Christmas acts of kindness ideas for the whole family

Christmas acts of kindness ideas for the whole family

If one time of year is more likely to draw out 'goodwill to all men’, it's Christmas. Whether you celebrate the holiday or not, this is the season associated with giving, kindness, thinking of others, gratitude and sharing what you have. Meaning it's an excellent time for the whole family to spread acts of kindness to teach kids key lessons about empathy, giving and donating. Here's how to bring Christmas kindness to life.


Related: Teaching kids how to give back


Some of our top Christmas acts of kindness ideas:

1. Donate to your local food bank via the supermarket. 

2. Give gift vouchers to a children's hospital. 

3. Take blankets to an animal shelter. 

4. Plant some daffodil and tulip bulbs for spring. 

5. Help elderly neighbours. 

6. Leave a kind online google review.

7. Donate to pet food banks

8. Be kind to your siblings (or parents) for a day. 

9. Get an NSPCC Letter from Santa

10. Buy gifts  with brands that give back.


What is Christmas kindness


Christmas kindness is all about the things we do to help, assist or cheer up someone else or a group in need.


If you're worried that your kids won't be interested, Gen-Zers are twice as likely to give and donate in the next year than any other generation! Our latest research has found that Gen Zers giving to charity has gone up by 256% in a year!


Louise Hill, co-founder and COO of GoHenry, agrees and says, "What amazes me is how responsible GenZ are. Aside from saving, they give a huge amount to charity. Several years ago, we saw that GoHenry children were donating a lot, so we decided to add a giving option. We partnered with the NSPCC to allow children to make micro-donations. So far, they have donated over £350,000 to the NSPCC. These kids care."


How to instil kindness and gratitude in your kids


If you’re looking to move Christmas away from the message to buy, buy. buy, it’s a good time to brainstorm ideas with your family around gratitude, kindness and helping others. 


Consider what being kind means, the benefits it brings to those around you and what as a family, you could all be extra grateful for this year.

To make it fun, come up with acts of kindness that the whole family can do as an alternative advent calendar in the 24 days leading up to Christmas (or any holiday your family celebrates). Talk about needs versus wants, the benefits of giving time and attention to others and acts of kindness that will make people feel happy and special.


24 random acts of kindness ideas for kids and families to do at Christmas


1. Donate to your local food bank via the supermarket. Christmas is a great time to get kids involved in donating to food banks. Look for the food bank collection box when you are doing your weekly grocery shop.


2. Give gift vouchers to a children's hospital. Donating toy shop vouchers means that hospital experts can use them to purchase gifts that children most need, including sensory items for children and items to help with their recovery.


3. Bring blankets to an animal shelter. Most animal shelters need good-condition blankets, towels, bed sheets, and newspapers, but do call them first to check what they are looking for.


4. Plant some daffodil and tulip bulbs for spring. Planting something now will make endless people happy as they walk past your house early next year.


5. Help elderly neighbours. Offer to weed their garden, mow their lawn or get their shopping for them.


6. Leave a kind online google review. Let shops and cafes, and brands know they did a great job, and you appreciate them.


7. Donate pet food. Pet food banks provide a supply of free pet food to families in financial hardship. You can donate via supermarket food donation boxes or via Pets At Home (check with the local store manager first).


8. Be kind to your siblings (or parents) for a day. This one is guaranteed to make your family happy, plus you’ll be surprised at how good it makes you feel.


9. Get an NSPCC Letter from Santa. Every donation that’s given when your child gets a Letter from Santa means the Childline service can answer more calls and support children all year round.


10. Buy gifts from brands that give back. Lush, Marks and Spencer, Zara and ASOS are just some of the brands that give back to charities like Oxfam and the Red Cross when you buy from them.


11. Do something kind for the environment. Walk more often, pick up litter if you see it, or donate your old toys and clothes rather than throwing them away.


12. Share your evening meal. The Casserole Club volunteers share extra portions of home-cooked food with people in their area who aren’t always able to cook for themselves. They share once a week, once a month, or whenever works best for them.


13. Write a letter to PostPals. Put a smile on a sick child’s face by sending cards, letters, emails, and little gifts to seriously ill children and their siblings in the UK.


14. Feed the birds.  Leave water, seeds and small scraps of fruit out for birds as they find it hard to find food once it gets cold.


15. Look out for lonely people at school and befriend them. School isn’t easy for everyone, so ask your kids to see if they can be kind to someone on their own at lunchtime and during breaks.


16. Donate socks and gloves to the homeless shelter. The basic things that we take for granted are hugely needed by those who have nothing.


17. Be there for a friend who is sad. It’s not always easy to be there for someone who isn’t feeling great, but it’s incredibly kind to be able to stay by their side, so they know they have someone.


18. Match a Christmas dinner. The charity Feeding Families matched a family who needed help with one who could donate a Christmas Dinner. In 2021 they delivered over 9,000 Christmas Dinners. You can donate or buy food to cook Christmas dinner. 


19. Compliment everyone you see today. Scientists have found that being given a compliment or kind word lights up the same parts of your brain that get activated when you win an award.


20. Bake a cake for a neighbour. Sometimes doing something kind for others simply makes someone feel seen and happy, which can make a huge difference in their lives.


21. Invite a guest to Christmas dinner. It could be a friend alone, a family who has had a hard time this year or even a neighbour who is by themselves.


22. Forget Elf on a Shelf. Swap him out for the Kindness Elves, who teach younger children about acts of love and service to the world around them.


23. Paint kind and happy words on rocks. And hide them around your neighbourhood and parks for others to find.


24. Buy thank you cards. And send them to everyone who has done something lovely for you this year, whether it’s sending you a gift, making you laugh, helping you when you were down or making you feel good about yourself and others.


How GoHenry can help


A prepaid kids debit card with GoHenry can teach kids everything from how to donate to charity to using their debit card to buy items that help others. The GoHenry giving feature also makes it easy for kids to donate a few pence of their pocket money to the NSPCC. To date, GoHenry kids have donated over £200,000 to the NSPCC, which is an incredible achievement considering the weekly average donation is 7p.



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Written by Anita Naik Published Nov 16, 2022 ● 3 min. read