Simple and Satisfying Ways to Give Back to Your Community

volunteers preparing donations
Photo by Julia M Cameron on

There’s no shortage of ways to give back to your community. No matter where you’re based, you should have no problem finding ample opportunities to help the less fortunate. However, if it’s been a long time since you were last involved with a charity or if you have no prior experience with charitable giving, you may have trouble determining where to start. As you’ll find, giving back to your community doesn’t have to be a difficult or financially strenuous experience.

Get Involved with Food-Based Charities 

Food insecurity is a terrible problem to have. Having to choose between eating and paying for other essential living expenses is a position in which no one should ever find themselves. So, if you’re in a position to help people who consistently don’t get enough to eat or are unable to comfortably afford food, it would be great if you’d do so. Fortunately, regardless of where you happen to be based, you shouldn’t have trouble finding food-based charities. Not only are many churches and soup kitchens always accepting donations in the form of money and actual food, there are also charities that seek to feed the hungry on an even larger scale. For example, Land of Lincoln residents in search of a worthy charity should get in touch with Greater Chicago Food Depository.     

Run Errands for Seniors 

Although many seniors will always welcome assistance, helping the elderly is particularly important at the present time. Since our immune systems naturally grow weaker as we age, the COVID-19 pandemic has facilitated the need for people to keep an extra-watchful eye on the seniors in their lives. As venturing into crowded public spaces is currently rather risky – especially for people dealing with compromised immunity – why not offer to run errands for elderly friends, neighbors and relatives? This will save them the trouble of having to leave the house, thereby minimizing their risk of exposure. 

Additionally, if you know any technology-challenged seniors, teach them how to shop online and utilize contactless pickup options. This will enable them to shop for themselves while keeping their exposure risk at the barest possible minimum.  

Regardless of age, if anyone in your life suffers from a disability, now would be a good time to provide them with any assistance they require. You may also want to help them explore options for long term disability insurance

Volunteer at Senior Centers 

Many senior centers and rest homes are constantly on the hunt for volunteers. Individuals with medical and/or caregiving backgrounds are particularly encouraged to seek out these opportunities. Of course, this isn’t to say that having a background in the aforementioned fields is a prerequisite for volunteering. For instance, even if you’re just volunteering to read to residents or keep them company, many senior centers and rest homes will happily take you up on your generosity.  

Donate Electronics You No Longer Need 

It’s easy to see why so many U.S. households generate a significant amount of e-waste. With constant pressure to get the latest gadgets and new technology becoming obsolete in the blink of an eye, there’s little wonder as to why we always seem to be upgrading our favorite devices. Rather than allowing your outdated electronics to collect dust or sit in a landfill, consider donating them to a worthy cause. Provided they still work properly, many charities will happily accept old smartphones, computers, televisions and gaming consoles.  

Do Your Part for Public Health 

With COVID-19 now entering its third year as an active threat, it behooves every one of us to act in the interest of public health. In addition to getting vaccinated (unless a medical condition prohibits you from doing so) and staying current with booster shots, this entails wearing masks in public spaces and social distancing whenever possible. Doing your part for public health also means avoiding direct interactions with infected individuals, as well as quarantining and testing yourself if you believe that you’ve been exposed to COVID-19.  

Giving back to your community can be a deeply rewarding experience. In addition to actively improving the lives of others, your good deeds will fill you with a tremendous sense of pride and satisfaction. Still, if you don’t have much experience with giving back, you may be unclear on how to get started. Luckily, opportunities for charitable giving abound in virtually every community. So, if you’re on the hunt for ways to give back, take care to consider the options discussed above.  

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