When you’re in the midst of the holiday season, it can be so easy to get caught up in the chaos of it all. From friendsgiving potlucks to family get-togethers, we’re oftentimes so busy that we end up taking it all for granted.
But, when we take a moment to sit back and reflect, we’re reminded of all of the things that we have to be grateful for, even though Thanksgiving traditions may be different this year. After all, there’s truly nothing like a dining table surrounded by our loved ones to remind us how blessed we are.
While it can be a season filled with happiness and joy for so many of us, it can also be one filled with loneliness and fear for so many others. For those who are less fortunate than us, the holidays can be one of the toughest seasons to get through.
For this reason, holidays like Thanksgiving offer a great opportunity to pay it forward and to help out those who could use a little extra cheer right now. So whether you’re celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving this week, or American Thanksgiving next month, it’s the perfect time to give back.
If you want to get involved but don’t know where to begin, you’ve come to the right place! We’re extending our helping hand to share some of the best ways you can make a difference this Thanksgiving.
- Make A Donation
When it comes to giving back, making a monetary contribution to a charity that’s near and dear to your heart can be a great place to begin. No matter which cause you choose to support, even a small donation can go a long way.
If you find yourself pinching pennies this fall, don’t worry! The good news is that you don’t need to actually give away your change in order to make a change. Charitable organizations are accepting donations of all kinds, from life-saving blood to unwanted clothing – so you can trust that anything you’re able to give will be received with wide-open and gracious arms.
Agencies like The American Red Cross and Canadian Blood Services have a constant and ongoing need for blood and platelets – and they rely completely on donations from volunteers. As hospitals resume treatments that were temporarily put on hold because of COVID-19, their need for donations is even greater than before. Not only is it both safe and easy to donate blood at your local drive, but it’s also an incredibly simple way to save lives and help out the people who need it most.
Donated Your Pre-Loved Clothing
Do your spring cleaning a couple seasons early this year and clear out your closet of any outgrown or unworn clothing. While the items that you’re willing to part with may no longer bring you joy, they can definitely do that for someone else. Organizations like Goodwill and The Salvation Army are always accepting donations, especially as the cold weather starts to creep in and the need for warm clothing rises.
Donate To A Food Bank
Next time you’re at the grocery store, don’t forget to pick up an extra can or two of non-perishable food to give away. You can donate these items directly to your local food bank or even to various collection points around your town (like grocery stores, schools and churches). The food items you donate are distributed to the individuals in your community who may be struggling to make ends meet and to those who need a bit of extra support to get food on the table right now. There’s no better way to celebrate Thanksgiving than to provide a meal for someone in need.
2. Shop & Support
It’s more important now than ever to support each other and by shopping from small businesses you’re giving back directly to the community you live in. You can do this by buying your produce from a farmers market, ordering your holiday gifts from independent sellers or even grabbing coffee from a local cafe.
If you’re looking for a way to support your local restaurants and bars without leaving the comfort of your own home, purchase a gift card! For small businesses, gift cards act as a sort of small loan that can help them get back onto their feet until you spend them later on. The best part? You’ll have an all-expenses paid date night or dinner with your girls all queued up and ready to go for when it’s safe to go out again.
If you need a little inspo, here are some shops we love to support:
3. Reach out
One of the most simple ways to pay it forward this Thanksgiving is to reach out to those around you. Your neighbors, co-workers, friends and relatives can all benefit from a text or a call. While it may seem like a small and insignificant gesture, checking up on someone can really brighten up their day and remind them that you’re there for them. Giving someone a sense of comfort and support in such an uneasy time is one of the best acts of service.
The holiday season can also be a very lonely time of year for those who are living in nursing homes and hospitals. Since visitors are limited due to COVID-19, many of them may be experiencing feelings of fear and vulnerability alone right now. One really simple and inexpensive way to reach out to them is to send a holiday card. A kind, handwritten note not only shows them how much you care, but is also a wonderful chance to connect with those who could use some extra support this holiday season.
4. Express Gratitude
From frontline workers like doctors, nurses and first responders to essential workers like mail carriers, grocery store cashiers and baristas – there are so many individuals in our community that we have to be grateful for. Sending a small bouquet of flowers, a coffee or even a heartfelt thank you note can go a long way in showing these brave people that you appreciate them. Putting a smile on the faces of those who work so hard to keep us safe and healthy is a great way to give back to them this Thanksgiving.
How are you choosing to give back this year?
xo, The Pretty Little Hangers Team