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If you were to describe “volunteering”, what words would you use? Hard? Time-consuming? Tiring? How about fun? Rewarding? Positive? We at Deep River Snacks want to take the stigma that volunteering is a tough event to tackle and show you how easy giving back really can be! Among the endless reasons of why people don’t volunteer, we’ve found that a couple of main reasons include not knowing where to begin and personal time/flexibility constraints.
It can be tough to start volunteering with your already busy schedule if you’ve never done so before! It may even seem pretty intimidating to commit to something when you aren’t sure if you will enjoy it. In a recent study, almost ALL volunteers (93%) noted an improvement in their mood after volunteering, as well as 70% noting lower stress levels. With stats like that, why don’t more people do it?!
There are incredible ways to support your community and the commitment doesn’t need to be large! Here are some ways you can volunteer that are easier than you might think:
Meals on Wheels
10 million seniors in America face the threat of hunger, and 1 in 4 live alone in isolation. By joining forces with Meals on Wheels, you can help out by providing meals (and a friendly face!) to those seniors in need. Simply give them a call or provide your information online to get started – easy as that! The best part? Your schedule can be totally flexible. Whether you want to help once a week, once a month, or as needed, Meals on Wheels can work with your schedule.
Did you know that every 2 seconds someone in the USA needs blood? The donation process with the Red Cross only takes only takes about 10 minutes, and your donation could potentially save more than one life! Find Red Cross blood drives/locations near you to schedule your appointment. Nervous to go alone? Call up a friend/family member to schedule an appointment with you!
Recycle Lightly Used Goods
When was the last time you cleaned out your closet? How about that garage of yours packed with soccer balls and unused bicycles? The Goodwill has donation centers across the country where you can donate lightly used clothes, sports equipment, and more to those in need. Another perk (aside from feeling GREAT about helping those less fortunate) is that these donations are tax deductible – just ask for a donation receipt when you drop off.
Does your weekly to-do list include stopping at the grocery store? If so, you can help those less fortunate without even changing your schedule. While you’re checking off groceries from your personal list, fill up a bag or two to donate to a soup kitchen or homeless shelter. Check out this helpful list of items that food banks take, or give one in your area a call to see if they need anything in particular!
Care Packages for Deployed Troops
Whether someone you love has served/is serving our country or not, putting together care packages for those who are stationed overseas is truly rewarding and will undoubtedly put a smile on their faces. Take an afternoon by yourself, with friends, and/or children to make cards and put together care packages of needed goods and reminders of home to send overseas. You can work with programs like Support Our Troops or Operation Shoebox to see how you can help and coordinate these shipments. Don’t forget to check out their rules/requirements for putting together these packages, and for lists of their most needed items!
Help a Local School
Teachers aren’t the only ones who can help students! By contacting a school in your area, you could open a world of possibilities in volunteering. Schools will often happily accept volunteer time to help with things like tutoring, after school programs, chaperoning field trips, cleaning up the grounds outside, read stories to elementary school students, and more!
It’s important to keep in mind a couple things when selecting what you want to embark on for your volunteering adventures. Make sure you have an idea of how much time you want to spend! Whether it be an hour, a day, or more, fitting volunteering into your schedule is extremely rewarding! Also make sure to select an activity that you are interested in. You’ll be much more likely to stick with a volunteer activity if you have a genuine interest and enjoy doing it. To find more unique volunteering ideas near you, visit VolunteerMatch.org or Idealist.org.
We Give a Chip™: Deep River Snacks is proud to donate a minimum of 10% of net profits to charities each year and is a strong advocate for volunteering! To learn more about how we give back as a company, visit DeepRiverSnacks.com/Giving-Back and follow us on social media @DeepRiverSnacks.
Please note that Deep River Snacks has made every effort to provide useful and credible data, and link to highly regarded charities. However, we encourage you to do your own research. Deep River Snacks is not responsible for the content on any of the sites referenced.