5 Gift Ideas For A Special Needs Child, Created By One!

Plus 8 Great Gift Card Ideas For Special Needs Parents

By Carissa Garabedian, Publisher of Know Different and Macaroni Kid Richmond, VA December 20, 2017

I know that all kids can have a varied list, but for those with special needs, it may be a little more specific. There may also be items that make the parents' lives easier.

If you are shopping this season for a special needs child and haven’t yet figured out what to get, check this list out. It may help.

Here are five ideas, written by a special needs kid:​

1.) Comic Books/ Coloring Books. These do not require much reading, so if reading is not on the list for the child, the pictures can be enough. They tell a story and kids really like them.

2.) Movie Tickets. Many theaters, including the AMC theaters in Highlands Ranch and Parker, offer sensory-friendly showings. This can be a great family outing.

3.) iTunes Gift Card/Game Gift Card. Many kids have a device that they use for games/learning -- this would allow them to have some freedom in “adding funds”.

4.) Puzzles. This is an activity that a family can do together. Although, in our home, our son does not want help!

5.) Magazines. A subscription that comes monthly is a great way to give a gift that keeps on giving. Highlights, Nick Jr., and National Geographic are just a few ideas.

    Here are five ideas, written by a special needs parent:

    1.) A Weighted Blanket. These can provide a sense of comfort.

    2.) A Membership to their favorite place to go (e.g., arcade, museum)

    3.) A Gift Card for their favorite food/restaurant (e.g., fast food, pizza) 

    4.) Fidget Gadgets (e.g., spinners, cubes, stress balls) 

    5.) A Wallet. Nothing fancy, but a place to keep all these cards in so you know where they are when you are ready to use them!

      8 Great Gift Card Ideas For Special Need Parents

      Since we had a list for our kids with special needs, why not have one that we can send over to our friends and family with some ideas to help make our lives a little bit easier, happier, and even — maybe — pampered!

      I thought about things that would make my day smoother and make me smile. It wasn’t easy — most of what I came up with, were things FOR the family — I really wanted to find things to take care of just US.

      1. A gift card for a spa treatment.
      2. A gift card for a cleaning of the house
      3. A gift card to the bookstore
      4. A gift card to a local coffee shop
      5. A gift card to a favorite place to eat
      6. A gift card to the movies
      7. A gift card for a manicure
      8. A gift card to a favorite salon

      For those who are worried about the costs attached to some of these, remember that your gift card does not have to be the full value of the service/item. Even if it is a portion, it will be one step closer to assuring they get to use it!

      If spending money is not a possibility, friends and family can create certificates and provide a service to the parents! They can offer to babysit one night or they can provide a meal, etc. There are ways to give, and receive, that will make a difference!

      Don’t be afraid to share this; sometimes all we need to do is let others know what we need, as we say so many times to one another — unless we say it, we can’t expect others to know it.

      Carissa Garabedian is the publisher of Know Different and mother to a special needs child in Richmond, Virginia. Carissa also publishes the award-winning Macaroni Kid of Richmond, VA.