Holiday volunteer opportunities for families in Cincinnati

‘Tis the season of giving, and the best way to teach your children to help others is by volunteering your time, energy and skills to local charities. While the coronavirus pandemic has changed the ways in which we’re able to volunteer, there are still many ways we can all pitch in and help. With the holiday season upon us, these local nonprofits need our help now more than ever. 

Here’s a list of holiday volunteer opportunities for families in Cincinnati:


The annual Thanksgiving Food Drive is great for groups, families and adults to help their community and beyond. Crossroads believes that helping those in need is a core part of their ministry; at Thanksgiving, they fill over 12,000 boxes each year. And this year, they’re aiming to fill 14,000 boxes! Both locally and nationally, in partnership with churches and faith-based ministries, Crossroads will be providing Thanksgiving meals to over 115,000 people in our communities. They’ll also be sending 90,000 pounds of food to their partners in South Africa.

Freestore Foodbank

In Cincinnati, many people face hunger every day — and during the holidays, this problem becomes even more pronounced. It’s estimated that 1 in 7 people in the tristate do not know where their next meal is coming from, and this problem affects 80,000 children in Greater Cincinnati. The coronavirus crisis has only made this problem more pronounced.  At this time, the agency is discontinuing food drives due to the current challenges at the local grocers and health risks to volunteers. If you’re able, make a donation so the agency can purchase large quantities of food in bulk to be shipped directly to them at a lower cost.

Give Like a Mother (GLAM)

Help by donating gently used clothing.  GLAM is located in Batavia and drop offs are always welcome! Parents can use this as a volunteer opportunity with your children is to host a clothing drive or a “new socks and underwear” drive.  Parents can visit our website at and choose “Give Funds,” “Give Time” or “Give Items” to learn more.

Giving Girls

Giving Girls was established in 2018 by local tweens Elise Tong and Maddie Evers. The longtime friends organized their first toy drive for Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in 2017, and, with the help of their parents in 2018, Tong and Evers established their nonprofit, Giving Girls. The duo has since organized numerous community service events for a number of high-profile nonprofits, including pet food and toy donations for the SPCA & Humane Society, a holiday toy drive for Dragonfly Foundation, blanket-making and donations to Warm Welcomes and backpack collection and school supply donations to Upspring. Tong and Evers have invited friends and local organizations to join them on their mission to spread kindness, serve the community and inspire giving. Follow their Facebook page to participate in their holiday toy drive or make a donation.

Hannah’s Treasure Chest

Established in 2001, Hannah’s Treasure Chest provides clothing, books, toys, diapers and other essential items to families through a network of partner agencies in Butler, Greene, Montgomery and Warren counties. During the holidays, Hannah’s Treasure Chest hosts a Giving Angels drive that provides gifts, stocking stuffers and necessities to area families.

Ronald McDonald House

In this time of great uncertainty, Ronald McDonald House is a place of support and stability. Help this local nonprofit by providing funding for meals; donating Amazon Wish List items; or simply making a donation.

Matthew 25: Ministries

Matthew 25: Ministries is a big player in the Cincinnati community, and it’s no surprise the nonprofit has responded to COVID: 19 in a big and meaningful way. They are distributing desperately-needed emergency supplies to first responders, police and fire departments, hospitals, nursing homes, schools, and other organizations that serve high-risk groups, including the sick, the elderly, and the impoverished. As part of their initial response, Matthew 25 is distributing more than 60,000 pounds of supplies to almost 200 organizations. Supplies include approximately 20,000 N95 and surgical masks, 155,000 gloves, 25,000 bottles of hand sanitizer, 11,000 packages of wipes, 8,500 rolls of paper products, 900 personal care kits, 1,000 sanitizing kits, 23,000 batteries, plus additional assorted medical and personal care items.

Sew Masks for Cincy

This nonprofit newbie has been a standout in 2020. Sew Masks 4 Cincy (SM4C) started this March in response to COVID-19. Within 72 hours of its launch, SM4C founder Esther Kang had mobilized 6,000 people in Greater Cincinnati. In its first three months, SM4C donated over 20,000 mask covers to frontline workers. To order a sewing kit or make a donation, visit ​​.

Sweet Cheeks Diaper Bank

As grocery stores and online retailers struggle to keep necessities stocked, diaper need is dire. The COVID-19 crisis has forced Sweet Cheeks to temporarily close its warehouse for donations; so the agency is in even greater need of monetary donations. And the good news is, because of some of our nonprofit partnerships, cash donations purchase 2-3 times more diaper buying power! {Read all about Sweet Cheeks here.}

Right now, as our city copes with COVID-19, our community’s needs are greater than ever. This holiday season, we need to pull together and hold each other up in these uncertain times. Because we’re all in this together. 

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