One of my favorite things about the holidays is that it’s the season of giving. As we wind down toward the end of the year, it’s important to remember to share the holiday cheer with those that are less fortunate. Making a positive difference in someone’s life can be as simple as donating a book you’ve outgrown, or some clothes you no longer can use, or humbly stopping by your local soup kitchen to help out. Here are a few ways to make the world a better place during the warm holiday season:
- I don’t know about you, but I always find myself with way more clothes than I need or even wear. I have perfectly good clothing stuffed at the back of my closet because I buy new clothes that go to the front, and I end up forgetting about all of my other clothes. It’s a horrible habit, I know. But instead of just letting it sit there, I like to do a little cleaning by going through everything and donating the clothing I no longer wear. You can usually drop the clothes off at your local Salvation Army, or donate them to other non-profits like Clothes for the Cause, Charities of Hope, or Goodwill.
- Bringing a smile to a child’s face is one of the best feelings in the world. They truly appreciate the little things, and so by donating a small toy, you’ll be lighting up a child’s life. There are some charities that do toy drives for children such as Toys for Tots, Operation Santa Search and Christmas Toy Drive.
- Books are knowledge, so by donating books, you’re basically donating knowledge. How awesome is that? If you have children’s books that your kids have outgrown or old books from college, donate them so someone else can learn and grow. There are several book drives, but a few notable ones are Donation Town (if you don’t have time to drive your books to donate them, they’ll pick them up for you!), Give, and First Book.
- Local soup kitchens, women’s and children’s shelters, hospitals and animal shelters always need volunteers. As these vary by location, you can Google volunteer opportunities near you in order to see the positive impact you’re making in person and first-hand. One well-known foundation is American Red Cross. Personally, I find it a humbling experience, and it makes me that much more thankful for everything and everyone I have in my life.
Making a positive difference in someone’s life can be as easy as leaving your donated items by your front door. If you’re pressed for time, a lot of non-profits have a pick-up service so you can just leave them outside your door and they’ll swing by to grab them.
The holidays are all about sharing and spreading warm joyfulness. Cheers to making the world a happier place!