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Christmas is the time for giving, and thinking of others. This Christmas, there will be so many families that won’t have an amazing Christmas. They will be worried about putting food on the table. There will be children going without presents and thousands of elderly people spending Christmas alone.

Giving back is now more important than ever. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up some Christmas volunteering programs for you to get involved in.

Christmas help#1 Crisis at Christmas

A national charity for homeless people, Crisis runs one of the largest volunteering initiatives at Christmas. Crisis at Christmas focuses on giving homeless people a Christmas experience, providing them with a safe and warm place to spend the Christmas period.

Crisis are looking for over 10,000 volunteers to help them out this Christmas, across a variety of roles – so no matter what you’re good at, you’ll be able to help them. Crisis at Christmas is nationwide, so you won’t be far from a Crisis centre. Find out if you can help them here.

#2 Community Christmas

According to Age UK, more than 300,000 older people were alone for Christmas last year. However, Community Christmas is working towards combating this. They know that there’s nothing worse than a Christmas spent alone, so they work to organize events for the elderly to come together and spend the festive season together.

Cooking a turkey for one is impractical and booking a table for one is unappealing, so why not pull up an extra chair for an older person this Christmas? Volunteer to hold an event here.

#3 Rotary Christmas Day

The Rotary Club ran a wildly successful Christmas Day party for older people in Battersea Park last year, and they’re looking to do the same again this year. However, they need volunteers to pull it off.

Volunteers are required for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day – however, you don’t have to do all three days, one or two is fine. The Rotary Club are looking for help preparing the venue, transporting guests, serving food and cleaning up after. If you’re interested – apply to be a volunteer here.

#4 Trussell Trust Food Banks

Around one in four children live in poverty in the UK today – and this number will, unfortunately, increase over Christmas. This Christmas, why not help out at a food bank? Food banks provide food to people who desperately need it throughout the UK.

Over the festive period, volunteers are needed to help out with collections from local supermarkets – so if you think you can help out, check out the Trussell Trust volunteer page.

#5 Royal Voluntary Service

Royal Voluntary Service focuses on helping older people stay active and independent. This Christmas, they’re finding and throwing events all over the country where older people can come together and celebrate in the festive spirit.

There are many events all over the country that they need help with, so if you’ve got the time to spare – why not volunteer to help the Royal Voluntary Service here?

Remember that, while it’s brilliant you’re helping out those less fortunate during the Festive period, there are many who need help all year round. You’ll get a taste of something fulfilling during your Christmas volunteering stint, so if you’re interested in volunteering more often research initiatives that happen throughout the year!