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12 Ways to Give for Increased Mental Health on World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day is meant to bring awareness to mental health issues around the world and reduce stigma against a variety of disorders and struggles. As we mark this important day, it’s not only an opportunity to acknowledge the challenges faced by individuals dealing with mental health issues but also a call to action for us all to be more actively involved in supporting initiatives for increased mental health in our communities.

One remarkable way to nurture your mental health and positively impact the lives of those around you is through acts of kindness and giving. Scientifically proven to boost mental and physical well-being, acts of kindness create a ripple effect of positivity that extends far beyond the initial gesture. It’s a mutually beneficial endeavor, where your generosity not only brightens someone else’s day but also leaves you with a profound sense of fulfillment and purpose.

Giving produces a “warm glow” where you feel happier doing something for another person as it releases endorphins and oxytocin (a natural feel-good hormone). Practicing giving can protect against symptoms of depression.

This day serves as an open invitation to engage with the mental health resources within your community. It’s a chance to connect with organizations, attend workshops, or participate in events that promote mental well-being and provide valuable information about coping with mental health challenges. Furthermore, World Mental Health Day reminds us that self-care is not selfish; it’s an essential component of maintaining our mental health. By taking care of ourselves physically, emotionally, and mentally, we become better equipped to offer support and kindness to others.

12 Ways to Give on World Mental Health Day:

1. Volunteer at a Food Bank

Volunteering is intrinsically rewarding and contributes to increased mental health and resilience. As you see your direct actions making a positive impact on those you’re aiding, you’ll experience the profound sense of fulfillment that comes from knowing you’ve brightened someone’s day.

Giving for World Mental Health Day

2. Donate Books, Toys, Clothes, and More

By clearing out your belongings and donating items, you actively bring joy and practicality to others’ lives. The act of decluttering is also therapeutic, contributing to your own sense of fulfillment. Giving items you no longer have use for to those who do can provide a great sense of happiness both for yourself and for the person receiving the items.

3. Offer Genuine Compliments

Offering genuine compliments actively brightens someone’s day and promotes positivity. It’s an active way to contribute to a more uplifting environment and strengthen connections.

4. Write Thank-You Notes

Expressing gratitude through handwritten thank-you notes actively strengthens your relationships and fosters a cycle of gratitude that enhances both your mental well-being and that of the recipients.

5. Host a Bake Sale and Donate Earnings to Charity

If you enjoy baking, then hosting a bake sale may be perfect for you! In fact, this can be done with most artistic skills. Setting up a station in your neighbourhood can help strengthen bonds between you and the members of your community while also providing them with handmade items. The money you earn can be donated to a charity of your choice, so you actively contribute to meaningful initiatives while delighting others with your creations and increasing mental health all around you.

6. Clean up Your local Parks

Participating in local park cleanups is an active way to give back to your community and the environment. Your efforts actively enhance the beauty and usability of public spaces, fostering a sense of pride and unity among residents.

7. Help Local Seniors

Actively offering your time and assistance to local seniors is a gesture of kindness that greatly impacts their well-being. Your companionship and support actively combat feelings of isolation and loneliness among senior citizens. You can offer to mow/shovel someone’s yards, offer to help them take out their trash, clean the garage, cross the street, buy their weekly groceries, and so much more. Senior residents can sometimes feel lonely or helpless, even offering just your company can lift their spirits.

8. Donate Blood

Actively saving lives by donating blood is a direct and impactful way to give back to your community and beyond. Your act of donating actively contributes to emergency medical care and patient recovery. It’s also physically good for your body to be able to create new blood to pump. Knowing that you’re donating something extremely needed and important for survival will positively impact your perception of yourself.

Giving for Mental Health

9. Start a Pay-it-forward Chain

Initiating a pay-it-forward chain actively encourages a culture of kindness. Your initial act of generosity can set off a ripple effect of goodwill, actively brightening the days of countless individuals.

10. Give Money Directly to Those in Need

Directly giving money to individuals in need is an active way to provide immediate relief and support. Your generosity actively addresses their pressing challenges and helps them navigate difficult times. This can be done by giving money to those you know personally, to the homeless population, or to other vulnerable populations. You can also give items in the form of care packages directly to individuals.

11. Virtually Volunteer around the World

Embrace the digital age by virtually volunteering around the world. Your active involvement in various global initiatives allows you to make a difference from the comfort of your home, connecting with and supporting diverse communities. Volunteering your time to various causes is a great way to give to places and people you normally wouldn’t be able to and add to increased mental health all around the world!

12. Advocate and Educate

Last but certainly not least, use your voice to advocate for mental health awareness and education. Actively participate in conversations about mental health, sharing your experiences or resources that can help others. By actively engaging in this dialogue, you contribute to breaking down the stigma surrounding mental health and creating a more compassionate and informed society that supports those facing challenges and contributes to increased mental health in our communities.

Give Back this World Mental Health Day

These ideas encompass a wide range of active ways to give back, promoting both mental health and community well-being. Whether you choose one or several of these options, remember that your active involvement makes a meaningful impact on the lives of others and contributes to a more compassionate and connected world.

So, on this World Mental Health Day and beyond, let us actively embrace the transformative power of kindness and generosity. Through these actions, we not only strengthen our own mental well-being but also actively contribute to a world where mental health is valued, stigma is dismantled, and compassion reigns supreme.

For more, check out the articles below!

Why Doing Good is Good for Your Mental Health and The World

5 Health Benefits of Giving that will make Life Better for You and the World

5 Ways Giving Back is Good for our Health and Healthier Communities

What people are saying about 365give

“I wanted to express my gratitude for the teaching you provided today. Your message was delivered eloquently, compassionately, and without judgment. The kids were engaged, and now have knowledge with which they can change the world. We all appreciated how you took the time to help us learn to build positive mindsets and practice happiness.”
Shelley Gardner, Grade 6 Ridgeview Elementary (West Vancouver)
“Actions really do speak louder than words, which is why I believe the 365give Challenge has resonated throughout my community. Every give we do is so important to us and leaves us happier and appreciating our lives a little bit more than before.”
Mahina Niyozova (Tajikistan)
“After watching the 365give TEDx Talk, I was inspired to join and begin a daily giving program in India. Today, along with 12 other volunteer women, we provide 100 meals to local underprivileged children in Bangalore for school every day.”
Deepika Ahuja, Mom (Bangalore, India)
“My life has greater meaning now.”
Renate Jorge, @BeKindBrazil and 365give Member, Family Program (Brazil)
“I just wanted to share that 365give really helped me. I am a better person now, thank you.”
MayLee, 365give Member, Individual Program
“This 365give Challenge has really injected excitement and extra enthusiasm in each work day as I think about what we can do. It has motivated me and the students.”
Cristina Peters, School Counselor (New York City, USA)
“I have seen a huge shift in energy throughout my classroom since doing the 365give Challenge. The Challenge has empowered my students to make a positive difference in the school’s community and beyond.”
Cella Adriana, Special Needs Educator /The Holliswood School (New York City, USA)
“The 365give Challenge helps students understand their impact on others. It opens avenues for introducing and discussing global and local issues in classrooms. It is powerful to watch students of all ages think about how they can make a change in another person’s life with one small act.”
Jessica Hall, Primary Teacher, French Immersion at École Pauline Johnson (West Vancouver, Canada)