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March 3, 2024 10:49 pm

Eight winter opportunities to give back

GOLDSBORO — Looking for a way to give back this winter? Habitat for Humanity Goldsboro-Wayne has several suggestions that can help you do just that.

Unfortunately, with winter comes inclement weather. Use this as an opportunity to shovel snow for somebody in your community who may need a helping hand. Or, scrape off the ice from your neighbor’s or friend’s car to help give them a head start on their morning.

Who says you have to wait for spring cleaning to dust off the clothes in your closet? Winter is the one time of year where warm clothes are desperately wanted for those in need. See if you have any hats, mittens or winter coats you can part with to donate. Blankets are also a great option for donations.

Local shelters are especially busy during the winter months due to the cold temperatures. Visit a local homeless shelter or animal shelter to see if you can provide assistance during these especially busy and difficult times.

Even though it’s cold outside, that doesn’t mean you need to give up volunteering until spring. Find an organization that has indoor volunteer opportunities. Even seasonal organizations may have opportunities in the off-season.

With the COVID-19 pandemic came many new ways of doing things — including volunteering. Many organizations don’t even need you to come into their headquarters to help contribute. Ask your favorite organization if they have any virtual volunteer opportunities. For example, you may be able to help with administrative tasks or even mentoring virtually.

This may not seem like “giving back” at first thought, but it can be an incredibly easy way to offer something everybody need — an ear to listen. You can also volunteer for various hotlines to help talk to somebody who is lonely or having a hard time.

Sometimes all it takes is a small, kind act to completely change somebody’s day or week for the better. Buy a warm meal or cup of coffee for a friend or a complete stranger. You never know just how much this small gesture can mean.

January is the perfect time to plan out how you’ll give back and make a difference this year. Use this time to get your ducks in a row and to consider how you’ll give back to your community in the coming year. Make 2023 your year of giving.

— From the Habitat for Humanity Goldsboro-Wayne website