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Boost your holiday spirit through area nonprofits

Keara McGraw



Holiday giving
Photo provided by Unsplash

Holidays have you feeling a little down? Studies have shown that helping others can provide a mood boost when you may not feel so festive. We’re back with another five ways to help our neighbors this holiday season – and maybe boost your mood. 

Adopt a child through the Healthy Start Coalition of Pinellas County. Healthy Start provides wrap-around services and support for area women, children, and babies. You can fill out the form on their site to be matched with a child to shop for and drop off items, or you can opt to shop directly from their Amazon wish list. Not in the mood to shop? You can still help by making a donation to directly support their holiday giving initiative.

Help keep traditions alive by volunteering directly with the event or purchasing gifts for foster youth who have aged out of the system. Ready for Life hosts an annual “Home for the Holidays” event, which gives area foster youth that doesn’t always have a family to spend the holidays with a chance for them to enjoy holiday traditions with their Ready for Life Family. Ready for Life also has an annual Christmas Day tradition of heading to the local movie theater, so tickets or gift cards for this event are also welcome. Ready for Life supports former foster care youth in homelessness prevention, education and employment, and lifeline support networks.

Join Silver Santas in providing Holiday Cheer to isolated and low-income seniors through Providers such as assisted living communities, senior housing (HUD) communities, and homes by Guardians or Professional Caregivers. To purchase a wish list item, head to the link. Area social workers and caregivers provide lists to ensure our seniors in need are not forgotten during the holidays. 

There is an urgent need for toy donations this year, Toys for Tots is still collecting unwrapped new toys for all ages. Information on where to drop off is located on their website. Toys are being accepted through December 14. Toys for Tots is a national program led by area Marine Reserves. 

Help local families ensure they have the necessities to care for their little ones by donating to Babycycle. Babycycle takes donations of unopened diapers, unopened and non-expired formula, and gently used baby items such as pack and plays and strollers. 

Have an organization you know that could use a hand up this season? Share them with the Catalyst Impact Connector section. 

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