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Tis the season of giving and of good will to all men. So, at Christmas time, when we give gifts and food in abundance to friends and family, it is also nice to give to those a little less fortunate.

From giving your time, to donating gifts, food and money, we share 5 ways you can give a little something back to the community, and others this Christmas.

Food banks

At Christmas there will be hundreds of families across the country concerned about how and what they can possibly eat this Christmas. Food banks are there to provide relief, help and support to those that simply can’t afford food. And every donation counts.

Supermarkets all across the country are working with local food banks by providing donation points in stores to allow you to donate easily. So when you’re doing your regular or Christmas food shop, buy a few items from the recommend food list and drop it in the donation bins on your way out.

Why not donate some toiletries too– there are other essential items they’d also be grateful to receive. With some even accepting gifts for the holiday season.

Donate a gift

Organisations everywhere are working to ensure that every child gets a gift this Christmas and you can help make their dreams come true. From as little as £1 you can pickup a gift that will mean the world to a child and their family.

Contact your local Salvation Army to see if they’re participating in the Christmas Present Appeal this year and donate your gifts to them. You could also donate a gift/money for a gift to Great Ormand Street Hospital. Or even, just donate a gift/s to any of your local hospitals to donate to anyone who will be in hospital over Christmas.

Something else you can do, if you know of a family in your street or town that is struggling, you can leave a hamper on their doorstop of things to help them through the holiday season.  

You could ask for donations as your gift

Instead of asking for gifts this year, why not ask to have a donation made in your name?

If you’re feeling a little environmental conscious you can do your bit for the planet where you could ask to have a tree planted in your name for as little as £5.

Why not use a proportion of your Christmas bonus (if you get one) by donating to a charity of choice or just giving a little something to an organisation you support.

A lot of organisations are having to use extra resources to help anyone in need this Christmas, your donations can make a difference to life or death situations this season.

Give your time

It’s never too late to try and get involved in the many organisations working overtime this season and your time is as valuable as your money (sometimes more so). Contact food banks/kitchens, charity events, or even contact your local nursing home to see if there is anything you can do to help out this season.

Help the Homeless

When you’re out and about doing your Christmas shopping, if you see someone sleeping on the streets why not donate a hot drink or food package to them. Donate your pre-loved blankets and coats, purchase thermal socks, gloves, scarves and hats that will provide even a little extra warmth. If you’re aware of any organisations opening their doors over the Christmas period, make them aware there is somewhere warm to go.

If you want to do something to help the homeless but not able to get out there yourself. Contact Salvation Army or Shelter to see what you can do this season to help. 

Not only will applying some of these tips help make an enormous difference to someone else’s life this Christmas, but you’ll also get that lovely warm fuzzy feeling that, really, Christmas is all about.

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