Holiday Spirit: How to Give Back to Your Community

Volunteering During the Holiday Season Provides Opportunities to Benefit the Community


Savanna Eickerman

The Boys & Girls Club, which holds an annual toy drive, located on 19th Ave. in Everett.

With the holiday season just around the corner, many joyful festivities are coming up. However, one thing to remember during this time of year is that giving is just as important as receiving. Snohomish County has a handful of volunteering opportunities that greatly benefit our communities especially during this time of year.

Christmas House holds an annual toy drive in Everett’s local Boys & Girls Club gymnasium to help low income families with presents. Christmas House is a 100% volunteer organization, with all of the gifts either purely donations from the community or are bought with grant and donation money. Each December, they open 700 time slots for volunteers to sign up and help out with making the holidays just a little brighter for families that can’t afford presents.

Boys and Girls Club employee, Jerome Price says, “I’ve been here nine years and the toy drive makes the atmosphere really heartfelt. It benefits so many of the kids here, but it does get really busy with lots of volunteers running in and out of the place.”

Savanna Eickerman
The Food Pantry, located in Whitehorse Hall room 290, is a free service provided for students and faculty that are food insecure.

Volunteers of America (VOA) is another local resource that not only gives back during the holidays, but has year long programs. VOA is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1896, and has been providing affordable housing along with assistance and resources primarily to low income people and families.

They hold different holiday programs for volunteers to get involved in activities like Stuff-a-Bus or sponsoring a family for the holidays. Stuff-a-Bus partners with Everett Transit, the ATU local 883 and the Everett Post Media team to provide food and gifts to families in need.

EvCC has a resource of its own for students and staff in need. The EvCC Food Pantry has been open since October 3, 2017 and has been

providing resources for food insecure students, staff and faculty. EvCC’s staff holds a Soups-giving to donate canned and other food goods to our student pantry.

Savanna Eickerman
The Food Pantry has a selection of non-perishable food for students and faculty to take if they are food insecure. Students can volunteer here to help hand out food, or donate food to their selection.

Student and Food Pantry Volunteer, Annika Carniglia says, “Before returning to college, I worked in a field where my coworkers and my customers frequently experienced food insecurity, sometimes quite severe, and I didn’t have a way to help. Repeatedly witnessing the suffering of others and feeling unable to make a difference is, for lack of a better way to explain it, is really bad for your soul. I tell my kids that being able to help even one person a day is valuable, which is why every shift at the food pantry is my favorite experience.”

The EvCC Food Pantry is located in White Horse Hall Room 290 and is available Monday and Wednesday 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Tuesday and Thursday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., If you are interested in volunteering at the Food Pantry, please contact Madi Gilbert, ASB Vice President of Student Engagement at [email protected]