Guest Author - Andria Bobo
Itís important that we, as citizens of our communities, find ways to give back in order keep them strong, as well as to show our appreciation for the many wonderful things others do for us. Donating money to charities and other organizations in your community is a good thing to do and certainly appreciated by the recipient, but giving to your community doesnít always have to involve money.
A great way to serve others is by donating your time. Helping out at a soup kitchen, volunteering at a hospital, and volunteering at your childís school if youíre a parent are just a few of the much-needed forms of service that make a difference. Some other ways to give of your time include writing letters to troops from your hometown and visiting people in the hospital. These are wonderfully personal acts of service because you visit one person at a time or write to one person at a time. (A note on hospitals: If you plan to visit people you donít know, talk to the staff first. If youíre visiting someone you do know, youíre probably already aware of the rules and procedures, but itís still good to check in with staff anyway.)
Another option is to use specific talents you have. Donating handmade items to charities, for example, is a great way to get involved in helping others. There are many charity organizations out there dedicated to donating handmade items. Obviously, not everyone is into crafts; there are so many other ways to provide charitable service using your talents. If youíre an excellent pianist, you could volunteer to play the piano at a nursing home for an hour or two each week. You could become a tutor. Or maybe youíre excellent at spreading the word about things, and getting everyone excited about them; You could work with local charities to raise awareness about any needs they have or any events they have.
Another helpful thing you can do is to donate your gently-used items to organizations in need. Nonprofit organizations like Goodwill are a great place to donate your no-longer needed possessions. You can also simply call a charity or group and ask what types of things theyíd need; different shelters around the area around your area is a great place to start.
These are only a few suggestions, of course. There are so many other good things that we can do to help our fellow siblings. Think about your unique talents and circumstances, and then find ways to put your time, talents, or resources to good use!