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Family volunteering – the best gift of all

This weekend, many families will have the rare opportunity to gather together to celebrate the holidays and wrap-up another great year. The challenge is finding activities that the whole family can enjoy. While you are looking for ways to spend time together, including activities kids and seniors alike will be able to participate in, consider volunteering a little of your time to a less fortunate family or local community organization.

No matter where you will be spending your holiday, there are many ways to volunteer. What better gift during the holiday season for someone less fortunate then a little of your time and holiday cheer? Here are some ideas that your whole family can participate in:

• Adopt a family. Many individuals are either unable to visit family members or have no one to spend the holidays with. Local churches and schools offer programs that allow families to support these people. Your help could provide them with a meal, gifts or even holiday decorations to brighten their season. Your kids might enjoy picking out gifts for a family with young children while your senior family members might find joy in preparing a meal.

• Collect children’s supplies for local hospitals and children’s centers. This could include school supplies, coloring books, craft ideas or toys. Picking out these items would be fun for the entire family and you know after dropping them off that many children will find joy in even the smallest donation.

• Spread some cheer in your own neighborhood! You never know how many of your closest neighbors may need assistance or even a thoughtful gesture around the holidays. Consider making some holiday cookies for the people on your street or delivering handmade holiday cards.

There are many ways to volunteer with your family this weekend. Whether it is visiting a local shelter or community center and finding out ways to help a neighbor in need, even the smallest donations of time or goods can brighten someone’s day and share the holiday spirit with your family. For more ways to help out in your community this weekend, visit

Happy holidays!

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