Six Tips for Supporting Your Neighborhood Organizations and Businesses


I am often asked how I have time to volunteer at my older daughter’s school and to write for a local blog when I have work and home life responsibilities. I am a people person by nature. I love the daily interactions with colleagues, clients, classroom parents, and even my neighborhood retailers. Supporting these local organizations fulfills me, because they support the local community, my community. I’ve never leaned more on my community than I have in the last year. If you are considering supporting your local organizations and businesses, here are my six tips to make those next steps a little easier. 

Recognize and accept your personal thresholds

Be honest about how much time, money, or activity you can commit to. Ask yourself the hard questions about what that support looks like. Your time and resources are valuable. You are valuable. 

Do your homework

Ask questions. Do the research. Make sure the organization/business you want to support is aligned with your beliefs and values. For example, when I was considering volunteering at Ilse’s elementary school, I asked organization members about their experiences and time commitment to make sure it was a good fit for me.

Start small

If all you can do is make a recommendation, then do that. No amount of support is too little. Any amount of support matters. It shows you care. 

Spread the love

If you can sell your goodies on Facebook, share your latest travel photo on Instagram, or rave on Twitter you can promote your non-profit or local business. Every organization or business has a social media handle these days. Promote them. If it’s a business you love, give them a shout out on Yelp or their own website. Every little bit of positive feedback helps. 

Make it a family affair

Involving the whole family demonstrates the importance of participation and that it matters. Both my husband and I volunteer at our church and at our daughter’s school when and where we can, because these organizations are important to us as a family. It also teaches our daughters to support what matters to them, not just what “looks good.”

Support what matters to you

Every family has something they love: their pets, their church, their school. Whatever you choose, what you support should be something that matters to you and your family. You will be more invested if it’s something you love or care about.

Supporting your neighborhood organization or business doesn’t have to be daunting; there are plenty of ways to contribute to an organization without a ton of additional time or even effort. Above all else, whatever you decide to support, support what matters to you. 

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Jeanne is a married, full-time working mom with an MBA in Marketing from Golden Gate University and BA in Communications from San Francisco State University. She is an Associate Director of Sales for Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants and loves that her career enables her to promote the city she loves. Jeanne and her husband Daniel live in San Francisco with their two daughters, Ilse and Alice. When Jeanne is not working, writing, or volunteering at Ilse's school, she enjoys traveling, spending time with family, and cooking from her collection of cookbooks (70 and growing) while sipping Hudson Bay Bourbon. Follow her adventures on Instagram.


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