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Way to Give Back this Holiday Season


As the holiday season approaches, we hear a lot about giving back. In some cases, it’s thanks to family tradition. In others, perhaps just the warm fuzzies that come along with the holiday spirit. Or, perhaps the realization of how grateful we are for all that we have and the fact that there are many people out there who are much less fortunate.

Thanks in large part to the Web, there are now more, and easier, ways to give back. Whether it’s across the globe or right around your block, here are some ideas for giving back this holiday season:

 

  1. Donate food, clothing, or other needed items to local shelters. Shelters for people, animals, and outreach missions are constantly in need. If you’re not sure where to go or what to bring, hop online. Most places have a website or a Facebook Page that will list preferred items as well as what they don’t Then, grab an extra item or two next time you go shopping. Or better yet, check your pantries, bookshelves, and linen closets (and your mom’s for that matter)…you probably have some spare nonperishable food items or *gently* used books or towels that you’ll be glad to share.
  1. Dollars make sense too. In most cases, you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your home, or iPhone, to donate monetarily. Don’t you love the Internet!? *But check with your favorite organization before busting that wallet out…some places are not allowed to accept monetary donations.*
  1. The gift of time. Volunteering time and helping hands can be just as valuable as a physical donation. Many shelters have sign-ups for ways to help out, and there’s sure to be something that suits you – food prep/serving/delivery, health clinics, dog walking, and more. There’s just something about one-on-one service with those you’re helping that makes it even more meaningful. *Again, check with your local shelters – many have only a certain amount of time and spaces designated for volunteers, and around the holidays, those can fill up quickly.*
  1. Give back while you shop! There are many restaurants, hotels, and stores that give back for Some have bins for donations of items, others simply donate a percentage of what they make to an organization. There are also many online shops that will do the same (see link below for some suggestions).
  1. Pay it forward. I’m sure you’ve all heard of paying it forward at Starbucks – you pull up to the drive-thru window to pay for your beverage, and turns out it’s already been paid for by the person in front of you! Try it out – offer to pay for the next person’s coffee, or sandwich, or whatever you can afford. You never know who might be in need, and you never know when that karma will come back to you!

 

As my mom always says, “There will always be someone with more than you, and there will always be someone with less than you.”

 

20 Places To Shop For Gifts That Give Back: http://bit.ly/2gNJG6M

Holiday Service Opportunities – MKE Area: http://bit.ly/2hA7Dvz

Volunteer Opportunities Greater MKE & Waukesha Co.: https://volunteer.unitedwaygmwc.org/


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