The holidays are a special time of year, for many reasons. From Thanksgiving to Christmas, this time of year signifies giving back, giving thanks, spreading joy and love, and lending a helping hand to those who are less fortunate than we are. For many, this time of year means sitting down to delicious meals surrounded by friends and family, opening presents, and being merry. However, it is also important to remember what the holiday season represents.

Giving back is simply sustainable

While many of us are privileged to have a roof over our head, a steady job, and money in the bank, there are millions who are not as fortunate. This is why it is important to practice gratitude and giving back during the holidays.

This year, we encourage you to consider helping others in need. We focus a lot on sustainability and adopting green practices in all different aspects of our lives, but we also think it is important to take a step back and lend a helping hand to those who may not have as much as you do.

Volunteer giving back
Image courtesy of Nazareth College.

The holidays are the time of year that we count our blessings, whether that means clean water and food on the table or a loving family and a job that pays the bills.

So, when you have the urge to say thanks consider giving back by doing one of these 13 things:

  1. Organize a Food Drive
  2. Give a Toy
  3. Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen
  4. Donate Clothing
  5. Put Together a Potluck
  6. Reach Out to Long Lost Friends
  7. Visit a Nursing Home
  8. Help a Local Animal Shelter
  9. Invite a Neighbor or Friend to Dinner
  10. Choose a Charity to Donate To
  11. Have Your Holiday Dinner Guests Bring Warm Clothes to Donate
  12. Share Your Leftovers and Kitchen Scraps with Local Animal Shelters
  13. Help Out a Food Bank

These are all great ways that you can help — many of which won’t cost a dime. The point of the holidays is to recognize your fortunes, be thankful, and give back to others. This is also the perfect time of year to take a step back and look at what changes you may be able to make that will have a positive impact on your community and the planet. Being thankful and giving back to the community isn’t just about donating clothes and volunteering at a food bank, it is also about taking an inward look and seeing if there are ways you can be more sustainable and green.

Upping your recycling efforts, switching to reusable produce bags, and being more eco-conscious with your purchases are just a couple of the ways you can make a positive impact on the Earth, and in turn, help out future generations.

This may be a less traditional way of giving back, but it is nonetheless important and is something to keep in mind as we celebrate the holiday season and how fortunate we all are.

Feature image courtesy of Nan Palmero

By Earth911

We’re serious about helping our readers, consumers and businesses alike, reduce their waste footprint every day, providing quality information and discovering new ways of being even more sustainable.