Updated: Dec 5, 2021
The last couple of years have been humbling and hard for so many of us. We have seen the deep impact on our community and neighbors all across the Sacramento area.
While the holidays give us a lot of opportunities to spend time together, enjoy treats and gifts, and also participate in fun community events, it's also the perfect time to roll up our sleeves and take part in activities that will truly improve the lives of people around us.
Often, it is these times of serving that we feel the true joy of the holiday season.
So, today we are sharing our favorite places to give back in the Sacramento area this holiday season. Please find a way, however small, to give back here or in your own area. There are so many people who would be grateful for such kindness.
If you're not sure where to begin, we love the Aesop quote, "No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted."
1. Look on Nextdoor:
Are you on Nextdoor for your community? It's a free site that you can join by verifying your address. This allows you to communicate directly with your neighbors and local community.
Around the holidays, there are more posts than usual from people who are struggling, need help with simple tasks around the home, or are asking for donations for their classrooms or charities. Look for these opportunities and pick the ones that fit what you have to give.
Remember that giving doesn't have to mean money. We saw a request by an older woman who had recently lost her husband and needed help with tasks to prepare her home for winter. Taking just a couple of hours out of your weekend to lend a hand can make all the difference to someone.
2. Get Involved with Hands 4 Hope:
We are fortunate to have a very active chapter of Hands4Hope in the Sacramento area. They've created a powerful organization full of youth who are actively making a difference in their communities. You can look for ways to get involved as a youth or adult participant on their website here.
To participate in events, you will need to have your fingerprints done. But, if you don't have the time or resources to do that, there are many ways to get involved from being a part of a fundraising committee or donating your time or resources. Email them at email@example.com for more information.
3. Join Hands On Sacramento:
Hands On Sacramento is a great site to find a wide range of volunteer opportunities right here in our area. You can sort through to find the ones you feel best suited for and also see exactly how many volunteer spots are available, as well as the date and time of the need.
For example, are you interested in sorting toy donations from the kid's toy drive? They still need 17 volunteers on December 7th. Do you have any musical talent? They'd love to hear it at the hospice homes. Whatever you have to give - time, talent, donations - there's a place that is looking for them in Sacramento.
Go here to find the right opportunity for you.
4. Feed Your Community at the Sacramento Food Bank:
If you have never had the incredible opportunity to serve at a food bank, please add that to your list right away. It's a powerful experience that you will never forget. The Sacramento Food Bank needs volunteers who are willing to bag produce, distribute food, and much more.
There are a few requirements to serving here. First, volunteers must be 10 or older. Any volunteers between the ages of 10-15 need an adult chaperone. Volunteers aged 16-17 need adult approval before volunteering. Groups are welcome, but be sure to contact the food bank to set up the right day and time for your group.
If you're interested in volunteering, check out their website here and reach out to learn the next steps to get started.
5. Find Your Local Habitat for Humanity:
Didn't think we had a Habitat for Humanity here in the Sacramento area? We don't just have one - we have a few, including locations in Roseville, El Dorado Hills, Sacramento and more. Find the one closest to you and be part of a Habitat for Humanity event where you can help families build and improve the places they call home.
Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit organization that believes affordable housing plays a critical role in strong and stable communities.
This is a great volunteer opportunity for people who like to work with their hands, have any skill set involving building, or if you'd like to take a group of younger people who are willing to get their hands dirty, work hard and learn powerful new skills while making a difference in a real, essential need for members of their community.
Go here to search the site to find your local habitat.
6. Make Wishes Come True with Make-A-Wish:
You may have heard about the Make-A-Wish foundation, but did you know that they are based in nearby San Francisco? Not only that, but they utilize volunteers from all over who use their time and talents to bring strength and hopes to kids.
Volunteers help the foundation get closer to granting the wish of every eligible child as volunteers are at the heart of every wish experience. Volunteers even have the freedom to choose when and how they would like to transform lives in their communities.
Some volunteer opportunities include: wish granter, translator, office volunteer, events volunteer, skill-based volunteer and more.
To learn more and find a volunteer position that matches your abilities - go here.
7. Help Animals at Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary:
Do you have a gift with animals? There are many shelters and pet sanctuaries around the area that would love to have you. Happy Tails Pet Sanctuary is just one such place where you could make a real difference in the quality of life for animals waiting in a shelter.
Some of the volunteer opportunities include adoption center clean-up, adoptions assistant, feral colony feeder, foster caregiver, fundraising, junior volunteers and much more. To learn more about these positions, check out their website here.
If you are not in Sacramento, look for pet sanctuaries and shelters in your area. They need you!
8. Check Volunteer Match:
If you have a particular skill set or just want to find a wide range of volunteering options, check out Volunteer Match to be matched with opportunities in your area.
They have volunteer opportunities of all types, such as collecting food items for local food banks and helping hospice patients at Suncrest Hospice. Here are just some of the areas where you could fill a need: Children and youth, seniors, health, education, literacy, advocacy, people with disabilities, arts and culture, animals, environment, hunger, veterans, women, homeless and housing, and more.
If you have the desire to serve, you'll be able to find a way to participate using your unique gifts and skill sets at Volunteer Match.
Did you find something here that has inspired you to set aside some time to help others? We would love to hear your stories. Find us on Instagram and look for posts on giving back to share where you decided to volunteer and how it went!
Fore more holiday ideas in the Sacramento area, check out these posts:
Thanks for reading! If you're looking for a realtor in the Sacramento area, we'd love to help. Give us a call at 916.524.9733.