In a world that often moves at a frenetic pace, it's easy to get caught up in our own lives and forget about the struggles others face. However, there is incredible value in giving back through volunteering. Not only does it benefit those in need, but it also nourishes our own souls and helps build stronger, more compassionate communities.
Volunteering allows us to make a tangible difference in the lives of others. By dedicating our time, skills and energy, we can support causes that align with our values and passions. It offers unique opportunities to forge connections, broaden perspectives and develop empathy.
The sense of fulfillment derived from lending a helping hand is unparalleled and can boost mental well-being, combat stress and provide a renewed sense of purpose.
So where can you find a charity that matches your interests and skill sets? Start by exploring online resources, reach out to community centers, and ask friends and family for recommendations. We’ve included three here that are dear to our heart and a great place to start making a lasting impact on the lives of others.
1. Food for Thought by the Sea
The mission at Food for Thought is to not only work with local organizations to alleviate youth food insecurity in Monmouth County, but to also train these teens for future careers. Headed by local chef and restauranteur Marilyn Schlossbach, they’ve distributed more than 150,000 meals since 2020. Every time the Food for Thought food truck hits the road, it's either training teens, collecting proceeds that will be used for the organization’s efforts, or a combo of the two.
2. Monmouth County SPCA
This no-kill shelter for homeless, abandoned and abused animals is dedicated to protecting, caring and advocating for all animals. Since they’re a nonprofit, they’re always in need of help, which can be offered in a variety of ways: adopt or foster—freeing up space for other animals in need—make a donation, walk dogs, clean enclosures, socialize puppies, do laundry, etc. The facility is beautiful and clean, and the animals are well-loved and cared for.
3. The Frances Foundation for Kids Fighting Cancer
The Frances Foundation is devoted to bringing smiles to children fighting cancer. They hope to alleviate any physical and emotional challenges they may be facing with a surprise gift, special gesture or fun group events. They also provide financial assistance to families and support researched aimed at terminating childhood cancers. Their 19th Annual Gala will be held next month at Ocean Place Resort & Spa on Saturday, October 21, 2023.