It’s the season of giving and if you’re looking for ways to make an impact in the community, we’ve got you. From “golden” adults to youth to people experiencing homelessness in our city — the need is great and donations of any size can truly make a difference. Here are nine easy ways you can give back to fellow Chandler residents this Giving Tuesday.
- Chandler Senior Center W.I.S.H.: Be a Santa to a “golden” resident and brighten a local senior’s holiday season with heartfelt gifts. Holiday shoppers can be a Secret Santa and receive a W.I.S.H. (Wish Individual's Seasonal Happiness) list with gift suggestions. All donations must be wrapped and returned to the Chandler Senior Center by Friday, Dec. 1. Don’t delay as there’s still time to contribute a gift! For more info and to make a W.I.S.H. come true, call Recreation Specialist Ariana Atwood at 480-782-2720.
- Golden Neighbors Holiday Celebration: The City of Chandler’s Golden Neighbors program is hosting a free holiday gathering for senior residents from 9-11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 14, at the Chandler Community Center. During the festive celebration, attendees will receive a holiday gift made possible by generous donations.
If you’d like to contribute to our Golden Neighbor gift list, you may purchase a gift directly from the event’s Amazon Wish List or purchase a gift on your own and drop it off at the city’s Neighborhood Resources Department, 235 S. Arizona Ave. Gifts will be accepted through Tuesday, Dec. 12. For more info, visit Golden Neighbors or connect with Priscilla Quintana with Chandler’s Neighborhood Programs at 480-782-4363.
- Youth Site Bucks Store: The city’s Public Housing Site Bucks Store is an incentive program for housing youth to earn “site bucks” from good behavior or actively participating in the after-school program, finishing homework or being involved in community events. The earned site bucks can then be used to purchase items from the store such as school supplies, toys, clothing and more.
During the holidays, the Site Bucks Store turns into a place where its public housing youth may purchase gifts for their parents and siblings. The deadline to donate to this unique holiday store is Thursday, Dec. 18. You may purchase items directly from an Amazon Wish List, purchase a gift/gift card of your choice and drop it off at the city’s Housing and Redevelopment Office, 235 S. Arizona Ave., or make a tax-deductible donation online. For details, visit the Chandler Site Bucks Store or connect with Housing & Redevelopment Program Coordinator Heather Callis at 480-782-3244.
- Chandler Library Giving Tree: Chandler Public Library is partnering with the city’s Neighborhood Resources Department this holiday season. Stop by the lobby of Chandler Downtown Library to check out the Library Giving Tree and select an ornament that lists an item or multiple items that will be donated to an individual or family in need.
Chandler’s Community Navigators will utilize donated items to help individuals who are currently experiencing homelessness. In addition to the ornaments with specific items, there will also be a sign by the tree listing other donation needs. The tree will be on display through Dec. 20 and all donated gifts must be returned to the Downtown Library by Wednesday, Dec. 20. For more info, call 480-782-2800 or visit Chandler Library Giving Tree.
- Chandler Fire Toy Drive: The Chandler Fire Department is collecting new unwrapped toys and gift cards for those in need. Donations will be accepted through Friday, Dec. 15 at all Chandler Fire stations and the Fire Admin Building, 151 E. Boston St. in Downtown Chandler. You also may attend the annual toy drive on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 2-8 p.m. at Chandler Fashion Center. And Chandler Fire also will be trying to “Stuff the Fire Truck” with donated toys at the Tumbleweed Tree Lighting & Parade on Saturday, Dec. 2 from 4:30-9 p.m.
- ChangeUp: Have you seen our ChangeUp signs around Chandler? The signs are placed along city streets to promote the ChangeUp program that offers residents another way to give to people experiencing homelessness. Instead of giving spare change to a panhandler, you can make real, long-term change through ChangeUp.
All proceeds go directly to services to help end homelessness in our city. Getting people off the streets as soon as possible makes a huge difference to their long-term success. Donating is easy. Text “ChangeUp” to 44-321 to make a one-time or monthly donation of any amount — even a $1 helps. Donations also are accepted at ChangeUp.
- Acts of Kindness Program (A-OK): Inside your Chandler utility bill, you will find a convenient way to help people in need in the community. The Chandler Acts of Kindness donation program, or A-OK for short, gives residents an opportunity to make a voluntary donation to assist individuals and families within the city who are in need. The contributions collected go back into the community through a grant process to support a variety of human service programs that provide basic needs and utility bill assistance to low-income Chandler residents. For more information, including how to make an A-OK donation, call 480-782-2280.
- Holiday giving to Chandler Nonprofits: Local nonprofits are always in need of donations during the holidays. Whether it’s purchasing a toy to help make this season magical for kids, or donating food to ensure no one goes hungry, there are multiple organizations in need. Currently, the Chandler Care Center, The Salvation Army Chandler Corps and ICAN’s Stuffed with Love Boutique are a few of our local nonprofits in need of your help this coming December. Learn how you can contribute to their upcoming events at For Our City-Chandler. To explore other nonprofits in our community, check out For Our City-Chandler’s Resource Guide.
- Volunteer: If you don’t have the extra money to donate, there are still several ways to give back to others in need. There’s no better gift than the gift of time, right? Whether it’s volunteering to teach someone to read, or helping a veteran or senior with yard maintenance through our Let’s Pull Together program, there are plenty of ways to help our community be a better place. Check out our volunteer opportunities for different ways you can donate through acts of service.
Thank you for considering a donation this Giving Tuesday, this holiday season and throughout the year.