‘Tis the season for giving and for most of us, that means a lot more than giving gifts to our family and friends. You don’t have to have a lot of extra money or time to give back to your community over the holidays. Here are some ideas to get you started on exploring how your family can do your part this season.
Get out your shovel
It doesn’t cost any money or take up too much of your time to shovel your neighbour’s walk while you’re out doing your own. If you have a neighbour that you know is elderly, has mobility issues, or is just incredibly busy, snow removal can be an invaluable gift. Plus, you’re not only helping out your neighbour, but also your mail carrier or any delivery people who may have to make their way to the front door.
Help organize a community party
Are you involved with your local community association? May community associations turn to volunteers to help organize their annual holiday party. For many seniors, newcomers to the city and other people prone to isolation, these parties may one of their only chances to get out and celebrate with others. For something on a smaller scale, invite some neighbours who you think may be lonely over for a coffee or a drink.
Donate to your local food bank
Food banks are especially busy over the holidays — and they also rely on this time of the year for a good deal of their donations. Cash is always most appreciated (most food banks say that they can transform $1 worth of cash into $5 worth of food) but if you have extra non-perishable items to give, they’re always appreciated. Donating physical items can also teach kids about giving in a more tangible way — something like this reverse advent calendar helps kids participate in the giving sprit.
Volunteer at a homeless shelter
The holidays are a great time to connect with the most vulnerable people in our communities. Many homeless shelters are in constant need of volunteers, especially people to come in and serve meals. Depending on the program, kids are often invited to volunteer and the shelters’ clients often delight in seeing kids and families helping out, especially during the holidays.
Give gifts to kids in need
While food and monetary donations are important, the holidays are also a time for frivolity. Many agencies look for new unwrapped toys to give to kids who may not otherwise get a special gift that’s just for them.
How you can help at your local Safeway:
- Until December 17th, donate $2 towards your local Food Bank and receive 5 Bonus Air Miles.
- Until December 31st, purchase and donate a $5 or $10 Care Package and help your local Food Bank.
*See in-store for more details.