Several years ago, our then-4-year-old daughter had her fourth ear surgery just before Christmas. Although it was an outpatient surgery, our daughter became too ill to go home that night. While we sat in her hospital room, watching silly cartoons as she healed, someone came to our door and asked if he could give her a Christmas gift.
I don’t remember what the gift was, but I remember that the kindness of a stranger lifted our sad spirits that day. Our daughter, now 13, remembers it well, too.
So this December when Cepia LLC, the makers of ZhuZhu Pets asked if I would give away 104 ZhuZhu Pets for them, I immediately thought of that day at the children’s hospital. It was an opportunity for us to pay-it-forward.
We were blessed to be part of Random Acts of Zhu, a program created by Cepia LLC, in which 100 bloggers were asked to give away 104 pet hamsters in our local areas. The choice of charity/ies was up to us, so our family decided to:
- Give a few away to the Angel Tree project in two local churches
- Give a few away to a homeless family
- Give a few away to The Lighthouse, a local abuse shelter
- Give the bulk of the pets away to the local hospital’s children’s wing
Unfortunately (but for good reasons), the hospital now won’t allow us to give the gifts directly to the children, but we were able to place them in a gift-giving box at the nurse’s station, ready to brighten a child’s day.
Thank you, Cepia LLC and your ZhuZhu Pets, for giving us the gift of being part of Random Acts of Zhu in 2010.
FreelyEducate.com’s Charity Projects in 2011
I haven’t yet figured out exactly how to do it, but I’d love for FreelyEducate.com to be more charity-focused in 2011. If you have any ideas, please share them in the comments. Meanwhile, I can’t wait to see how other companies respond to the Random Acts of Zhu program. It would be so exciting to give away even more toys in 2011!
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As for charity minded, maybe you could have corporate sponsors who would do a matching donation to every comment? Like if 200 people leave a comment, the sponsor would donate $200 to a particular charity.
I personally recommend the Ronald McDonald House, Dave Thomas Foundation, SmileTrain and/or Doctors Without Borders.
Have I mentioned before that I love freelyeducate?!
Lori Seaborg says
Oh, I LOVE that idea, Leslie!
Candace @NaturallyEducational says
We had a great time with Random Acts of Zhu! Looks like it was a wonderful experience for you, too.
I also have another site, Bloganthropy.org, that is a non-profit designed to inspire, recognize, and amplify social media acts of good. We hosted our first annual Bloganthropy Awards last year and are hoping to start holding monthly recognition awards and quarterly link carnivals…I hope you will come check it out and maybe you’ll get some ideas about how to connect your blogging with your volunteering!
Lori Seaborg says
Thank you for writing, Candace! I'll be happy to check it out.