Red Cross catalog makes giving more meaningful

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Have you completed your holiday gift list yet? Chances are it's getting longer and longer.

For many families, the idea of gift giving during the holidays has taken on new meaning. Instead of giving gifts to each other that we don't really need, they're saying, let's give to the less fortunate.

The American Red Cross is responding to the trend this year with its Holiday Giving Catalog. It's just like those many Christmas gift catalogs that are arriving in our mailboxes almost daily now, but instead of the traditional gifts, the choices from the Red Cross are items that can help people in need after a disaster situation.

"So you actually have something tangible that you can say that you helped with," said Mary Burchett, spokesperson for the American Red Cross of Utah. "So you're not just writing a check, you're actually giving those gifts that can actually save someone's life."

In the print and online edition of the Holiday Giving Catalog, there are dozens of items to choose from. For as little as $18, you can provide three blankets for children. You can buy phone cards for soldiers for as little as $20 each, and $100 will provide hot meals for 10 people.

91% of your donations to the Red Cross go to program expenses.

In any disaster situation, large or small, there are many needs. The Red Cross is appealing to those who want to do something during the holidays, but want to do something more meaningful than just sending in a generic financial donation.

"We see an increase around the holidays of people wanting to spend their money on something that's a little more tangible than a sweater that's going to go into the back of the closet or a wreath that's just going to wither," Burchett said.

The Red Cross Holiday Giving Catalog is in its second year.



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Keith McCord


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