There’s no better time of the year than the holiday season. From delicious treats to cozying up by the fire, everyone’s in a wonderful mood. Since it is the season of giving, wouldn’t it be nice to spread the cheer with those in need?
The winter season offers plenty of ways to volunteer and give back to the community. Not only does volunteering help share the holiday love, but also it will put an even bigger smile on your face.
Truth be told, volunteering is great for the mind, body, and soul.
Don’t believe us? Studies show time and time again that helping others less fortunate combats depression and increases levels of happiness. Not to mention, volunteering is a great way to connect with others and make new friends. And staying socially engaged and active in the community has significant health benefits for the brain – it can lower one’s risk for dementia and even prolong the lifespan!
But what matters most is that any generosity (no matter how small) will bring happiness to those in need.
Here are a few ways you can make a difference this season:
While the holidays are meant to be merry, for some individuals they can be difficult. Some families can’t afford to give gifts to their children or even put food on the table. Fortunately, Family-to-Family allows you to sponsor a household in need through a variety of ways. Go grocery shopping for “your” family and ship the food, or even just donate money for their grocery expenses when their food stamps run out. Either way, you’ll find satisfaction in knowing that your generosity has helped a whole family find a little more joy during the holidays.
Another option is to partner up with one or more friends and sponsor a family together! That way, you all can have a fun outing while grocery shopping and picking out foods to send.
Click here to learn more.
According to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, over 610,000 people experience homelessness in the United States. While families are coming together under one roof during the holidays, those without a place to stay can find it a particularly difficult time. Homeless shelters offer plenty of volunteer opportunities during this winter season – serving food, building homes, donations, soup kitchens, and more.
You might consider grabbing some friends and heading down to a homeless shelter for a day. Some extra hands and hearts make for a fun volunteer experience!
To find a homeless shelter near you, click here.
This holiday season, serving the veterans who fought for our lives and safety can certainly be a rewarding experience. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is always looking for donations or volunteers to help with various events and transportation services dedicated to veterans across the nation.
Look into serving those who served us by clicking here.
As the winter season rolls around, many charitable organizations and churches run food drives in order to help families in need have meals for the holidays. Donating canned foods to a local food drive certainly makes a difference. But you can have an even greater impact by organizing your own food drive for the less fortunate. Besides, it’s simple and fun!
Make it a community effort and spread the word to your friends and family – with everyone involved, you’re sure to have a great time giving back to those in need.
Learn how to organize your own food drive by clicking here.
Unfortunately, many children from low-income households don’t receive gifts during the holiday season. The Toys for Tots Foundation seeks to fight this issue and help bring joy to these deserving kids. The foundation collects toys from drop-off centers across the nation and delivers them to children in need of a special gift this season.
You can be the reason a child smiles on Christmas by dropping off a toy, or even get involved in the operation by volunteering locally.
As you can see, there are many opportunities to spread the love and joy this holiday season. Even giving back in the smallest way can make a huge difference. During this time of year dedicated to laughter and cheer, a warm smile can go a long way!
Do you know of other volunteer opportunities during the holidays? Let us know in the comments below!