December is a month of giving. It’s the month where people help each other and show love to one another. There are lots of things you can do during this special month to help others out. This list is for you if you’re stumped on what to do or if you want more ideas.
Helping people out in the smallest possible way is a wonderful feeling. You can help out your friends, family, neighbours or total strangers if you want. As long as you’re making life easier for someone (without asking for gratitude in return), you’re doing something awesome. I hope you use these tips to assist as many people as you can.
NOTE: These tips don’t apply to December only. You can do these things any time of the year if you want!
There are so many places you can volunteer in; you can volunteer in a soup kitchen, an orphanage, a retirement home, an hospital and so on! Volunteering helps reduce the workload of workers during the holiday period and it makes a real difference in the quality of service given to people. There are more hands on-deck and so, more people to help around.
2. Donate to Causes
If you don’t have the time to volunteer, this is an amazing option you should consider. Giving money to legitimate causes is very important to boost their work and help them. You’ll not just be giving some abstract organisation, you’ll also be helping people all over the world that really need the help.
Some great causes you can donate to are:
- Humans of New York (HONY) Patreon
- Helping and supporting autistic people e.g. National Autistic Society, Autism Society
- Animal Farm Sanctuaries that help to rescue and rehabilitate animals e.g. Farm Sanctuary, The Gentle Barn, SASHA Farm
- Supporting LGBTQ+ people e.g. Human Rights Campaign, Human Rights Watch – LGBT Rights
- Amnesty International
- Donate books to people around the world
Apart from these, you can also donate money, clothes or food (not a frozen chicken) to an homeless shelter or to people’s GoFundMe. By signing up, you’ll be able to help a lot of people asking for donations for rent, food, school fees, hospital bills and lots more. It’s a wonderful thing to support others even if you don’t know them.
3. Teach For Free
If you’re good at something, pass your knowledge on to someone else. It can be anything from teaching subjects like math to teaching a skill like photography. You don’t have to have a certification to teach. As long as you know the subject, I encourage you to teach it. You’ll be adding a lot of value to the lives of your student(s).
4. Provide a Service for Free
This is another awesome thing you can do to aid people! You don’t have to do it for the entire month. A couple of days or hours are good enough. You can mow the lawn for your neighbours, babysit, help a client with their tax statement or offer any other kind of service to people for free. By doing that, you’re helping people save money for other things.
5. Give a Job to Someone
December (especially) is a month in which people are searching desperately for extra cash. If you own a business like a supermarket or restaurant, hire someone to help out and pay them. You don’t have to hire them forever. One or two weeks of good pay will be great for boosting people who really need the extra cash. Don’t be overly frugal with your money though. Pay at least the minimum wage or more if you can.
6. Give Bonuses to Employees
Another lovely thing to do if you own your own business! Giving bonuses to those working for you is really helpful during the holidays to help them pay for extra expenses like gifts, decoration, more food and so on. A lot of companies give out Christmas bonuses during the holidays to assist their employees. If you aren’t doing that, I hope you start!
Even if you don’t own your own business, you can give bonuses to those who you pay for their services like your babysitter, post-man or newspaper boy. It’s a great way to appreciate them for what they do. Yes, they’re getting paid already but a little extra would be nice.
7. Offer Free Therapy
If you’re a certified psychologist or therapist, this is for you. You can go to a foster home, a retired people’s home or a homeless centre, talk to people, listen to their problems or challenges and help boost their mental health. So many people suffer from undiagnosed mental illnesses. Even if you can’t be their full-time therapist, spending some of your time with them will help. I know therapy takes a long time but genuine help (in 30 minutes to an hour) from a professional to someone who needs your service (but may not be able to afford it) will go some way.
8. Plant a Tree
Yes, you saw that right. Last month, the United Nations warned that climate change must be limited in 12 years to prevent catastrophe. There are lots of steps to help push back the effects of climate change and one of them is by having lots of trees around. The logic behind it is that the plants absorb carbon dioxide (CO2), a major greenhouse gas in the atmosphere and thus, reduce its effect on animals and human. Plant a tree (or 10) today! Help make the earth better for you, your family and friends and billions of people all over the world.
9. Make Useful Things for People for Free
If you’re a creative who can knit or crochet, this is the perfect time to make something for free for someone. Many countries are in winter in December and sending blankets, sweaters or jumpers to people who need them will be fantastic! You can also donate winter wear to homeless shelters, orphanages and so on. It’s a great way to support and provide for people.
10. Clean up your Environment
The New Year is coming and we shouldn’t enter it while having dirty sidewalks and surroundings. Organise some of your friends or family, put on your gloves, get some rubbish bags and go clean up! It’s also advisable to make signs for people who “don’t know” it’s not right to litter 🙄
And that’s it! I hope this list helps and encourages you to add value to someone’s life this month or any other month!
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