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Gift Giving Ideas

If you are like me, you have to be resourceful when it comes to giving gifts to you youth and volunteers. Most parishes do not have big budgets to spend, but you still want to recognize your students and your volunteers on special occasions. 

Gift Baskets

Gift baskets can get pricy, but they can also be more fun. If I am giving a gift to a speaker that came in from out of town, I try to purchase locally made stuff. A painting from a local painter, bottle of wine from a local winery, honey from a local beekeeper, handmade soap from a local crafter, etc. Give them a little bit of your community to take home with them.

I like to give gift baskets to my volunteers at Christmas time as well. during COVID, they got a mask with our logo, a personal hand sanitizer, bottle of local wine, candle from a local crafter, and a fuzzy blanket. 

Small Tokens

Small tokens of appreciation can be a low-cost gift. Online shops like Autom Catholic Gifts, Catholic Supply Shop, Oriental Trading, etc. have some inexpensive items. Other online shops, such as the Catholic Company have some slightly more expensive similar items. Or you can shop here on this website and help keep this site running.

Easy Gifts

Mass Journal: Purchase plain journals like this one on Amazon. Pair with a nice pen and this letter. You can also include a full-size candy bar or ornament.

Creative Gifts

12 Days of Christmas: This is a youth group favorite with my middle schoolers! They get to open 1 gift a day for the 12 days of Christmas. It can get expensive depending on the gifts you find to go in each day's gift. It is also a lot of wrapping! But, if you want to win your youth group over with this exciting gift, here's the instructions and the pintables.

Candy Bouquet: We actually have the middle school youth group make these for the graduating seniors every year. Use a small vase or mug. You can usually find these for $1 at the Dollar Store. Get some pool noodles and cut them with a knife about 5-6 inches - so that they fill the vase or mug, but do not poke out over the top. Purchase lollipop sticks (you can get these in the candy-making isle at Walmart) - you will need about 5 per bouquet. Purchase candy bars, Airheads, Starburst, gum, Blowpops, or other similar candies - about 5 per bouquet. You will also need tissue paper, cardstock and one card holder per bouquet (I purchased from Amazon). Loosely wrap the tissue paper around the pool noodle and stick down into the vase or mug. The edges should be sticking up out of the vase or mug. Tape the candy to a lollipop stick and poke the other end of the stick into the pool noodle. Do this with all of them. It should resemble this. Make a card with the cardstock and add to the cardholder. I've used full size candy bars and snack size. Both work, but the full size look nicer.

Advent Calendar Gift: This is a lot of fun! Like the 12 Days of Christmas, the youth get to open a gift everyday, but for the entire Advent season. This one will get very pricey unless you are able to find some good, inexpensive items to put in them. If you have a smaller youth group, this would be a fun option. I wrapped a shoebox bottom, and a shoebox top, so that I could put the wrapped lid on the wrapped box. This way, the recipient can open it to get their gift each day and close it back up. You can get creative with this, or simply number each gift as a countdown. Some inexpensive items can include fuzzy socks, candy, gum, laptop stickers, inspirational pens, devotional diary, etc. 

Handmade Gifts

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