Ah, spring. Hello spring and hello to new spring giving ideas!
Spring is a favorite time of year. Everything in nature comes alive again. The sun shines brighter and more often. The outdoor temperatures no longer scare you. You get excited with ideas and plans to venture outside and fully enjoy what this season has to offer. You might think: “What could possibly be better?”
Well, there is one thing better. How about being able to enjoy your spring activities, perform your acts of giving, and get to know your own community – all at the same time? Here are five ideas for spring giving you can do with your community group.
Spring is the time when many people do a major cleaning that they weren’t able to do during the cold winter season. Why not extend this year’s spring cleaning to your community? You can form your own clean-up crew or join existing ones to pick up garbage from streets, parks, or beaches in your community. When I was a teenager, I did a beach clean-up with a group of YMCA youth volunteers. It was a great way to serve my community, enjoy a pleasant walk along the beach, and make new friends.
The beginning of warm weather also signals the beginning of many outdoor festivals. Chances are, there will be a festival that celebrates something or someone in your community – a historical person or event, music, art, food, culture, holidays, or religious occasions. These festivals usually require volunteers to plan and organize the details; set up and run the events during the festival periods; and clean up after the festivals are over. Consider volunteering for festivals in your community; it might give you a chance to enjoy yourself, and learn more about your community and what it takes pride in.
During both World Wars, people in Canada, United States, Great Britain, France, and Germany used their own gardens and public spaces to grow food. These gardens, called Victory Gardens, contributed to the war effort and instilled a sense of community that people needed during these wars (Hamilton Victory Gardens, 2021).
Nowadays, many communities use public lands to plant and grow vegetables and flowers; community members share their mutual love of gardening and strengthen their sense of community. Some of these gardens grow food for local charities that provide healthy and nutritious produce and meals for the hungry.
If you have an interest and passion for gardening, joining community gardens could be a great way to do more of what you enjoy and help local charities.
In the city where I live, there is a church that provides meals for the hungry. Every Friday, this church organizes and serves BBQs to their clients. I’ve also been to several BBQ events where all proceeds from the sale of food went to meaningful causes. Are there organizations in your community that do something similar? If you can’t find one, why not organize your own BBQ fundraiser for a cause that is near and dear to your heart? I am sure many people in your community would be happy to enjoy one more BBQ event this spring.
Swedish people came up with a great idea of combining jogging and picking up garbage. Plogging (a combination of Swedish words for jogging (jogga) and picking up (plocka upp)) began in Sweden and, within several years, became popular in over 100 countries worldwide (“Plogging,” 2022). If you want to get your daily dose of exercise while making your community more beautiful, you can start plogging with your jogging or walking group.
With the arrival of the nice, warm weather, many organizations are holding marathons or walk-a-thons to raise funds. Participate in these events to get some exercise and raise funds for causes you care about.
I hope this article helps you appreciate your spring activities and communities even more. Be sure to check out 365Give’s blog for more ideas and inspirations for spring giving ideas for and with your community. Happy spring and happy giving!
Hamilton Victory Gardens. (2021). About Us. Retrieved May 9, 2022, from https://hamiltonvictorygardens.org/about-us/
Plogging. (2022, April 4). In Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plogging
Volunteer Canada. (n.d.). Group Volunteering: Key Resources for Groups Wanting to Volunteer [Brochure]. https://volunteer.ca/vdemo/EngagingVolunteers_DOCS/group-volunteering-key-resources-groups-wanting-volunteer.pdf