Ways to Help Others this Holiday Season
With the holiday season fast approaching it seems that we are all rushing to get things done. With families, work, shopping, cleaning there is hardly enough time to think of ourselves, let alone others. I find it important to do something kind for others, especially this time of year. There are plenty of ways that you can serve the community on a big or small scale.
Our neighborhood has put together a turkey and coat drive this season. The Denver Rescue Mission is hoping to get 15,000 turkeys donated this holiday season. While our neighborhood alone can’t raise that, we can absolutely contribute. I’m sure other neighborhoods, community centers, churches, etc. have places you can donate food, and gently used winter wear. If you can’t afford something new, maybe look into getting rid of some items you don’t use anymore that someone else could benefit from.
For the past 5 years my husband and I buy toys for kids and typically either donate to Toys for Tots or Salvation Army. This gesture includes spending money. I stock up throughout the year so it doesn’t feel as overwhelming on our bank account. Clearance sections can have wonderful toys that won’t break the bank. I also stock up on toys at stores like Tuesday Morning and Zulily. When looking for toys I try to get sets that have more than one thing in the package. Kind of sad, but if this is the only gift that child may get this year I want it to have a few things for them to do.
Adopt a Family:
Again, many churches, grocery stores, community centers have Christmas trees up with tags on them. The tags list a child, their age, and a wish list. If you can afford to adopt a child and get them something off their wish list you could help make it more special for a child who may otherwise not get much of anything. At the same places they also sometimes that have whole families that are in need; which you could split up with a group of friends.
Doing something kind for other people doesn’t have to cost anything. We all know time is precious and there doesn’t seem to be enough of it. If you do have a bit of downtime; volunteering could help someone out. During the holidays the homeless shelters get a lot of volunteers helping pass out meals. People tend to be more generous this time of year. There are many places you can volunteer. Homeless shelters, food banks, humane societies, meals on wheels, shoveling someone’s driveway. A small gesture can go a long way. If you can’t find a place to volunteer during the holidays, maybe put a group together to volunteer throughout the year.
Time with Others:
Nursing homes and hospitals have lots of residents and patients that are lonely. Not only that, but the staff work long hours to take care of these people, while spending time away from their own families. Spend some time chatting with an elderly person. Bake some cookies and bring it into a nursing home or hospital. Bake something and drop it off at your local fire station or police station as a way to say thank you for their service.
These are just a few suggestions that could possibly make your holidays more fulfilling. I’m so excited to spend the holidays with my family and eat all the yummy goodness. I also want to get involved in my community and do something, even on a small scale, to leave the world a tiny bit of a better place.
What’s your favorite way to help others?
“If you can’t feed a hundred people, then just feed one.”
– Mother Teresa