During the holiday season, while we sip hot cocoa and think about the best gifts to purchase for our loved ones, it can also be important to think about ways to give back to the community. Did you know that there are many ways to spread cheer here in Tallahassee? While the options are limitless, these five ways to give back in Tallahassee during the holiday season are sure to put a smile on someone’s face.

1. Increase Tips. If you are dining out, be mindful of the fact that with Florida restaurants hard-hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, your servers may have lost wages and are trying to make the most of every shift. Increasing your tips to servers can allow them to budget a little extra for the basics, and perhaps make a few holiday memories of their own.

2. Pay it forward. If you are at the drive-thru, tell the cashier to put the meal of the family behind you on your tab. This could brighten someone else’s day and even spur them to continue spreading cheer down the line. If you want to make a targeted impact in this vein, donate to organizations that address food insecurity like Second Harvest of the Big Bend.

3. Donate to Second Harvest of the Big Bend. This organization works with 135 partner agencies in 11 counties in the Florida bend to help families struggling with food insecurity. By donating, you are helping to make sure these Florida families have food on the table during the holiday season and beyond.

4. Help Our Heroes. Many of the armed forces overseas are missing the holiday cheer they would have experienced back home. Having your kids write letters to our heroes can bring joy to those serving our country and allow them to make a connection to the brave men and women who sacrifice for them every day.

5. Volunteer. If you are interested in giving of your time, check out the organizations at Volunteer Florida. Start a family tradition of giving back while spending time together by having each family member choose an organization, and devote a day where the whole family participates at each endeavor.

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