Feed Their Needs- One of the greatest gifts you can give to someone in need is personal hygiene items and food to nourish their bodies. Begin by picking up items that will satisfy this area in their life first. Simple items like shampoo, a razor, deodorant, a toothbrush, toothpaste, a comb, a bar of soap, and tissues are great items to keep on hand.
Food like granola bars, crackers with peanut butter, trail mixes, dried fruits, and a bottle of water are also great items to tuck into your bags. If you have the funds, small denominator gift cards (we did $5 Walmart gift cards) can also be great to give so that they can pick up a meal or item(s) they might need.
Provide Warmth- We live in Ohio and the winters here are brutal. We can’t imagine how cold it would be to stand on the streets without the proper items we need for warmth. Add items like thermal boot socks, gloves, scarves, and hats to your gift bags. Items like these may seem out of your financial reach, but we found all of these at the dollar store and the sets of gloves were a mere $.50 each.
Feed Their Souls- We are sure it goes without saying, but feeding someone's soul is just as important as feeding their needs. You can feed their souls in a variety of ways depending on your family's beliefs and resources. We created a resource list (available to download) that they can tap into for further resources in your town. A note that lets them know that they are on your prayer list, a note of encouragement by your children, or a scripture that you find comforting can also be excellent additions.
When buying things for YouCAN2 bags, we thought about what we would want if we were in their situation. Just because they are in need doesn’t mean they don’t care about the same stuff we care about. We are all human and carry the same needs and desires.
The gifts themselves hopefully add a bit of light to the days of sad, sick or hungry people. But from our point of view, of equal value is the message they can send the givers, especially the littlest givers among us: Seeing matters.
Giving feels good.
OhioCAN is reaching those whose lives have been impacted by substance use and mental health by providing snacks, smiles and encouragement while in Detox, early recovery, ER care, or simply in need. Your donations are greatly appreciated. Being a 501(c)3, your donations are tax deductable. When ordering, please send us a message telling us which county you are donating to. Again, We thank you and so do Ohio's kids.