Giving is what the holidays are all about…well that and food. We look forward to seeing the reaction our gift recipients have when they rip through the bows and wrapping paper, digging into the boxes we’ve filled with the latest and greatest.
We give gifts to people we care about and some we may not (if you have one of those crazy cousins/uncles — no one actually wants to claim him). Some people even donate gifts to ‘Secret Santa’ groups, toy drives and other events that help those less fortunate this holiday season.
But the ultimate gift you can give this holiday season could potentially help those you love, those you don’t and those you don’t even know. So what could this ultimate gift be?
The ultimate gift you could give during the holidays….is your own time. Spending your time volunteering is the ultimate sacrifice of yourself, which is what the holidays are predicated on.
Volunteer to help with these services (or any of the plentiful others that could use your help and support) and you’ll feel great about yourself and about helping doing something useful with a great cause:
Animal Shelter – Shelters and rescues could always use a helping hand to exercise the animals, bathe them and help clean up around the building.
Bell Ringer/Donation Collector - Non-profit organizations and volunteer service providers across the country have to raise money every year to support the services they provide. If you can’t afford to give a large donation to help them out, you can always donate your time helping them collect donation. This could be as a Salvation Army bell ringer or helping St. Jude’s Children Hospital stuff envelopes.
Meal Delivery - In every major city, there are meal delivery services for people that are incapable of getting out their homes and/or can’t afford meals. Not only will you get to put a smile on their faces, you’ll also likely get a lesson in humility when you see how some less fortunate people live on a daily basis.
Retirement Home - Many senior citizens don’t have anyone to visit them during the holidays. Why not pop into to see four or five rooms at the retirement home and spend 15 or 20 minutes talking with each? You never know what they might actually be able to teach you.
Tutoring - Whether it is elementary school, high school or adults trying to get their GED, there is a group of students that could use your help learning and knowledge is a gift that keeps on giving.