The holiday season is in full swing, and our communities are full of holiday activities and cheer. But we still see our neighbours struggling. Much of southwestern BC has been recently devastated by torrential downpours that overflowed rivers and flooded homes and farmland. The rain has also caused significant mudslides closing many major highways and hindering supply chains.

We thought we’d use this month’s article to remind you that no matter where you live, others could use a helping hand or extra holiday cheer this winter. Here are five ways to spread joy in your communities this year:

1. Donate to a cause
Charitable organizations are often the busiest this time of year. Find one that does good work in your community and donate your time or provide a financial donation to help them do more.

2. Visit a senior centre
Not everyone can get out and enjoy the light displays and holiday markets. Take time to visit those house-bound or in care centres and bring some holiday cheer in the form of decorations, holiday treats, or even carolling!

3. Donate toys to teens
Find a local toy drive and donate a toy. Many get lots of donations for smaller kids, but less for teens as they’re often harder to buy for. Buy a few gift cards and donate them to a toy drive for the older kids.

4. Phone a friend
With the internet and text messaging, “traditional” phone calls have become few and far between. Pick up the phone this week and call a friend or family member “just because.”

5. Wish everyone a happy holiday
It doesn’t cost a thing to wish someone a happy holiday. Since it’s hard to see a smile behind your face masks, be sure to let those around you know you appreciate them by saying Happy Holidays to your neighbours, the guy at the drive-through, the lady at the grocery store checkout, and everyone you meet.

Find a way to give back to help others find the joy in this festive holiday season.

From all of us at Essential Medical Products, we wish you a happy holiday and a safe and healthy new year!

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