10 Gift Ideas for People With Disabilities

2:11:00 AM

My sister, Colleen, turned 23 today!  Now let me preface this by saying that she loves her birthday-- it is usually combined with the family 4th of July celebration.  We all try to make her feel special, but sometimes we ask ourselves, "What should we get her this year!?"  Most of us know of someone with a disability and have encountered/will encounter the big dilemma of what to get them for a gift.  You want to get them something that 1) they can use and 2) they don't already have.  I have compiled a list of 10 unique, affordable gift ideas for people with disabilities.  I hope you find this helpful! 

1) Jewlery!!!! You can't go wrong with jewelry, just ask my sister.  All of her friends & family know that she LOVES rings.  I would guess that she got 8-9 rings for her birthday.  She loves each and every one of them.  Collecting fun rings has become a fun hobby for her.  It's usually best to avoid fine jewelry, thin chains, or small clasps.  Similar ideas-- a jewelry box/organizer, hair accessories, or sunglasses!  
2) Baseball Cap.  These are especially great for guys.  Find out his favorite sports team and get him a hat!  Hats are great because they last forever, they go with nearly every outfit, and they are easy to fit!  If this idea really confuses you, get them a gift certificate for a hat from the store, Lids.  Then they can choose their favorite one.
3) CDs.  Oftentimes those with disabilities may have a difficult time with mp3 players or managing something like itunes.  They really appreciate getting a physical CD that they can play at home or in the car.  Not sure if they like Country or Rap better?  A safe bet is getting a CD of the year's greatest hits such as NOW 24, etc. 
4) Movie Theater Tickets.  This is one of the BEST gifts you can get someone, because you're giving them an experience that they can look forward to.  An even better idea is to get two tickets to a popular movie coming up and offer to take them yourself as a fun "outing."
5) Magazine Subscription.  This is another great gift that keeps on giving.  A monthly/weekly magazine subscription gives the person something to look forward to.  It also helps them stay up-to-date on current events and pop culture.  My dad got my sister a weekly subscription to People and she just LOVES it.  Her favorite part is cutting out pictures of her favorite celeb "hotties" and making collages.  Other great magazines include US Weekly, J-17 (has a lot of fold-out posters within it), Seventeen, Teen Vogue, ESPN, and Sports Illustrated. 
6) A Date to the Zoo or Amusement Park.  This will depend on their level of physical mobility and their attention span.  If they have a tendency to get worn out easily, then try the zoo, and you can always take a sit-down break in the cafe with some smoothies.  Otherwise, go to the amusement park on a weekday when it's less busy, and you'll be less likely to encounter frustrating lines or overstimulation.  Again, it's about the gift of time. 
7) Potted Flower or Plant.   This is a great idea for someone who might need a hobby.  It requires less commitment than a small pet or fish, but it gives them something to "care" for and tend to... giving them a sense of responsibility and pride.  I would actually recommend getting a plant that doesn't flower, because when the flowers go away the person may feel as if they killed the plant or failed.
8) Manicure or Pedicure.  For only $10 - $40 you are giving the person a fun experience that they will surely remember for the rest of the year.  Either get them a certificate for their local salon or take them yourself on a fun "girls' day out."  They will feel really special and pampered.  A manicure is the safest bet, especially if they normally wear tennis shoes or have mobility issues. 
9) "Makeover" at a Cosmetics Counter.  This is a very fun one for those girly girls who are not able to or unsure of how to apply make-up.  Just call the MAC or Clinique counter at your local department store, and they will be so eager to help make it a special experience.  An added idea would be to go to a pretty park or beach afterwards and take your own "glamour shots."  It will help them remember the experience forever!
10) DVDs.  These gifts are great for guys or girls.  Tip: Ask their family members what movies they like or wanted to see.  Another idea is to get the season set of their favorite TV show.  DVDs are fun for them to enjoy with their friends, family, or alone.  It's especially fun to get them a new DVD for each birthday, Christmas, etc. and let them know you're helping them build their DVD collection.  People love having a hobby or collection to build on.
I hope this might help you someday!  Thanks for reading!

Dylan Maureen 

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