Since the holidays are coming, I wanted to remind everyone that the holidays are a time for giving and helping the less fortunate. Oftentimes, I forget how lucky I am to have a family that cares for me and a place that I can call home. I never have to worry about food on the table, electricity in my house, or my Netflix subscription being canceled all of a sudden.

That’s why I strongly believe in volunteerism. In America, volunteer participation has gone down while charity donations have increased. While I fully support giving money to charity, there’s nothing that beats the fulfillment that I get from giving up my time to help people directly. For people like me who often can’t give much to charity, giving my time to help people that are less fortunate is something really special.

So, during the holidays, I volunteer at an elderly daycare center called Royal Garden where I serve a Christmas experience to those grandmas and grandpas who sometimes don’t have a family to go back to when they get home. Thus, I do everything in my power to serve them a proper Christmas meal while playing some traditional holiday music on the piano. When they come up to me at the end and say how much they love the song, that’s when I truly feel the magic of the holidays.

Whatever you do over the holidays, whether volunteering at a soup kitchen or a homeless shelter, know that you are making somebody’s holiday all the merrier. Tis’ the season to give: time is also a gift worth giving?