Ten Ways to Give Back


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By Danielle Grimes

Around this time each year it can be easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of shopping, cooking, traveling, and all things "holiday." In the midst of the madness, don't forget to spread some joy.

The holidays are a perfect time to bring cheer to others through acts of giving, and here are 10 ways you can do it this holiday season:

1. Collect non-perishable food items and donate them to your local food bank.

2. Put food on the table for a family that doesn't have the means to do so. Not sure where to start? can match you with a household in need.

3. Donate your old coats to a clothing recycler.

4. The National Coalition for the Homeless offers a number of ways for volunteers to combat homelessness by serving food at shelters, building homes, or offering job training.

5. Donate blood at your local blood bank.

6. Visit the Department of Veteran Affairs to find out how you can thank the Veterans who put their lives on the line for our safety.

7. Adopt a pet from an animal shelter or rescue organization.

8. Bring a sense of family to someone who doesn't have one by volunteering at your local nursing home, where more than half the residents never get visitors, according to the Senior Source.

9. Pledge a donation to a charity of your choice.

10. Share a meal with a lonely person in need this holiday season when you sign up with Meals on Wheels' food-delivery program.

Giving back doesn't have to be costly or time-consuming. A small, random act of kindness can go a long way. If you receive or witness a kind gesture this holiday season, pay it forward and continue to spread the giving spirit.

How do you plan to give back this holiday season? Tell us in the comments below. Giving back to your community isn't just for the holiday season. Find out ways you can give back year round.

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