Gratitude Focused: Seven Ways to Give Back as Business Owners

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This is the time of year many people like to give back to their community, either through money, toys or food donations, clothing drives, and/or volunteering at soup kitchens. I’ve read that the supply for volunteering is so high on days like Thanksgiving that many places have to turn away volunteers because it’s so popular. As business owners, we work hard for our clients and customers, but still want to give back to our communities in a realistic way. Here’s some suggestion on ways to give back to your tribe.

Holiday Food Drives

During the holidays, you can encourage employees or customers to bring in unopened non-perishable canned and boxed foods that can be donated to local food banks.

Sponsor a Youth Sports Team

There’s a good chance an employee or client has a child on a youth sports team. Through a local team to sponsor, you can help with funds it needs and get PR in exchange for your support.

Sponsor an Event such a Local Marathon for a Good Cause

Sponsoring a local marathon can be a great way to show support for the nonprofit or charities a large percentage of the proceeds goes to.

Build a House (Habitat for Humanity)

Organizations like Habitat for Humanity offer businesses the opportunity to participate in construction projects that benefit local, disadvantaged residents, usually building on the weekends.

Donate to Silent Auctions

Schools and Nonprofits often need gift certificates  or merchandise they can sell for fundraising efforts.

Join a NonProfit Board

Offer your business or industry expertise to a local nonprofit by sitting on their board. This way, your contribution can be time (after work hours) and not money.

Local Media Drives

The Portland’s Willamette Weekly puts out a Give Guide every year in the beginning of November. The guides lists different non-profits in the city and what they accomplish. There are prizes and incentives to donate to non-profit(s) in the guide, based on amount, dates, and age. Check and see if there’s a local incentive to give to nonprofits in your city or area.