Although the holiday season means full stomachs on Thanksgiving and presents on Christmas for many, some do not have a picturesque holiday. Although you may be giving just a few hours of your time or a small amount of money, these things can make all the difference to those receiving the help. Here are some ways to give back:

Angel Tree Christmas Assistance: Salvation Army

This program connects groups or individuals with a child in need to provide them with gifts their family cannot afford. The process is labeled “adoption” and can be done at either the Castleton Square Mall or Greenwood Park Mall from November 27-December 10. If you are unable to contribute financially you can volunteer your time by ringing bells to collect money for the organization or sorting bags to help distribute toys on distribution day.

Contact: 317-224-1037

Good Samaritan Network

People age 16 or older (or younger with a chaperone) are welcomed to help underprivileged families choose toys and clothes for their children. They are also in need of volunteers to help prep, serve, and deliver meals for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Although the organization is at a greater need during the holidays, they are also looking for year-round volunteers.

Contact: 317-842-2603

Samaritan’s Purse: Operation Christmas Child

Operation Christmas Child delivers boxes to children in need in over 100 countries. To donate, simply fill a box with gifts like toys or schools supplies and take to a designated location during National Collection Week, November 13-20. For $9, you can receive a tracking label to follow your box and see where it is sent. Find more information on suggested items and drop-off locations on their website below.

Contact: samaritanspurse.org

Lebanon Community of Shalom: Shalom House

The Shalom House is a house, renovated into a dine-in facility where meals are served on Tuesdays (5-7pm), Saturdays (11-1pm) and the last Thursday of the month (5-7pm). To help, you can donate books to their free lending library in front of the house. Aside from donating books, you can volunteer to serve by either making meals or being a server.

Contact: 765-891-9065

Other Ideas for The Holiday Season:

  • Creating crafts or cards and delivering them to local nursing homes
  • Donating coats, boots, etc. to local homeless shelters
  • Making toys for the animals at the Humane Society
  • Write letters or make cards for service members who are deployed
  • Stay connected to websites like VolunteerMatch or DoSomething to find more volunteer opportunities