Published by PETA.

It can be quite easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the busy holiday season, and what should be the season of giving turns into the season of fighting over parking spaces and standing in long checkout lines at the mall.

While many of us are fortunate enough to have a few spare dollars to participate in gift exchanges and delicious vegan holiday meals, many of us are still feeling the pinch of the economy and struggling to keep the bare necessities for our families.

One of the most valuable things that you can give to someone is your attention, so why not give some to those who need it most? You don’;t have to go far out of your way to share with others.

Check out the following suggestions:

  • Most food banks welcome gifts of canned goods that can be used for holiday meals. Take up a collection of vegan items like canned sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, vegetable broth, or pre-packaged vegan stuffing and drop it off.
  • When making your own Thanksgiving dinner, bake an extra vegan pie or two and drop them off at a homeless shelter or church that might be offering free meals. If you have the time, why not stay and lend a hand with some dishes or even stick around and visit with patrons who might enjoy some nice conversation?
  • Have a neighbor who lives far away from family and friends? Extend an invitation to them to come over and have some vegan green bean casserole.
  • Visit a nearby nursing home and help spread some holiday cheer by dropping off flowers to patients who don’t have any visitors.

Giving is what this time of year is all about, and there is no greater gift that we can give than what is inside of us: our compassion.

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