Thanksgiving just might be my favorite time of year. The weather is chilly and cozy, I spend time with my family and I fill myself with treats I only see once a year. But for many, Thanksgiving doesn’t go that way. Maybe they don’t have family or perhaps they can’t afford the luxury of a Thanksgiving feast. Either way, it’s time to remember what Thanksgiving is all about: being grateful and thankful for what we have and spreading that joy to our community. Take this holiday as an excuse to do something kind for your fellow man (and woman). Here are just 5 ways you can give back this Thanksgiving!
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1. Provide the Warmth
This is the time of year when it starts to get really cold. Everyone is buying their winter jackets and coats to prepare for the winter ahead. But what about those who can’t afford winter clothing? Take this time to empty out your closet and get rid of your old hats, sweatshirts, coats and mittens. Don’t have anything to give away? Go out and buy some affordable clothing to give away!
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2. Start a Canned Food Drive
You see Thanksgiving as a time for a huge feast, but here are plenty of families who can’t afford that much food. If your school, your sports teams or your local church don’t have canned food drives, start one of your own! All you need to do is talk to the person in charge and ask their permission. Put up flyers, spread the word and maybe even offer prizes to the person or group that brings the most canned food in!
3. Volunteer at a Food Bank or Soup Kitchen
If collecting food or starting a food drive is problematic, you can still provide warm and delicious food to those who need it! Stop by your local food bank or soup kitchen and volunteer your time. Even if it’s only an hour, your help and positive attitude will go a very long way.
4. Help Out Your Fellow Ladies
Something that many philanthropists and volunteers might not think about is the hygiene of those without homes. And women on the streets have it especially rough. Money they earn is often being spent on food, shelter and maybe their families and can’t go to their own hygiene. This results in infections, illnesses or worse! Help a sister out and buy some tampons, pads, menstrual cups and period panties to women who can’t afford to make that a priority. If you have an old purse, put the products in there to provide discretion and give her a brand new purse!
5. Help Your Extra Busy Neighbor
Volunteering doesn’t have to be a super big task or project. Sometimes, the littlest action can be a really big help! Babysit for your neighbor who’s a single mother and can’t afford a sitter. Help the older couple next door with chores around the house. Giving back to people you know is just as rewarding as helping your city’s community.