Homeless Donation Drive Hot
Now that Halloween is over, we approach the season of being thankful and getting in the spirit of giving! This Resident Event idea encourages the spirit of the season by bringing your residents together and giving back to your community. It should be fairly inexpensive and easy on your budget!
As a community, host a collections drive for a local homeless shelter. You can easily find lists of items that are most needed at the shelter itself but some ideas are: socks, coats, toiletries, diapers, blankets, non-perishable food items, and more. Many homeless shelters have programs which provide a Thanksgiving meal to families in need so see if you can find out if there are specialized food items to collect. Some shelters even accept book donations if they have programs in place to assist those in need with education and job placement.
Host a Resident Event not only to collect those items for the homeless, but ask your residents to participate in a Bake Sale to raise money for the cause as well. Encourage your residents to bring baked goods wrapped in individual packages to sell for 50 cents to one dollar with all funds specifically going towards a monetary donation to the homeless shelter. This is much more fun than placing a box inside of your leasing office for people to put items in (although you can do that too, leading up to the event if anyone cannot attend). This way you are bringing your residents together as a community to give back to those in need, which makes everyone feel GREAT! Depending on the size of your community and the space in which you will be holding this event, open it up to the public! Spend a day or two doing outreach marketing to promote this collections drive to support local homeless shelters and get some positive attention for your community!
You should host this event on a Saturday for a few hours so you have the chance of more people participating in both the Bake Sale and the donation drive. Make it as festive as possible with balloons and provide light refreshments such as sodas, bottled water, apple cider, and juice boxes for the kids. During the event, have a box or a bowl out to collect money for donations as well. If you can make contact with someone at the shelter who could also attend that would be a great addition to have someone there talking to your residents about the impact they are making.
Once the event is over, be sure to get a count of how many items were donated and how much money was raised and make sure you put that in your next resident newsletter and all over your social media accounts for your property! Make sure your residents feel proud of what they accomplished and put it into perspective which phrases such as, “By raising $237 we were able to provide 20 Thanksgiving meals to families in need. Great job, ABC Apartments!”
Make sure to list the items that you are collecting on your flyer or whatever media you will use to promote this event and Bake Sale as well as including the box in the office for donations if someone is unable to attend. Plan this event a few weeks in advance and spend plenty of time promoting it so that you can ensure the most participation.
The following link is a great resource to start your research to find a local shelter: http://www.homelessshelterdirectory.org/