November 12, 2018

5 ways to give back during the holiday season

family volunteers together

Senior meal delivery at Focus: HOPE is a holiday volunteer opportunity the whole family can participate in.

It’s the time of year again—people are making lists of their most-wanted items, planning parties and prepping for the New Year. It’s also a great time to add one more thing to your calendar: giving back as a volunteer. 

When the temperature starts to drop, the needs of our community increase. This makes it a particularly good time to give back to your community. By helping others, you can also help yourself. Studies show that giving is just as good as getting when it comes to your physical and mental health. 

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  1. Help a family have a happy holiday. Several United Way partners offer “adopt a family” opportunities for the holidays, including Oakland Family Services and Jewish Family Services. Connect with?a partner through our volunteer portal to be linked with a family in need.
  2. Cook up a smile. Food is central to many gatherings this time of year. Take the time to ensure those in need can share in a warm meal by gathering your friends or coworkers and heading to Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries to help prep and serve lunch.   
  3. Make shopping easier for others. Take a break from the crowds and long lines in retail stores and help others with their shopping instead. At the FREC Mercado Food Hub Client Choice Pantry, you can stock the shelves and assist shoppersZaman International offers similar opportunities to assist in their food pantry. 
  4. Spread holiday cheer online. You never know who may be dealing with a tough time during the holiday season. Reach out to an old friend, or share United Way resources – like our our 2-1-1 service – on your social media pages. Our representatives answer phones and live chat 24/7/365 and connect families to resources like food, housing and utility bills.? 
  5. Make volunteering a family affair. The holidays are a great time to teach your children about the joy of giving to others. Take your kids along with you to deliver holiday meals to seniors with Focus: HOPE. 

Need more ways to give back? United Way partners with more than 100 organizations to provide thousands of opportunities to volunteer during the holiday season—and beyond—through our Seasons of Caring initiative. Click here to find the right opportunity for you.