More than ever, communities are in need of caring neighbors ready to spread kindness to those in need. Seniors, families with children and the homeless are some of the vulnerable populations that could benefit from the kindness of simplistic donations from their neighbors. If you’re ready to give back, we have ideas for how to make an impact in your local community.
Order Grocery Basics for a Neighbor
Household survey data from Fall 2021 indicated nearly 1 in every 10 adults has had difficulty affording enough food for their selves or their household. If you have a neighbor or family friend with limited mobility, physical limitations, economic impact, or distance from family that makes it hard to grocery shop, ordering grocery basics could make a big impact. This is something you can leave at the door or shop for online. Many grocers and meal delivery services offer no-contact delivery that drops the groceries at the front door, making it easy to surprise a neighbor, friend, or family member in need with pertinent essentials.
Have a Meal Delivered to a Neighbor
Winter holiday dinners can range in cost from $50-$150. This can be a burden for a senior, family or neighbor experiencing financial hardship. That can make what is usually a joyous occasion a little less enjoyable. If you know someone who could use a bit of caring and kindness, consider having a holiday meal delivered to them to brighten up this holiday season. Food delivery services like Doordash and Uber Eats have expanded to include “meal gifting” as a new service. Try it out to spread some cheer.
Donate Personal Care Essentials to a Senior Community
Blankets, Throws, or Shawls
According to a recent article on agingcare.com, seniors can become “dangerously chilled because they have less fat, slower circulation, and a more sluggish metabolism. A senior can even become hypothermic while indoors.” Receiving a blanket or shawl can warm the body and the heart.
Soaps and Lotions
Soaps and lotions are simple items that give a touch of comfort to seniors. Be mindful of common allergens and care facility rules when you are donating.
Recent statistics from the National Council on Aging suggest, "25 million or more Americans aged 60+ are economically insecure—living at or below 250% of the federal poverty level. The federal poverty level is $29,425 per year for a single person." Purchasing basic items like disposable undergarments may be a hardship.
Comfortable socks are more than a cozy accessory. They have health benefits excellent for maintaining senior wellness. Wearing socks helps regulate body temperature, reduce strain on feet and provides protection from germs or diseases, in some cases, according to medical and industry experts.
A set of comfortable towels may be a perfect touch of home or kind luxury often overlooked for a senior in need. Towels are a great sensory related gift.
Denture adhesive, cleanser, or holders
According to the dental experts featured in the Journal of International Oral Health, loose painful teeth or ill-fitting dentures may result in a reduced desire or ability to eat contributing to poor eating habits. For seniors with health problems who are living on a fixed income, basics like these are a big need.
Senior Friendly Manicure Kits
Many older adults have nails that are hard to cut or reach. Donating a nail kit that works well for clipping for thick toenails or is easy to use with hands that may not exert a strong grip can be particularly useful.