Today is a day dedicated to giving, not just dollars but also our time, our knowledge, our experiences, our love and compassion for the benefit of all sentient beings and for the environment.
There are so many ways that we can support the precepts of our vegan lifestyle. For those of us who have some discretionary income, a donation to a 501(c)3 organization is a wonderful way to support and put our beliefs into action. It is also a tax deduction.
For others, the act of giving can take the shape of volunteering our time and effort to causes that are near and dear to our hearts. Whatever you do, both large and small, makes a difference.
Grassroots organizations that work locally abound everywhere. Find out what is in your area and what you can do to support their efforts.
Monetary donations are a wonderful way to support the animal sanctuary and/or shelter, the local rescue group, or an advocacy/activism organization. Many of these organizations also depend upon the tireless dedication of volunteers from their community to fulfill their daily operational needs.
Not all giving needs to be organized. It might also be as simple, yet as important, as going out on a hike and doing trail maintenance. I always pack a couple of plastic bags and disposable gloves in my knapsack to pick up debris left behind by others. It might be going to your local shelter and volunteering to do some socialization with the animals in residence while they are awaiting their forever homes. It might also include, if you are able to do so, bringing home one of those wonderful beings in a fostering relationship or adoption. Or donating food or blankets. It might be helping to serve a meal at your local homeless shelter.
Clean out your closets and donate those clothes and other items to your local non-profit thrift store whose proceeds all go to supporting a local animal shelter, womenís shelter, etc. Not only will you be helping others but you also get a tax deduction.
If you have a particular skill, for example carpentry, you might offer to repair that broken gate. If you have good office skills, you might offer to help out with filing or typing or stuffing envelopes. A good writerómaybe offer to help with writing a grant application or fund-raising efforts.
Ah, did I hear you say that baking is your thing? How about a bake sale to benefit the charity of your choice? With everyone being so busy, being able to score some delicious, home-baked vegan treats for the Holiday table will be a welcome addition for many.
It might be setting up a time to do a presentation on any aspect of our vegan lifestyle to a classroom of children, or an assisted care living, or your local church group, etc.
It could be volunteering at a tabling event or handing out pamphlets and providing education/advocacy at your local farmerís market, flea market, community fund-raising event, etc.
Whatever you do today, know that your effort matters. And while what you do today matters, please remember that support is needed not only today but every day.