November is a season of gratitude and giving. If you’re looking for ways to support local nonprofits but feeling financially strained, donating money isn’t the only way to get involved. Here are 25 ways to give back in Chattanooga.  

  1. Gift-A-Bike– For the past 11 years the generous donations of Local Fare Magazine readers have provided brand-new bikes for Christmas to our most vulnerable population. Scan the QR Code to donate today!

  2. Clean up Chattanooga– Join Green Steps Chattanooga for a community cleanup picking up litter around trails, parks, open spaces, neighborhoods, and city limits. 
  3. Join the Family– Welcome Home of Chattanooga offers a loving home environment for end-of-life care. Donate home care items, prepare a meal, or simply provide friendship by listening to their stories. 
  4. For the Animal Lovers– Work at McKamey Animal Center to help socialize cats, walk dogs, volunteer in the office, or, for a longer commitment, become a foster family until pets can find their forever homes. 
  5. Clean out your Closet– Donate professional clothing to Dress for Success and empower women to achieve economic independence. 
  6. Shop for Necessities– While you’re shopping for your family, grab an extra set of diapers, baby wipes, body wash, hair products, toothbrushes and paste, and more to donate to the Chattanooga Free Store for community members in need. 
  7. Pay it Forward– While getting your caffeine fix at Cadence Coffee, buy a cup for a stranger and leave an encouraging note with their Pay it Forward program. 
  8. Be a Safe Haven– Help refugees fleeing from war and poverty find a new home and a new hope in Chattanooga. 
  9. Give Formalware a New Life– Dust off gently loved gowns and help local teens get outfitted for prom or homecoming. Check out The Closet of Blessings on Facebook.
  10. Get your Steps In– Find a nearby 5k race fundraiser to support local non-profits and give back while earning bragging rights. 
  11. Take 15 Minutes to Save a Life– Everybody is somebody’s type. Donating blood is an easy and quick way to make a huge community contribution. 
  12. Calm in Chaos– Due to a foster parent shortage, children entering state custody have ended up sleeping in offices. Isaiah 117 house provides a warm bed while children transition into care. Check out their wishlist. 
  13. Play Santa– The Angel Tree’s goal is to make sure every kid in our community has a Christmas to remember. 
  14. Invest in the Future– Become a mentor through the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program.
  15. Shop for Good– Project Free to Fly provides job skills, mentoring, and support to women in recovery. Shop their high-end goods, and do some good. 
  16. Change the Course of Generations– MOMentum believes higher education can transform a generation. Use your resources, talent, and experiences to support single moms who are working hard to make a difference for their families by graduating college. 
  17. Provide Comfort and JoyCrochet blankets, donate new toys, or pick something from the wishlist for children staying at Erlanger Hospital.

  18. The Power of Art– The Hart Gallery believes that art has the power to heal and help those in mental, emotional, and economical distress. Purchase their beautiful work to support the artist’s recovery and healing.
  19. Be a Shelter in the Storm– Provide household goods to families transitioning from homelessness to Chattanooga Room at the Inn.
  20. Lend a Lift– Provide autonomy and dignity to the elderly or disabled members of our community by offering free rides to appointments or errands. 
  21. Get Wild– Volunteer at the Chattanooga Zoo and get a behind-the-scenes understanding of how to care for these exotic residents. 
  22. Book it!– Did you know volunteers ages 10 and up can work at the Chattanooga Public Library? 
  23. Be a Bridge– The Chambliss Center provides transitional living for teens who have aged out of the foster care system. Become a mentor, provide a home-cooked meal, or simply check things off their wishlist to help these kids navigate adulthood. 
  24. Work the Poll– The midterm elections are upon us! Volunteer at your local polling station and become a part of democracy in action! 
  25. Not sure exactly where you fit? Peruse this list of available volunteer opportunities in Chattanooga.