Along with having gratitude at Thanksgiving, I am a big believer in giving and volunteering during the Holiday season. If you have been clearing your clutter and have things in good condition, why not consider giving them to a local charity? Charities also need support with financial donations as well as volunteer hours.
One of the reasons I wanted to write this blog post is because I was very fortunate to benefit from the kindness of others when I was younger. As a teenager I was helped from services at the Fred Finch Youth Center. The generosity of strangers allowed me to have opportunities that I wouldn’t have had otherwise. Now that I am in position where I can help others, this is one of the places that I give back to.
Here are some guidelines when donating your stuff to charities. Non-profits also need your dollars as well, especially during the Holidays.
Give Me What I Need. Learn what the charity needs. Donating what they don’t want makes more work for them. If you wouldn’t donate it to a friend or family, don’t dump it on the non-profit. While I try to be as green as possible, some times items are worn out, no longer useful and need to be put in the trash.
When I Wish Upon A Star. Many charities have a wish list or you can conveniently donate through Amazon smiles. No time is wasted and the charity gets what they need and you don’t spend time guessing what they really could use.
Paying it Forward. If you don’t want to add to someone’s clutter or more stuff to organize, consider giving a donation on behalf of a person on your gift list. You could also ask that a donation be given in your name and make gift giving a breeze for your friends and family.
Many non-profits need your time, skill and expertise. Non-profits keep track of their volunteer hours that can help them be competitive in being awarded grants. If you are going to be a volunteer, be great. Here are some tips on how to be a good volunteer:
Show Up. If you signed up to work, show up. Unless it is a real emergency, don’t cancel at the last minute. People are counting on you and arranging schedules based on when you said you would come.
Have a good attitude. Working for a charity can be stressful as employees sometimes see heartbreaking things on a regular basis. Be a good listener, be positive and don’t offer constructive criticism without a solution.
Be flexible. Maybe they need you for your ability to write or crunch numbers, but right now they need help in stuffing envelopes for the big charity gala or end of the season ask. Roll up your sleeves and help!
Commit. Having committed volunteers makes a lasting difference. Volunteering on a regular, long-term basis maximizes your skills and in turn helps the charity.
Past the season. If you find a charity you love, you can continue to donate your items, your money or your time and talent after the holidays. If you have a child/children, get them involved and teach them early on about giving back. The world is a better place when we offer a hand to help others.
Here is a list of the charities that Collector Care regularly donates to in the San Francisco Bay area and in central California. Some of the links includes wish lists.
What charities do you regularly donate to or volunteer your time? How do you share your abundance with those less fortunate? Share your comments below.
Does your favorite non-profit need organizing? Would you like to donate a gift certificate for clearing clutter and home organization to someone who might not have the funds right now? Call Collector Care at 925.548.7750 or email email@example.com to schedule your free 30-minute consultation to discuss your gift recipient’s needs.