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No matter the season, it’s always a good time to declutter your domicile, tidy up your community or lend a helping hand to a neighbor in need. Here are a few easy ways to make a difference in your town, on your time, with little or no prior skill required.

Find a home for what’s old

Go room-to-room throughout your home looking for items you seldom use. Then gather them to donate to the charity of your choice. If your second-hand store is temporarily closed due to COVID-19, you can box them up and pay a visit when they open again. In a similar light, you can reach out to your younger, smaller neighbors and offer to donate gently used toys and clothes your family has outgrown. Now is a great time to create a neighborhood email list as well, to keep in touch with each other as we shelter in place.

Tidy the pantry

Groceries are more expensive than ever this summer, and many families are struggling to make ends meet. With an extra strain on food pantries due to COVID-19, now is an ideal time to take inventory and donate extra food items, especially canned goods. Find a food bank here, and learn what they need. Many will send volunteers to pick up bags of food you wish to leave on the porch.

Pick up what Mother Nature leaves off

Bad weather can leave a mess of debris in its wake, particularly along public roads, rivers and local parks. If you’re among the millions who take a daily walk, bring a bag along to collect waste you find on your path. Just remember to wear gloves and wash your hands when you return. If you’d like to bring the family along for your trip, you can make an even bigger impact by modifying these steps.

Help a neighbor prep for the season

If you have a home-bound neighbor or know someone who needs a little extra help, you can always offer to clean up and tidy their yard, or take their unwanted items to a donation center on their behalf. Everything can be accomplished without social interaction, including making arrangements by email or over the phone, and limiting your volunteering to activities outside.

Always remember, safety first

One great way to clean up your neighborhood is to get all the neighbors on the same page when it comes to preventing crime. The National Crime Prevention Council has Neighborhood Safety Tips for Parents and information on how to set up your own Neighborhood Watch Program. On a smaller, but important scale, you can help ensure firearms don’t get into the wrong hands when you share this safe firearm storage bulletin with your online neighborhood social media page.

Discover even more volunteer opportunities today, many of which you can do from home, when you use this simple volunteer search.

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