It’s almost that time of the year when we all sit down and say what we’re thankful for before stuffing ourselves with a huge turkey feast. Actions speak louder than words, which is why volunteering your time and effort to the community and those who are in need is undeniably a more meaningful expression of gratitude.
Whether it’s a large commitment or a small gesture, there are countless ways we can share our blessings. If you find yourself in a fortunate position and want to help those in need, here’s a list of local charities that could use your time and effort this holiday season.
#1 The Center for Family Resources
The Center for Family Resources, for more than three decades, has been a pillar of support for children and their families. This private, non-profit community organization provides food and additional food resources for Thanksgiving.
Helping hands are needed this year with the following:
- Unloading trucks
- Sorting food donations
- Organizing donations (food, boxes, etc)
- Traffic control
- Quality control
Please note that volunteers must be at least 14 years old, able to lift heavy food boxes, and capable of standing for extended periods. Click here to volunteer and be part of this heartwarming tradition.
#2 MUST Hope House
MUST Hope House is run by a small staff and relies on the incredible support of volunteers, like you, to make every day special for those in need. Through Loaves and Fishes Community Kitchen, the Hope House provides warm meals and serves nearly 80,000 meals annually, most of which are prepared by corporate, civic, church, and family volunteer groups.
As a Hope House Kitchen volunteer, you will:
- Assist the staff in the kitchen with meal preparation
- Set up the dining hall
- Serve on the food line
- Wash dishes
- Take care of the final clean-up after the meal service
If you want to join this initiative, you must be 18 years or older and come dressed in shirts with sleeves and closed-toed shoes. You can also volunteer to support runners of the Annual Gobble Jog on Thanksgiving. To volunteer at the MUST Hope House, click here.
#3 Meals on Wheels
Volunteering at Cobb County’s Meals on Wheels program this Thanksgiving is an amazing way to make a difference in the lives of home-bound older adults in our community. You can be one of the program’s dedicated volunteers who deliver five-pack meals to those who need them most, right to their doorstep.
These nutritionally balanced meals are delivered weekly. Each is thoughtfully planned and prepared under the supervision of a registered dietitian to ensure that they meet one-third of the daily nutritional needs of an adult. Plus, recipients who struggle to provide for their pets can also receive complimentary pet food.
By lending a helping hand, you’re not only delivering a warm meal but also care and comfort to those who might be feeling isolated. To join them in spreading nourishment and kindness this holiday season, contact (770) 528-1447.
#4 SafePath Children’s Advocacy Center
SafePath Children’s Advocacy is a non-profit, private organization that strives to reduce trauma and end child abuse by offering professional, child-friendly, and comprehensive help to children in alleged child abuse cases. Their Holiday Open House is a special event filled with joy, festive cheer, and celebrates the spirit of community, hope, and giving.
Here are some things you can do if you volunteer for their Holiday Open House:
- Decorate for the holidays
- Help with the setup and cleaning
- Assist programs
- Help with taking down holiday decorations and cleaning up after the event
By volunteering, you’re making a positive impact on kids who’ve experienced neglect and abuse. It’s a heartfelt way to be part of something bigger this holiday season. If you want to become a SafePath volunteer, click here.
#5 Hope For Christmas
Hope For Christmas goes above and beyond in spreading the spirit of giving through its Secret Santa Shop and annual holiday meal. Helping hands are important when it comes to serving the needs of over 3,000 families that are expected to attend.
Weeks before the event, you can:
- Sort toys
- Decorate the facility
- Help with food preparation
On the big day (Dec. 9), volunteers assist with:
- Guest Registration
- Guest Services
- Toy distribution
- Work in the Secret Santa Shop and become a Santa helper.
Hope for Christmas will be held at multiple locations throughout Cobb County. For the list of locations and if you want to volunteer, click here.
#6 Cobb Christmas, Inc.
With the help of hundreds of volunteers, Cobb Christmas works tirelessly to ensure that children from infants to fifteen years old receive a minimum of three age-appropriate toys, making their Christmas a little brighter. This non-denominational, non-profit organization focuses on helping working poor and low-income families in Cobb.
Here are some of the ways you can get involved as a volunteer:
- Set up the facility
- Distribute gifts to the registered families
What sets this organization apart is that they’re entirely run by volunteers, allowing them to direct the majority of their funds straight into the services they provide. Click here to volunteer for Cobb Christmas.
A Few Final Suggestions…
Aside from volunteering, donating whenever and whatever you can is another wonderful way to make a meaningful impact. Whether that’s by collecting goods for your neighborhood food drive or delivering baked goods to those who work on Thanksgiving (animal shelter staff, firefighters, essential workers, etc.), there is never a gesture that’s too small. This Thanksgiving, let’s keep the tradition of giving alive and celebrate the holidays in a way that truly warms the heart.