Thanksgiving is just a few days away, and while you may be scrambling to find the best place for Thanksgiving dinner, or even planning an adventure out to the Macy’s Day Parade, there’s still time to give back this holiday season! There’s nothing more wholesome than helping out during the giving season, and NYC charities make it so easy to lend a hand.
From delivering turkeys to raising funds, there’s so many options to help families across the city. Check out some great volunteer opportunities you can be a part of this Thanksgiving season!
1. The Bowery Mission
Volunteer with The Bowery Mission this Thanksgiving, and join in on the longest-running Thanksgiving meal celebration in New York City! This year’s annual tradition will take place on Thanksgiving, with hot breakfast being served from 8 – 9 am and Thanksgiving meals from 11 am – 4 pm.
The Bowery Mission is planning to serve over 350 turkeys, 3,500 pounds of potatoes, and 400 pies this year to those in need. You can learn more and sign up to volunteer here.
Where: 227 Bowery
2. FeedingNYC 2023
FeedingNYC has hand-delivered almost 90,000 boxes of Thanksgiving meal ingredients over the past 22 years, and this year is no different! This year they’ll be hosting a huge food distribution event on November 21 at Terminal 5, which you can volunteer at! Or, you can also donate (one $48 donation covers one family) to the cause as well. Learn more and sign up here.
Where: Terminal 5 (610 W 56th St)
3. Healthy Foods Holiday Challenge 2023
The organization West Side Campaign Against Hunger is hosting a fundraiser in aim to feed 13,000 families with food in 2023. After serving 11,000 families last year, the Healthy Foods Holiday Challenge is searching for donations of (upward to) $75, which provides a family with healthy groceries containing 50% fresh produce, and a centerpiece food item, such as a turkey, for a holiday meal.
There’s also other ways to volunteer too, like starting your own fundraiser, volunteering in-person, or sponsoring the challenge. Learn more about the campaign here.
Where: Church of St. Paul & St. Andrew
4. God’s Love We Deliver
God’s Love We Deliver is looking for Thanksgiving helpers, where you can join them in the kitchen for additional food prep shifts, decorate holiday tote bags from home, or deliver meals on Thanksgiving with friends and family. The best part is that there are distribution centers in all 5 boroughs! Learn more and sign up here.
5. Citymeals on Wheels
After providing over 39,000 meals last year, Citymeals on Wheels is a great charity to help out during holiday season. Citymeals helps serve festive home-delivered holiday meals to older adults who live alone or are homebound seniors. Anyone can volunteer to deliver meals, and children can even help out by making holiday cards for the seniors. Learn more and sign up here.
Where: 355 Lexington Ave
6. New York Common Pantry
Although a few of New York Common Pantry’s Thanksgiving opportunities have since passed, you can still help out this Thanksgiving season by donating or volunteering to help families around NYC! Learn more here.
7. Masbia Soup Kitchen Network
This non-profit has 2 location in both Queens and Brooklyn, and they serve up hot meals to those who enter from Sunday-Thursday. Volunteers can be age 12+ (accompanied by parent) and can help out in all sorts of ways…like preparing meals, helping serve food, and any other miscellaneous tasks. Learn more and sign up here.
8. Gobble Gobble Give 2023
Join Gobble Gobble Give on Thanksgiving Day at The Apollo (253 W 125th St) from 8:30 am – 12:30 pm to help out this year! This organization has been around for 26 years, and this year they’ve teamed up with the historic venue to serve as a donation drop-off site for packaged and canned food, clothing, blankets, toiletries, new and gently used books and toys. Learn more about the drive and sign up for a volunteer time slot here.