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Who doesn’t love to make a difference in the world? The best way to start making a positive impact is by looking at what you can do to help your local community. There are hundreds of different ways you can help, and not all of them require time or money.

Here are a few creative and surprising ways to give back to your community. Consider doing one of them next time you’re looking to pay it forward. 

Organize a Food or Toy Drive

Doing something for the less fortunate during the holiday season is a great way to give back. Organizing a food or toy drive is a great way to give back to the community. It allows you to allow someone to partake in some of the traditions they may not have been able to experience otherwise.

You can also inform people that you’re collecting toys and canned goods by posting flyers in your area. You can also set up a drop-off point in your workplace or at one of the community centers. Be the point person for collecting all the donations, and then offer to deliver them to the local donation center.

Donate to a Food Pantry

Food pantries are always in need of new donations. If you have extra money to spare, consider pulling up a list of items that your local pantry needs. It is always a delight to donate as many of these items as possible. It helps to know that you’re making a difference in the world.

Vote!

Yes, voting counts as giving back to your community. Letting your voice be heard is an essential part of joining a community. Be sure to attend local elections and vote for the initiatives (and people) you care about. By doing so, you can create lasting change in the community. 

Volunteer at a Homeless Shelter

While it’s common to think about the homeless shelters during the holiday season, it’s also important to remember that these individuals still need help year-round. If you can give a couple of hours of your time to help these individuals, it can make a huge difference in their lives. Check out this list if you’re in the market for a local homeless shelter. Many volunteer opportunities are available, including helping with their food kitchens.

Donate Used and Unused Items

We’ve all purchased something we never ended up using or only used a few times. Consider donating these items. Not only will it free up some space in your home, but it will undoubtedly make a difference to whoever receives your donation.