With the city slowing down again and the holidays quickly approaching, we decided to round up some great causes, charities and initiatives needing support. I don't need to remind you how different this holiday season will be, but hopefully we can keep some things the same, like spreading some joy and good spirits. If you have anything to give, consider these options. And if you can’t spare anything, continue to be kind.
Please note that with the rising cases of COVID-19, a few places are not accepting new volunteers but continue to accept (and desperately need) financial support and donations. Anything helps! If you are also in need, we hope this list and our Emerald City Resource Guide help you locate assistance. The following charities are King County based, with one in Tacoma.
Help at Asian Counseling & Referral Service Food Bank — King County’s most visited food bank — Wednesday, Thursday or Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., preparing and organizing food packs. tinyurl.com/y2e7qvw8
Bellevue Lifespring works with the Bellevue School District and will collect gift cards in $100 increments and distribute them to families and children most in need; priority will be given to those experiencing homelessness. tinyurl.com/y2bc2v2s
Columbia City Youth Tutoring Program: A one-hour commitment weekly, Monday or Wednesday 4 to 8 p.m. or Tuesday and Thursday 5 to 8 p.m., with a six-month commitment preferred, to provide individual tutoring for students grades one to 12. No teaching experience needed. tinyurl.com/yypypa5l
Join the Dependency Court Appointed Special Advocates of King County for abused and neglected children. The hours are flexible. tinyurl.com/y4vtms8u
The Emergency Feeding Program helps over 1,800 clients a month and delivers over 20,000 emergency food packs every year across Seattle. $20 can feed a family for two days. They are accepting financial donations only at this time. tinyurl.com/yxbownjb
Farestart delivers food to shelters and homeless programs across Seattle 365 days a year. They are currently looking for volunteers to help with serving food, preparing food and delivering meals. tinyurl.com/yyznjg47
Food Lifeline opportunities have flexible hours to distribute food boxes across the city, pack and sort items for delivery; volunteers must be 18 or older. tinyurl.com/y3owj95s
The Forgotten Children's Fund is actively looking for volunteers to help in their North Pole warehouse in Renton, where they will be wrapping and assembling gifts for families across Seattle. Gifts are also delivered directly to families. COVID-19 precautions will be taken seriously. tinyurl.com/y52asayw
Grocery Rescue at the Lynnwood Food Bank has flexible hours Monday to Saturday between 9 a.m.–3 p.m. You can assist the drivers in packing and delivering food pick-ups from grocery stores and bringing everything safely to the food bank. tinyurl.com/yxdwv372
Help feed our seniors. South Park Seniors Center; Monday/Wednesday/Friday 3:30 p.m. kitchen support to help prep/cook/clean: tinyurl.com/y2gp366u
Help seniors with their fancy devices! Phinney Neighborhood Association; flexible hours, 6-month commitment preferred, virtual sessions: tinyurl.com/y4mx4vbg
Medical Teams International needs medical professionals for COVID testing support. The shifts are 9 a.m.–1 p.m. and 1 p.m.–5 p.m. to perform nasal-swab COVID tests for vulnerable and underserved people: tinyurl.com/y2vvce7n
Foster toy-breed dogs with Pup Dog Rescue. They are looking for foster homes ASAP, caring for and fostering toy breed dogs until they find a forever home tinyurl.com/yxnufoza
Real Change (yes, us!!): Flexible hours, openings spanning phone-call-making to photo-taking: tinyurl.com/y3c5yw6t
Seattle Neighborhood Farmers Markets need support in 2.5-hour shifts Saturdays and Sundays to aid COVID-19 logistics. tinyurl.com/y2sgadb8
Tacoma Rescue Mission: For over 100 years, Tacoma Rescue Mission has been providing meals, support and shelter for those experiencing homelessness and other life challenges. They are currently accepting volunteers in shifts that range between 6 a.m.–6 p.m. tinyurl.com/y5ozkhs8
Treehouse works to support children in the foster care system. They are currently not accepting donations of items, instead offering families in need a way to host their own holiday collection drives that you can support. Financial donations are also accepted. tinyurl.com/y5xuz37p
Deliver food to isolated seniors with Volunteer Services, based in your own neighborhood and with flexible hours for one to four volunteer sessions monthly. tinyurl.com/y3xz8k25
Wellspring: You can donate new or gently used items and essentials to the Baby Boutique run by Wellspring. It offers a place for children 0-18 to get essential items and something special as well. Financial donations are also accepted. tinyurl.com/y27pcpgy
Westside Baby supports more than 120 local organizations to provide critical necessities for low-income families. They collect and distribute diapers, clothing, cribs and important safety gear for babies and children. Volunteering in their space is on hold, but there are three remote ways you can help and volunteer from home. tinyurl.com/yyndp8hy
YWCA: Adopt a Family supports parents who are looking for assistance to give their children holiday gifts. Get in touch to be matched with a family. tinyurl.com/y4gasawk
Read more in the Nov 25 - Dec 1, 2020 issue.