#GoodDeedsDay this weekend was a wonderful way to bring a breath of fresh, kind, air to the streets of New York. People were giving out free hugs, handing out red roses, and being altogether GOOD to each other. Booths were set up in front of a huge stage – a ton of entertainment, freebies and celebrity meet-ups were in full swing.
I attended to see what was up, and get an idea of how to spread the good in New York. Good Deeds Day, founded by the Arison family 10 years ago is now in 74 countries. Check out their Twitter to see how people contributed that day all over the world.
David Arison of Good Deeds Day said, “Today it’s about connecting to the cause and sharing it with your friends and family. It all starts with our own personal circles.”
I also spoke with Adrian Grenier of the hit series, Entourage, but who also founded the Mobile Kitchen Classroom. His mission is to make people into responsible food citizens, starting with high school students. His message to us: “Do good deeds on the regs.”
Doing good doesn’t have to stop at Good Deeds Day. There are plenty of ways to get involved year-round. Here are some ways to volunteer and give back in NYC:
- NY Cares: Give your time to a variety of NYC centric organizations. Visit https://www.newyorkcares.org/ to find a good opportunity for you schedule.
- The perfect match: Find some unique ways to volunteer through this portal. It welcomes those with many types of expertise.
- Get outside: Volunteer with the Parks Department of NYC.
- Food bank: Volunteer with the food bank to help end hunger in NYC.
- American Red Cross: There are plenty of opportunities to help the American Red Cross for just a day, or on a more consistent basis.
- Habitat for Humanity: Help build homes nearby, or jet off to somewhere new with https://www.habitatnyc.org/volunteer.
- Foodie love: Help out at a variety of events with City Harvest. The gist is to connect restaurants with food banks in the city.
- Be artsy: Listen to your artistic side and help teach children all different art forms at The Arts @ Henson Parks. You’ll also meet some really cool people along the way.
- Deliver meals and hear cool stories: DOROT is all about helping senior citizens. NYC can be a lonely place, even though we’re always surrounded by a ton of people. With this organization, you can deliver meals to local seniors, and hang out for a while to hear their stories.
- Help the animals: You can help walk cute dogs and hang out with some kool katssss at nearby shelters with the ASPCA.
- Broadway cares: Volunteer to help fight AIDS (and maybe see a Broadway show or two).
*Some of the above have training requirements
- GOOD + Foundation: Organize a drive to collect goods for children and families in need through Jessica Seinfeld’s GOOD + Foundation.
- Music & Memory: Donate an old iPod to those living with memory loss.
- Mobile Kitchen Classroom: Donate money to help children learn to cultivate a healthy relationship with food.
- Invest in music education: Donate to VH1’s Save the Music campaign.
- Donate clothes: Of course, always remember to donate your old clothes to a nearby Goodwill or another like-minded organization.
Let me know if there are any organizations your contribute to that I should list!