Here's how to give an RESP Gift Certificate and actually make it a fun gift!
As Christmas time approaches, we're all thinking about how we can give to others. I see the malls fill, my shopping list grows, and I watch the traffic build on my Non-Toy Gift Ideas blog post! As parents, we know all too well that toys seem to have a way of multiplying! You start out with a small collection of baby toys in a little basket in the corner of your nursery, and then you blink and you've got bedrooms and playrooms bursting at the seams if you're not careful! I know parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends are looking for non-toy gift ideas this time of year, and today I'll share one with you that you may not have thought of, as well as some ideas for how you can make it a fun gift – even though it's meant for the future.
We've been talking about education savings plans on the blog lately. I've shared why I think RESPs are important and our experience looking for an RESP provider. So let's say you've decided to start an RESP, you've chosen a provider, and you're on your way to saving for your child's future education. Did you know that your friends and family can contribute to your child's RESPs, too?
Of course, there's the traditional way of doing this, where anyone who wants to contribute could give you the money and you then deposit it into your account. However, last year, Heritage Education funds announced the launch of their Heritage eGifting Program. The program provides a convenient way for you to electronically collect funds toward your child's RESP. It's an online fundraising campaign that provides you with a link you can share with family and friends, allowing them to contribute to your child's savings plan for milestone events and special occasions. Their contribution goes straight to your child's RESP, and you don't have to take any extra steps to make it happen!
Make It Fun!
If you're concerned that contributing to an RESP for a gift will not be very fun for the child right away, here are a few ideas of how to spice it up:
- If the child has a special interest or goal for what they want to be "when they grow up," you could give them a gift (such as a science kit for a child who wants to be a scientist, an anatomy book for a child interested in becoming a doctor, or art supplies for a little artist). Explain in a card that you want to help them make their dreams come true.
- For young kids, you could include a dress-up costume that fits their dream of what they want to be when they grow up.
- Arrange a little trip together to go and see someone working in the field they're interested in. Let them know about it at the same time as you tell them about your contribution.
- Give the gift while the child is still too young to care about receiving a toy or money.
- Give the gift when the child is old enough to understand the importance of education and knows a bit about saving money.
- Print a certificate to represent the gift.
I made the little certificate shown above. If you'd like to print it as a representation of a contribution to someone's education savings plan, you're welcome to do so! Just click on the image to see it full-size (it's for 8.5 x 11" paper). Then right click on the full sized image and choose "save image as" from the dropdown menu to save it to your computer.
For easy instructions on how to get started with the Heritage eGifting Program, visit this webpage.
Happy Holiday Saving!
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Heritage Education Funds. All opinions shared are my own.