This holiday season I am trying very hard to give feel good gifts that give back somehow. Every year I get gifts I don’t want or I seem to give gifts that I’m not sure the other person is really using. I wanted to try this year to spend money that is going for a good cause but is still a “gift” that a person can unwrap and be excited about. Not an easy task but very possible.

I have many children and animal lovers on my gift giving list so I started doing some research. I know that our local human society always has pets up for adoption but if I give a pet to some child on my list I think the parent would be less than thrilled (I know I would be if it were me). What about a certificate, stuffed animal and facts about the adopted animal all for a low cost? There are lots of animals out there that are being taken care of or need to be taken care of and the money needs to come from somewhere. I found two neat sites that I’ll be using this holiday season, World Animal Foundation and Audubon Institute. Both of these provide many options and many different animal choices.

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The Audubon Institute site is probably one I’ll choose for the little guy on my list that might like a stuffed animal toy. They have all sorts of cute fuzzy choices in price ranges from $15 to $75 depending on the animal. I thought the little African Pigmy Hedgehog was so cute! The money goes to a good cause, the child gets a gift in their honor and everyone is happy. I love it!

The World Animal Foundation costs $35 and you can adopt a species so the money goes towards not one specific little (or big) animal. They include a glossy photo, certificate, fact sheet and some animal action cards that have facts and information on them about animal issues. I might use this for some of my pre-teens or adults that would appreciate the gift.

I have many more ideas up my sleeves for this gift giving holiday so keep checking back. Besides a few materialistic gifts I have planned for my kids I’m really trying to steer clear of these types of gifts. There are so many ideas that can help the environment and the person you are giving a gift to. What a great lesson to start teaching our children!

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Originally posted 2007-11-15 22:08:00.