5 Ways to Volunteer for the Holidays

holiday volunteering word cloudSo I was thinking about volunteering for the holidays.  Dec. 5, 2016 was International Volunteer Day, which reminded me that I was going to volunteer during the holidays this year.  So I looked…and I looked.  You know what?  It’s hard to find something to volunteer for! This is especially true if you don’t know someone in your community who can connect you to a special event to volunteer at, or a volunteer organization. Most of these are primarily advertised through word-of-mouth.  So if you’re thinking about volunteering too, here are some prompts to get you started:

  1. Soup Kitchens

soupWe all know what a soup kitchen is. Usually they are based out of a mission or shelter like like Soul’s Harbour (Regina), The Lighthouse (Saskatoon, North Battleford), Riverside Mission (Moose Jaw), Fresh Start (Swift Current, Prince Albert), The Olive Tree (Lloydminster), The Soup Haven (Yorkton).  Soup Kitchens need volunteers to help serve, so go out and feed hungry people!


  1. Animal Shelters

Animal shelters such as the Humane Society or SPCA often have adoption drives and fundraising events around the holidays and rarely have enough qualified people for all the jobs they have.  You’ll have to go through a screening and orientation process though, so be sure to plan ahead.


  1. Gift/Toy/Hamper Drives

giftsIt seems like every church and community association has its own toy drive or Christmas hamper program.  Contact your local church or community association directly to find out how you can get involved.  Small groups like these rarely advertise outside their own newsletters, so give them a call if you aren’t on the mailing list or missed the announcement.


  1. Drive Safe Drivers/Navigators

Operation Red Nose iconPrograms like Operation Red Nose  will be helping keep the roads safe this holiday season by driving home people who’ve had a few too many to drink.  Don’t worry – you’ll never be alone in a car with strangers, at least two people are always sent out.


  1. Put On Your Own Event!

Places like the Food Bank, United Way or the Humane Society are more than willing to help you put on your own Holiday-themed fundraising event.  So if you can’t find something that suits you and your schedule, you can get together with friends, coworkers or whoever you’d like to join in and put on your own holiday volunteer event!