Unless you are Jimmy Buffett, Sissy Spacek or Karl Rove, Dec. 25 is probably not your birthday, but it’s no secret to anyone that consumerism is rife this time of year.

A philanthropic Web site, CoolPeopleCare.org, has launched a “Christmas is Not Your Birthday” campaign to help readers fight consumerism by rethinking wish lists and giving generously during the holiday season.

“When we say ‘Christmas is not your birthday,’ we simply ask you to rethink the time and energy you spend in this month and a half of eggnog, wrapping paper and family,” says Sam Davidson, founder and CEO the site that offers ideas about how individuals can make a difference in less than five minutes a day.

“For starters, rethink your wish list,” he said in an article. “Instead of asking for clothes to replace the ones that are perfectly fine, ask your parents to buy clothes for someone else. Instead of requesting the gadget that will be outdated by June, ask your spouse to send that money overseas. Instead of it all being about you, make it about someone else.”

Second, Davidson suggested that individuals give generously at Christmas. “If you’ve never donated in someone’s name or given livestock, this holiday season is the perfect time to start,” he said. “As you give gifts with your specific tradition, find ones that donate a portion of the sticker price to a worthy cause.

“Begin family traditions that value sacrifice over consumption and giving over getting. The average American will spend nearly $800 on gifts this winter. This just so happens to be the same amount needed to protect a child for a year, reunite 11 families, or feed a village.”

Davidson acknowledged that old habits die hard, so CoolPeopleCare  has devoted its signature feature “5 Minutes of Caring” and Friday’s “More Time on Your Hands” feature between Nov. 20 and Monday, Dec. 25, to support of the “Christmas is Not Your Birthday” campaign.

Davidson co-founded CoolPeopleCare, Inc., a Nashville-based company, with Stephen Moseley, the company’s president, launching the Web site in August. In three months, it has served more than 25,000 visitors.

The company’s model is one of social entrepreneurship, by which it creates positive social change as a direct function of its business.

For more information about CoolPeopleCare, Inc., CoolPeopleCare.org, or the “Christmas is Not Your Birthday” campaign, visit www.coolpeoplecare.org or contact Sam Davidson, (615) 260-3082.

Bob Allen is managing editor of EthicsDaily.com.

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