This time of year, many of us find ourselves searching for that “perfect gift.” However, the greatest gift is not the one that is the most expensive, or the one wrapped in festive paper and bows. The most valuable gift you can give is one that helps someone less fortunate. by Joanne Chive
Help Our Next Generation:
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Miami
Mission: Helps at-risk children reach their full potential by matching them with volunteer adult mentors. The organization serves more than 7,000 children, volunteers and families each year.
Get Involved: Volunteer to be a Big Brother or Big Sister. More than 1,000 kids are waiting to be matched and 60 percent of those are boys in need of a Big Brother. BBBS Miami also seeks financial donations so they can continue to impact a child’s life.
Make A Wish Southern Florida
Mission: Grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. A wish can transport a child from a world of doctors and hospitals to a world of carefree fun and excitement.
Get Involved: Donations help the organization grant wishes. In addition to financial contributions, you can donate airline miles or used vehicles. Volunteers are needed for roles including special events, speakers, airport greeters and office staff. Wishes begin with referrals, so contact Make-A-Wish for more information.
Mission: Miami-Dade’s only 24-hour emergency shelter for abused, neglected and abandoned kids ages 10-17. The organization provides at-risk children with structure in a stable and nurturing environment.
Get involved: Miami Bridge shelters more than 1,000 children and teens and counsels more than 550 families each year. Your time or monetary contribution can change lives. The organization also seeks items such as clothing, books, toiletries, sheets, video games and athletic equipment. Volunteers and mentors are needed to offer guidance and support.
Help Our Animal Friends:
Humane Society of Greater Miami
Mission: Focuses on ending euthanasia of healthy pets by offering low-cost spay/neuter services and providing shelter for homeless animals while they wait to be adopted by responsible and committed caregivers.
Get Involved: Your donation makes a difference in the lives of homeless pets. You can donate online, by phone or by mail. Volunteers must be at least 16 years old and are needed within and outside the shelter for positions such as greeters, animal walkers, office workers, maintenance, foster care, outreach, groomers and special events.
Help Our Homeless Population:
Miami Rescue Mission
Mission: The Mission is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and provides food, clothing and shelter along with recovery and educational programs to the homeless and needy of South Florida.
Get Involved: Your financial donation helps provide hot meals to hungry, homeless people. In addition, the Mission seeks donations of clothing and household items in good condition to use in the centers or sell in their thrift stores to raise funds. Volunteers are needed to serve meals, tutor students or work with young adults.
Help Our Low Income Families:
Habitat for Humanity of Broward County
Mission: Volunteers revitalize and strengthen the community by building affordable homes for low-income families who are unable to qualify for conventional financing but are willing to work hard to improve their family’s lives.
Get Involved: Monetary donations can be made through the website, and 100 percent of every donation is used to fund the construction of a home. Volunteers are needed for construction and non-construction positions including at the Habitat Broward ReStore, a discount retail outlet that sells items such as building materials, furniture and appliances.
Help Our Veterans:
Wounded Warriors of South Florida
Mission: Provides temporary and immediate financial assistance to disabled veterans. This may include rent/mortgage, utilities, auto repairs, auto loans, auto insurance, home repairs and other bills that require immediate action.
Get Involved: Donations from individuals or businesses may be made online. Volunteers are needed for a variety of roles. Wounded Warriors of South Florida also partners with local businesses and organizations to provide help and resources to disabled veterans in South Florida. Check the website to find out how you can help.