This time of year calls for joy, celebration, and time spent with the ones you love most, but it’s also an important time to consider how to give back during the holidays. This season reminds us to look outside ourselves and is an opportunity to spread kindness and help those in need. In the spirit of this giving season, here are five thoughtful ways to give back during the holidays while upholding the values of the MEDLIFE Movement.
1. Donate to Meaningful Causes
One effective way to give back during the holidays is by donating to charitable causes. Ask yourself what it is that you’re passionate about and what it is that you think needs aid and empowerment. If you’re passionate about children being able to access education, consider contributing to MEDLIFE’s Ignite the Light campaign (donate here). Your donation can make a significant difference in the lives of children and schools in need in Latin America and Africa. Through your donations, rural communities will be able to provide proper infrastructure for schools, supplies for students, educational workshops, as well as safe hygiene facilities. All things that are necessary for being successful in gaining an education.
2. Volunteer Your Time
Volunteering is another rewarding method on how to give back during the holidays. Look into who is in need of assistance at local shelters, food banks, or community centers. If you have extra clothes, blankets, or food, consider donating them, especially if you live in a colder climate. Giving just a portion of your time and effort can have a profound impact on both the individuals you help and your own sense of fulfillment.
3. Support Local and Ethical Businesses
The holidays requires a lot of shopping. When considering how to give back to the community during the holidays, think about where you shop. While it may seem easiest to buy all your gifts at the local big chain store, it helps to consider where your money is going. Purchasing gifts from local and ethical businesses supports small entrepreneurs and contributes to sustainable community development, a thoughtful approach on how to give back during the holidays.
4. Organize a Fundraiser or Collection Drive
Organizing a fundraiser or collection drive is a communal and effective strategy to help give back during the holidays. Ask your friends, family, neighbours, and co-workers to gather food, clothes, or toys to donate to those less fortunate, creating a wave of generosity and community spirit. Make sure to do your research on what items are most helpful for whichever cause you are donating to. Sometimes certain food banks or charities prefer non-perishables, or if you’re collecting for a women’s shelter they may want you to focus on collecting women’s and baby/children’s clothes.
5. Share Skills and Knowledge
Offering your skills and knowledge can be a unique take on how to give back during the holidays. Whether it’s teaching a free class, offering professional advice, or mentoring, using your talents for the benefit of others can be incredibly rewarding. Look into local community centres or homeless shelters. Sometimes they offer job skills training or substance abuse help programs. If you feel you have the expertise to help people struggling with things you have in the past, offering your support can mean the world.
Remember, every act of kindness counts. Understanding how to give back during the holidays not only enriches the lives of others but also brings deeper meaning to your own holiday experience.
If you’re looking for more ways to volunteer your time outside of your local community, consider joining a MEDLIFE Service Learning Trip. Work alongside local professionals and assist them in providing comprehensive healthcare, dental care, education, and infrastructure. Fill out the contact form below to join our mailing list, visit our upcoming trips page, or check out our brochure!