The Holidays are a time of reflection for most people. We tend to look back on our year and ask ourselves if we did enough, if we gave enough, or if we showed up in a way that made us and others proud. One way to ensure that you are meeting your goals in these areas is to focus on giving back.
I think that sometimes people tend to think that “giving back” means that you need to dip into your bank to be able to give to others and while that may be one way to help someone in need, it’s not the only way!
So today I thought I’d share TEN Ways That You Can Give Back This Holiday Season~ Most if not all of these require nothing more than your time!
- Volunteer at a nursing home! – This one will pull at your heartstrings so you’ll need to be up for the emotions that may come with this, but so many senior women and men live in nursing homes and have no visitors for the Holidays. It may be that they have no family left, maybe no family lives close by, or perhaps they just aren’t close with anyone. Whatever the reason may be, most nursing homes will let volunteers come to visit their residents! You can do things like read to them, arts and crafts, or help even help to do their shopping if they have items to buy! This is also a great volunteer opportunity for kids! Children always brighten up the day and might be the perfect thing for someone who may be feeling down over the Holidays.
- Donate Warm Clothes, Blankets, or Coats! – Getting new coats this year? Have the kiddos grown out of their coats from last year? Especially in places where it gets icy, there’s no better thing to donate than warm clothing items and blankets. When it gets freezing out, shelters fill up quickly, and some people may be turned away due to not enough space. Most shelters will still offer a blanket or coat if they have it to give though! If you have extras of these items, dropping them at local shelters is a wonderful idea!
- Invite Someone To Christmas Dinner! – Maybe it’s a neighbor who will be alone on the Holidays, a recently widowed senior, or even that nice co-worker who just moved to town and doesn’t have any family or friends nearby! It’s a small gesture that anyone would appreciate!
- Serve Christmas Dinner at a Shelter! – Most churches usually organize Holiday meals for those less fortunate over the Holidays. If you don’t know of any opportunities any your area you can always go online and find your city’s food bank website. There are usually things posted there that will give you dates and times that volunteers will be needed! I’m sure if you ask around you will find someone that will gladly take your help!
- Volunteer at an Animal Shelter! – While most animal shelters have lots of animal loving volunteers, what you might not think of is that those folks may want or need a break to spend some time with their families on Christmas! Animals need care even if it’s Christmas Eve, so you could always find a local shelter and ask if they need volunteers to take a shift! You could go before or after your Holiday festivities and let someone else go home for a few hours to enjoy their festivities too!
- Donate your products or Services! – If you’re a business owner, an easy way to give back is to donate your product or service to someone who could use it! Lots of businesses do this over the Holidays, and people are always extremely grateful to be able to have something that they may not have been attainable otherwise!
- Volunteer at a Hospital! – Hospitals are happy to have volunteers during the Holidays to cheer up patients who may not be going home for Christmas. You can do things like organizing a gift exchange, decorate their rooms, or even take someone for a walk! Old or young, anyone would appreciate a little Holiday Cheer to get their mind off of being stuck in the hospital on Christmas!
- Deliver a Holiday Meal to First Responders! – There’s a whole bunch of brave and selfless people who sometimes have to work on Christmas! Firefighters, EMS, doctors, nurses, and police officers just to name a few! Dropping off a special treat or meal to one of their stations is always appreciated and shows just how much you value them this Holiday Season!
- Give To a Restaraunt or Coffee Shop! – You can find a local restaurant or coffee shop that will let you give a dollar amount and reserve that for someone or someones who can not pay for their meal or coffee. Give what you can and just ask the manager if he can reserve it for anyone who may come by frequently and not have money to pay! Usually, the restaurant or coffee shop knows a few people that are down on their luck and stop by asking for food from time to time. Instead of having to turn them away they will be able to provide a meal or a cup of coffee because you’ve already paid for it!
- Help Someone Do Their Holiday Shopping! – Maybe this is someone older who can’t drive anymore or someone disabled who can’t go out shopping on their own. You could volunteer to take their list and pick up their items for them! Everyone wants to be able to give gifts to their loved ones, and this small gesture may help someone get that perfect item they’ve been hoping to give! You could even go a step further and wrap for them too!
Alright, guys! There you have it! 10 Ways to Give Back This Holiday Season that requires not much more than your time, a little Holiday cheer, and that big ol loving heart of yours!
Merry Christmas Y’all!