The Best Gift

The holiday season is upon us earlier each year.  Commercials for gift giving permeate every corner of every media.  Crowded stores, malls, driving and parking add to the stress of the season, as will pondering what to get each person on your list.   So, here’s an idea to simplify your life, relieve holiday stress and give the best gift of all – a new life!

Instead of buying more “stuff”, consider making donations, in the names of those on your list, to special organizations that change lives.  Many people on our planet struggle with excessive handicaps, just to survive. With our help, we can really make a difference to contribute to the alleviation of their burdens. Here are three incredibly worthwhile non-profit organizations that I support.

Oral cancer is the fastest growing cancer in the United States and is increasingly affecting young adults. Donations provide financial help to patients and their families who face the challenges of oral cancer during treatment.

In most American dental communities, while we focus on restoring teeth and cosmetic dental options, we seldom run across cleft palates. Yet, in some places in the world, this is not uncommon. Worse, in many places, children born with cleft palates are superstitiously considered cursed and forbidden to attend school or work at jobs. The surgery to correct this is easy and inexpensive. Smile Train trains thousands of doctors all over the world to perform these life changing surgeries, and parents travel (usually walking), with their babies in arms, hundreds of miles to get this help.  Smiles are made and lives are changed, for less than the cost of one crown!

Canine Assistants breeds, raises and trains service dogs for people with disabilities. These dogs are trained to open and close doors, pick up dropped objects, turn lights on and off, assist with seizures; and serve as companions in so many other supportive roles. One recipient said it best, “My dog makes my wheelchair go away”. Amazing dogs for special people!


This holiday season, I hope you’ll join me in changing and saving lives by helping others to help themselves, as you give yourself the gift of some extra time to enjoy the upcoming holiday season.



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