General Support
Why Gift Cards Are Especially Useful in the Midst of Crisis

We know all too well that life can change in an instant. When a crisis or big life event takes place, one of the first things that people say is “Let me know how I can help." Setting up a Gift Card Train is one of the best ways to send and receive immediate support to a loved one in need, from anywhere.

Here are a few reasons why:

There are plenty of different types of gift cards to help address the recipients’ immediate and future needs. If a family has lost everything to a house fire, they may have more unconventional needs like a gift card to help put a temporary roof over their heads. If a recipient recently received a medical diagnosis, a night out for ice cream might be just what the doctor ordered. If you’re unsure of the type of food to order, a food delivery gift card allows everyone to get exactly what they want, when they want it. If you’re unsure, see our recommended list of products by Situation to see what gift cards are most helpful to your recipient(s).

People who are experiencing a disruption in their life — expected or unexpected — may not always know what they need. One veteran of home loss we know pointed out than when fleeing a mass crisis, there is no particular plan set in place. Regardless of the situation, their new reality requires community support as they find their way through all kinds of challenges. 

People ask whether there was a plan. The answer was . It was to get out and to bring what we could. Beyond that? It was vague and had a lot to do with making it through the day-to-day.

Survivor of Mass Home Loss

By anticipating their needs with gift cards at the ready, recipients can adapt to their every-changing new reality and still have the basic necessities (food, clothing, and shelter) provided to them when they need it.

People facing crisis may have difficulty asking for help. Gift cards make this easier. Giving loved ones the ability to decide what is useful for them and use it at their discretion affirms their dignity and enables their ability to make choices. More importantly, gift cards allow people to hang on to cash for other needs. Digital gift cards are easy to give, easy to claim, and easy to use.  

If you or someone you know could benefit from a Gift Card Train, see our easy how-to instructions and create a Give InKind page to get started.


Give InKind does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. We have an affiliate relationship with many of the advertisers on our site, and may receive a commission from any products purchased from links in this article. See Terms & Conditions.

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