Tis the season for thinking of others and for giving gifts to those we care about. While much of the holiday shopping and spending will be done in stores and online, there is an alternative to consider.
Our friends at the Human Service Chamber of Franklin County created a holiday guide to illustrate nonprofit opportunities from toy and coat drives to serving dinner on Christmas Eve.
What a wonderful way to celebrate the season and make meaningful gifts on behalf of someone on your shopping list. A few of their featured drives and events include:
- Besa offers a Secret Santa program for 2,000 senior citizens. This Adopt A Senior program spreads joy to elderly neighbors. When the program opened on November 1, 100% of the seniors were adopted within hours. This is the 10th year of the program, which began with $240 in gift cards for 26 seniors.
- Flying Horse Farms is hosting Light Up Camp, a drive-through light display, which features festively decorated camp buildings and an animated light show. A great opportunity to support camp programs for children with serious illnesses.
- Franklinton Cycle Works, a nonprofit bike shop, wants to help 10 individuals overcome transportation barriers through its Bicycles for Independence Recipients will receive free bicycles, equipment, and maintenance education.
- Mental Health America of Ohio is hosting the Holiday Magic Drive by asking for donations via an Amazon Smile Wish List. Gifts include clothing and toiletries for patients who are being treated for mental health disorders in the Twin Valley Behavioral Healthcare hospital.
- Seeds of Caring has a unique mission, to help kids see and understand community needs. They are highlighting dozens of kid-friendly Holiday Acts of Kindness activities including baking cookies, making sack lunches, and collecting books and toys.
- YMCA of Central Ohio and YWCA Columbus are hosting events to support the men, women, and families residing at the shelters they operate. From serving meals to donating toys, clothing, and gift cards, these two amazing nonprofits offer meaningful ways to serve.
- Zora’s House is hosting WoCO Holiday Market, which features more than 20 women of color artisans and entrepreneurs. What a perfect way to buy gifts and support local artists and the nonprofit’s mission at the same time.
Thank you, Michael Corey, for your leadership in creating the list and to all the nonprofits who serve the breadth of needs in our community. My family looks forward to spreading holiday cheer by supporting these missions. We hope you do, too.