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Holiday volunteer and giving opportunities in New York

Written by
Jillian Anthony
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Tis the season—to give back! Check out these opportunities to help out causes you care about. 

Register to grant the wish of someone in need by purchasing a gift through an Amazon registry or directly through New York Cares. Organizations that benefit from the program include KSJAMM, which provides youth and young adults self-development through dance, Mount Hope Housing Community, which provides services such as ESL and eviction assistance, and New Hope Family Worship, which helps immigrant families get back on their feet.

Drop off your gently used coats at one of the 300 collection sites through Dec 31, or start your own collection.

Macy's pairs up with the Make-A-Wish Foundation with its 6th annual letter-writing campaign. Have your child writer a letter to Santa and drop it off at Santaland in Macy's on 34th Street, or simply write one online. Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish for every letter received up to $1 million, and today only they'll donate $2 per letter to celebrate National Believe Day.  

Ask your child to give up one of the items on their wishlist for a child in need. Go shopping together for the gift, then email kids@family-to-family.org to be hooked up with a local shelter, or ship the gift unwrapped to a sponsored community address.

Head to a participating US Post Office to pick up a child's letter to Santa and fulfill his or her wish! Don't forget to bring your ID or driver's license so you can register.

  • Help deliver groceries in Boerum Hill 

Volunteers can help bag groceries at Recovery House of Worship (360 Schermerhorn Street) from 2-4pm on Saturday December 13. For every bag assembled, Peapod.com, an online grocery delivery service, will match the donation with a second bag of groceries. 

Join the Community Synagogue of Rye in delivering meals to the Jewish elderly homebound throughout the Bronx on December 25.  

Help the Met Council prepare for its holiday party for the homeless in Jamaica, Queens by wrapping gifts and setting up the venue. Opportunities are available Dec 15-18.

Want more volunteer opportunities? Search by location, date or cause you care about on New York Cares' website, or search by borough, skill or interest at NYC Service.

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