Vegan Christmas

Advice, recipes and gift ideas for a merry vegan Christmas

Charity Gifts

For those looking for an alternative to the waste and conspicuous consumption of Christmas gift giving, a gift given to a charity is a popular choice. However, not all charities are compassionate towards animals so be careful when choosing a charity gift for a vegan. Many medical charities spend their money on cruel animal vivisection experiments so these are ones to avoid. Animal Aid maintain a comprehensive list of the animal testing policies of charities to assist in this choice.

Don’t Send a Cow

In recent years Oxfam have encouraged people to buy presents which are given to people in developing countries. One of the most popular gifts is a goat or cow which is given to a family to provide milk, skin and meat. This is not only unfortunate for the animal itself (despite the happy smile of the Christmas-hat-wearing goat in the advertisement and the fact that, ironically, they advertise it as a gift for animal lovers!) but has also been strongly criticised by organisations such as the World Land Trust for the environmental damage caused. Supplying grazing animals in areas with sparse vegetation is a cause of, rather than solution to, a shortage of food. Because of this, Animal Aid have organised a Don’t Send A Cow campaign to encourage alternatives. In particular, they recommend Hippo and Vegfam, two charities helping people in developing countries in ways that are environmentally sustainable and animal friendly. Of course, if you wish to give an Oxfam Unwrapped gift then you can just choose an animal friendly and environmentally sound option.

Sponsoring Rescued Animals

If you would prefer to keep animals alive, rather than pay for them to be eaten, you can sponsor a rescued animal. By making a donation to an animal sanctuary, they will often give you a certificate, updates on the animal’s progress and sometimes even visitation rights! This is a great gift for an animal lover which can bring pleasure all year and can be renewed for as long as you wish.

Organisations who rescue animals include Brinsley Animal Rescue, Hillside Animal Sanctuary, the Celia Hammond Animal Trust, the Foal Farm Animal Rescue Centre and the Dogs Trust. You may also find organisations close to the recipient’s home who have a sponsorship scheme.

You could also donate to a conservation charity to sponsor a wild animal or an area of natural habitat.