What can you do when you want to give back to your community, but your schedule keeps saying, “sorry, not today”?  You grab little opportunities to make a difference that can feel pretty big! Pen Air’s Communerosity team offers these ideas:

Declutter and donate

  1. Lightly used clothing, linens and shoes are welcomed by many charities that help the homeless or displaced. You can also donate kitchenware you don’t use anymore, or books that are taking up space.
  2. If you have older textiles that are clean, but maybe a little too “hole-y,” ask your town’s recycling program if they accept them.
  3. Many towns have online freecycling bulletin boards where you can list all kinds of items (toys, appliances, tools and more) in good condition. The stuff you don’t need anymore might be just what someone else is looking for!

Give a little

  1. Often you’ll see a donation jar at the counter of a local store, or kids raising funds outside. When you get change back from a purchase, toss the coins (or a little more if you’re feeling generous) into the jar.
  2. When you’re grocery shopping, buy a bagful of non-perishables to donate to your local food pantry.
  3. Driving by a fund-raising car wash?  Pull in and give your wheels a bath.
  4. Support local arts! If there’s a student play, concert or art exhibit happening in your community, carve out some time to attend.
  5. Keep a grocery or trash bag and a pair of work gloves in your car. If you see roadside trash, pull over (in safe spot, or course) to do a quick pick-up.  Take a bag for trash when you walk your pet, too.

Make someone’s day

  1. If you’re in a checkout line and the person behind you has just a coupleitems (or has a handful of kids), let him or her go ahead of you.
  2. Pay for a stranger’s cup of coffee “just because.”
  3. Hold the door (or the elevator) for someone.
  4. Is an oncoming driver trying to make a left turn across your lane? Is someone trying to pull out into traffic from a driveway or parking space? If you can slow down safely, let ‘em go.
  5. Just smile and say “hi” to the person next to you in a line.

We all have a little bit of Communerosity inside us. Let yours shine, just by being kind, every day!