Giving Back

The current economy is dim. Now, more than ever, we need to reach out to one another. Here are some ideas of how we can give back to our community during these tough times by volunteering.

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Choosing a volunteer opportunity -- What can we do

Select an organization or cause that is near and dear to your heart. The personal attachment will make it special and keep you going back. Be sure to take photos of your volunteering experiences for long lasting, precious memories.

Here are some ways of giving back to the community through volunteering:

  • Hospice – office work, patient visits, family support
  • Animal rescue organizations – caring for animals, fostering, office work
  • Support groups – fundraising, help at meetings, clerical work
  • Hospitals – answering phones, information desk, offering support and assistance to patients
  • Soup Kitchens – preparing and serving food
  • Retirement/Nursing Homes – Visiting lonely residents!
  • PTA – fundraising, working on events
  • Schools – helping teachers, working with students, assisting on school events
  • Community beautification – planting flowers, working in gardens, creating nature walks
  • Clean up the environment – litter clean-ups, graffiti clean-up
  • Church – assisting those in need, helping out during fellowship
  • Big Brothers / Big Sisters – spending time with a child and making a difference in their life
  • Make a Wish Foundation – Office help, committee member, helping to make a wish come true.

These are only a few starter ideas for volunteering. For a more comprehensive list of opportunities in your area, go to:
http://www.usafreedomcorps.gov/

This site lets you enter the geographic location where you want to get involved and what your particular interests are. Then, just a click supplies you with a list of volunteering opportunities to consider. This extremely helpful site is created and maintained by the US government.

Pay it forward

Have you seen the movie? In the 2000 film "Pay it Forward," the young boy, Trevor, receives a social studies assignment to "Think of something to change the world and put it into action." Trevor comes up with the clever idea of paying a favor forward instead of back. His plan is to repay a good deed with new good deeds done to three new people. What an awesome concept!

This economy may be making us poor of pocket, but there's no reason why it should make us poor of heart. Now, more than ever, we need to reach out to one another… How little it takes to volunteer, give back, and make a difference in this world.

"Service to others is the payment you make for your space here on earth."
- Mohammed Ali

More great volunteering opportunities:

Volunteering for teens
Donating your hair to cancer patients
Support your favorite cause by shopping online

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