With holiday altruism in the air, tis’ the season for giving back to the community. If you haven’t already, now is the time to leave your mark on those who are less fortunate. Here are a few fun, festive and easily accessible opportunities to get involved by yourself, with family, or with coworkers.
A great holiday season is defined by selfless action, being with loved ones, but most of all; overeating. Volunteering at a soup kitchen or shelter is a simple way to make the holiday season a special one for the locals in need. A hot meal goes a long way to help people recharge their batteries, boost holiday spirit, and provide hope and optimism for the new year. Kitchens and shelters are readily available and are always in need of volunteers.
Spread holiday cheer that starts at the stomach by participating in a canned food drive. Canned food drives are not only a great way to get involved in the community but also a great way to clear out your pantry and avoid wastefulness. This is peak season for food pantries all over the country who need to fill their large warehouses with sorters, packers and labelers so get your family and coworkers involved. Food drives might be the most efficient way to positively affect as many people as possible. The only downside is you won’t experience the joy your hard work is creating firsthand.
Host a Letter Writing Party
If you’re feeling creative, hosting or participating in a letter writing party is a great way to send out holiday love and cheer to those who otherwise would not receive any. The holidays are not a happy time for everyone. There are many overseas troops, orphaned children, and homeless people who would rather skip this time of year. It may sound odd but a heartwarming and genuine letter from a stranger can be just what someone needs to get them through the holidays. There are many national organizations and charities that can help get your cards distributed.
If you’re feeling constructive, participating in a holiday home build is another great community volunteer opportunity. Reliable shelter provides vital piece-of-mind to underprivileged households, especially during the winter months and could be the missing piece a family needs to pull themselves out of a rut. If you’re up for the challenge, a home build is an amazing way to give back.
Find an “Angel Tree”
Picking a present off an Angel Tree embodies the essence of what the holiday season is all about: gift giving. Ask a parent, nothing is tougher than explaining to a child why there are no presents under the tree on that special morning. Charity gift giving is a very personalized way to fill that void for someone. If you don’t have access to a local parish or charity giving tree there are several national organizations that help with charity gift giving.