#GivingTuesday unites the globe in celebration of charity

On the heels of Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Shop Small Saturday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday kicks off the season of giving worldwide.

For the past seven years, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving has been set aside to celebrate philanthropy through action. #GivingTuesday has become an international movement largely powered by social media that encourages collaboration between individuals and families, nonprofit organizations, businesses, and government entities to lend their time, talents, and resources to a good cause. Even if it’s just a few hours or a few dollars, a small act of kindness can make a big impact – both for the giver and the receiver.

Although #GivingTuesday is recognized globally, you don’t have to look very far to find opportunities to give. Whether you prefer to drop off a bag of gently used clothing, work behind the scenes at a call center, or write a check, consider giving to a local organization that resonates. Here are a few nonprofits located right here in Long Beach to plug into:

1. His Little Feet

Lily Rodriguez, 14, in a space where His Little Feet keeps its donated shoes. Photo by Thomas R. Cordova.

Lily Rodriguez, 14, in a space where His Little Feet keeps its donated shoes. Photo by Thomas R. Cordova.

Having a good pair of shoes to get to and from school is not always a guarantee, especially for the nearly 6,000 homeless students attending Long Beach schools. His Little Feet, a local nonprofit, is celebrating five years of putting shoes on the feet of our communities’ homeless youth. Gently used and new shoes are accepted, and help during shoe cleaning events is always welcome. You can sign up for a scheduled cleaning event (the next of which will be on February 3rd) or gather your friends to host your own cleaning event at your home or business. Email Hali Wolf at [email protected] for more information.

2. Meals On Wheels

Meals on Wheels volunteers making a difference. Courtesy photo.

Serving the Long Beach community for over 47 years, Meals on Wheels of Long Beach is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that provides nutritious, freshly prepared daily meals, with a “Friendly Visit”, to homebound seniors and disabled residents in the Long Beach community. This community-based organization receives no government funding and relies on the generosity of individual donors to accomplish it’s mission to; Nourish, Comfort, & Protect those less fortunate. Meals on Wheels provides 155,000 meals annually to the elderly and disabled of Long Beach. Canned goods are always welcome. Or, you can witness the results of your giving and become a volunteer. Learn more by visiting the Meals on Wheels website here.

3. The Heart Of Ida

Heart of Ida spreading holiday cheer. Courtesy photo.

Another local organization focused on supporting our senior citizens, The Heart of Ida is named in honor of Ida Alice Reich, a community activist who spent the majority of her time on earth helping those in need. It’s mission is to help low-income older adults in Long Beach and the bordering communities preserve their independence for as long as possible, and to provide comfort and cheer when assisted living is necessary.  Their holiday program, Operation Holiday Hearts, involves the delivery of personal hygiene gift bags to impoverished seniors living independently, in board and care facilities, nursing homes, and on the streets. Click here to find out more about the many ways you can help bring hope and joy to a low-income senior this holiday season.

4. Christian Outreach In Action

Christian Outreach in Action gathering. Courtesy photo.

Christian Outreach In Action is a nondenominational, nonprofit organization that serves those in need by providing a warm meal every day to anyone who comes to their doorstep – homeless & near-homeless people, low-income families, single moms – anyone. COA has been helping those down on their luck in Long Beach for over three decades, not only by providing groceries twice a week to many families, but also by distributing clothing, running a free legal advice clinic, a mobile medical clinic, and more. To learn how you can give back through Christian Outreach In Action, please visit their website.

5. The Rock Club Music Is The Remedy

The Rock Club – Music is the Remedy volunteers together with Rock for Vets band. Courtesy photo.

Music heals. The Rock Club Music is the Remedy harnesses this healing power to touch the lives of countless Long Beach residents, with a particular focus on veterans and at-risk youth. Dedicated to providing social, emotional and mentoring support to individuals struggling with mental health issues, social adjustment, or simply the stresses of everyday life, the Rock Club offers music instruction, education, and performance as a means of facilitating the reentry of these individuals into society. You can learn more about this unique organization here or make a donation via PayPal.

The business and editorial staff of the Long Beach Post have scheduled time to spend with a few of these non-profits during the holiday season. We hope to see you out there!

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