Are you looking for places where young children can volunteer in Spartanburg? We’ve come up with several places where young kids can volunteer, as well as places where kids can take donations in Spartanburg. Peruse the list and find a Spartanburg location that will motivate your child to give.
More and more, families are using the holiday season to spread kindness and teach children the spirit of giving.
Our family celebrates the season leading up to Christmas with an activity-filled advent calendar, which includes fun Christmas activities, as well as acts of kindness, giving or service.
But with three children under 4, finding age-appropriate opportunities can be challenging. While they are too young to volunteer at soup kitchens, hospitals or food banks, there are still many things they can do in and around Spartanburg and the Upstate to help our community.
Organizations that rely on donations all year
Last year when my son was 2, and we were looking for a charity he would both understand and be excited to help, we chose the Humane Society. After setting a budget, my son helped us choose food, beds, and treats for the dogs and cats waiting for homes. He loved helping load up the shopping cart, and carrying the bags. At the Humane Society building on Airport Road, he very proudly handed over the items we were dropping off. He got to meet some of the puppies and was so proud of himself for helping the animals. View the Spartanburg Humane Society’s volunteer opportunities here.
Hope Center for Children in Spartanburg keeps an updated urgent needs list.
Spartanburg Soup Kitchen has a wish list to help those less fortunate in our area. Donations can be made any day of the week from 9 am – 12 pm.
While monetary donations are accepted, Mobile Meals of Spartanburg is another way your family can volunteer.
Daily Bread Ministries runs Greer Soup Kitchen. They have a wish list of items they need to stock the kitchen pantry.
SAFE Homes Rape Crisis Coalition in Spartanburg collects items for children and adults. See their wish list for current needs.
TOTAL Ministries of Spartanburg has a food pantry list of needs.
Upstate Family Resource Center keeps the Harvest Family Ministries Food Pantry needs list updated, which helps families in Boiling Springs and District 2.
Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina has a Spartanburg food drop off location.
Greater Spartanburg Ministries has a list of current needs.
Greer Community Ministries provides items for Meals on Wheels Pets, the Food Pantry, and Sharon’s Closest. They keep an updated current needs list.
Carolina Pregnancy Center in Spartanburg accepts donations of baby clothing and baby items.
The Haven is a homeless shelter for families in Spartanburg. They have a needed items list.
DSS has a wish list for children in foster care in Region 1 (which includes Greenville and Spartanburg counties).
Lutheran Services of the Carolinas has wish lists for senior citizens, refugees, and foster care.
Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Carolinas also has a wish list. View it here.
Thrive Upstate helps people with disabilities and special needs. They accept monetary donations, craft supplies, notebooks, DVDs, CDs, educational games and toys, and more. See their complete wish list here.
Miracle Hill Ministries has various ways for families to donate and volunteer.
Calvary Home for Children in Anderson has a list of items in need.
South Eastern Children’s Home has a variety of ways your family can help.
Wildlife Rehab of Greenville has a variety of ways to help the animals in their care.
Greenville County Animal Care, another local shelter has a wish list, as well as the opportunity to sponsor an animal while they wait for their forever home.
Make Christmas Cards or Decorations
This is a great idea for little ones because the bulk of their volunteering can be done at home. Colorful paper chains, garland or pictures really brighten up hospitals, fire stations, retirement communities, children’s homes or animal shelters. Be sure to call before delivering your cards or decorations.
I’ve had several friends ask about sending Christmas cards to soldiers. One of the more popular organizations is Operation Gratitude. This organization sends care packages and letters to those who serve. Additionally, they collect Beanie Babies for soldiers to give to children in combat zones, and they also run a Halloween Candy Give-Back program.
Adopt a Family or Child
The Salvation Army of the Carolinas has several opportunities for families to serve throughout the holidays including their Adopt a Family and Angel Tree Program. Find more info here.
Adopt a military family through Soldiers Angels. This is not a local organization; however, you can request families in particular states.
Operation Christmas Child: It’s too late to create your own box (boxes were collected by November) this year, this is something to keep it in mind for next year. This international charity delivers shoeboxes filled with toys and necessities to children in need all over the world. Many of my friends with small children do this because it’s something the kids will understand and can help with at home. This Christmas, you can still donate and have them create a box for you. Get all the details here.
Help with a Toy, Food, Clothing or Donation Drive
Young children can help collect items by asking neighbors, friends or family members to donate. They can also sort items into boxes and help deliver everything to designated drop off spots. Families can also organize donation drives through several local charities. Items can be collected at Christmas parties, cookie exchanges, or even play dates.
Places to donate toy, clothing or food this time of year
Organize a donation drive for Miracle Hill.
Hope Center for Children runs Hope for the Holidays with various ways you can make this time of year special including donations, sponsoring children or families, and wrapping presents.
Mobile Meals of Spartanburg provides Christmas Bags and Homemade Holiday Gifts for their recipients. 2018’s requested date TBA.
Toys for Tots accepts new toy donations at all area Toys R Us stores as well as these Spartanburg locations.
SAFE Homes Rape Crisis Coalition has a Holiday Giving sponsorship program.
Spread Cheer and Good Will
Bake cookies and make decorations to drop off at your local fire station, police station, hospital, urgent care, assisted living facility or doctor’s office. Be sure to call first to make sure there is a good time to do this.
Write letters or draw Christmas pictures to give to your mail carrier, neighbor or teacher.
My son is very shy, but one thing he has loved doing lately is handing out stickers to people he meets throughout our day. We recently bought a sheet of Christmas stickers, and so far he has handed them out to the cashier at the grocery store, the librarian, a friend who came over and the UPS guy.
Make bird feeders to hang in your yard to help birds through the winter.
Write a nice note or make a holiday card for a family member.
Make a batch of peppermint scented play dough for a friend.
Donate gently used toys or books to Goodwill or the Salvation Army.
Buy a box of Christmas cards from the dollar store and leave them on windshields, in random mailboxes or hand them out to the Salvation Army Bell Ringers.
How do your kids participate in charity during the holidays?