Start Your Own Kindness Campaign as a Family This Holiday Season

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The Holiday Season is coming up quickly and the best way to get involved in the giving spirit is to actively participate in local charity and giving campaigns.  Last year in the height of the pandemic, our family planned a “holiday kindness campaign.”  This provided a way for our growing family to participate in acts of service, acknowledge gratitude, share kindness, and spread joy.

Nonprofits need our help

In 2020, nonprofits faced significant declines in donor support. There was also limited ability to accept in-kind donations, serve as an active volunteer, and participate in community events.  Despite the obstacles that still exist for in-person volunteering, there are ways to get the family involved in spreading cheer this holiday season.  

Initiating a family Kindness Campaign is a wonderful way to connect as a family. It is also an opportunity to model gratitude and demonstrate what it means to give versus take.  

Here are 7 ideas to spread kindness and joy this holiday season as a family:

1. Donate dog food or old blankets to local animal shelters

Arlington:

Donate Supplies | Lucky Dog Animal Rescue 

Gifts In Kind – Animal Welfare  

League of Arlington (awla.org)

Fairfax:

About Four Paws Rescue Team

Montgomery County

Donations (montgomerycountymd.gov)

Washington, DC

Humane Rescue Alliance

2. Host a local food drive in your neighborhood

If you live in an HOA, identify your interest in participating in a community-wide food or toy drive.  Collect the donations at your community center, or request they be dropped off contact-free in a bin outside your home.  Be clear on the types of food and toys that can be accepted.  For instance, identify the food donation requirements such as non-perishables, low sugar, low sodium, high fiber. Examples of non-perishables include whole grain pasta, brown rice, 100% juices, low sodium canned veggies, etc. For toy gifts, specify the toys needed. Include whether the gifts should be unwrapped and what ages to purchase for. Consider donating toys that your family never opened!

DC/Virginia:

Donate Food | Capital Area Food Bank

DMV

Marine Toys for Tots

Food Donations

3. Host a toiletry drive in your neighborhood

Do you travel and/or keep unused toiletries from hotel stays? Consider donating these toiletries!  

DC:

Toiletry Donation Drive – Thrive DC

VA:

In-Kind Giving – Second Story (second-story.org)

4. Plan your own community event!

Get creative and have fun!  Look at what your child really loves about the holiday season.  For us, our toddler loved the music, and we thought it would be perfect to host a virtual sing-a-long with a local residents for adults with developmental disabilities.  We found this was a fun way to spread joy and share the spirit of the holiday season.  This meant that our family planned the event. We created a song booklet, invitations, and set up the musician to entertain. We also hosted the Zoom event.

5. Shop and decorate a Thanksgiving boxed meal

6. Participate in a local park clean-up or neighborhood clean up

Do you see trash on your walk, grab garden gloves and a bag and collect it.  Model kindness to the earth and acts of service for your neighbors!

7. Write thoughtful notes or send artwork to military personnel or first responders 

holiday kindness campaign

Wishing you and your family a season filled with kindness! Do you have ideas for a holiday kindness campaign that the whole family can participate in? Share them in the comments!

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