The holidays are all about giving. Don’t let that generous spirit end with your friends and family, extend it to those in need. And giving isn’t all about money; your time is incredibly impactful too! I’ve done some research (you should too!!), and found some really great causes to donate to this holiday season, in addition to the ones that are always near and dear to my heart.
One Warm Coat is a really cool organization I found that does exactly what you’re thinking, they give new or gently used coats, absolutely free charge, to anyone in need. They also provide individuals, groups, and companies with all of the resources necessary to hold a successful coat drive. You can visit the Donate Coats section of their website to browse a map of the US and find your nearest coat drive location. I was absolutely floored with the number of locations in Columbus. This organization makes it so easy to keep someone warm this winter!
Mid-Ohio Foodbank has one goal: End Hunger. Servicing central and eastern Ohio, the Mid-Ohio Foodbank provides to over 650 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, after-school programs, and senior living facilities. To find out more about how you can donate time, funds, or food, click here.
Mountaineer FoodBank is the largest emergency food provider in West Virginia distributing over 15.3 million pounds annually. Servicing 48 of West Virginia’s counties, Mountaineer FoodBank provides meals to over 450 programs including food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, senior programs, Veterans Table programs, mobile pantries, school food pantries and backpack programs. To learn more about donating to Mountaineer FoodBank, click here.
Toys for Tots is an organization that you’ve absolutely heard of, and very likely donated to. Their mission is to get toys to children, who would otherwise have none, for Christmas. It’s really difficult for me to imagine a child having no gifts on Christmas, and I truly get choked up just thinking about the joy that Toys for Tots brings to families each year. To find your local Toys for Tots campaign, click here.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is an absolutely wonderful organization that seeks to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food. You can make a one time donation to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, or you can become a Partner in Hope with an automatic monthly donation. Click here to learn about becoming a Partner in Hope, or click here to make a one time donation. Childhood cancer is an absolutely devastating reality for some families, and St. Jude is making huge strides toward a goal of 100% survival.
When it comes to furry friends, I think local is a wonderful way to go! Volunteer or donate to your local shelter, and who knows? Maybe you’ll end up with a puppy brother this Christmas!
As far as giving goes, the world is literally your oyster. You can impact your local community, or you can make an impact globally. There are so many ways to make a difference this holiday season, and year round!
If you’re in the Columbus area and looking to volunteer or donate, check out BESA to see what’s going on around town! Last weekend, my coworkers and I volunteered at Wagons Ho Ho Ho, an organization that delivers an entire Christmas dinner to someone in need in, you guessed it, a red wagon! We headed to Santa’s workshop, and with the help of many volunteers, built nearly 600 wagons in our morning shift to be distributed across the community. It was super fun, and I’ll definitely be headed back next year!
Happy giving! Be sure to keep up with Vlogmas on @shutupcrystal’s channel!
xoxo Leigh Ann
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