I don’t know where the time has gone, but the holiday season is here. While philanthropy is crucial all year long, I find myself giving back to the community most during the holidays. It’s a great way to spend time with your family or friends. I also love giving my kids the opportunity to volunteer around their community. We found a few ways to give back in Old Towne Orange and the surrounding area. Keep reading to learn more about these opportunities!
Canned Food at The Dizzy Daisy
For the entire month of November, The Dizzy Daisy is collecting non-perishable canned goods and dried foods for Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County. You can drop off at The Dizzy Daisy located at 292 S Tustin St, Orange during their regular business hours.
The Dizzy Daisy is open Monday-Friday from 9 am to 7 pm and Saturdays from 10 am to 4 pm.
Salon9 and Ronald McDonald Toy Drive
This year Salon9 is working with the Ronald McDonald House of Orange County to help local families. You can bring an unopened and unwrapped toy to the salon and be entered into a raffle where you can win a $50 Salon9 gift card and a shampoo and conditioner of your choice. December 14th is the last day to drop off a toy!
Orangewood Foundation Foster and Community Youth Services
The Orangewood Foundation assists almost 2,000 foster and community youth in preparation for independent adulthood. The foundation works to help the kids with health and wellness, housing, life skills and employment, and education.
This holiday season you can donate new and unwrapped items from the Orangewood Foundation’s wishlist (pictured above). The most requested items are highlighted. The deadline to donate is Tuesday, December 17. Drop off hours are Monday-Friday 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and you can drop it off at 1575 E. 17th St. Santa Ana, CA 92705.
First Presbyterian Church Of Orange
The First Presbyterian Church of Orange serves an average of 90 families a month, by providing a bag of groceries for free. The bag contains enough food for four people for two days. You can volunteer to organize the church’s pantry, pack bags of food, and donate food. To check their availability and schedule to volunteer please contact Pam Presnall at [email protected].
Orange Senior Center
The Orange Senior Center offers so many opportunities to volunteer year-round! You can lead an activity or program in a skill you would like to share. You can partake in the Senior Grocery Food Distribution and EFAP Food Distributions. If you have 1-1/2 hour once a week to be a driver and deliver meals. You can be a greeter, or office support, or a crafter every Friday to create items for raffles.
To find out more about volunteer opportunities, please call 714-538-9633.
Volunteer at Orange Home Grown
Every Friday from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm, you can volunteer at the Orange Home Grown Farm. Volunteering at the farm provides Old Towne Orange lovers an opportunity to learn and engage in organic farming techniques. The farm is located at 356 N Lemon St, Orange.
If you’re interested in volunteering you can contact the Volunteer Coordinator, Angela Nichter, at [email protected] and retrieve the volunteer waiver here. Print out the form and bring it when you volunteer at the farm. If you volunteer, bring a hat, gardening gloves, filled water bottle, sunblock, and your signed volunteer waiver.
Mary’s Kitchen is outside of Old Towne Orange, but it’s a great way to serve the Orange community. Every Monday through Saturday from 9 am to 3:30 pm, Mary’s Kitchen provides breakfast and a hot lunch to the hungry and or homeless. When you volunteer at Mary’s Kitchen you help prepare meals and serve food to those in need.
To volunteer, you must fill out this form to request a day to serve and give your contact information. Mary’s Kitchen is located at 517 W Struck Ave, Orange.
Meals On Wheels
Meals on Wheels has a few different opportunities to volunteer. You can pick up meals from local senior or community centers and hand-deliver them to seniors’ homes on weekdays between 9 am and 11 am. This takes one hour to complete and a background check is required. You can also greet senior guests and register them for lunch at a local senior center. You will assist the Meals on Wheels staff with preparing food and serving lunch to seniors. This would take place on weekdays between 10 am and 1 pm. Meals on Wheels is located right off of The Circle, at 170 S Olive St, Orange.
For more information, you can contact Linda Molthen at 714-229-3377 or [email protected]. To sign up for any volunteer opportunity at Meals on Wheels Orange County, click here.
If you don’t have time to volunteer during the weekdays, you can provide or help make a small holiday gift to a low-income senior. Sometimes it may be the only gift they receive during the holidays. This program runs from October 25 to December 10. Click here for more information.
Orange County Ronald McDonald House
The Ronald McDonald House of Orange County is located at Orange at 383 S Batavia St. There are so many different opportunities to give back.
During the Meal of Love volunteer opportunity, you and a group of up to 12 people, can prepare a meal in the house’s full-service kitchen for families who have a child in the neighboring hospital. You create your own menu and provide your own ingredients. All food must be prepared and cooked at the house. Volunteers must be 13+ with adult supervision and there must be at least one adult per five youth volunteers.
The Wish List Drive! The Ronald McDonald House is constantly in need of items from this list to effectively serve the families that visit. If you are pressed for time, this is a simple yet extremely helpful way to volunteer. You simply collect the items from the organization’s wish list and drop them off at the Ronald McDonald House from 9 am to 9 pm. You can check out their wish list here.
The Cleaning Project helps make the house feel more like a home for families that visit. You and your friends or family can clean the communal spaces of the three-story home. There is a maximum of 15 volunteers at a time and volunteers must be 13+ with adult supervision.
If you are interested in volunteering with a group, click here.