There are lots of ways to give back to the community this time of year. Whether you like to volunteer your time, efforts, and talents, run for a cause, or give back by donating, there’s no shortage of ways to do so in the Scenic City.
The tricky part? Finding all of them. That’s why we rounded up 30+ volunteer opportunities, Thanksgiving runs and walks, and now, we’re rounding up local toy, food, and other donation drives + events that you can take part in.
- The Children’s Hospital at Erlanger is collecting mini Christmas trees to decorate the rooms of patients in December. Artificial trees (three ft. or smaller) with ornaments can be dropped off Thursday, Dec. 8 or Friday, Dec. 9 between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the table near the main entrance.
- Toys for Tots collects toys for children in Chattanooga + surrounding areas. Click here to view the many donation drop sites around town, or make a monetary donation here.
- Down the road a bit, The Caverns music venue is hosting a toy drive — bring an unwrapped, new toy to any show at the venue through Dec. 10, and you’ll receive one free cave tour for someone in your group.
- Level Up Arcade & Billiards will host a Christmas toy drive and tribute night on Friday, Nov. 25 — bring a toy or $10 donation cover.
- Adopt an Angel with the Salvation Army’s Chattanooga Area Command Angel Tree program. Your Angel tag will provide you with the Angel’s information + item(s) they would like or need. After purchasing items, return them to the location where you selected your tag or one of the designated drop-off locations.
- Wednesdays are Charity Nights at NoogaLights — $5 from each ticket scanned is donated to Northside Neighborhood House, Humane Society, and Bethel Bible Village.
- Head to a Food City nearby to purchase pre-packaged bags filled with food or pet items, all of which will be donated locally to benefit local hunger relief organizations + animal shelters — bags are available for purchase through Dec. 31.
- Local 3’s annual “Share Your Christmas” food drive will take place on Friday, Dec. 9 from 4:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Drop off donations at the Chattanooga Area Food Bank, First Baptist Church of Dalton, or Life Care Centers of America in Cleveland — the food collected in each community will stay in that community.
- Hits 96 is hosting multiple teddy bear toy drives for The Forgotten Child Fund starting Thursday, Nov. 17. Each donation will score you tickets to an Ugly Christmas Sweater Party event with Hits 96 Artists, Gayle, and charlieonnafriday at the Barrelhouse Ballroom on Dec. 7 — find donation locations here.