Giving Back To Your Community When You Have No Time #LocalLove

It is Sunday night, the kids are finally in bed and the house is quiet.  I take a look at what is coming up for the next week – swimming lessons, school council meeting, traveling for work, and a birthday party on the weekend.  Ugh, I am tied already and the week hasn’t even started.  But then again, I am pretty much always tired, I have 3 kids… I think this is the default setting.  With all that life throws at us finding time to  volunteer in my community and give back is not easy.  Even with the the chaos of our daily lives I believe that we have to be the change we want to see in the world so giving back, and teaching my kids to give back, even in small ways is so important.  I might not be able to fix everything, but if our family can help another family in our community take a step forward then we have made the world a better place. And these days we could all use a little more good in the world.  I was excited to learn about LocalLove that aims to highlight the ways you can live local in the GTA and easily support your community.

Disclosure: I have partnered with YMC and Local Love and have received compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

The competition for your time is fierce, so makes it easy to find out about smart and simple ways you can have a meaningful impact in your community without spreading yourself too thin.  The saying “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” has really resonated with me lately.  I can’t change everything in my community to make it a better place all on my own, but I can make meaningful small choices that will allow me to help and support those in need without over extending myself.  It is a win/win for my family and my community.

Now you might be thinking “Kate… I have no time, seriously do you know how tired I am running after my kids?  And money is tight, I don’t have a lot to spare”.  I know, trust me, because I am right there with you.  That is why the LocalLove website and newsletter are such a great resources.  You get a weekly dose of GOOD NEWS, a welcome break from the craziness of the world, to learn about living well and doing good at the same time.

So what does showing LocalLove look like?

You could help build a home without needing to use tools – The Furniture Bank collects furniture, housewares, kitchen items and electronics to furnish homes for families transitioning out of homelessness or displacement.  They also provide jobs to people facing barriers to employment.  So the next time you are doing a purge of your housewares reach out to the Furniture Bank to donate them and support others in your community.

Let Them Eat Cake – The Northern Birthday Box Project is a nation-wide Facebook group run by three women who match sponsors from southern Canada with families in remote northern communities across the country to provide a child with a birthday box that contains at least one box of cake mix, one container of icing and one decoration.  What a fun and simple way to brighten up a birthday for a child living in Northern Canada where a box of cake mix can cost $15!

Dress To Impress – Picking out an outfit to wear to an interview can be tough.  Dress For Success helps women in need feel confident heading into a job interview by providing clothing to them.  On your next girls night, ask your friends to bring any dresses, blazers, shirts, and dress pants that they no longer wear to donate to this great organization.

Eat well – where you buy your next loaf of sourdough bread can have a direct impact on job training for refugees, people with learning disabilities and those struggling with employment while dealing with mental illness.  At St. John’s Bakery they bring together people of varying capabilities and social backgrounds come together to do something constructive and creative.  In turn they providing job and skills training while creating the most delicious bread that is available at stores across Toronto.

So the next time you find 2 minutes to yourself take a moment to explore and see how easy it is to live well while doing good, and be inspired by the many everyday change makers in the GTA.  Or better yet, sign up for the LocalLove Good News newletter and have a weekly dose of good delivered right to your inbox.  I believe that we have to be the change we want to see in the world so giving back, and teaching my kids to give back, even in small ways is so important.  I am thrilled that LocalLove will help me find ways I can make a difference that fit in my chaotic life.

Small actions can have big impacts!

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