Holiday Giving: 20 ways to give back and help those in need

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‘Tis the season for giving back!

christmas-gift-giving
Photo courtesy pixabay

This month, local non-profits, charities and community organizations are carrying out holiday fundraisers and donation drives that will help citizens and families throughout Vancouver. Here are just a few ways you can help make the holidays extra merry for those in need.

 1. Greater Vancouver Foodbank – Christmas Campaign

vancouver santa claus parade
Photo courtesy Vancouver Courier

Donating to the Greater Vancouver Foodbank helps them serve the 26,500 people who depend on their services each week. You can donate cash or non-perishable food items at this year’s Santa Claus parade, or participate in the 3rd annual Stuff the Truck event. Learn more HERE

2. Blanket BC Society – Drive On the Line

On Nov 24 and 25, volunteers will be positioned at select Canada Line stations to collect blankets, socks, toques, scarves, pillowcases, winter jackets and long underwear. Donations will be distributed to shelters, churches and other organizations that are seeking these items. Learn more HERE.

3. Union Gospel Mission – Christmas Hampers

Union-Gospel-Mission
Photo courtesy Union Gospel Mission

Gifts of Hope, UGM’s Christmas Hamper Program, alleviates some of the stresses of the holidays and gives our neighbours in need the chance to provide their families some of the joys that have become a part of the Christmas season. Help stock UGM’s hamper store to support individuals and families this Christmas! Learn more HERE.

4. Covenant House – Christmas Backpack Program

The Covenant House provides shelter, food, immediate crisis care and an array of other services to homeless and runaway youth. Participate in their Christmas Backpack program so homeless youth can receive a backpack full of gifts for the holidays. Learn more HERE.

5. DTES Women’s Centre – Seasonal Donations

Donate to the DEWC to ensure women and children living in the DTES have gifts and warm clothes this holiday season. The DEWC has this handy guide on their website which outlines the donations they are in need of most. Learn more HERE.

6. Megaphone Magazine – Hope in Shadows Calendar

Megaphone
Photo courtesy Megaphone Magazine

The Hope in Shadows calendar is launched each October and is sold through Megaphone Magazine’s vendor program, which creates employment for people impacted by poverty. While most of the vendors they work with are Downtown Eastside residents, the program is open to anyone who identifies as low-income. Learn more HERE.

7. PACE Society – Seasonal Donations

PACE Society offers low-barrier programming and support for, by and with sex workers. They’re looking to provide holiday gifts for their members, like unused hygiene products, clothing and gift cards. Donations can be dropped off during their drop-in hours from M-T 10:30am – 4:30pm. Learn more HERE.

8. Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau – Toy Donations

LMCB
Photo courtesy LMCB Twitter

You can donate toys to children in need by bringing donations to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau’s drop off centre. Learn more HERE.

9. Delta Assist – Seasonal Initiatives 

Delta Assist are running a variety of holiday initiatives, including a toy drive, collecting food  donations and putting together holiday hampers. Initiatives service individuals and families in need from Delta, Ladner and Tsawwassen. Learn more HERE.

 10. YWCA – Presents of Peace

The YWCA is running several programs, including Presents of Peace, which supports low-income families and single mothers. You can also donate directly to families in need. Learn more HERE.

11. Lookout Society – Winter Clothing and Blanket Drive 

Lookout society is in need of warm winter clothing and blankets to donate to homeless and low-income individuals and families. Learn more HERE.

12. BC Children’s Hospital – Big Snowball Fight and Lace Up For Kids 

BC-Childrens-hospital
Photo courtesy BC Children’s Hospital Facebook

Join UBC REC and the Rare Disease Foundation, in support of BC Children’s Hospital Foundation in fundraising on a team, or on your own at Lace Up For Kids. This season, you can also throw a digital snowball. Learn more HERE.

13. A Loving Spoonful – World AIDS Day and Holiday Hampers

A Loving Spoonful is a volunteer-driven, non-partisan society that provides free, nutritious meals to people living with HIV/AIDS. Help their cause by supporting their event on World AIDS Day or sponsor a family for their Holiday Hampers. Learn more HERE.

14. Stanley Park Christmas Train – Fire Fighters Burn Fund

Donations from the front gate and a portion of ticket sales will go to the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund. The Stanley Park Christmas train has raised $1.4 million to help burn survivors and their families since 1998. Learn more HERE.

15. Christmas at Canada Place

For the past 30 years, Christmas at Canada Place has been one of Vancouver’s favourite holiday events, bringing communities together to celebrate the festive season while raising funds and awareness for Strathcona Community Centre’s Food Security for Children program. Learn more HERE

16. CBC Vancouver – Open House & Food Bank Day

CBC-Andrew-Chang
Photo courtesy CBC Vancouver

Once again, the CBC Vancouver Broadcast Centre is opening its doors to the public for a day of fundraising and fun to support the thousands of citizens that rely on food banks in B.C. The event will feature live programming, a chance to meet your favourite CBC personalities and a behind-the-scenes tour of our newsroom. Learn more HERE

17. Lower mainland Christmas Bureau – 30th Annual Christmas Wish Breakfast

The Pan Pacific Vancouver Hotel organizes this event in support of the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau. Bring your Christmas spirit along with a new and unwrapped children’s toy to help children in need. As a thank you for everyone’s generosity, the Pan Pacific Vancouver Hotel provides a complimentary hot breakfast buffet on the house. Learn more HERE

18. BC Children’s Hospital – Festival of Trees

Tour an enchanted forest of decorated trees at the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver to raise funds for the most urgent needs at BC Children’s Hospital. You can donate and vote for your favourite decorated tree from November 30, 2017 until January 1, 2018. Learn more HERE.

19. Lotus Light Charity Society – Sleeping Bag Drive

Lotus Light Charity Society’s annual Winter Drive distributes much needed sleeping bags and winter emergency care packages to Vancouver’s homeless population throughout the cold winter months. You can sponsor a sleeping bag or winter car package HERE.

20. Keithmas VIII – Greater Vancouver Food Bank

keithmas fundraiser vancouver
Photo courtesy Keithmas Facebook

Here’s a fun one for adults looks to give back and let loose. Keithmas celebrates the wild, crazy near-death living of Mr. Keith Richards. The evening will feature Keith/Stones covers by local bands and 100% of the proceeds will be donated to the Food Bank. Learn more HERE.

Please let us know about any initiatives that we may have missed by contacting us HERE.