Thursday, November 8, 2012

10 Places to Give This Holiday Season

The poor East Coast is being hammered once again and the just plain poor people of the country are still continuing to struggle no matter what the powers that be say about the improving economy.  This holiday season, do your fellow man a favor and give if you can.  Here's where:

  1. The Red Cross.  This organization always comes through in a disaster; the more donations they get, the more they can give to those in need.
  2. Donate blood.  Blood and plasma is always needed, especially in times of disaster or when people are otherwise occupied (due to the holidays, the East Coast storm, etc) and donations drop.
  3. Donate to your local food bank.  Food banks have been helping more and more people as the economy has tanked.  During the holidays, the need for food is even greater so find your local food bank  and make a donation to help out your neighbors.
  4. Goodwill.  Besides being a fan of shopping at the Goodwill, I also like to donate to the Goodwill and St Vincent de Paul, another thrift store in my city.  These organizations take your donations and turn them into job training and other services to help those in need.
  5. Salvation Army.  The Salvation Army is yet another organization that helps those in need.  In my city this organization provides free meals as well as a number of services for the homeless and those in need (they also provide enough bell ringers with donation pots to rattle your teeth about this time of year but like I said, they do good works).
  6. Church.  In addition to tithing every month, I also make it a point to help out churches in my community.  Many churches are busy with food drives, coat drives, blanket drives for the homeless, and other good works to help people in the community, especially at this time of year.
  7. Schools.  (Way) back in the day when I was a youngin' all I needed to take to school with me was a pencil and a pee chee.  I was fairly surprised when one of the grandkids showed me the list of school supplies they needed at the beginning of the school year--it was longer than the list of stuff I keep in my BOB!  Many schools these days are in need and many students are as well.  By donating school supplies and other needed items to your local school you can help kids have a better educational experience.
  8. Random acts of kindness.  Simply by being kind to people you can make your community a better place to live.  I make it a habit to carry bottled water in my car to give to those begging on the corner for money when I pass them.  The spouse and I have also kind of adopted a homeless man who lives by the side of a road that we pass often.  We will drop off a meal, a blanket, a case of water, whatever we happen to have, when we pass by.  You can't help everyone but helping even one person can make a difference.
  9. Give your time.  Many community organizations desperately need volunteers to continue to provide the services that help those in need.  By volunteering you can help others in your community with everything from search and rescue to teaching English or being a Big Brother/Big Sister.
  10. Give to your favorite organization.  The need is great for every non-profit organization these days.  There are so many people in need but there are also so many previous donors who are now in need themselves so many once thriving organizations are now struggling just to stay viable due to a decline in donations and grants that previously kept then well funded.  Some of my favorites: Doctors Without Borders, Mercy Corps, and CMRT

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