Want, need, wear, read—Compassion style

During the holidays, I often get sucked down the black hole that is Pinterest. Before I know it, I’ve pinned 13 pumpkin pie recipes (I don’t even like pumpkin pie), a handful of “Elf on the Shelf” ideas (have I mentioned I don’t have kids?), and instructions for how to make your own wrapping paper (I typically shove 90 per cent of my Christmas presents into gift bags on Christmas Eve).

A girl standing in front of a farmhouse proudly holds a rooster

But one thing I’ve seen over and over has intrigued me. It’s called the Four Gift Challenge, and it’s designed to create intentionality when it comes to Christmas gifts.

The idea is simple. You give your child (or really anyone in your life you might be inclined to “over give” to) something they want, something they need, something to wear and something to read.

And that got us here at Compassion thinking. We could do our own Four Gift Challenge! But with the Compassion version, you could give those gifts to children in poverty.

You can do this fun challenge with your family using Compassion’s Gift Guide to find those four perfect gifts to share with children in poverty.

We’d love to hear what you do with the Four Gift Challenge! Tag us @CompassionCA to share.
A girl in a yellow dress smiles as she swings on a swing.

Something a child in poverty wants:

  • A bicycle: Every kid wants a bike! And when you give one through Compassion’s Gift Guide, you’re also providing a way for a child to get to school.
  • Safe playground: Give kids a safe place to run, play and just be kids!
  • Spiritual camp: A spiritual camp can be an incredible time of both fun and growing closer to the Lord.


A little girl and boy pump water from a new well.

Something a child in poverty needs:

  • Safe water: How amazing would it be to give access to fresh, safe water to a child for Christmas?
  • Dental kits: Keep those whites pearly by giving a child in poverty a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss and mouthwash.
  • Chickens: Does a child really need a chicken, you ask? Children do need good nutrition, and giving a chicken is a great way to ensure children are getting the nutritional benefits of eggs!


A woman sews colourful cloth.

Something for a child in poverty to wear:

  • Tailoring workshop: A sewing class gives moms the skills to not only sew their families’ clothing but also a marketable skill that can be used to defeat poverty.
  • Sewing machine: With a sewing machine, moms can learn to earn an income from home, while clothing their families!


A girl standing in front of a farmhouse proudly holds a rooster

Something for a child in poverty to read:

  • Books: In many communities, a textbook is a key to education—and a clearly marked path out of poverty.
  • Learning centre: At Compassion learning centres, children have access to all kinds of books to grow their imagination and further their education.


Check out Compassion’s Gift Guide for more ideas for gifts to send to a child in poverty. And be sure to tag us @CompassionCA to share your challenge!

By Brandy Campbell with Amber Van Schooneveld

Written by: Compassion Canada