The holiday season is a magical time for so many. People are filled with excitement, anticipation, and joy. For many, Thanksgiving and Christmas are a time to reflect, practice gratitude, and find opportunities to be generous. In many instances, families use this as an opportunity to show young children what it means to give back or gather as a family or group of friends. While the holiday season inspires kindness and compassion toward the less fortunate, unfortunately, the vast majority of that giving stops soon after the holidays. For less than two months of the year, shelters are filled with people spreading holiday cheer and offering food, voluntary help, and gifts to those in need. But what about the other 363 days of the year? The season of giving is short, but the need lasts all year. As food insecurity may be more prevalent around the holiday season, it is more than a seasonal issue.
“Since the holidays are the ‘time of giving, people probably only associate giving with that time, so they feel guilty realizing they hadn’t been giving the rest of the year… or they may just be selfish during the rest of the year and feel charitable during the holidays. I believe that there are people who only do it for show, but I also truly believe there’s people who do it out of the kindness of their heart.” Generosity should be year-round. The holidays are a wonderful time of year, but the need and want for basic life necessities don’t go away when Santa does.
The work of nonprofit organizations like Recycle Pots and Pans happens each and every day. Most nonprofits are very dependent on active volunteers and financial support. Our nonprofit organization was developed to address by collecting and redistributing gently used cooking items to those in need.
See how you can support local nonprofits during the holidays, but also consider these ideas for year-round help:
- Bringing your book club, team, girls’ night out, or another group to volunteer instead of one of your normal meeting times.
- Schedule a “Christmas in July” volunteering day, since food pantries are traditionally low on resources in the summer months.
- Set up monthly donations with your favorite nonprofit so funds are spread out all year long.
- Donate or volunteer time in someone’s honor or memory on their birthday.
- When you change the batteries in your smoke alarms twice a year, also clean out your pantry and drop off non-perishable food items.