38 answers

Bday Party for Kid - Okay to Say No Gifts please....or Make a Donation in Lieu

We are having a bday party for our 6 y.o. son....and I am wanting to have attendees just come and not bring a gift. Just come and enjoy the party. Having about 12-15 kids at the party. We don't want everyone to go out and get a gift - he really has all the toys he needs. We have a small house and can't store a bizillion toys that don't get used. So thinking of asking people not to bring a gift. Is this okay? Also considering asking those that really want to - to make a donation to a charity that supports kids....any ideas on this? Want to teach him to be generous to others who are less fortunate....What do you think of this....anyone done this?

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Featured Answers

we have some friends (the children were in 4th grade though) who asked for donations to the local food pantry. That way everyone gets to bring something (and even watch the child open it) then helped load them in the car to take over there after the party. Gave the birthday kids great satisfaction to give the food to those who needed it and it was all tangible goods

2 moms found this helpful

I think it's ok to say no gifts please, but some kids will probably bring a gift anyway. I wouldn't ask for a donation to charity, that's a little awkward and at six years old they don't really get the concept of giving to charity, that's a little abstract IMO.

2 moms found this helpful

I would thinking asking people to make a cash donation would make people feel odd...a lot of people like bringing an actual present...maybe you could say instead of gifts we're collecting (toys for tots presents early, food for a food bank, books for kids at the orphanage...) idk I would tlak it over with yuor son and see what he would like to collect and really make it a lesson on giving and all of the kids coming would be able to participate and learn as well....

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More Answers

Awesome idea!
"Your present is your presence! We will be accepting donations for the local food bank at the party, as well."

3 moms found this helpful

i don't think it's rude in the least to have a no-present party, so long as the kid is okay with it. i love the 'your presence is the present!' wording that's been suggested!
i also like the idea of donations as a present. opening gifts of toys for tots or animal shelter goodies would fulfill the need to bring something and open something, if such a need exists.
but i don't think it's necessary. a party that provides a fun experience is really and truly a gift for all concerned, and i really love that this trend is taking off.

3 moms found this helpful

I think it's a nice idea if he's already got a zillion toys, but really make sure he is on board with it. A birthday, IMO, should be one of the rare times we spoil them. If you and your son can find a charity he is truly excited about donating money to, I think it's a great idea.

If he's not on board with the idea, then the donations are really all about you, and will be irrelevant to your son's birthday, and you're not teaching him anything, except to be annoyed that his gifts all went to someone else.

Maybe an animal-related charity will interest a boy?

Also, at 6, kids really like giving gifts to their friends. So it's usually not fun for little Jimmy to donate to breast cancer in the name of little Bobby. Maybe one of those charities that "adopts" animals, so little Jimmy can adopt a zebra or a sloth or something.

3 moms found this helpful

We have gone to several "no gifts" parties and are throwing one for our son next month! We're having his party at a zoo and put on the invitation "Your presence is your present!" For those who called and asked, we suggested a donation to the zoo in our son's name... meaning he'll have his name on the "donor" list which is pretty funny considering he'll be 3.

The last party we went to asked for dontations to the SPCA and I didn't think it was rude to have a specific request. My son liked picking out "presents" for the "poor kitties and puppies" for his friend to take to the local shelter.

3 moms found this helpful

Asking "no gifts" is fine.

Dictating what gift to give your child, even if it is a donation to charity, is not good etiquette, but most people tend to ignore etiquette in these times so...

3 moms found this helpful

I LOVE this idea!!

One thing that we'll be doing with our kids as they get older is to pick a local charity and ask for gifts for that. For example - the local aminal shelter. WE'll call up and ask what they need (food, treats, toys, beds,etc.) and then on the invite we'll say something like:

"For his birthday Joey has chosen to support XYZ kennel this year so no gifts for him! But, if you'd like to bring something for the animals (list what the shelter told us they need) we will happily deliver them next week!

I think asking for an item is less stressful on people than asking them for money. Great idea... just tweek it for your beliefs/ needs. Another friend asks for food donations for the local food shelf ... she's done that ever since her child was born. Another great idea!

2 moms found this helpful

I think it's fine, if your boy understands that it's a no-present birthday. (Expect to get a few anyhow, though.) I like the donation idea, and it might make it easier for folks who can't wrap their minds around "birthday without gifts."

Wouldn't it be fun if, on our birthdays, we GAVE presents to the people who have done so much for us since we were born?

2 moms found this helpful

Oh good luck!! I tried this several times-even posted this on here a few yrs ago. I had one mom tell me she was going to get my daughter a gift anyway because kids needed to have that experience!!
She is now 15 and most of those things have been added to our get rid of pile thru the years-some she kept one year, some went quicker.
Just don't understand that what I really wanted was for my daughter to just share the day with them-that was the gift!! I finally got so frustrated and as she got older, just quit having parties!! Now bdays are just one best friend todo something special!!

2 moms found this helpful

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