Between roasting the turkey and baking the pumpkin pie, it’s easy to forget that the true essence of Thanksgiving is to celebrate our gratitude for all we have, especially the bountiful meals we get to enjoy with friends and family.
In these times of economic hardship, there are many folks who will have less to celebrate. Give thanks this year by helping those less fortunate enjoy a holiday meal. Here are five easy ways to help:
1) Gather. Run a holiday food drive in your office or at your children’s school. The San Francisco Food Bank asks for a 100-pound pledge (roughly 2/3 of a barrel) for any pick up, but you can also drop off smaller amounts at their designated locations.
3) Serve. Help serve up holiday meals with One Brick, a volunteer staffing organization that gathers people together for various community projects. It’s simple to sign up for events online. Their calendars cover all major cities.
4) Deliver. Volunteer 1-hour of your time and your car to deliver food for Food Runners. You’ll pick up excess food from businesses such as restaurants or hotels, and make deliveries to shelters and neighborhood programs that feed the hungry.
5) Donate. A cash donation of $10 can provide two nutritious meals for a homebound senior citizen. For an organization like Meals On Wheels, nearly 50% of their funding comes from individual donations. By donating online, you can assure that 82 cents of every dollar you donate goes directly to delivering meals and services to seniors.