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5 Ways to Give Back to Your Community

Posted on December 23 2019

 

If you frequently donate pre-loved items or volunteer your time on the regular, you already know that giving of yourself is one of the best things you can do for your mental health, not to mention the world around you! And if you have yet to tap into the benefits of giving back, consider this the sign you’ve been looking for.

 

It's cool to be kind. Here are five simple ways to get in touch with your community-oriented side. 

1. Give away gently-used clothing

Is there anything more life-affirming than a thorough wardrobe cleanup? Conjure up your inner Marie Kondo and get your closet under control for a good cause. If it doesn’t spark joy, put it aside so it can enjoy a new lease on life with someone else who will give it the love it deserves.

 

Those boyfriend jeans that you never got around to wearing? Donate. The wool sweater you’ve always loved that shrunk in the wash last year? Donate. The gorgeous shoes you only wore once because the heel was too high? Donate, donate, donate!

2. Volunteer at a food bank

Access to nutritious food is the bedrock of a healthy life, and food banks make that possible for a huge number of underprivileged individuals and families in your community. From food prep to cooking to serving and washing dishes, there’s a role for everyone at the local food bank, so grab an apron and jump in.

3. Join a charity walking or running event

What could be better than enjoying the great outdoors for the greater good, alongside thousands of other people supporting the same cause?

 

Many local walking or running events have a tiered structure to accommodate all fitness levels: for example, yours may have the option to sign up for a 1k run, 5k run, half-marathon, or full marathon. No excuses – get out there and have fun in the name of charity!

4. Contribute to a neighborhood gathering event

What’s good in the neighborhood? If you don’t know of any events happening in your immediate community, why not start one yourself? After all, a richer community life starts right at home.

 

Getting to know your neighbors is somewhat of a lost art these days, but relationships with people who live nearby are uniquely heartwarming and gratifying. Just imagine how warm and fuzzy it’s going to feel next time you ask your next-door neighbor for a cup of sugar or an egg!

5. Get involved with a youth program

Ever heard the expression “the children are our future?” Make your own little mark on the next generation by getting involved with a youth mentorship or tutoring program. Play to your strengths: you can provide homework help after school, coach a little league team, get involved with an art initiative for underprivileged kids, etc.

 

Whether you choose to join a larger organization like Big Brothers Big Sisters or a locally-run grassroots initiative, you’ll be giving one of the greatest gifts of all as a positive role model: support for children who need it most.

 

If you think of another way to make positive ripples throughout your community, take the idea and run with it! Small actions can make huge impacts, no matter how you decide to get involved.