A quick list of 10 relatively simple ways to serve others during this holiday season (or any other time of the year):
1. Make baked goods and distribute them, with your best wishes, to places that might have someone working during holiday hours, like animal shelters, or police, ambulance and fire stations.
2. Donate unopened children’s toys to the Pirate Toy Fund (they accept toys year round) (http://rochester.kidsoutandabout.com/content/pirate-toy-fund)
3. When shopping for holiday meals, buy extra canned and boxed goods. Then drop them off at the Open Door Mission, Grace House, Mission: Share, or other similar organization, before you even go home.
4. Give a gift card for gas to someone struggling with the cost of holiday travel.
5. Make up small “blessing bags” with essential hygiene items and snacks, and keep them in your car to hand out when you come across a needy person standing at an intersection.
6. Send Christmas cards to overseas military personnel. There are numerous organizations online that will help you accomplish this.
7. Volunteer to babysit for a couple with small children so that they can get time away.
8. Shovel a sidewalk or driveway for someone unable to do it themselves.
9. Leave a treat and a card in your mailbox for the mail carrier.
10. Get organized and fill up/deliver as many children’s gift shoeboxes as you can. (https://www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/the-journey-of-a-shoebox/)