smart spending

12 days of financial gift giving

Charitable giving
Charitable giving

On the 11th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, the importance of charitable giving.

Teaching those in your life how important it is to give back is a gift for those in need, as well as a gift for the giver's heart.

What would the holidays be without sharing with those less fortunate?

"Charitable giving is included in the financial standards that Jump$tart produces," says Levine. "It's not an add-on; this is an important lesson and part of money management -- not just money for the sake of personal wealth but also how you use it. It also helps you value money."

Levine says that while children are naturally generous, as they grow, their own good fortune may insulate them from the needs of others.

"Thinking charitably is a way to help kids appreciate the value of money if they've never had to worry about money," says Levine. "It's a good lesson, and we're seeing it increasingly in different financial education programs."

She suggests this helpful holiday tip to instill the gift of charity in children.

"Parents who are going to give gifts of money this Christmas should consider breaking your gifts into several parts. For instance, if you're going to give someone $15, give three $5 bills. This helps facilitate the idea that you want your child to be able to spend some, donate some and then save some for later," she says.

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