The most amazing Secret Santa idea

Tired of the same ol' boring Secret Santa exchange at the office year after year? Then you'll LOVE this little twist to the famous holiday tradition!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Vitamin Angels for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

The Christmas before my daughter was born, one of the gals in my office suggested we start an annual Secret Santa tradition in the marketing department, and while I’m not really one for organized fun, I really liked her idea.

You see, she didn’t want us to do the typical Secret Santa exchange, where we all drew a name from a hat, tried to find the perfect gift for someone we barely knew, and then spent an entire afternoon watching people try to guess who their Secret Santa was.


She had something much more meaningful up her sleeve.

Tired of the same ol' boring Secret Santa exchange at the office year after year? Then you'll LOVE this little twist to the famous holiday tradition!

What she proposed for us to do was draw names from a hat and then buy a childhood toy we felt that person would have liked when they were a kid. We would then spend an afternoon eating cookies from our cookie exchange and drinking horrible cafeteria coffee while we opened the gifts and tried to guess who our Secret Santa was before driving our gifts to a local toy drive.

It was such a fabulous idea.

On the morning of the exchange, EVERYONE was in a good mood. There is just something so magical about buying toys for children, but knowing we were making a child’s Christmas wish come true was truly special.

About halfway through the exchange, when our pants no longer fit from all the cookies we’d eaten, and our hands were shaking from the horrible coffee, one of the gals on my team opened her gift, which was an envelope, and when she saw what was inside, her eyes welled up with tears.

Naturally, this worried the rest of the team, but when a couple of us stood up to find out what was in the envelope, she held up her hand as if to tell us it was okay before showing us that her Secret Santa had donated well above our $20 limit to her favorite children’s charity.

As it turns out, her Secret Santa sat next to her at work, and had overheard her talking on the phone to her sister the week prior while they discussed how much they could each donate to “their charity” that year. It was a tradition they had kept up since high school, but that particular year had been tight for both of them, and they were feeling a little disappointed with their final donation amounts.

But her Secret Santa had taken care of that for them.

It was hands down the most beautiful and meaningful Secret Santa exchange I’ve ever been a part of, especially since the guy who made the donation was the department’s jokester and the least sentimental person among us.

Boy, did he surprise us that day!

I remember making a promise to myself while I was driving home that night that I would start a similar tradition with my daughter to ensure we always help out those less fortunate than us during the holidays, but each year I struggle to decide exactly how I want to help.

So when I was asked to partner with Vitamin Angels this holiday season, I knew I’d finally found my match.

Have you head of Vitamin Angels? They help at-risk populations in need – specifically pregnant women, new mothers, and children under the age of 5 – gain access to lifesaving and life changing vitamins and minerals. And in the last 5 years alone, Vitamin Angels has reached more than 100 million mothers and children with vitamins in approximately 45 countries including the U.S.

And that’s pretty special if you ask me.


So if you’re trying to think of the perfect Christmas gift for your mother, sister, aunt, uncle, boss, assistant, and/or the person you drew out of the Secret Santa hat at work, I encourage you to consider a donation to Vitamin Angels.

Even the smallest gift can change a child’s life

-25 cents will bring lifesaving vitamin A to a child in need
-25 cents reduces mortality in at-risk children by up to 24% by providing one dose of vitamin A, twice a year
-Vitamin A supplements are the least expensive solution to addressing preventable child deaths
-An estimated 190 million children under the age of 5 suffer from vitamin A deficiency, which can lead to weakened immune systems, childhood blindness, and even death

Wow, that really makes you stop and think, doesn’t it?

Vitamin A Saves Lives

So, in lieu of giving a gift, why not donate to Vitamin Angels in honor of an individual this year?

It’ll be a gift that lasts beyond the holidays and it will create a legacy of giving.

Get involved. Donate now.

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