Northern Division: Serving every county in Minnesota and North Dakota
Volunteer helping kid on slide

Six ways to volunteer on your time

Added on Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Written by Ashley Grossman, social media and content manager at The Salvation Army Northern Division

We’ve all been there. In a moment of inspiration, we commit to something outside of our routine. Yet as quickly as we are overcome with motivation, we are defeated by the reality of a schedule filled with work, errands, kids, and sports.

Rather than letting your heart’s desire fade with busyness, try one of these six volunteer opportunities you can do, rather easily, amidst your routine.

  1. donated clothes in a cardboard boxClean out your closet. Whether it’s the shoes you wore once for a wedding, the bell bottoms you no longer wear, or the kitchen utensils you were gifted but still haven’t found useful, these donations will do the most good locally when dropped off at your local Salvation Army Store. Create a donate box in your closet and when you spot something you haven’t worn in the past year, add it to the box. Encourage your spouse and kids to do the same.
  2. Food drive collection binLead an office food drive. Host a spur-of-the-moment food drive at your place of business. Encourage your coworkers to bring in at least one nonperishable food item. They can grab something as they are packing their lunch for the day and drop it in the box under your desk or another designated area. At the end of the week, drop it by your local food shelf on your way home.
  3. Little boy giving a bagCreate blessing bags. Making blessing bags is easy and a great activity for the whole family (see related story). Fill a plastic bag with basic needs items such as Chap Stick, granola bars, band aids, and more. Once the bags are filled, keep them in your car. The next time you see someone living on the street, offer one of the bags.
  4. teenage girl on an iphoneTake to social media. You can easily help others by learning more and sharing your knowledge on social media. We invite you to follow us locally on social media. Just click the icons located on the right side of this page.
  5. change jarStart a change jar. Put a jar on your dresser to collect your pocket change. Commit to using cash and adding any change to the jar each night. When the jar fills up, take it to the bank to calculate your total. Then, donate to a local charity to help your neighbors in need.
  6. a girl holding a cucumberTry microvolunteering. Still strapped for time? Start small by engaging in microvolunteering opportunities. They can be as simple as holding the door for someone carrying groceries to donating extra produce from your garden. You could also lend a helping hand to an elderly neighbor by offering to mow their lawn. Be creative! These small acts of kindness help make our community a better place to live.

Whether you’ve volunteered with us before or are new to the scene, we’ve got something for everyone. Browse opportunities in your area when you visit the Volunteering page in your Community Menu and connect with us to get started.