Five Ways to Help Military Families this Holiday Season

Military charities

Do you want to get into the charitable mood early this year? Before we know it, the holidays will be upon us. Now is the perfect time to organize a charitable giving event. When you plan and organize these events, you are encouraging those around you to also help out. Any of these events are perfect for raising funds for organizations that help military families this holiday season.

Holiday evening formal event

People enjoy getting all dressed up and spending time with friends and family. Organize a formal holiday event that will double as a holiday celebration and a way to help local organizations that help military families. If you are on a budget, you can even turn your own home into a formal venue for the evening. If you notify local venues and restaurants of your intentions to help organizations that help military families, they might even be willing to donate items as well. Send out invitations, create a menu, and request that all gifts come in the form of donations.

Local school or work clothing drive

People are on tight budgets during the holiday season. This doesn?t mean that you can?t help out local organizations that help military families. Charitable donations can also come in the form of clothing items. In 2007, an estimated $5.8 billion worth of clothing related donations were made to charity foundations in the United States. Clothing donations can provide clothing to families in need or they can be sold by charitable organizations to raise money for other needed items. Set up a box at your school or work, with permission of course, and let coworkers know that you are collecting donations. Most people have at least a few clothing items that they are willing to get rid of.

Host a dinner evening in

You don?t have to throw a large formal event to arrange for charity pick ups. Invite all of your family, friends, and neighbors over for a dinner in. Make it a potluck and ask that everyone bring a dish to share. You can decorate for the holidays and everyone is sure to be in the giving mood. Throw on some holiday music and even plan a caroling trip after. Collect donations for military families during the dinner and then donate the items to charities that pick up donations. The whole event is low maintenance and yet, you are helping out those in need.

Request charitable donations in lieu of a birthday or holiday gift

You don?t even have to throw an event to collect donations. Most people are going to gift you something for the holidays, or your birthday if it happens to be near the holidays. Send around the word ahead of time, that you would like donations in lieu of a gift. Your friends and family will most likely follow your wishes and choose a local charity. You can enjoy the holidays knowing that you are doing good and you won?t have to politely accept a gift that you will never use anyways.

Donate unwanted holiday gifts

There are always those holiday gifts that have good intentions behind them but are simply not something that you would ever wear or use. If you tend to get a lot of these gifts, make it a point to donate them. Ask your children to do the same. In 2011, an estimated 2 million tons of clothing and textiles were recycled or donated to charity in the United States. You can accept that ugly sweater from your mother in law with a smile, knowing that you won?t have to give up valuable closet space for it.

It can be difficult to come up with extra funds during the holiday season to help organizations that help military families. Fortunately, there are other ways to raise funds and still help out. You can throw a formal event, host a dinner night in, or collect gently worn clothing from coworkers. You can also donate your birthday or unwanted gifts to local charities. There are many ways to help out, even when funds are low.

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