Besides feasting with friends and hosting group gatherings to catch up with loved ones, Christmas is a time where the spirit of giving reigns. This Christmas, why not give something else a little more special? Volunteering, and giving your time and energy to a good cause, is one of the ways which we can give back to society. Spread some Christmas cheer and warmth by supporting some of these local causes below, and feel good while you do good!
Food to warm the belly and warm the heart
1. YWCA’s Meals-on-Wheels
The Young Women’s Christian Association’s (YWCA) Meals-on-Wheels programme first began to help those who struggled to fall asleep due to hunger pangs. Their programme helps 3 core beneficiaries:
- Children from low-income families, who are 5 to 12 years old
- Seniors above 60 years old who are frail and homebound
- Individuals who are between 13 to 59 years old, and are physically or mentally disabled
Free dinners, all of which are Halal certified, are delivered to these families directly or to YWCA’s partner agencies for distribution. Volunteers can help deliver the meals in the areas including Chinatown, Tiong Bahru, Redhill, Queenstown and Commonwealth. The free meals are delivered from Mondays to Fridays.
To volunteer, find out more here.
2. Touch Community Services Meals-On-Wheels
Source: Touch Community Services
As we gather for meals with our loved ones this Christmas, some seniors in Singapore who live alone may not be able to get out of the house for food due to mobility issues or medical conditions. Touch Community Services’ Meals-On-Wheels programme helps home-bound seniors by delivering meals to them, ensuring that these seniors can live independently as much as possible while also providing them with opportunities for daily social interaction.
Volunteers are needed to help with meal deliveries between 9.30am to 12.30pm or 3.30pm to 6.30pm, especially on weekdays. Distribution locations include Bukit Batok, Toa Payoh, Whampoa, Bendemeer, Geylang Bahru, Potong Pasir, Bishan, Ang Mo Kio and Jurong. Both car owners/drivers and delivery personnel are needed. By joining as a volunteer, your duties would involve reporting to the Touch Community Services office to collect the food, and helping to drive or working as a runner to bring food to seniors along a designated route.
Find out more about volunteering with Touch Community Services Meals-On-Wheels programme here.
Donate your preloved items during this season of giving
If you have preloved phones, bags, or shoes that are in good condition, why not donate them during this season of giving? ItsRainingRaincoats (IRR) is a charity that aims to foster ties and integrate migrant workers into the community. Apart from encouraging interaction between Singaporeans and transient workers through various activities, such as having meals together or visiting local attractions, the charity also matches workers to items that they need. ItsRainingRaincoats has recently opened a shop, InspIRRe, which allows migrant workers to pick up bags, fans, and shoes for free.
You can drop-off your items, including men’s clothes, card games and electronic appliances and gadgets all year-round or at IRR’s Christmas Drive 2022. Alternatively, if you would like to volunteer in other ways, such as donating to their causes or helping to man their shop, check out their full list of events and initiatives.
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Give back to Mother Nature and her creatures (i.e. animals)
1. Cat Welfare Society
Have a Meowy Christmas with some furry friends at the Cat Welfare Society! The society aims to reach out to the community to educate the public on sustainable and humane management of cats in Singapore through various programmes. The organisation relies heavily on volunteer support, such as in areas of advocacy, sterilisation, mediation and educational outreach programmes. If you enjoy hanging out with the local kitties in your neighbourhood, why not consider being a Community Cat Caregiver or Mediator to care for the cats in your community by ensuring they are fed and sterilised? If you prefer a more behind-the-scenes role, there are various administrative and managerial roles which require help as well.
Otherwise, if you have a bit of cash to spare, consider heading over to their online shop for a mini shopping spree of all things cat-related – proceeds from the shop go to the Cat Welfare Society’s causes.
Find out how you can help out here.
2. Action for Singapore Dogs (ASD)
Source: Action for Singapore Dogs | Facebook
Join the Paw Patrol at Action for Singapore Dogs (ASD) to hang out with man’s best friend and do good, all at the same time! If you have always wanted a dog but aren’t able to have one, you can walk the shelter dogs at ASD to ensure they get their daily dose of sunshine and fun. Plus, you can experience being a dog owner for an hour! Alternatively, you can volunteer at ASD’s Adoption and Rescue Centre to help maintain the centre by ensuring the place is clean and training the dogs. Otherwise, you can provide logistical or administrative support by helping with designing educational pamphlets on dog ownership, or to help ferry dogs to vet clinics and foster homes if you are able to drive.
Find out more on how you can help out here.
3. Trash Hero World
Source: Trash Hero Singapore
Part of an initiative by a Swiss non-profit organisation, Trash Hero World has various networks across the globe, with Singapore being one of them. Its aim is to bring communities together to clean and reduce waste. The Singapore arm focuses on cleaning up parks and beaches, and you can find their event list here on Facebook. The best thing is that you can simply turn up at the next event if you wish to help! There are no sign up costs or registrations required to indicate your interest to participate.
Find out more here.
4. Riding for the Disabled Association
Source: Expat Living
Giddy up and help out at the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) Singapore! The ponies and horses in these barns are specially trained for horse-riding therapy sessions catering to individuals who are differently abled. As training for sidewalkers is provided, you will be glad to know that no experience with horse riding is needed for you to join. Other than walking alongside horses, you can also help with cleaning and maintaining the stables. You can also help out with other administrative duties like marketing and fundraising efforts, or organise events! It is mandatory for volunteers to be at least 16 years old, and preference is given for volunteers who can commit for at least 1 riding therapy term, which is once weekly for ten consecutive weeks.
Find out how to volunteer here.
Caring for the health and well-being of our communities
1. Ronald McDonald House Charities Singapore
Source: Ronald McDonald House Charities
Make a child smile with a Happy Meal with Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), which is a registered society that seeks to improve the health and well-being of children in Singapore. With a focus area in hospitals and health facilities, RMHC believes that family support and love for a hospitalised child makes the biggest difference in their journey toward recovery. The charity provides rest areas and family rooms where caregivers can stay over at the hospital and take a break from the hospital wards respectively. These areas are currently available at the National University Hospital and Institute of Mental Health.
Other programmes include the RMHC Happy Wheels Cart, which offers snacks to caregivers and their children at the hospital. Children who are undergoing chemotherapy for cancer and need to fast are also given the RMHC Paediatric Happy Snack Packs, as a way to cheer them up despite the difficulties of their treatment.
Learn more about volunteer opportunities here.
2. Make-A-Wish Foundation
Get fit and do good trying? Santa Race for Wishes, organised by the Make-A-Wish Foundation is back as a virtual event in 2022. More excitingly, there’s a new category you can take part in – cycling! The Make-A-Wish Foundation hopes to fulfill wishes of children who are ill and to provide their families and them with hope, strength, joy and improved chances of recovery. This year, the target is to accumulate a total of 40,075km during the race period. All registration and donation proceeds will go to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. You can sign up for any of the race categories here.
While you don’t need to be fitspo material to join the race, you might be looking for other ways that you can help. In this case, you can check out Make-A-Wish’s Foundation’s fundraising efforts, or volunteer as a wish granter to help fulfill a child’s dream. Find out more here.
3. Silver Ribbon Singapore
Source: Porsche Poh | Facebook
COVID-19 has loomed over our heads for close to three years now, and discussions around mental health and its importance have thankfully become more common in our society. However, it is not always easy to seek help for our mental health due to stigma or misgivings about mental illnesses. Silver Ribbon Singapore aims to change negative perceptions of mental illness through organising outreach events and promoting local mental health literacy in communities. It also hopes to facilitate the integration of individuals with mental illness into society, and encourage them to speak out and seek help bravely.
The organisation plans various programmes for schools, communities, and workplaces to advocate for mental health and wellness. Volunteer with Silver Ribbon to contribute your skills, whether it’s graphic design or emceeing for their events. You can find out more on how to volunteer here.
As we spread the Christmas joy and spirit to others this season, do remember to keep your well-being in mind too. If you need a helping hand with your personal caregiving, Homage has got you covered. Our Care Pros, who include local caregivers, nurses, and therapists, can assist your elderly loved ones with their physiotherapy exercises and perform respite care to relieve you of your burdens.
Provide the best care to your loved one today! Fill up the form below for a free consultation with our Care Advisory team.
- Meier, A. (2018, September 28). Trash Hero Singapore | Trash Hero World. Trash Hero Singapore. https://trashhero.org/network/trash-hero-singapore/
- Ng, M. (2022, September 3). Migrant workers can now pick up bags, fans and shoes for free at a new shop in InspIRRe. The Straits Times. https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/migrant-workers-can-now-pick-up-bags-fans-and-shoes-for-free-at-a-new-shop-in-inspirre
- Honeycombers. (2021, December 6). Lend a hand and earn good karma points: Donate or volunteer at charities this Christmas. Honeycombers Singapore. https://thehoneycombers.com/singapore/volunteer-singapore-christmas-help-community/
- Tan, E. J. (2020, December 5). 9 Ways To Volunteer At Christmas Time With Your Family. Little Day Out. https://www.littledayout.com/ways-to-volunteer-at-christmas-time-family-giving-gifting/
- Time Out Singapore editors. (2021, February 28). 20 Charities and Organisations To Volunteer At In Singapore. Time Out Singapore. https://www.timeout.com/singapore/things-to-do/places-to-volunteer-at-in-singapore