Last-minute gift ideas for hard-to-buy-for Iowans
December 21st, 2011 by Ric Hanson
Iowans who need to come up with a last-minute gift for that hard-to-buy-for person may be able to find something appropriate at the American Red Cross website. Tammie Pech spokeswoman for the agency’s Siouxland chapter, says they’re offering a host of options for gifts you can give to deployed soldiers or people in need — in honor of anyone you choose. “There are military calling cards, there are disaster comfort kits, there’s blankets, there’s vaccinations for children across the world,” Pech says. “Whatever is near and dear to your heart, they’re going to have something for you.”
Whether it’s helping American troops overseas or helping victims of a tornado, she says the website “www.redcross.org/gifts” offers a range of items in a range of prices. The least expensive gifts include a set of three Red Cross blankets for $18, or a phone card for a deployed service member for $20. Plus, she says, you don’t have to worry about mailing anything as you can notify the gift honoree electronically, via email. “When you purchase your gifts on there, you have the option of sending an e-card so even if that person isn’t where you are or you want to send them a note about it, you can certainly print it, wrap it up and give it to them so it feels like they’re opening a gift,” Pech says. “You can also send them the e-card which is a really great way to send something across the country or across the miles and say ‘I really thought about you and this is a really special gift I wanted to give in your name.’” This type of gift is uplifting and can help to save lives, so Pesh says it’s both precious and enduring.
“Ninety-one cents of every dollar that’s donated through the Holiday Giving Catalog and to the American Red Cross goes directly to services,” Pech says. “We feel that’s really important and also, your gift is tax deductible, so that’s a neat thing at year-end that people need to know.” With donations of $100, $200 and $300, gift-givers will also receive gifts ranging from an aluminum water bottle to a messenger bag to a family first aid kit.