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Hand-picked tips for an ethical Christmas

Tearfund campaigners from around the UK share their tips and ideas for a more sustainable Christmas

Megan Hermes | 08 Dec 2021

Christmas present wrapped in brown paper packaging and string (Unsplash/ Priscilla Du Preez) 

Christmas present wrapped in brown paper packaging and string (Unsplash/ Priscilla Du Preez) 

The countdown to Christmas is on! We asked our Tearfund UK Campaigners Facebook group for their favourite tips to make their Christmas celebrations more sustainable.

This is a great time of year to try different ways of reducing waste to demonstrate love for our global neighbours and for God’s creation. Here’s a selection of home-grown ideas that you might like to try.

Giving good gifts

It's easy to forget about the ripple effect from making more ethical choices – but your actions may have more impact on others than you realise!

Round the dinner table 

One of my favourite things about Christmas is gathering around the dinner table with loved ones. Here are some of the tips we received about making festive meals more ethical.

Eating locally means fewer emissions are involved in getting the food from its source to your plate. It also benefits the local economy by supporting local farmers and producers. Local fruit-and-veg box services can be an easy way to get local produce delivered to your door. 
 
It’s estimated that 40 million crackers end up in our bins on Christmas Day. While some crackers can be recycled, those that use foil or glitter can’t – and the plastic toys inside are often headed straight for landfill! We received many comments from people who had replaced their Christmas crackers with eco-friendly alternatives, including fair trade chocolate, wooden toys, fabric ties and upcycled charity finds.

Deck the halls 

For many of us, hosting Christmas festivities means decorating the house and trying to keep warm! These tips focus on making a cosy environment while reducing the harmful impact on our planet.

Time to reflect

Many of us use this end-of-year season to take stock. It’s a good opportunity to review your daily choices and habits, and prayerfully consider what the next steps towards more ethical living might be. A few Tearfund campaigners shared their thoughts about taking action, and what’s been helpful for them along the way.

 
Whether you’ve been doing everything listed above for years or you’re just getting started, we can all take action towards making our Christmas and our daily choices more ethical. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get a chance to try out all of these ideas this year: it’s all about taking the next steps. 
 
If you’re still looking for more inspiration, take a look at our 25 ideas for an ethical Christmas blog from 2019. 

Megan Hermes

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