There’s a viral video doing the rounds of a child unwrapping an early Christmas gift — and his father, a serviceman presumably returning from a US military tour, bursts out of the present.
The original tweet has been viewed nearly 15 million times — and it got us thinking: what do people really want for Christmas?
If it’s that beautiful warm fuzzy feeling you get when the boy in the video says, “I missed you”, then you’re in luck — and you won’t even need to rewatch Love Actually to get it.
There’s loads of charities that do an incredible job fighting extreme poverty every day of the year — and your support over the festive season can help them change lives. Christmas is simply about giving. All you have to do is jump on the bandwagon.
That’s why the British government decided to offer a “ChristMatch” — meaning that the Department for International Development (DfID) will use its lifesaving UK aid budget to double any donation made to seven specific charities over the festive season.
For every £1 you donate to these charities, DfID will add another £1 on top. And it’s a way of making sure that UK aid funding goes to support the charities that really matter to the British people.
The offer expires for different charities on different days, but if you want warm and fuzzy to become grand and romantic, a donation can be made as a Valentine’s Day gift too. Most run until at least February or March.
Here’s an overview about which charities have been chosen for the scheme, so you can pick projects you’re passionate about.
1. Street Child
What it does: Get children into school.
What it's already done: Helped over 200,00 kids go to school — and supported over 15,000 families set up businesses to keep them there — since 2008.
What your money gets you: £15 can give a child a year’s worth of quality education.
Street Child’s website can be found here.
Can we count YOU in to support our #CountMeIn campaign with @DFID_UK#UKAidMatch so that more children like Sorie can go to school, learn and achieve their full potential? https://t.co/AfULZaZA6r Please Retweet! #StreetChild#UKaid#UKgovpic.twitter.com/24SALv3z2A— Street Child (@streetchilduk) December 17, 2018
2. Village Water
What it does: Provide safe water, sanitation, and hygiene in rural Zambia and Mozambique.
What it's already done: Reached over 1,000 communities and 191,000 people in Zambia since 2004 — and installed 10 waterpoints in Mozambique.
What your money gets you: £10 will provide three bags of cement to build a permanent toilet block. Here’s why that’s so important.
Village Water’s website can be found here.
With safe water to drink and proper, private toilets and washrooms school is a better place to be. Pretty obvious isn't it? We want all children to have the same opportunity to reach their potential. It starts with safe water. Give before 26 Feb and your donation will be DOUBLED by the UK government. Go to villagewater.org/ukam-donate to give now. #safewater #cleanwater #sanitation #charity #education #matchfunding
3. Mary’s Meals
What it does: Offers one good meal to the world’s poorest children every day.
What it's already done: Feed 1,361,586 school children daily.
What your money gets you: £7 can feed two children for a whole school year.
Mary’s Meals website can be found here.
UK gifts go further with #DoubleTheLove! Until 1 March 2019, the UK government will match your donations, up to £2 million, helping #MarysMeals reach more hungry children in #Zambia#UKAidMatch: https://t.co/rL415uTJcbpic.twitter.com/uou2FxA9ZC— Mary's Meals (@MarysMeals) December 15, 2018
What it does: Protect the human rights of every child in Ghana.
What it's already done: supported thousands of kids in completing their education — with some schools now achieving total completion rates for basic education.
What your money gets you: £10 can send two teachers from rural schools to a training session to improve the quality of education they can give their students.
AfriKids’ website can be found here.
June Sarpong MBE announces the launch of AfriKids’ Time to Shine appeal today!— AfriKids (@AfriKids) December 3, 2018
Give before 04/03/19 and all public donations to our Time to Shine appeal will be doubled by the UK government.
5. Practical Action
What it does: Uses technology to improve the lives of people in poverty.
What it's already done: The organisation runs 104 projects in developing countries around the world, directly benefiting over 1 million people last year.
What your money gets you: £23 enables someone to move from reliance on food aid to self-sufficiency — by combining traditional agriculture practices with advances in technology and science.
Practical Action’s website can be found here.
Will you do something wonderful today? Your gift & our clever thinking can help beat poverty & hunger in #Zimbabwe – for good! Every pound you donate between now and 8 March 2019 will be matched by the UK government: https://t.co/ViL6KbyAWL#BeAChangemaker#UKAidMatch@DFID_UKpic.twitter.com/9qo3XMtCsO— Practical Action (@PracticalAction) December 13, 2018
6. War Child
What it does: Protects, educates, and stands up for the rights of children impacted by war.
What it's already done: Last year, War Child supported almost 50,000 former child soldiers.
What your money gets you: £10 provides a Back-to-School kit for a former street-working child, to support them back into education.
War Child’s website can be found here.
We need your help to support children in the #CentralAfricanRepublic to move beyond their experiences of war.— War Child UK (@WarChildUK) November 20, 2018
Donate - https://t.co/eOsJ1UJTJ9
Give before 1/8/19 & your gift will be doubled pound for pound by the UK Government up to £500,000. #UKAidMatch@DFID_UKpic.twitter.com/cfwMkwwApD
7. Elton John Aids Foundation
What it does: Funds frontline programmes to alleviate the suffering of those affected by HIV/AIDS.
What it's already done: 1.8 million people were supported last year — and 155,000 have accessed programmes through projects the foundation has funded since 2015.
What your money gets you: £20 can provide a self-testing HIV kit.
The Elton John Aids Foundation website can be found here.
Let the #12DaysofChristmas countdown begin! We will be sharing videos from twelve videos, one per day, from our friends and supporters, who are sharing their reason for back our #AIDSfree appeal with @evening.standard and @the.independent. To kick off our first day, @j_corden is here sharing the first step in stopping HIV: testing. There are still many people in London and around the world who have HIV, who are at risk because they haven’t been tested. HIV still carries stigma and fear, so by tackling that, we can encourage people to know their status so they can live normal, fulfilling lives. Our campaign aims to get 300,000 people tested. Your donation is the first step in helping us achieve this. Click on the link in our bio to donate to our appeal, and support our work. Every gift will be doubled by the UK Government, up to £2m, to be spent across projects in Nairobi and Maputo #UKAidMatch @dfid_uk