November is a time when the nation collectively gives thanks for all that we have, while finding opportunities to help those who are less fortunate. This practice, however, can be at odds with the egocentric occasion of birthdays, which by very definition honors “when a person was born, typically with a celebration and the giving of gifts.” A new generation of revelers, however, are melding the two philosophies, using their birthdays as a chance to have good fun, while doing good.
Today, there are many ways to put the “thanks” into birthdays, extending the principals of Thanksgiving to every month of the year! Here are some of Booked Parties favorites:
Host an animal lovers party.
The SPCA of Westchester and many national organizations including the ASPCA and The Humane Society host birthday parties that are not only fun, but also integrate volunteerism. The formats of these parties range, but most include an educational tour, time with the animals, and craft and game time. The event space can be reserved for a nominal, recommended donation of $200-250.
Become birthday fairies.
The Confetti Foundation is a favorite of Claire & Meryl’s as its work is near and dear to the heart of Booked Parties. They believe, as do we, that despite sickness, every child should mark their birthdays with an element of joy. Your children can use their own birthday celebration to get in on the action.
- In lieu of gifts, collect supplies (listed on the foundation’s website) or donation.
- Set-up a birthday banner- and card-making station including paper, stickers, markers, etc. at the beginning or conclusion of your event.
There’s no better feeling than the look on a child’s face when they receive a brand-new toy. At your child’s next birthday, they can swap their gifts for the gift of giving by partnering with these organizations:
The Birthday Box anonymously delivers a “party in a box” including a cake, candles, decorations and a gift with a mission of ensuring that all children, regardless of their families’ financial status, have the chance to enjoy their special day.
Birthday Wishes’ goal is to ensure that children experiencing the trauma of homelessness have the opportunity to celebrate their birthdays joyfully, surrounded by those who care for them.
This turnkey solution was formed to teach children the virtues of generosity and selflessness, while facilitating a more efficient gift exchange that benefits everyone. Children create an event page, select up to three charities and choose the percentage of the gift that they will share with those charities. Guests are then encouraged to give a monetary donation to this site in lieu of purchasing a gift.
Whether your child opts to make a grand gesture surrounding his/her birthday or a small contribution, the seeds of volunteerism and giving are being planted. We encourage each member of your family to continue finding many ways of experiencing joy in all aspects of life, whether by celebrating your own birthdays, those of a stranger and in communing at your own Thanksgiving tables. We are thankful for all of your support this year.