We shouldn’t need an excuse to inspire, recognize, and encourage ourselves and those around us to join or create initiatives to engage with and improve our communities, countries, and the world. However, National Volunteer Week is just that excuse. And while I believe engaging in philanthropic, selfless acts on a daily basis is something we as humans should feel a natural instinct to perform, the first step to getting there is highlighting the importance of volunteerism through a week of national celebration.

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From April 10th till the 16th, the nation will come together in order to demonstrate the incredible fortitude we have to together meet challenges, create solutions, and reach goals.

For those of us hoping to make a big impact (I know I am!) it can sometimes be difficult to know where to start. Lucky for us, Create the Good has fashioned a list of ways to get out and volunteer now! The list helps to cut the necessary steps between idea and action so those around you can feel the impact of your philanthropy as soon as possible.

Here are a few of their practical and creative tips to help you get out and volunteer today!

Don’t Forget About the Kids!

Whether you’re recruiting your introverted little brother, pre-teen cousin or the little boy next door, getting everyone involved can help expand your reach. Talk to your family about community needs; what is lacking at your sisters elementary school? Is there an issue with childhood literacy in your community? What can be done at your grandmothers nursing home to create a more positive environment? And so on.

Listening to what is needed is the first step to figuring out how to get it and how all can be involved. From there, you can create easy initiatives to help make a positive impact, including:

  • Organizing a school supply drive for schools that are lacking, and reaching out to local businesses and community leaders for support–who better to know what supplies are lacking then the children who are using them!
  • Enlisting your neighbors to, together, clean up the neighborhood and surrounding area–this is a great way to teach children the importance of treating our environment with respect
  • Volunteering at a nursing home–there has been a notable difference in nursing home residents when they are performing activities with youngsters versus when they are not.

Stay tuned for part two of this post, coming soon!