Today is Make a Difference Day. The holiday is meant to be a way for volunteers to meet up with opportunities all over the nation with the purpose to improve other peoples’ lives. For many, making a difference can seem like a tremendous goal to reach in one day, but there are many smaller ways to improve the lives of others. For example:
If you don’t find any project near you or a particular issue isn’t covered in your neighborhood, you can start a project through the Make a Difference Day site.
If you have access to transportation, you can meet up with others to volunteer on a project, as well.
You can help those in poverty by donating clothes to a local Goodwill, Coats for Kids or other donation agencies, or donating canned goods to local food pantries. In Bloomington, that includes Hoosier Hills Food Bank or Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard.
You can volunteer at a soup kitchen to serve people without homes at places like Community Kitchen or Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard.
You could even make sack lunches and/or buy personal care items for people without homes, if you have the resources.
If you love creating things with your hands, you could crochet or sew clothing and blankets for people in need.
If environmental causes are more your concern, you could plant trees in approved areas or clean up litter you find on an evening stroll.
If animals are your thing, you could volunteer at a local humane society, donate pet supplies, or just stop by to give the animals the love and attention they deserve.
As change starts in our homes first, you could do things as small as asking friends if they’re doing okay or if they need help with anything, such as financially, emotionally, or with their work-life balance.
As sexual health and substance use is what CCPE is primarily about, having a conversation with your loved ones about these topics can be especially useful if they are in need of help or support.
If you are able to, think about getting tested for HIV to help decrease the stigma associated with a seropositive status and to own your status.
By making a difference in one person’s life, you can create a snowball effect of hope and change through incremental steps.