35 Gifts for Families Struggling Financially

Updated on November 18, 2017

Families who are struggling financially are either struggling to pay their monthly bills, struggling to put food on the table for their kids, struggling to find and keep a job, struggling to buy nice things for themselves and their children, struggling to pay off the credit card bills or maybe they do not struggle this, but struggling to do the forever repairs in their home or car. In whatever way you struggle or know a family that does, here are some gift ideas for the holiday season so they will not be forgotten.

  1. Clothes & Shoes for the Parents and Children: Jackets, coats, Sweaters, pants, pajamas, scarves, gloves, socks for the winter, cool outfits, jeans, etc.
  2. Gift Card to a Clothing Store: Macy's, JC Penny, Sears, Kohl's, etc. In this way, the parents can choose what to purchase for themselves and their children.
  3. Give them a Job if you can or Help in Finding a Job if the parent(s) are unemployed: Maybe the woman can help in the home, or the man can help with minor repairs if he has experience in this area. If not, if you know someone or a place that is hiring and this individual has the experience and the skills, refer or recommend this individual.
  4. Paid Rent or Mortgage for a month or More and also other bills like the utility bill, heating bill or electric bill for a month or two for the Family. This would help the family in a great way and they would be much appreciated.
  5. Offer Help with getting small errands done: This can be going to the grocery store, picking up prescriptions at the pharmacy, taking the children to school or any other activities, picking them up, returning library books or anything else, putting gas in the car etc.
  6. Toys for the Kids- Video games, board games, dolls, action figures, DVD’s
  7. School Supplies for the Children- notebooks, folders, backpacks, construction paper, scissors, pens, pencils, crayons, markers, glue, glue stick etc.
  8. Small Kitchen Appliances – if their appliances are old and need to be updated or if they need one, you can purchase either a Rice Cooker, Slow Cooker, Blenders, Coffeemaker, Microwave, Toaster, Toaster Oven, Mixers,Griddle, new pots and pans, etc.
  9. Prepaid Cell Phone
  10. Pay for a specific repair in the home- if there are plumbing problems, leaking roof, need new carpet, new windows, etc.
  11. Comforter Set, Blanket and Quilt for the Cold Weather
  12. Flat Screen TV & DVD Player
  13. Desktop Computer or Laptop & Wireless Router, Amazon Kindle
  14. Other Electronics- MagicJack, Digital Camera, iPod touch, IPhone, Tablet
  15. Paid Internet Service for a few months- help with any bill is always helpful
  16. Paid Repair for their Cars- oil change, tune up
  17. Paid Car Payment for a month or two

Food Gifts

The next 6 gift ideas are food gifts. This is only if you notice the family barely have anything to eat or the refrigerator and kitchen cabinets are going empty. Some families struggling do have food and it is the other nice things that are missing

18. Bag of Groceries or a Gift Card at a Supermarket and Point them to a Food Pantry in Your Town, they can go to monthly or weekly.

19. Food Gift Basket - some food ideas include:

Rice, Pasta, Pasta sauce, Mashed potato, Dry milk, evaporated milk, cereals, Olive Oil, Flour, Pancake mix, syrup, coffee, teas, Juices, ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, salt, sugar

Canned items include canned vegetables, canned corn, canned carrot, baked beans, red kidney beans, pinto beans, black beans, canned soup, canned chicken or tuna, canned salmon, Spam, canned fruit (Peaches, pineapple, mandarin orange, etc)

20. Snack Gift Basket – items to include are : Crackers, Chocolate Cookies, Shortbread Cookies, Peanut butter, jelly/jam, microwave popcorn, peanuts, cashews, almonds, potato chips, vegetable chips, cheese, Pretzels, dip, sunflower seeds, cereal bars, health bars, etc

21. Fruit Gift Basket- filled with apples, oranges, pears, pineapple, strawberry, bananas, blueberries, dried fruit like apricot, cranberries, raisins,

22. Gift Card at a Restaurant that covers the whole family or Invitation to Dinner- Ruby Tuesday, Applebees, Steakhouse, Red Robin, IHop, Red Lobster, Pizza Hut, Cracker Barrel, Italian Restaurants,Mexican restaurant, other international restaurants and any local restaurant that is favorite for them or one the family will love to sit down and eat.

23. Bring dinner at least once a week or prepare dinners for the entire month- there are places like Hellofresh.com where you can have meals delivered to their home. You can also surprise them and have a restaurant deliver dinner to them once in a while.

24. Coupons- restaurant coupons, fast food coupons, grocery coupons, clothing coupons, etc.

Miscellaneous Gifts

25. Gas Gift Card- gasoline is something that is always needed.

26. Childcare Help for a month or Paid Daycare- if a mom or dad has to work or do errands, providing help with the children would be such a great help, so they do not have to worry about one more thing.

27. Cinema Gift Card or Movie Tickets for the entire family- in the midst of struggling, having a family night at the movies is a great idea.

28. Gift Cards at a Department Store- Walmart, Kmart, Target, Kohls, etc.

29. Women’s Gift Basket- filled with makeup, shampoos, conditioners, face cleanser, face moisturizer, body lotion, body wash, soap, hairbrush, styling gel, hairspray, women’s multivitamin, Candle, journal, Deodorant, body spray, etc.

30. Men’s Gift Basket- body wash, soap, shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, aftershave, razor, men’s deodorant, cologne, combs, wooden massager, men’s multivitamin

31. Financial Book & Tools to help Budget their Finances- like Dave Ramsey book, The Total Money Makeover, Financial Peace Revisited and Dave Ramsey's Complete Guide To Money. You can also pay for them to go through the Financial Peace Classes in your area.

32. Grants & Program for Struggling and Needy families in Your Area- like SNAP, Programs that offer assistance through the winter with electric and heating bills, or help with mortgage or rent.

33. Baby Products, Baby Diapers if necessary- for mothers with babies, toddlers is always a wonderful help.

34. Cleaning Supplies- Laundry detergent, dish detergent, multi-surface cleaner, sponge, mop, broom, Windex, toilet cleaner, Paper towels, Toilet Paper

35. An Envelope full of Cash or a Check to cover monthly expenses.- this can be from you or you can put together money from a group of friends.

The holidays can be an extra strain for struggling families to buy that special gift for their loved one. You can bring joy to your struggling friends and family.


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    • Janellegems profile image

      Janellegems 3 months ago from United States

      Thanks for sharing. You can possibly try churches in your area that has food pantries for the community. You can sign up for one or more of them. Here is a site for you to check up on- https://www.balancepro.net/education/publications/...

    • profile image

      Nicole Alcantara 3 months ago

      I have a 16yr old boy and 3yr old girl. I am on disability and rent n bills n food are my whole check plus gas to get son to school and daughter to preschool. I would just like to get any help I can. I have some assistance in past 2yrs at least thru kent food bank and once salvation army. Having car problems also right now. Thank you

    • Janellegems profile image

      Janellegems 15 months ago from United States

      Thanks Margie Lynn for your comment.

    • Margie Lynn profile image

      Margie Lynn 15 months ago from Beautiful Texas Hill Country

      Great suggestions, thanks for all the wonderful info!

    • Janellegems profile image

      Janellegems 16 months ago from United States

      Thanks so much Joy for stopping by and for your comment. We should always consider those in need.

    • profile image

      Joy Summers 16 months ago

      This is an amazing Hub with all great ideas to help struggling families. It teaches us not to be selfish, but consider those around us who need help. Thanks so much for compiling this to help those in need.