How to Give Back in Baltimore for the Holidays as a Small Business or Solopreneur
Believe it or not, the holidays are just around the corner. It’s a time for fun festivities with your loved ones, but it can also be a meaningful time to consider how to give back in Baltimore and support your community.
And the good news for small business owners and solo pros is that giving back isn’t just about cutting a cheque to a charity. There are creative, cost-conscious, and meaningful ways to go about it.
How to give back in Baltimore is more about engaging with your community, looking for creative ways to help others, and—as a bonus—building your company’s brand and culture.
Here’s how to give back in Baltimore this holiday season, plus some amazing local charities and initiatives to check out.
Why Give Back?
We won’t waste much time with the obvious: giving back is good for all parties involved.
How to give back in Baltimore depends on what cause is most important to you.
There are a ton of hard-working charities and non-profits that support the community in various ways—food security, housing, pro-bono legal services, holiday gifts, medical care, and so much more.
Your time, money, and effort in giving back in Baltimore impact many people’s daily lives.
But giving back also benefits the giver. Study after study after study shows that charitable giving and volunteerism boost mental health, increase happiness, and reduce depression.
But we’ve also got a bonus reason to give back—it boosts your company’s brand image and culture. Through charitable giving of time and money, your organization can benefit in multiple ways:
- Strengthened company culture and sense of purpose around a common cause.
- Increased morale through work-life balance and benefits of giving back.
- Positive brand and company recognition through public-facing activities.
- Meaningful networking opportunities with like-minded businesses, charities, organizations, or professionals.
How to Give Back in Baltimore
Giving back in Baltimore this holiday season can benefit you, your company, and your community. And, it’s totally possible to do so while saving money in your small business budget and finding cost-conscious options.
Here we’ll look at some creative ways to do so, plus 7 Baltimore and Hampden-specific charities, initiatives, or events to get involved with.
Charitable organizations always appreciate financial gifts, especially during a busy holiday season.
But if you’re not in a financial position to cut a check or are looking for something unique and engaging, there are so many other creative ways to give back in Baltimore. Here are our favorites:
1. Spend Time Volunteering
This is the top way to give back in Baltimore without breaking the bank. And, giving time is a way to reap the full benefits of charitable work! There are two ways you can volunteer:
- Volunteer as a team: Choose a charity to work with and spend a day (or couple of days) volunteering together as a staff team. This is great for bonding, team culture, and a mental break from work.
- Offer a volunteer day: If your team is spread out geographically or you want to provide more choice, give everyone a paid day off to volunteer at their organization of choice. It will offer the same benefits as well as support your efforts to build a strong remote work culture.
Giving time is a way to make a tangible difference to organizations that need help during the holidays. It also boosts your company’s visibility in the community and creates long-lasting memories for your team.
2. Hold a Collection or Drive
Another team approach on how to give back in Baltimore is to hold a collection or drive. Connect with a charitable organization and ask what they’re in need of and ask employees to donate them.
Here are some common items in need over the holidays:
- Food (non-perishable goods)
- Toys and gifts for low-income families
- Baby clothing, diapers, and formula
- Hygiene products
- Electronics (i.e., second-hand, but useable, phones and laptops)
3. Mentor or Coach Others
Solo professionals may wish to give back in Baltimore in a different way. Mentoring or coaching is an excellent opportunity to share your skills, knowledge, and expertise with others.
Local schools (high school through to college and other post-secondary institutions) can partner you with students in your field. Or, some charities might be looking for professionals with the expertise to share with their clients.
A similar way to give back is by offering small training or coaching sessions. You can provide free workshops or talks that help others learn something new. If you book a flexible event space to host it, you can make it a memorable and impactful experience.
4. Offer Financial Giving through Payroll
Consider setting up the option through your payroll system for employees or solo pros who’d like to make monetary contributions. This allows people to easily make financial donations and keep simple records for tax purposes.
Make the donations go even further by matching employee gifts, as your budget allows.
5. Donate Skills
Your skills are a third valuable asset to donate, along with time and money. Here are a few examples of what we mean:
- Marketing professionals can donate their expertise to run a holiday giving campaign for a Baltimore charity.
- Videographers can offer a free video to profile a non-profit organization.
- Lawyers can offer pro-bono work to people in need of legal services.
This isn’t only a practical way to support local organizations but also has brand-boosting benefits by getting your name out there and networking with community partners.
Baltimore Charities with Holiday Initiatives and Events
Let’s get specific. How can you give back in Baltimore this holiday season? Here are 7 charities with holiday initiatives to get you started:
1. Hampden Family Center
Multiple holiday events and initiatives, including the Holiday Drop-In on Saturday, December 11, volunteer opportunities to wrap gifts, and their Christmas Angel gift drive.
2. United Way of Central Maryland
Local programs focus on housing, health, economic advancement, and education in the central Maryland region. The United Way accepts donations and volunteers throughout the year.
3. Santa Claus Anonymous
Give the gift of, well, gifts! This charitable organization has been providing children of Baltimore with special presents that they wouldn’t otherwise receive. They’ve been at this for 88 years, so join in on the legacy and give back in Baltimore!
You can donate to the organization or join in on one of their fun events, like the Holiday Stroll on December 3 or a Wine and Beer Tasting on December 14.
4. St. Vincent de Paul Baltimore
With multiple shelter services, supportive housing programs, food access programs, and more, Vincent Baltimore’s mission is to “ensure those impacted by poverty have the skills, resources, and opportunity to achieve their full potential.
Get involved through multiple opportunities like meal service, corporate volunteer opportunities, or youth involvement.
5. Maryland Food Bank
Working year-round to combat food insecurity, the food bank also hosts holiday-specific initiatives. You can volunteer at the food bank in Baltimore or donate to the 2022 Turkey Drive, which provides a holiday meal for a family in Maryland.
6. Giving Back Linda’s Legacy
This charity has a goal to provide warm clothes to homeless individuals through its annual drive, all while creating an impactful volunteer environment in Baltimore and the surrounding areas.
7. House of Ruth Maryland
This organization supports victims of intimate partner violence through shelter services and training opportunities. They welcome groups of volunteers to come support their Baltimore location. They’re also always looking for donations of personal items, clothing, baby and children’s items, cookware, cleaning supplies, and more.
This, of course, is a non-exhaustive list of awesome charities in Baltimore! Do you have any favorite holiday initiatives to share with our community here at Co-Balt?
Supporting your community this holiday season is a wonderful way to help others while boosting your business’ brand and culture. We hope this guide on how to give back in Baltimore inspires you to action today.
If you’re a small business owner or independent professional looking for the support and tools offered by a full-service office, book a tour of Co-Balt today.