Friday, April 14, 2017

Give Back with Your Family This Easter

By: Paul Denikin

Easter is celebrated as a Christian holiday and is often seen as a wonderful time to give back to others. This holiday occurs every spring, which is a season often associated with transformations and self-awareness, so even if you’re not affiliated with Christianity, it’s still a great time to contribute to your community through service-related projects. If you’re a teacher or a tutor, the season also provides a great opportunity for educating your students on the importance of being involved in their community, and you can even tie in your lesson plans with your message of civic engagement. Whether your family spends time at a local homeless shelter or volunteers through a program like the YMCA, use this Easter and spring to exemplify the value in giving back.

Children often wake up to the joy of an Easter basket on Sunday morning, but some families cannot afford an Easter basket. Other families have children who will spend Easter in the hospital, and these children may not receive a basket either. Consider getting a group together to host an Easter basket party for disadvantaged families in your community. You can also make baskets to bring to the children at your local children’s hospital.

For the adults this Easter, consider making an Easter-related craft to bring to the residents at a nursing home, such as a bunny bookmark or a wreath for their door. You can also donate your time at a local soup kitchen or homeless shelter, as many of them will serve a large hot lunch or dinner on Easter Sunday. Help by setting up, cleaning up, cooking, or serving the meal.

If the weather is nice, have a cleanup/picnic party at a nearby park. Take trash bags and have family and friends fan out to pick up litter before you sit down to a holiday meal.
holiday goodies. The treats might not get there in time for the holiday, but these service members will be grateful for the acknowledgment.

Animal Help

Don’t forget about the animals at your local animal shelter. Many animal shelters depend on volunteers for a variety of tasks. If you’d like to be involved without directly dealing with animals, volunteers can help with the adoption process by helping customers who are interested in adopting an animal. You can also help at events throughout the community that raise awareness about adoption. If being more hands-on with the animals appeals to you, help is needed to clean cages, walk dogs, give animals baths, and more.

If you’d rather help shelters from your home, consider building beds for dogs and cats. From repurposing old drawers to utilizing an old sweater, there are a variety of ways you can DIY a dog bed to donate to your local animal shelter. Many shelters also accept donations of food, leashes, bowls, and more.

Giving back to the community gives you a sense of purpose and meaning. It also boosts your mood and self-esteem. Even better, it helps someone (or an animal) in need. Many of these programs couldn’t be successful without the contributions from volunteers. This spring and Easter, make it a point to give back to your community with your family.

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