HAVE a hand vs. GIVE a hand

Posted in English Language by Patrick on 22 May 2015

If you HAVE A HAND IN something, it means you are participating in or involved with something.

If you GIVE someone A HAND, you are helping them do something. Let’s use the party in the picture to show the difference. Let's pretend that Stacy's best friend threw her a surprise birthday party and that she planned it with Stacy's sisters.

“We did it! We totally surprised Stacy. She had no idea about the party and couldn’t believe it when she found out both of her sisters HAD A HAND IN planning it. I didn’t help to plan the party, but this afternoon, they asked if I would come over and GIVE THEM A HAND putting up decorations before she arrived.”

P.S. LEND A HAND = GIVE A HAND. They both mean the same thing.