It’s a New Year with New Opportunities to Serve #HFExtendedFamily

This post may contain affiliate links. This means, if you make a purchase through one of my links, I may receive a very small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you!

Last Monday we celebrated Martin Luther King Day.  Throughout the course of our country’s history we have had scores of men and women who have been wonderful examples of how we can serve others.  We are at the beginning of a new year, and with the new year comes a fresh start.  We can look around us for opportunities to serve in our communities, within our families, and in our social circles.

I know that as moms it is very easy to become super focused on your own family and not realize the need of of those outside our immediate families.  Making sure the needs of our own families are met should be our first priority.  One of those needs is for our family members (particularly our children) to learn through our example to serve others.  So, it is time to evaluate.  How do you plan to give back to your community this year? 

Here are some ideas to help you get going:

  • Volunteer at the local soup kitchen
  • Volunteer or donate to your local food bank
  • Clean out your house and donate those great, but no longer used items to charity
  • Organize a neighborhood book drive and donate books to a school or local library, Boys and Girls Club, or other non-profit organization

If you have very young children, and find it difficult to do the above, you could try:

  • Taking a meal to a family who just welcomed a new baby.
  • Visiting an elderly neighbor or friend.
  • Shovel your elderly neighbor’s snow from their driveway.  Your kids will love playing in the snow and you’ll get an excellent workout.
  • Bake some cookies and write a heartfelt note to a neighbor or friend in need.
  • Offer free babysitting to a friend so she and her husband can go on a much needed date.

There are a multitude of ways we can serve those around us.  During my pre-children days I used to love to go sing at nursing homes.  While serving as a missionary for my church (also pre-children days) in Memphis, Tennessee, I worked with the Crisis Center.  I was able to design and teach a parenting/cooking class to low-income parents.  When I look back at my life thus far, my happiest times have been the times when serving others has been a priority.

As a blogger I have a particular insight into companies and the work they do in their communities.  Hormel is one of those companies that makes serving their communities a priority.  Each year, Hormel finds time to dedicate themselves to many different charitable efforts.  Did you know that in 2010 they gave over $5.7 million in cash and donations toward charitable efforts in the communities where their employees live?  It is great to know that we have good examples among us.  Currently, Hormel Foods is running a program called “On Our Way to Ending Hunger” where they are collaborating with retailers, nonprofits, and the government on hunger relief efforts to alleviate hunger in the US and abroad.

What are your ideas for, or what are you planning on doing this year to give back?  Have you heard of any other great philanthropic efforts?

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post.  As a Hormel Brand Ambassador I occasionally receive promotional items.  This post was written with sincerity and with integrity.  All statements and opinions expressed are honest and are entirely my own.


About Amy @ Oh So Savvy Mom

Amy is mom to three, wife to one, and a sister and aunt to many. Her family is a former military family now settled in Lehi, Utah. Oh So Savvy Mom began as a way for Amy to share parenting and product advice with others. Just as she has evolved, Oh So Savvy Mom has evolved into a resource for Healthy Living for Families, Food, Parenting, and Family Travel.


  1. Donna Haynes says
  2. courtney b says
    great ideas! i like the soup kitchen one
  3. Our family volunteers at a local food bank and I help out at a senior citizen center, a few times a month.. Thanks for the great ideas!
  4. What great ideas! Another thing I love to do is go to sites like The Hunger Site where you can click to give free food, paid for by advertisers. During those times when time and money may be tight, it's something you can do no matter what.
  5. I try to sign up for charity campaigns at my husband's workplace. This year I am also trying to have the kids and I volunteer at the local animal shelter.
  6. Giving back is so important to me! I love volunteering at my daughter's school and physical therapy center. I'm also planning on taking some friends dinner a few nights this week - they just became parents a few days twins!
  7. I had my Cub Scouts visit a nursing home. We arranged to have the authorized people bring in the animals the adults could pet and then just had the children talk to the patients. We learned to give our time for companionship when lonely people need it.
  8. I love your ideas. I think young children are never too young to learn compassion. We donate to a local pantry. We Pack up our clothes, kitchen items etc. And donate them too. We dont throw away much! We also use gently used items so our children learn the value of money and learn not to be wasteful. We try to volunteer with the children too. We help out at bake sales, garden clean ups, and local charity events. The children really absorb it all! On a different note, Last valentine's day we baked cookies and gave them out to all of our neighbors with a little note of appreciation. We all look out for one another and we wouldn't live anywhere else because of that!
  9. So far this year, we have cleaned out the house and brought used items to donate. I would like to involve the girls in more volunteer efforts.
  10. Juli Guthrie says
    That is great! Thanks for this post, we've been looking for more ideas to get our boys involved!