In case you wondered.
Someone has apparently put FamilyChristmasOnline.com on a list of places you can send unsubstantiated hardship stories and get money. You should know that nobody here draws a salary. In fact, it COSTS us money to run this site. We don't complain, and we don't ask for donations, because we consider running this site as one way to "pay it forward," in honor of folks who have shared great Christmas stories and traditions with us over our lifetimes. But everyone who has volunteered to help this site already
volunteers and supports legitimate charities that help needy families. None of us has time - especially as Christmas approaches - to "vet" unsolicited requests for help from individuals so far away we couldn't check out their story if we wanted to. Nor do we feel good about diverting support from folks we know
need help to people we know nothing about.
Actually, we did check out the first several requests we got, and the results did not make me feel good about trusting people I only know by e-mail. But even if the requests were legitimate, we've already made commitments to people and organizations we know
If you really have needs, you should know that, instead of ignoring needs like yours, we are devoting time and support to trustworthy organizations that have chapters in your community as well as ours.
If you really need help, contact your chapter of the Salvation Army for starters. If your kids are really in danger of going "toyless" this year, contact the regional Marines' "Toys for Tots." If your children have a parent in prison, contact the closest "Angel Tree" group. If neither of the latter two groups has a chapter in your region, your local Salvation Army may be able to suggest alternative resources. By the way, they're one of the charities we count on and support for this kind of work in our
community, so I don't feel bad about listing them as a "point resource" in yours.
If you're thinking about your own charitable giving and you've been wondering what organizations really help the people they claim to, check out the organizations that check THEM out.
- Charity Navigator
" - CharityWatch
- BBB Wise Giving Alliance
You'll notice that none of those sites list FamilyChristmasOnline.com as a charity. For tax purposes we operate as a business - believe it or not it works for us, because it allows us to use advertising to offset some of the costs and keeps us from having to ask for money. So don't send us money. But you can send us stories, articles, special memories, favorite Christmas songs, etc.
Have a great holiday season.