Imagine the smiles on the faces of families who can get to receive free Christmas gifts and toys. What’s easy to forget during these festive times is the fact that there are many families around the world that are struggling just to put food on the table.
In this article, you’ll learn all about how you can receive help with free Christmas gifts & toys for low-income families in California from a variety of charities focused on providing Christmas support.
Christmas can be a financially and emotionally challenging time for families already concerned about money. Fortunately, many national and local charities offer assistance to help make sure every child gets a visit from Santa.
Whether you know a child who needs a gift this holiday season or simply want to make Christmas special for another family, several organizations can help.
Christmas Charity Organizations In California
Having a low income should not stop you from celebrating Christmas with joy, delight, and dignity. Many social service agencies and nonprofit organizations are able to assist those with genuine needs during the holidays. Some programs include:
Make a Wish Foundation
The Make-a-Wish Foundation is one of the world’s most important charitable foundations, not simply because they grant the Christmas wishes of children, but because they grant all wishes of kids throughout the year. More importantly, they do so for kids who face life-threatening medical conditions aged from 2 1/2 to 18 years old.
If you know such a child and are eligible to refer that child, I would encourage you to do so as soon as you can. The Make-a-Wish Foundation will make that child’s holiday one of the most magical and special that they’ve ever experienced.
And if you miss the holidays, don’t worry—the foundation grants the wishes of these children the whole year.
Toys for Tots
Toys for Tots is another organization that helps provide toys for children in need.
Affiliated with the US Marine Corps, they accept donations of money or toys from individuals and businesses and then work to get toys under the Christmas trees of more than seven million children each year.
Whether you want to find Christmas gifts for your own children or help someone you know is in need, it’s easy to sign a family up for Toys for Tots.
Of course, no list of resources for families in need during the holidays would be complete without a mention for the Salvation Army.
Of all charities in the world, when it comes to the holidays, the Salvation Army really comes out in full force.
You’ll see them with collection tins and ringing bells just about everywhere you go when you’re shopping for holiday gifts.
You’ve probably even seen the lines of people just outside the Salvation Army soup kitchens and food pantries.
These are people just hoping to collect a little bit of food to get them through.
Another national organization that sometimes has local branches with toy drives, the YMCA is a great place to look in your community.
To find your local branch, enter your zip code on the main page. Some branches have large scale toy drives each holiday season.
Requirements for qualifying for the free toys vary depending on the branch.
In general, you’ll need to demonstrate that your family is in a difficult financial situation. Age requirements for kids also vary based on the location.
United Way Christmas Bureau
United Way is one of the most well-known charities that helps families all year.
But during Christmas, the United Way goes into high gear to help families during the holidays in many ways.
In addition to collaborating with various other charities to support Gift Tree initiatives, the United Way also provides Christmas assistance programs to families in need.
If you belong to a church or other religious organizations, they may be able to help as well.
In some cases, they even help non-members. To find out if you can get assistance this holiday, talk the pastor or other religious leader.
- Be sure to explain your situation completely. To be able to help, the pastor will need to understand what is going on. Share the ages of the children and a bit about your financial status.
- Give the pastor a clear idea of what you need so he or she can help with specifics.
If you would like to help a religious organization bring Christmas cheer to a family in need, contact the pastor or leader.
You can share your ideas or work with a program that is already established.
Christmas Spirit Foundation
If you really want to get into the Christmas spirit, donating to a charity like the Christmas Spirit Foundation will definitely work.
Imagine being a soldier stationed overseas, far from your family and loved ones.
The Christmas Spirit Foundation organizes a program called Trees for Troops, which involves packaging and shipping Christmas trees to troops stationed overseas all around the world.
A Christmas tree can make all the difference to lift the spirits of men and women stationed in remote locations.
Even though they can’t be home with their loved ones for the holidays, a Christmas tree at least brings them the memory of home during Christmas.
Free Crowdfunding sites
Free Crowdfunding sites can be another way to raise money to pay for Christmas toys or ask for free gifts.
The process involves using one of the networks out there, such as GoFundMe, to create a campaign.
You will need to tell your story, why you are struggling, and why you need toys or presents for your kid(s)
Family, Friends and Neighbors
Ask them for help. Also be sure to return the favor to them when you regain self-sufficiency.
It is very common for a grand-parent or aunt or uncle to provide a toy to a child, or maybe they can give the parent some free money so they can shop for a Christmas gift.
Help from Loans and Credit Agencies
In addition, if you would rather obtain a loan or a line of credit in order to do your Christmas shopping, but maybe you have poor credit scores, here are some options to consider.
Refinance Your Auto Loan
This is another way to both save money on your payments and to also get cash out of the principal on your car.
It is free to do. The funds can be used to pay for Christmas gifts as well as other holiday shopping.
The monthly savings you experience will really amount to free money that can be applied to paying any number of bills.
Low Interest Salary Advance Loan/ Peer to Peer Lender,
Take out a low interest salary advance loan from a credit union, peer to peer lender, or a payday advance lender.
As noted though, this is a very risky way to borrow.
From these options, a peer to peer or a salary advance loan will usually have the lowest interest rate.
However any of these offerings should only be used as a last resort when seeking extra money at Christmastime.
Free, Zero Interest Loan
Free, zero interest loan programs do exist. Money can be provided from a number of sources, ranging from churches to community action agencies.
The funds can be used to pay for Christmas gifts, help parents pay bills or obtain presents, and can address other financial obligations.
Many programs can help low-income families, whether it is an agency that provides money for Christmas shopping or charities that provide assistance.
There are other avenues as well as non-profit organizations near you that can provide help to struggling households.
However, it is always very important to sign up as early as possible for the free Christmas toys and gifts program as the demand for help from needy families is very high.
We hope this article about free Christmas toys and gifts has been helpful to you. Please share it with anyone who you think will appreciate the information!