathons.  I’m not saying those charities don’t deserve our support, but they have a bigger budget to reach a wider audience.  Let me tell you about the people Aunt Leah’s helps.  They are people from your community, young single mom’s, and near and dear to my heart, young foster kids who are transitioning out of government care.

Think back to when you were 17, 18, 19.  Think back to the first time you moved out of the house.  Did you ever get help or advice from a family member?  Did you ever call home because you couldn’t quite meet rent and needed some help?  Did anyone ever sit down with you and teach you how to balance your cheque book? or how to cook a meal? Maybe some words of encouragement while you went job hunting in a recession?Rows of majestic trees

Now imagine what your young life would have been like if you didn’t have parents,  a community or just someone who cared whether or not you were getting by.  Imagine if you didn’t have anyone in your life to teach you some of the life skills needed for a successful adult life? There are many young people in the foster care system who face these challenges alone. Aunt Leah’s provides a community, housing and those much-needed life skills that lead to self-sufficiency.

I am lucky.  I still have the support of wonderful parents, family and a community of friends. 

If you’re going to buy a tree this year, I hope you’ll consider Aunt Leah’s tree lots and help out a young person or young mom who isn’t as lucky as you.

Happy Holidays!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Lisa Wells permalink
    December 2, 2009 4:53 am

    What a fantastic charity!

    “This year I’m only buying one gift. ” That sounds wonderful. I buy and buy and buy and then spend boxing day throwing out so much of it.

    • December 2, 2009 9:01 am

      I have to admit I was a bit resistant to the not buying presents but now that I don’t have to run around like a mad woman, I’m really enjoying the approach of the holidays. This year I’ll show my love in other ways.

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