Anyone else feel like Christmas cripples us financially, ends up being really stressful all the presents turn your children into spoilt brats? As December draws closer Marina talks to Kristina Salcenu about what we can do to make Christmas less of a burden, more thoughtful and meaningful, less ‘me-centred’ and more community focussed.Here are some of the ideas Kristina mentioned in the podcast about how you can help charities over the Christmas Period. Instead of your usual advent calendar, go to Advent of Change, where the amount you pay is donated to different charities and each time you open a window you learn about where your donation has gone. They produce advent calendars for children, adults as well as year calendars where every month you can learn about a new charity and some ideas to make your life richer. Adventofchange.co.uk For a more meaningful Christmas this year, why not forgo the endless secret santa £5 novelty gifts that we all end up buying and buy a gift for someone who really needs it instead? 52 Lives set up wishlists every Christmas so our supporters can buy gifts for 1000 people who otherwise wouldn’t receive anything! Volunteer with Blue Cross this festive period! Spend some time sitting calmly with the cats and kittens in our care..you can even read to them to give them some company. It's also the perfect opportunity for you to have some peace and calm away from the hustle and bustle of Christmas Why not give back to nature for a more meaningful Christmas? Take a family walk, perhaps even complete a nature hunt and collect leaves! Being outdoors has a positive effect on everyone's well being. The Bumblebee Conservation Trust’s BeeWalk which runs from March – October is a great way to get outdoors looking for bumblebees and enjoying what nature has to offer. Crisis at Christmas is a unique volunteer effort that provides hope and immediate help for homeless people at a critical time of year, when thousands face the prospect of spending Christmas alone or in dangerous conditions on the streets. In December 2019 you can make a real difference to people experiencing homelessness by joining our army of volunteers, and providing our guests with companionship, safety, 3 hot meals a day and advice to help them get back on their feet. Make your Christmas meaningful this year by giving the gift of hope Why not suggest that instead of giving traditional Secret Santa gifts in your place of work that you each give the gift of a donation to the Great Ormond Street Hospital play team. Your donation will help to enterntain the children staying in hospital over the Christmas period. Use Amazon smile for your online shopping. A proportion of your spend is donated to charity - including Just One Ocean :) Avoid fast fashion. Christmas jumpers are fun but often only worn a handful of times, so check out your local charity shop instead of buying something new. The festive period isn't always one of happiness and joy and for many homeless people it can be an incredibly lonely time. Why not acknowledge a rough sleeper the next time you're passing and say good morning or just give a smile? Or offer a comforting hot drink or food if you're popping into a shop or cafe. For half a million older people, Christmas isn’t a time to look forward to. This year, as part of their 'Community Christmas’ campaign, Re-engage will be listing public events from 18th-31st December and actively matching over-75s with events on Christmas day. For a more meaningful Christmas this year, you can use their website to volunteer your time at local events or refer lonely, older people who may ordinarily be spending the season alone The Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity are asking their supporters this year to send a Christmas... See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.