3 Ways to Give Back This Valentine's Day
Known as the most romantic day of the year, Valentine’s Day is known all over as the day to celebrate love and shower your spouse with gifts and quality time. But with all the love that’s floating in the air on this special day, many dread everything about it. If you’re one of those people who believe such a holiday shouldn’t exist or you’re single and the thought of spending the day alone gives you anxiety, remember that perspective truly is everything.
For starters, remembering that there are other forms of love to celebrate outside of romantic love can help to change your views about the day. There is love for self, family, friends, and love for all of humanity so, why not spend Valentine’s Day spreading love through giving back? There are women, men, and children who are in shelters, poverty-stricken or are dealing with unfortunate circumstances that make celebrating holidays difficult.
So, instead of spending the day throwing a pity party while dressed in all black because you’re alone, spread a little love for those in need. Even if you’re happily coupled and you choose not to partake in the holiday, there are many people who could use a little extra love on Valentine’s Day. Unsure of where to start? Our list below can help give you a head start.
Volunteer at A Senior Shelter
There are a lot of seniors who have lost their spouses, family members and feel incredibly alone on holidays. Valentine’s Day can serve a reminder of the love they once knew. Spending time at a local senior shelter donating gifts or just spending quality time with those living in senior homes can truly make a difference. Outside of the company from other members in the home, most seniors crave quality time and conversation for the sake of not feeling alone. Your kind gestures can always bring a smile to those in need.
Donate to A Domestic Violence Shelter
On average, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the U.S. Over the course of one year, this equates to more than 10 million women and men. 1 in 15 children are exposed to intimate partner violence each year, and 90% of these children are eyewitnesses to this violence. Even if the child/children aren’t the direct targets of violence, they are at increased risk for mental, physical, social, behavioral, and developmental problems. For these reasons, many domestic violence survivors are forced into homelessness as a way to escape their abusers. According to statistics, there are roughly 55,000 beds set aside for survivors of domestic violence in the United States alone. Other data shows that one in five families experiencing homelessness report that domestic violence is the primary cause.
There are a lot of women and men in DV shelters who are seeking refuge through shelters to provide better living conditions for themselves and their children. Most families leave their homes with little to nothing in an effort to escape their abusers. Prized possessions, clothing and the life they once knew are all left behind. We recommend doing a search for local shelters in your neighborhood. Once you find a shelter of your choice, their websites typically list ways to make monetary, food, household, clothing and toiletry donations. There are also DV shelters that need volunteers to help out in shelters. Whatever way you decide to give back, families in need will be grateful.
Create Self-Care Boxes for The Homeless
One of our biggest crises across the globe is the homelessness epidemic. A total of 552,830 people were experiencing homelessness on a single night in 2018. This number represents 17 out of every 10,000 people in the United States. Most people experiencing homelessness are individuals (67 percent). The remainder (33 percent) are people in families with children. We come in close contact with homelessness daily. Those dealing with homelessness have created shelters in tents throughout our local neighborhoods, they're seeking a warm place to rest and get a hot meal during extreme weather conditions. And yes, a vast majority of those who suffer from homelessness do not have access to clean water or hygiene products.
Putting together care packages for the homeless on Valentine’s Day could truly make a difference. They’re always in need of clean water, non-perishable foods, feminine care products, grooming products, socks, blankets, jackets and more. Think about the love and warmth you’d bring to the hearts of those in need on Valentine’s Day when they’re least expecting it. A kind gesture letting them know, that regardless of their situation, they are loved and thought of could truly go a long way.