‘Tis the Season for Volunteering

soupTis the season, but for what? What marks a holiday season, how do we officially celebrate? Is it when Starbucks rolls out the cool red cups and fancy flavored drinks, perhaps it’s the start of Christmas music in the grocery music in late October. If all other holiday signs fail, then the sales should signal that it is the time of year to get out and buy, in order of course to give, and in return perhaps receive.

A typical holiday consists of large meals, football, Christmas trees, presents, family, and perhaps some drinking and singing. It is this very idea of a holiday that has created the demand that keeps stores open on holidays; if we weren’t running out to purchase last-minute gifts or go to super electronic sales then others could be home enjoying a day off to spend how they wish.

This isn’t to say bah humbug and screw the holidays, but a plea for us all to be mindful this season how our celebration might affect others, and perhaps try a new tradition that doesn’t feed the theme of consumerism as much as what the holiday is really about. Corvallis offers many volunteer opportunities around the holidays, which is a great way to spend time with your family and loved ones while giving thanks, or starting a new year.

Stone Soup offers meals every day of the year including holidays, and has fed upwards of 100 people on Christmas day with only 12 volunteers. The event which is completely run by volunteers works to offer everyone a new pair of socks for Christmas. A volunteer was quoted on the Stone Soup website as saying, “Doing something for someone else on Christmas day is the ultimate gift.” This offers the opportunity to offer your time, on your own or as a family, to give back to your community.

There are countless other opportunities throughout Corvallis at places such as assisted living homes, nursing homes, homeless shelters, animal shelters, and much more. If you are interested in truly giving back this holiday season, please check the links below. Take the challenge to spend the time you have with your family wisely, and spend wisely not only for your sake but for those who work behind the counters these holidays.

Stone Soup: http://stonesoup.fcc-corvallis.org/first-christian-church.html
Volunteer Match: www.volunteermatch.org
Hands On.Org: http://www.handsonw.org/