As the holidays near, and shops begin to post all their holiday sales and promos, opportunities also begin to open more in your local community. With so many still struggling to make ends meet, local non-profits are needing help in filling shelves, and filling volunteer spots. With business typically slowing down around the holidays, there is more bandwidth in the office for community activities. Looking for some ways to get your office involved? Here are some ideas to get you started:
Host a food drive
This time of year many of the local co-ops count on to stock their shelves for the next few months. Find a local one, or search for “Food Bank” in your area. Most organizations will list their highest current needs, and it’s easy to send out the list to your staff with a date of when to bring the food in by. At Synergis, we will ocassionally stock up a cart with drinks and some goodies. If an employee brings in an item to donate, they get an item on the cart. It’s a fun end of the week activity.
Start a Toy or Clothing Drive
As the cold months begin, more are in need of coats and socks for the weather. Toys are also at a high demand with holiday gift giving. Local co-ops, Toys for Tots, religious organizations and others host these drives, and often have all the promotional material for you to print off and hand out to your staff. You could challenge each department to compete for the most items brought in, and have an incentive prize, like a pizza party or the ability to leave early one day to shop for holiday items.
Partner with a non-profit partner of your choice
Many organizations already have relationships with non-profit partners in the community. If you don’t, ask your staff for recommendations; they may already volunteer with some of them. This also means they might be able to spread the excitement and passion for helping. Some organizations do fund-raising events, and need people to come to the events. Others need help stocking goods in order to pass them out for the holidays. Some might need something as simple as help spreading out mulch at their facility. Whatever your team loves to do, there is probably an option out there!
Adopt a family
With the holidays, many families want to provide their children a nice meal, and some gifts. Several organizations like the Salvation Army have the option to get a list of items needed and their wish list as well. It’s easy to send this list out to your staff, or even use it as a team building activity, and shop for the items together!
Serve as a team somewhere
The holidays are all about giving. Find a place to volunteer in your community this year instead of having holiday lunch. Or, use this as your team building activity for the year, and schedule a time to get those teams together to work out differences before the end of the year.
Get out there, and love on your community!